Statements and Speeches
Statement in the Congressional Record
Dec 10 2007
Mr. President, I rise today to celebrate the tenure of Wesley College President Dr. Scott D. Miller. After ten years as president, Dr. Miller will step down to assume leadership of Bethany College in my home state of West Virginia in January 2008.
Founded in 1873, Wesley College is located on fifty acres in historic Dover, Delaware. Delaware’s oldest private college, the school offers thirty bachelors and four associates degrees, and master’s degrees in nursing, education, business administration and environmental science.
I first met Dr. Miller in 1997 when I was Governor of Delaware, and he was appointed as the 15th President of Wesley College. During his tenure, the college proudly reported record applications, a climbing enrollment, increased alumni participation and a greater minority presence. For these and other accomplishments, Dr. Miller has been nationally acclaimed for his contributions to higher education.
Under Dr. Miller’s leadership, Wesley experienced substantial growth, including total enrollment increases from 1,052 to 3,210 and $67 million raised in the Campaign for Wesley fund, with more than $40 million earmarked for capital renovations and new construction. Dr. Miller oversaw the creation of four graduate programs and the establishment of a New Castle County campus for Adult Studies. In addition, he established an undergraduate nursing program and five other new undergraduate majors.
Beyond academics, Wesley College has also been granted membership in the selective Capital Athletic Conference and enjoys the addition of new varsity sports programs. Congratulations to the Wolverines who are again in the quarterfinals this year for the NCAA Division III South Region collegiate football championship.
To maintain Wesley’s support of the local community, Dr. Miller was also instrumental in building an alliance with Delaware State University and the Friends of the Capital Theater to maximize the usage of the historic Capital Theater, positioning it as the premiere performing arts center in southern Delaware. The relationship was formalized in January 2007 with the three organizations becoming equal partners in the operation, management and programming of the theater.
In addition to all the accolades already mentioned, Scott and his family have become valued friends of mine and of many others in Delaware over the past decade. Dr. Miller’s wife Ann is an educator in her own right and has been a full partner with her husband in supporting his efforts to lead Wesley to new heights. We were also lucky to have their daughter Ashlee serve as an intern in my Wilmington office this past summer.
Scott and Wesley College have also supported my Charter School initiative in Delaware by being one of the first colleges in America to charter and provide space for a public charter school. Additionally, Wesley College was one of the first institutions to sign on as a partner of a homeownership initiative that I started in Dover by supporting the effort to increase homeownership rates in the capital city. Our new homeowners include employees of the Aramark company which provides food services to Wesley College.
Prior to joining the Wesley community, Dr. Miller served as President, Executive Vice President, and Vice President for Development of Lincoln Memorial University; an interim public information officer at West Virginia Wesleyan College; and Director of University Relations and Alumni Affairs at the University of Rio Grande.
Dr. Miller earned his bachelor’s degree from West Virginia Wesleyan College, master’s degree from the University of Dayton, education specialist from Vanderbilt University, and doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the Union Institute and University. He has also completed post-graduate studies at Ohio University and Harvard University.
Outside of the college, Dr. Miller was an active community participant during his time in Delaware. He served on the board of numerous local and national groups including the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church, the United Way of Delaware and the Greater Dover Commission. Dr. Miller was also an honorary commander of the Dover Air Force Base for two years and was selected to serve on the Joint Civilian Orientation Council by the Secretary of Defense.
I would like to personally acknowledge and sincerely thank Dr. Miller for the outstanding contribution he has made to Wesley College and the surrounding community over the past ten years. The Millers have been good for Wesley, for Dover, for Kent County and for Delaware. We will miss them a great deal.