Roger H. Sublett Archives - Community | Union Institute & University

Union Announces New Board of Trustees Member

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Sharon Dunbar is the newest member of the Union Institute & University Board of Trustees.

Sharon Dunbar

Vice President | Human Resources, General Dynamics Mission Systems

Sharon Dunbar is the newest member of the Union Institute & University Board of Trustees. She serves as the Vice President, Human Resources for General Dynamics Mission Systems where she oversees human resource operations, internal communications, community relations and investments for the 13,000-employee company. Dunbar retired from the United States Air Force in 2014 as a Major General.  

“It is a distinct honor to welcome Sharon to the Board of Trustees. I first got to know Sharon when she was a Kellogg Fellow. Sharon’s devotion to her country, selfless service to her career and community, and her legacy of ethical leadership parallel Union Institute & University’s mission to engage, enlighten, and empower our students in a lifetime of learning, service and social responsibility,” said Dr. Roger H. Sublett, President of Union Institute & University.

Dunbar is looking forward to contributing to Union’s growth. “My goal is to contribute to Union’s advancement and its immense contribution to the academic community and communities as a whole,” said Dunbar. “I believe Union offers incredible value to higher education. Its flexibility to educate adults while they balance the demands of life is an opportunity to advance in every aspect,” said Dunbar. “I have seen the difference this flexibility makes to the men and women transitioning from a military career to civilian life.” When approached by Dr. Sublett to join the Board of Trustees, her first reaction was one of humility. 

“I was surprised and honored to be asked to join the Board of Trustees. Dr. Sublett has been a mentor since my days as a Kellogg Fellow. He is dedicated to giving back and I couldn’t decline the chance to make a difference in higher education alongside him,” said Dunbar.

During her 32-year Air Force career, she served in a variety of acquisition, legislative affairs, and human capital positions. She commanded organizations at every possible level, including a mission support squadron, Air Force Basic Military Training, an air base wing, and the Air Force District of Washington where she was responsible the Air Force’s Washington operations. 

Learn more about Sharon
Dunbar’s Illustrious Career

A Celebration of Learning: Union’s 2016 Ph.D. Residency

By | Alumni, Doctoral Degree, Faculty & Staff, Students | No Comments

Highlights from the 2016 July Ph.D. Residency


Highlights from

the 2016 Ph.D. Residency

A Celebration of Learning was on display as students from around the nation gathered at the 2016 July Ph.D. Residency in Cincinnati, Ohio for the collective purpose of pursuing professional goals and a lifetime of learning, service and social responsibility. 

The residency opened Sunday, July 3rd with an Opening Night Dinner event featuring Dr. Betty Overton-Adkins, renowned social justice speaker, with a, powerful presentation entitled, “Intersectionality Part 2: Intersectionality and the New Normalcy.” Other featured events included Breakfast with University Provost Dr. Nelson Soto; New Student lunch with Dr. Arlene Sacks, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs; Two MLK Capstone Presentations; Women & Power Hour with Dr. Diane Allerdyce, Program Chair; and Curriculum and Dissertation process with Dr. Raffanti, Dean of the Ph.D. Program.   

Outside of hitting the books after dinner, the evenings of the residency week were filled with fun group activities such as a Dance Social and Open Mic Night. The culminating event, held Friday, July 8th, was the Presidential Luncheon hosted by University President, Dr. Roger H. Sublett. Dr. Sublett reflected on the current state of higher education in America and Union’s role in transforming lives and communities. 

Our Ph.D. residency weeks are held twice a year in January and July. All doctoral students are required to attend the residencies. Most students find extreme value in these week-long connection events. Dr. Raffanti, Dean of the Ph.D. Program noted, “We make ourselves as faculty very available to our students that week, from mornings through well into the evenings,” Raffanti said. “We try to establish those connections you won’t find in other, similar programs.”

Learn more about Union’s
distinctive doctoral program

From the President’s Desk

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“Monday, January 19, 2015 provides us with a gift: another opportunity to celebrate the life and vision of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

At Union Institute & University, we celebrate his teachings throughout the year, most recently during our eleventh semi-annual Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Lecture on January 8. We were fortunate to feature Dr. Betty Overton-Adkins who spoke about “intersectionality,” a term coined by Kimberlee Crenshaw, that expresses the interconnected realities that impact our interconnected lives.  We also celebrated Dr. Virgil Wood, a Baptist minister who has dedicated his life to Dr. King’s teachings. And, we honored recent doctoral graduate Rev. Greg T. Bailey with the first Virgil Wood award. All three, along with so many others at Union, are making a difference in the lives of others and bringing Dr. King’s vision to life every day.

Union Institute & University has made a major commitment to further the dream of Dr. King through our Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Studies Program, a specialization in our Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies program.  I am very proud of Union and our support of the King Studies Program, as well as our students and faculty who together are pursuing a vision for the future. In time, I believe it will become a signature program of the university.

Dr. King’s vision was one of unifying all people with respect for the individual dignity of each person.  This year, with the violence around the world, it will be even more important for all of us to listen carefully for the powerful voice and message of Dr. King calling for the best of the human spirit to show itself in peaceful ways to solve social inequities, social injustices, violence, and intolerance. We are all a part of a human network that must honor the fragile bond of life that holds all of us together. Recent events may make us feel we have lost our way, but I believe that whether it is violence in Florida, Missouri, New York, Paris, or around the world, Dr. King would focus on the positive progress we have made together in building a better and safer world for our children and ourselves and call on us to double down and work harder for one another.

On this occasion of remembering a giant among men of the last century, let us dream of a future when all people can live together in peace and harmony with a deep respect for one another regardless of race, creed, or religion.

Dr. King stated, “Life’s most persistent, urgent question is:  What are you doing for others?”  As we celebrate the life and memory of Dr. King, let us ask the question, “What are we doing for others?”  At Union, we are challenged by that question each day.

Enjoy your holiday and please take time for a moment of reflection”.

Roger H. Sublett
Union Institute & University

Zero Percent Tuition Increase for 2014-15

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Cincinnati, OH – Union Institute & University President Roger H. Sublett announced there will be no tuition increase for the 2014-2015 academic year starting July 1.

“On behalf of the Union Institute & University Board of Trustees, I am very pleased to announce a zero increase in tuition and fees for the upcoming academic year, July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015. This zero percent increase comes after very minimal increases last year (one percent or less). For some programs, this means that tuition has remained static for two years running. This is almost unheard of in higher education today, but the staff, administration, and trustees felt strongly that our hard working students and their families are struggling and pledged to find ways to continue to operate our university without increasing the burden for our students,” said Dr. Sublett.

Management of the university’s finances is key to Union’s success.

“Each year, our goal is to avoid any increase in tuition and fees. Most years, the rising costs of energy, insurance, IT, library databases, and other factors impact the cost of attending Union. This year, however, through very diligent spending and careful stewardship of our limited resources, we were able to curb spending and focus on the essential task of serving our students,” said Dr. Sublett.

Union’s tuition is consistently below the national average.

“Obviously, this year, we are below the national average in tuition increases, but for many years, Union’s increases have been below national averages. Most colleges and universities experienced tuition increases at an average rate of between 2.4 and 5.2 percent beyond inflation. A more in-depth comparison may be viewed at CollegeBoard Average Rates of Growth of Published Changes by Decade report,” said Dr. Sublett.

Union continues to assist learners through scholarships and service.

Union contributes more than $2 million each year to institutional scholarships across all programs. This is nearly 10 percent of the university’s annual budget, set aside for reduced tuition and fees in a number of programs, including:

• Military personnel and their dependents
• Students from community colleges (Union articulation agreements)
• Cincinnati-based female, heads-of-household
• Law enforcement officers and local chambers of commerce

“We also have a number of named scholarships across our programs that support students with awards for merit and/or need. Our constant goal is to increase the number of scholarships available, working with our trustees and local foundations and corporations to fund new and existing scholarships. This past year, we received two major grants to provide substantial scholarships in our graduate programs,” said Dr. Sublett.

Union is the recent recipient of two $250,000 grants in memory of the parents of Union Ph.D. alumna and trustee, Dr. Virginia Wiltse: The Eugene P. Ruehlmann Public Service Fellowship Program, which comes as an award and tribute from Western & Southern Financial Group, and The Virginia Ruehlmann Women in Union Fellowship, awarded by the Helen Steiner Rice Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation.

The Virginia Ruehlmann grant will be awarded to graduate women as part of the university’s growing Women in Union scholarship program that previously funded only undergraduate females. The Eugene P. Ruehlmann Public Service Fellowship, in honor of the former Mayor of Cincinnati, will be awarded to doctoral students and will assist individuals whose dissertations embody Mayor Ruehlmann’s dedication and commitment for community and social change.

Additionally, each year, Union seeks to allocate resources to improve how students interact and communicate with their faculty and service offices. In an effort to improve academic quality and student services, the university continues to expand library databases, improve access to student accounts and academic records and enhance the Writing Center and its ability to reach and assist more students online. The university has greatly increased the availability of online courses and options, all reducing costs without sacrificing quality.

This year the university created a new department, the Office of Student Success, designed to serve current students in a number of areas. This new office exemplifies the university’s commitment to serve students as they complete their degrees.

These achievements come in the midst of Union Institute & University’s 50th anniversary celebration.

“This year is Union’s 50th anniversary. During this time of celebration, I am so pleased to bring this great news to the university community. Excellent governance will continue our mission for the next 50 years of educating generations of highly motivated adults who seek academic programs that engage, enlighten and empower them in their pursuit of a lifetime of learning and service,” said Dr. Sublett.