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Colleges and Academic Departments Outreach

Arts & Sciences | Business Administration | Engineering | Law | Pharmacy


College of Arts & Sciences

Contact: Office of the Dean at 419-772-2131

In the Department of Art & Design, the annual Artists Against Hunger food drive is overseen by Brit Rowe, associate professor of art, and Luke Sheets, assistant professor of art. Rowe also advises students who belong to the Ada Friends Ceramic Workshop. In addition, the department co-sponsors (with the education department) the Saturday Morning Art Enrichment (SMArts) program, which teaches area elementary and middle school students about art through the many exhibits and art installations on ONU’s campus, The department also is involved with the “Design: Think. Know. Do” summer honors camp (with the University), the MI Ready design course, and a literacy campaign for the Ada Public Library.

Bradfield School for the Arts is an outreach program led by ONU’s collegiate chapter of the Ohio Music Education Association. It provides free one-on-one music instruction to underprivileged youth in Allen County public schools. Nine ONU music majors volunteered 504 service hours during the 2010-11 academic year. Denise D’Arca, professor of music, is the program’s advisor.

Department of Biological and Allied Sciences supports the Ada Food Bank, Ada Tree Commission, and various service clubs and organizations (EMS, Soroptomists, Health Board, etc.).

ONU Future Forensic Scientists conducts fingerprinting and takes identification photos of children at Homecoming and helps area police set up for testing and demonstrations. This group of students is advised by Dennis De Luca, associate professor of biological sciences.

MI Ready involves Arts & Sciences faculty, staff and students who work with 100 underserved students in Lima Senior High School of Multiple Intelligences to keep them in school and prepare them for college.

HealthWise is a joint collaboration between the College of Pharmacy and the College of Arts & Sciences’ departments of exercise physiology, nutrition and nursing. HealthWise works to review medications and provide nutritional guidance and exercise coaching. Other benefits include assistance in the management of diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia, hypertension and tobacco cessation for ONU employees, spouses, family members and retirees. HealthWise now manages diabetes patients in Hardin County and Coumadin patients at Mary Rutan Hospital in Bellefontaine, Ohio. The ultimate goal of the program is to create a culture of wellness for the ONU campus and the surrounding counties.

The Department of Education supports the Saturday Morning Art Enrichment (SMArts) program, which teaches area elementary and middle school students about art through the many exhibits and art installations on ONU’s campus. Students then apply what they’ve learned in the studio through art projects that develop creativity and confidence under the mentorship of ONU education majors. The program was founded in 2006 by Linda Lehman, visiting instructor of education at ONU.

In fall 2009, a group of faculty members from Ohio Northern University’s Center for Teacher Education got together to improve the professional development of their students and to build stronger relationships with local schools. Members of this committee are Jim Schul, assistant professor of education, Russ Crawford, associate professor of history, Patricia Freeman, associate professor of education, Deb Gallagher, assistant professor of education, Diana Garlough, assistant professor of education, Linda Lehman, visiting instructor in education, and Ron Kieffer, associate professor of education.

In the Department of Technology, Richard Miller, instructor in technological studies, advises ONU’s Construction Management Association, which has adopted highway cleanup as a service project. Paul Nutter, associate professor of technology, advises the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, which conducts food drives for the Ada Food Pantry. David Rouch, professor of technology, advises the Epsilon Pi Tau honorary, which participates in Habitat for Humanity.



College of Business Administration

Contact: Office of the Dean at 419-772-2070

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is provided by undergraduate accounting majors. They provide assistance to the general public, mostly persons in need, in the preparation of their federal and state income tax returns.

Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) participates annually in the Ohio Society of CPAs’ FETCH! program, in which IMA students visit grade schools to teach personal finance and the benefits of accounting. Chapter members participate each December in the campus-wide Adopt A Family food and gift drive.

Dr. James W. Fenton Jr., dean, is a member of the Lima Rotary and the Board of Trustees for Otterbein Homes, a Methodist assisted-living and retirement community for the elderly. His public service activities within Allen County include funding of the Rotary Jogging Path, Rib Cook-Off fundraiser volunteer, volunteer bell ringer for the Salvation Army and Paul Harris Fellow for international service. 

Peter Banfe, associate professor of international business, is a member of Grace Baptist Church of Delaware, Ohio, and volunteers in homeless outreach, a food pantry and a rest home ministry.

Art Elsass, computer applications professional, is on the Board of Directors of Richland Manor Nursing Home and volunteers for Allen East High School (softball facilities improvements and database creation for tracking activities of members of the marching band).

Randy Ewing, associate professor of marketing, is a commission member of the First Church of God in Findlay, Ohio. (Commission manages the church’s properties.)

Michele Govekar, professor of management, is a member of the Hardin County Hospital Board of Trustees in Kenton, Ohio (executive secretary of the board).

Paul Govekar, associate professor of management, is on the Funding Committee and the Board of Directors of United Way of Hardin County in Kenton, Ohio, and a member of the Finance Committee for Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Ada, Ohio.

Robert Kleine, associate professor of marketing and associate dean, is a committee member of the Bowling Green Bicycle Safety Commission in Bowling Green, Ohio.

David McClough, assistant professor of economics, is a member of the East Side Neighborhood Association in Bowling Green, Ohio.

David Savino, associate professor of management, is involved with Boy Scouts of America, Troop 124, in Ada, Ohio (assistant scoutmaster), Food Drive, Scouting for Food, and the Ada Citizens Committee on Scouting.

Tammy Schakett, assistant professor of entrepreneurship, is a workshop organizer for ONU’s Entrepreneurship Workshops (targeted towards local businesses, ONU students, faculty and staff interested in starting businesses), a member of the Steering Committee and the Ohio Entrepreneurship Council in Columbus, Ohio.

Susan Schertzer, assistant professor of marketing, is a Board of Trustees member at McAuley High School and a committee member (marketing) of Holy Cross Immaculate, both in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Dexter Woods, BSBA ’79, JD ’82, professor of business administration, is a board member of Hardin County USTA Junior Tennis Association, committee member of Ada First United Methodist Church, and faculty advisor to ONU’s Voluntary Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program (students, mostly undergraduate accounting majors, who provide assistance to the general public, mostly persons in need, in the preparation of their federal and state income tax returns).

Kay Zekany, associate professor of accounting, is program coordinator of the Greater Port Clinton (Ohio) Area Arts Council.



College of Engineering

Contact: Laurie Laird, BSME ’86, at 419-772-2421 or

The TEAMS (Tests of Engineering Aptitude, Mathematics and Science) competition has been locally hosted since 1987 by ONU, which currently ranks in the top 10 competition sites annually for the number of participants. In addition to the testing facilities, ONU sponsors a portion of the competition fees and provides lunch and a T-shirt to each participating student. The Lima chapter of the Ohio Society of Professional Engineers also sponsors these T-shirts.

The Engineering Explorer Post, located in Findlay, Ohio, receives help from College of Engineering faculty three to four times per year in providing on-campus activities and learning opportunities for young adults.

STeM 2 STEM, a weeklong, grant-funded program, provides middle and high school teachers the opportunity to learn how to bring engineering education into their math, science and technology classrooms through hands-on, inquiry lessons. Contact Ken Reid at 419-772-2383.

Curriculum development with local school districts is a recent collaboration between ONU’s T.J. Smull College of Engineering, the Department of Biological and Allied Health Sciences, and the Center for Teacher Education. This effort created a four-module curriculum for the Upper Scioto Valley School District’s Energy Academy.

A STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Academy for elementary and middle school children was operated in fall 2011 for the entire student body (fourth through sixth grades) of Washington Intermediate School in Piqua, Ohio. The cost of the materials was underwritten by an Air Force Association Educator Grant. The college plans to duplicate the academy at other schools.

Senior Capstone Projects are yearlong endeavors, sponsored by industry, local organizations or the college itself, completed by engineering seniors. Sample projects include the design of an autoclave for use in a small village in Kenya, the design of a vibration test stand for the college’s laboratory, working with ODOT on the design of a highway bypass, and working with an automotive company’s painting process to design a way to reduce the net energy consumption of the facility. ONU’s wind turbine project was the result of engineering students’ research and a capstone project.

Professional development (CPD) events are hosted by the college for College of Engineering alumni. These events include the True North Surveyors Workshop, a continuing education event for surveyors in northwest Ohio.

The college has entered Economic Partnerships with and has obtained funding for a variety of faculty and student activities through the Allen Economic Development Group, the Hardin County Economic Development Council, the Wyandot Economic Development Council and the Regional Growth Partnership in the Toledo area.

American Society of Civil Engineers conducts annual activities such as Adopt-a-Highway (state Route 81 near Ada), Trick-or-Treating for canned goods (which provides support for the Ada Food Pantry), winter clothing drive to support ReStore, and reading to Ada Elementary second graders. Additionally, members volunteer at ReStore to support an after-school math and science program, repaired concrete at a local church, and built wheelchair ramps for local citizens.

Tau Beta Pi, the engineering honorary, works with Engineering Explorers Group, helps with Science Day at fairgrounds, helps with Ada Science Fair and District Science Fair, helps with High School Quiz Bowl, assists with Ada Christmas lights, sponsors a family via the ONU Chapel Gift Tree, helps with JETS (Junior Engineering Technical Society) team competitions and the Ada Music Fest Show Choir competition, and participates in the Kappa Phi Sing-a-Thon.

Phi Sigma Rho, the engineering sorority, regularly assists local Girl Scout troops and the Girl Scouts of Western Ohio Council and participates in and fundraises for the ONU Relay for Life organization.

Society of Women Engineers assisted Girl Scouts of Western Ohio Council with an event in Lima for girls of all ages called “Defy the Stereotype.”

Eric Baumgartner, dean of the college of engineering, is chair of the board of directors of the Ohio Energy and Advanced Manufacturing Center (OEAMC). He also is a member of the Governance Board of Lima Central Catholic High School in Lima, Ohio, and a member of the Lima Rotary Club.

Bill Kanzig, BS ’92, machinist, is an EMT for the Ada-Liberty Ambulance Service.

Laurie Laird, BSME ’86, director of corporate and alumni relations and assistant professor of mechanical engineering, is secretary and past president of the Ada Rotary Club, which has provided support for various community entities including high school scholarships, the Ada Harvest and Herb Festival, and Ada Park. The club also provided member and monetary support for Partnership South Africa. The Partnership, supported by Ada Rotary, Rotary District 6600, the ONU education department and others, provided teacher training in the small village of Lepesi in South Africa. Additionally, Laird is president of the Twice Ten Art Club (a local women’s organization), a volunteer and member of the Ada Music Boosters, and an adult volunteer and driver for the Girl Scouts of Western Ohio and, specifically, Ada Troop No. 30298.

Jed Marquart, BSME ’80, professor of mechanical engineering, is a judge for the District Science Fair and deacon and past president of Ebenezer Mennonite Church in Bluffton, Ohio.

David Mikesell, BSME ’97, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, is a worship leader at St. John Mennonite Church in Pandora, Ohio.

David Retterer, associate professor of mathematics and computer science, is mayor and past council member of the village of Ada.

Tom Zechman, assistant dean for student and academic affairs, is the facilitator for “Teens Taking Charge,” a program offered annually by the Piqua Chamber of Commerce.



College of Law

Contact: Office of the Dean at 419-772-3051

ONU’s off-campus Legal Clinic is located in downtown Lima. It offers legal services to low-income area residents and nonprofit corporations in Allen and Hardin counties. The clinic also works closely with the West Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church to help local churches with incorporation and issues pertaining to mergers, consolidation and risk-management. Last year, 30 students performed more than 3,500 service hours and served more than 150 individuals.

Street Law teaches law to area high school students.

Voluntary Income Tax Assistance (VITA) is a tax preparation service for low-income area residents.

Public Interest Stipends are annually awarded to approximately six law students to work around the country in public interest positions, which typically work with underserved segments of society.

Law Student Organizations Holiday Activities. During the holiday season, student organizations do a number of things for the local community:

  • Law Veterans Association sends care packages to troops.
  • International Law Society collects items for refugee project.
  • Legal Association of Women collects items for a community shelter.
  • Adopt A Family provides food and gifts for a local family in need.
  • Black Law Students Association directs a Giving Tree program.



College of Pharmacy

Contact: Office of the Dean at 419-772-2275

HealthWise, a joint collaboration between the College of Pharmacy and the College of Arts & Sciences’ departments of exercise physiology, nutrition, and nursing, works to review medications and provide nutritional guidance and exercise coaching. Other benefits include assistance in the management of diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia, hypertension and tobacco cessation for ONU employees, spouses, family members and retirees. HealthWise is now managing diabetes patients in Hardin County and Coumadin patients at Mary Rutan Hospital in Bellefontaine, Ohio. The ultimate goal of the program is to create a culture of wellness for the ONU campus and the surrounding counties.

Blood pressure checks and blood testing take place every Thursday at Kroger in Kenton, Ohio.

Outreach events, screenings and testings at Rays Supermarkets in Lima:

  • “Winter Wellness Expo” in January – Nearly 50 students served the patient population, and more than 200 members of the Allen County community were screened.
  • “Spring Into Wellness” health fair at Rays Supermarkets in March.
  • Four-year partnership with Rays Supermarkets on weekly health and wellness screenings. Pharmacy students present different health topics every week and provide free screenings to three different sites. Disease topics include the prevention and management of hypertension, diabetes, women’s/men’s health, nutrition, cholesterol, heartburn, and asthma/COPD education.
  • Screenings and testings at ReStore in Ada.

Operation Immunization teams up with CVS Pharmacy in northeast Ohio. Pamphlets containing information about the seasonal flu vaccine, preventative measures and a listing of high-risk groups will be distributed to the more than 75 companies and residents that CVS pharmacists will immunize. In addition, Operation Immunization plans to train and provide a certification course to new student members. Students will continue to educate people on vaccinations, including the shingles, flu, meningitis and pertussis vaccinations.

Operation Diabetes plans to collaborate with other outreach groups within the college to provide various health-related screening services to the Spanish-speaking population in Columbus, Ohio. They also will participate in various health fairs and host monthly blood glucose clinics at Rays Supermarkets in Lima, Ohio.

A prescription drug take-back program features pharmacy students and a pharmacy graduate at Barnesville Hospital in Barnesville, Ohio.

The NACDS (National Association of Chain Drug Stores) RxIMPACT Day in Washington, D.C., featured the participation of ONU pharmacy students.

Kappa Epsilon, a women’s professional pharmacy sorority, donated 75 baskets of “comfort and hope” to St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima, Ohio, to be used for women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Christian Pharmacists Fellowship International (CPFI) is a worldwide, interdenominational ministry of individuals working in all areas of pharmaceutical service and practice.

Heartburn awareness challenge is focusing its efforts during the 2011-12 academic year on having a presence at a local pregnancy clinic to help educate women about safe and effective treatments for heartburn during pregnancy. Student members plan to sponsor a food drive and work at a men’s homeless shelter to serve heartburn-friendly meals to its residents. Additionally, students will distribute information to fans at football tailgates in the surrounding area and other universities.

The Stefanie Spielman Walk/Run for Breast Cancer Awareness, an annual event sponsored jointly by Kappa Epsilon, the ONU chapter of the Student Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the Office of Alumni Relations, had more than 150 participants and raised more than $4,000 for the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute.

Health Fairs. Pharmacy students participate in wellness programs at the Ada’s Harvest and Herb Festival, Hardin Memorial Hospital Health Fair, Allen and Hardin counties Councils of Aging, Blanchard House Assisted Living in Kenton, Heartbeat Pregnancy Crisis Center in Lima, “Date Night” in Dayton, and the SNPhA Health Fair at ONU.

The Raabe College of Pharmacy, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi, Ghana, and the pharmacy council have partnered to help guide KNUST through its pharmacy education transition from a bachelor’s degree to a PharmD program. The cause for this new partnership is a West African Health Organization initiative to standardize medical education and the standard of care. Ghana, with the most advanced social, educational and political structures in Africa, has been selected to take the lead in moving pharmacy education forward.

SHARE Kenya is a three-week clinical program in which students, faculty and clinicians from across the country deliver health care in rural western Kenya. 

The Medicinal Herb Gardens, two clearly marked, landscaped herb gardens that are part of ONU’s ongoing herbal education for biology and pharmacy students, are available for summer camp programs and area herb society presentations. The shade garden, featuring 17 medicinal plants, is near the ONU soccer field at the northwest corner of the campus woodland area. Its counterpart is located in a sunny location on the south side of the Hakes-Pierstorf Family Pharmacy Education Center. Its creation is a service-learning project for students under the mentoring of Vicki Motz, visiting assistant professor of biological sciences, and David Kinder, professor of medicinal chemistry.

The Pierstorf Family Pharmacy Museum (on the ONU campus) instituted its first off-campus exhibit. A selection of pharmacy antiques, including cobalt bottles, Torsion scales, and varied mortar and pestles, were displayed at the Bluffton Public Library.

Kristen Finley Sobota, assistant professor of pharmacy practice, received the National Association of Chain Drug Stores Foundation (NACDS) Community Pharmacy Faculty Award. She has been awarded a grant to fund community outreach programs, which will continue various health and wellness screenings in Hardin and Allen counties. 

Natalie DiPietro, PharmD ’01, assistant professor of pharmacy practice, is the program director for “Heart-to Heart for Women’s Health,” a project that educates between 250 to 350 women in Hardin and Allen counties about primary and secondary prevention measures for cardiovascular disease. Educational topics include modifiable and non-modifiable risk factors, lifestyle modifications, and proper use of medications. Blood pressure measurements also are taken at the sessions by pharmacy students trained by DiPietro and Dr. Kristen Finley Sobota. Each participant receives verbal counseling and written education materials. The project occurs during the first two weeks in May to coincide with National Women’s Health Week.