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RED and Wheeling Jesuit University Announce Expansion to Stone Center

WHEELING, W.Va. --The Regional Economic Development Partnership (RED) announced that Wheeling Jesuit University (WJU) plans to relocate its doctoral of physical therapy program to the Stone Center in downtown Wheeling later this year.

Relocation of the physical therapy program in the Stone Center will provide more space to allow the University to expand this program – both in number of students and in number of classrooms and labs. Inside the Stone Center, the PT program will occupy one-and-a-half floors and house a free clinic, which will be staffed by WJU PT students. RED said the space is scheduled to be ready for the start of the fall of 2013 semester.

“We’ve been working hard to fill the Stone Center with the right tenants,” said Don Rigby, Executive Director of RED. “Having this program in the Stone Center is not only important to us, it is a great fit. With these students downtown, we will have more activity that will benefit the entire area.”

“We have been working on this project for some time. I am thankful to RED and the city of Wheeling for their generous commitment. Not only will moving to the Stone Center allow Wheeling Jesuit to grow its health science programs, it also brings new growth to our city,” said Richard A. Beyer, president of Wheeling Jesuit University.

The city of Wheeling is partnering on the project and will be making a major investment in the Market Plaza that will enhance the Stone Center and the surrounding outdoor area.

“Our goal with the Stone Center was not just economic development, we wanted to also bring more pedestrian traffic downtown. With this expansion, there will now be hundreds of people working and attending class in that location,” said Mayor Andy McKenzie, city of Wheeling.

“Historically, universities and cities have grown up together. Jesuit universities, in particular, were established in major metropolitan centers. We would not be able to move our doctoral program in physical therapy into downtown Wheeling without the financial support of RED and the city of Wheeling. This move is in line with our tradition and will provide state-of-the-art educational facilities for our students that we cannot offer on our main campus. It also will help revitalize downtown Wheeling. It’s a win-win for Wheeling Jesuit and Wheeling,” said Rev. James Fleming, S.J., executive vice president of Wheeling Jesuit University.

“The relocation of the doctoral program in physical therapy to the Stone Center in downtown Wheeling will allow us to increase the number of students in the program. This new location will provide added space for labs, study areas and classrooms. And the addition of a free clinic will mean better, more accessible service to the residents of Wheeling who need our care the most,” said Craig Ruby, director of Physical Therapy.