Wheeling Jesuit University

West Virginia Secretary of State Visits Campus

WHEELING, WV, Dec. 1, 2010 ó W.Va. Secretary of State Natalie E. Tennant took time to visit the Wheeling Jesuit campus today and discover the value of a Jesuit education as she toured a psychology classroom, visited the Center for Educational Technologies, the Challenger Learning Center and the Robert C. Byrd National Technology Transfer Center.

Tennant spent about two hours exploring campus and meeting with employees and students. She brought with her two staff members, Sean Hill, outreach manager and Jake Glance, communications officer.

(From left, Sean Hill, Challenger Learning Center Director Jackie Shia, Director of CET Chuck Wood, Natalie Tennant and Jake Glance tour the Challenger Learning Center.)

Tennant especially enjoyed the presentations by psychology students in Professor Debra Hull's learning laboratory class where students demonstrated the success of their operant and classical conditioning of goldfish.

Tennant even took part in the demonstration and learned to hand feed the goldfish that were trained by students to take a bite of food right from the hand of the trainer (shown below). Other fish have been successfully trained to play with a tiny soccer ball and swim through tunnels when prompted.

While touring the CET building, Tennant viewed the new Micronauts studio, the Challenger Learning Center and the main office.

At the NTTC, she met with Darwin Molnar, vice president of SBIR & NASA Technology Transfer and Tricia Lollini, manager of public relations for Sponsored Programs.

Tennant also said hello to Diego Gattesco, senior international trade specialist with the U.S. Export Assistance Center in Wheeling, before heading over to Donahue Hall for her classroom tour.

She ended her visit at the campus shop and enjoyed lunch at Parkhurst Dining Services before leaving campus at 12:30 p.m.

(From left below are Tricia Lollini, Natalie Tennant and Darwin Molnar.)

West Virginiaís 29th Secretary of State, Tennant was sworn in on Jan. 19, 2009.

According to her official website, since taking office, she has focused on initiatives to create an open and engaging government for our citizens, maintaining fair and honest elections and implementing efficient technologies to better serve the businesses and agencies of West Virginia.

She has a bachelorís degree in journalism and masterís degree in corporate & organizational communication and has the distinction of being the first female Mountaineer mascot for her alma mater, WVU.

Following the completion of her undergraduate degree Tennant worked in broadcasting in the Clarksburg and Charleston markets where she reported the news for more than 10 years. She is married to W.Va. Senator Erik Wells.

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