Dean’s Message Fall, 2017

Michael HolleyUpdates

Welcome Back!!! I hope everyone had a good summer and that you are ready to start back to school in our Fall, 2017, Semester. I would like to emphasize that our faculty truly understand that education is challenging and rigorous. Please know that if you need assistance, contact your instructor, Program Chair or my office. There are a number of resources ranging from the Student Success Center, tutoring, Advisors, and faculty who can assist you. There are also several new certificates, events, and activities for our students this fall.

Last year we implemented a new degree program in Applied Family Science, and new certificates in Compliance, Trauma Informed Approach, Case Management, Emotional Intelligence, Community Engagement, and Crime Scene Investigation. We have also added certificates in Emergency Management and Family Science, and a Legal Studies Completion Degree.

Understanding the needs of our students in preparing for their careers, promotion or changing fields of employment, we have developed certificates in specific areas of study that offer focused information and courses for students.  Many of our certificates are designed to be earned as you attend courses within your major (stacked as you go…).

Here are a few of the new certificates as well as information on those in development:

Compliance Certificate

Our compliance certificate is now recognized by the

“Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists (ACAMS) which is a mark of excellence among fiscal watchdogs.”

Under the terms of a newly signed agreement between Wilmington University and ACAMS, the leading professional organization for those who police money laundering and terrorist financing, completion of Wilmington University’s six-course compliance certificate is worth 36 credit hours toward the 40 credits required to sit for the 120-question, computer-based exam.

For select students at Wilmington University, earning the distinction of ACAMS certification is now well within reach. The University’s compliance certificate program provides each student with 90% of the qualifications needed to take the Association’s rigorous CAMS exam.

“Earning 36 of the required 40 credit hours is a huge step up for students pursuing this professional credential,” said assistant professor Lori Sitler, who chairs WilmU’s government and public policy program and coordinates the compliance certificate program.

While the certificate is a standalone credential, its completion as part of a degree increases its benefit to CAMS exam candidates. “A student who earns both an undergraduate or graduate degree and the compliance certificate will earn enough credits to sit for CAMS certification immediately upon graduation,” she added.

This certification has the potential to open many doors. “Since CAMS-certified people possess a fundamental understanding of the risks, red flags and regulations associated with a variety of financial crimes, pursuing and obtaining CAMS certification provides an opportunity to demonstrate proficiency. It also allows promotions for those who complete the program along with the chance to move on to more challenging roles,” said Chris King, co-chair of ACAMS’ Delaware chapter. (retrieved from

What is Compliance? Well, this is a certificate consisting of six courses. “The field of compliance has been deemed by the Wall Street Journal as the “Hottest Job in America” because, “Banks, which are under heightened scrutiny, have been hiring thousands of people in their compliance departments:  HSBC Holdings PLC said it added 1,600 compliance employees last year, and J.P. Morgan Chase and Co. is bringing in what it calls a “SWAT Team” after agreeing to make billions of dollars in settlement payments.”

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects an increase in the job category of Compliance and specifically lists Delaware as one of the top paying states for this occupation category. The undergraduate certificate in Compliance is comprised of 18 credits (6 courses) through a combination of existing and new course offerings.  New course offerings within the certificate include:

  1. U.S. Administrative and Regulatory Law (3 credits) – This course will provide students with an overview of the framework of laws that regulate the operation and procedures of U.S. government agencies.
  2. Global Regulatory Law (3 credits) – This course will explore global regulatory and operational strategies utilized by business, international organizations and governments.
  3. Fundamentals of Compliance Management (3 credits) – The objective of this course is to provide students with a broad understanding of important topics related to corporate ethics and compliance management. The course provides a foundation in ethics, then delves into compliance management, and finally explores aspects of regulatory compliance.
  4. Corporate Governance and Regulation (3 credits) – The objective of this course is to provide students with an overview of governance issues including financial risks and compliance related to the following laws Anti-Money Laundering / Anti-Terrorist Financing, the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) / USA PATRIOT Act, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), Anti-trust compliance, HIPAA compliance and non-financial reporting.

The certificate courses will start in Spring Block II, with full implementation in the fall of 2016.  Please see our web page for additional information.


Case Management 

 This is a 15-credit post-bachelor’s certificate for Human Service professionals. This certificate will offer a graduate-level study option for students seeking in-depth knowledge of working in the human services field and giving direct client care. Case management is a practitioner skills subset within the larger, interdisciplinary, human and community services field. This proposed post-Bachelor’s certificate in Case Management for Human Services emphasizes preparing practitioners to work with individuals and/or groups needing help in accessing  services and resources that facilitate well-being among those in need.”

Course offered include:

  • Law and Practice in Human Services (Online)
  • Case Management Intervention Strategies (Online)
  • Social Inequality, Social Change, and Community Building (Online)
  • Ethical Practice in Case Management (Online)
  • Advocacy Skills and Client Services (Online)


Trauma Informed Approach

 This is our fastest growing certificate within the college. Students enrolling in this curriculum will find it complements programs in Psychology, Organizational Dynamics, Behavioral Science, Criminal Justice, Government and Public Policy, and Legal Studies. It will help better prepare professionals who are competent in understanding and applying a trauma-informed approach in a variety of environments. A trauma-informed approach refers to how an agency, organization, and/or community, responsible for providing services such as mental health, educational, crisis, and/or criminal justice services, thinks about providing those services in a way that supports prevention, resilience, and recovery. In this approach, all components of service delivery incorporate a thorough understanding of the prevalence and impact of trauma, the role that trauma plays, and the complex and varied paths in which people recover and heal from trauma. A definition of a trauma-informed approach incorporates three key elements: (1) realizing the prevalence of trauma; (2) recognizing how trauma affects all individuals involved with the program, organization, or system, including its own workforce; and, (3) responding by putting this knowledge into practice.*


*Retrieved from

 Three new core courses for the certificate are housed in our college Psychology programs. They are:

  • Trauma-Informed Approaches
  • Trauma and Self-Care
  • Practical Implications of Trauma-Informed Approaches

Elective courses, all currently existing courses, will be drawn from other programs including Organizational Dynamics, Behavioral Science, and Criminal Justice. There are also options from the College of Business, the College of Education, and College of Health Professions.

Please check our web page for new developments and information on this important topic.


In July, Dr. Johanna Bishop planned and held the 2nd Annual Human Trafficking Symposium. The keynote speaker was Holly Austin Smith, human trafficking survivor and advocate against all forms of trafficking, and author of the book Walking Prey. Besides the keynote, the day-long event included 24 presenters providing practical information during multiple morning and afternoon breakout sessions with presenters from counseling, social work, ICE, FBI, etc. as well as money laundering. The day concluded with interactive table topics allowing attendees to engage in conversations and sharing their insights. Wilmington University President Dr. LaVerne Harmon and Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn presented opening remarks. This crucial topic will be a continuing effort by our faculty and college during the upcoming year. Please check our website periodically for information on future events.


In May, the Legal Studies Program had the onsite visit from representatives of the ABA for reaccreditation. Thanks to Program Chair Amy O’Dell and her faculty for their efforts in a successful visit resulting in a recommendation for reaccreditation.


I would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the family members and significant people in the lives of our students that support them on their academic journey. We all need the support of those around us to be successful. Going to school, working, and taking care of family requires initiative, hard work and a willingness to succeed. Our faculty and staff are here to help you along the way also, because as a student, you are a member of our college family.


Finally, please let us know your thoughts on the new initiatives, your classes, and any input you may have on our programs and certificates in general. My office is located in the Peoples Building at the New Castle Campus in Room 022. My phone number is 302-356-6870. Please stop by or call if you have any questions. I also visit each of our sites during the semester and will be glad to be available to answer questions. Thank you for your interest in our programs and Wilmington University.


Dean Ed Guthrie