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Millersville University to Award Its First Doctoral Degrees

Ten students have successfully completed their degrees, and will be awarded their diplomas later this month.

Millersville University will award its first doctoral degrees this spring. Ten students have successfully completed their degrees, and will be awarded their diplomas later this month. Eight of the students are scheduled to attend the graduate commencement ceremony in Pucillo Gymnasium on Friday, May 11, 2018 at 6:30 p.m. The ninth will graduate in ceremonies at Shippensburg University.

“One of the accomplishments I’m most proud of during my tenure at Millersville University is launching three professional doctoral programs,” says Dr. John Anderson, president of Millersville University. “The ability to hand diplomas to our very first graduates is certainly a historic occasion and reason to celebrate.”

The Doctor of Social Work (DSW) program focuses on preparing leaders and educators for career advancement in agencies, government and higher education.  The program, which is a partnership with Kutztown University, is geared toward professional social workers who are ready to take on advanced leadership positions in which they will create and evaluate innovative programs in either executive or academic positions.

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program prepares individuals to lead healthcare change and translate evidence into practice, collaborate intra-professionally to improve patient care outcomes, as well as advocate and provide leadership for health policy. The program is designed for busy Registered Nurses who already have a master’s degree in a related area, and builds upon their previous education and healthcare experience.

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) in Educational Leadership joint doctoral program has two areas of focus, the roles of poverty and technology in education. The program, which is a partnership with Shippensburg University, is designed to prepare working professionals to fulfill the responsibilities of today’s school administrators, such as principals and district superintendents, and work with students in a wide variety of educational settings.

“Our doctoral programs are an important part of our University strategic plan and add another option for adult learners to advance their careers,” says Dr. Vilas Prabhu, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at Millersville University. “Millersville University strives to serve all learners, regardless of age or profession.”

“Millersville University and our partners designed our new doctoral programs with flexibility for the working professional and we’re delighted to announce our first doctoral degrees to working professionals,” said Dr. Victor DeSantis, dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Adult Learning. “We’re pleased to provide opportunities for students to pursue scholarly and research activities to help them strive for excellence in their lives and careers.”

The following students have earned their Doctorate of Nursing Practice: Emily Elizabeth Gehron, Lisa Ann Senft and Adam Michael Updegraff.

The following students have earned their Doctorate of Social Work: Bertha Ramona Saldana DeJesus, Sau-Ling Dinse, Pia Houseal-Allport, Meredith Elaine Moore and Karen E. Polite.

Jolinda Wilson and Edward Rife have earned their Doctorate of Education Leadership, however, they will process at Shippensburg University.

Sau-Ling Dinse
Sau-Ling Dinse

By earning their doctorates, each student is taking a crucial step forward in their careers. One graduating student, Sau-Ling Dinse, had this to say about her doctorate, “The social work profession strives to use the most effective and current interventions. The doctoral education has sharpened my research skills and increased my competence as an evidence-based practitioner. The expanded knowledge on current research and practice enriched my role as an educator preparing the next generation of social workers striving for excellence.”



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