(From left to right) Sophie Johnston, Ashley Dinh and Britney Ma help clean the highway in Manhattan, Kansas, as part of the Circle K International conference.

Students impact the communities around them

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Newman University students are without a doubt making a big impact, readying them to enact change even after they graduate. 

Four such students teamed up last fall to collect clothing items and hygiene products for The Women’s Network, which offers job readiness and educational opportunities to survivors of domestic violence.

Said junior Sadie Steiner, “When I saw this opportunity, I thought it was really cool, especially since it’s a project led by all women and it’s for women. It’s just really empowering.”

Another Newman project that impacted the community occurred during a disc golf tournament this past January called the Father Kapaun Classic. 

The entry fee to play was a donation of 100 diapers. Thirty-three competitors — including members of the Newman Disc Golf Club — signed up for the tournament. Roughly 4,000 diapers were collected from the event, all of which were donated to Catholic Charities of Southwest Kansas to support families in need.

Then there’s Newman senior Sophie Johnston, who was recently elected as the district state governor for Circle K International (CKI) — the largest student-led collegiate service organization. 

She said, “This opportunity means that I get to be a leader to not only those around me but also people around the world.”

For fellow senior Madisyn Bucl’s ASC Service Award capstone service project, she created “blessing bags” for the children who benefit from Kidzcope — an initiative of the Wichita Children’s Home providing grieving children and families with community and peer support. 

Bucl said, “I’ve really learned how to be a better leader and all the different ways that I can be a leader out in the community.”

Newman launches two new doctoral programs

Newman University is unique in higher education in that it offers a wide range of degree programs from certificates and associate degrees to now doctorates. 

The university launched its first cohorts of students in two new doctoral programs this year — the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) and the Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP). 

The DNAP program is multifaceted and addresses health care needs and problems of the city, region and nation through anesthesia education. It prepares qualified individuals to assume advanced practice nursing roles in the delivery of safe and evidence-based anesthesia care.

President Kathleen S. Jagger believes the new program sets Newman apart. 

“Newman is well positioned to continue making a positive impact on the health of families in Wichita, the region and beyond by producing skilled medical professionals who also embrace the human element of their care and the commitment to service that exemplifies Newman graduates,” she said. 

With Newman’s DBA program, students can pursue flexible research tracks and various focus areas for dissertations. They’re trained to not only build upon the knowledge and skills they’ve already established but also learn to excel in environments that will continuously change.

Larry Straub, director of the DBA program, explained the overall benefit of both doctoral programs. 

“The skillsets taught in graduate level education, but particularly in doctoral level education, will impart the ability to research, approach problems from unique angles and levels, and identify solutions not yet identified to date,” he said. “These specific skillsets will be in increasing demand and a primary way to differentiate one’s career in increasingly competitive environments.”