Ohio Wesleyan University
University Hall 101
Delaware, OH 43015
Ohio Wesleyan is a small national University with a major international presence. Already honored as one of the nation’s finest liberal arts undergraduate institutions, we continue to augment opportunities for our students through the OWU Connection, our signature experience.
Guided by our caring and mentoring faculty, the OWU Connection helps students to think big (understand issues from multiple academic disciplines), go global (gain international perspective through classroom and travel experience), get real (translate classroom knowledge into real-world experience through research projects, internships, and more), and do good (participate in service to others).
Through the OWU Connection, students are fanning out across the world, already having completed on-the-ground research and other educational experiences in more than 60 countries. (International travel has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic, but we are looking forward to its full return.)
In addition, OWU's innovative faculty are revising the academic curriculum to include three pillars: a universal first-year seminar designed to provide students with the foundational academic skills they need to thrive at Ohio Wesleyan; course requirements based on core competencies intended to teach students to think, speak, and act as engaged global citizens; and a universal requirement that all students complete at least one OWU Connection experience before they graduate.
The curriculum enables Ohio Wesleyan to focus on its core strengths and support students as they prepare for their future careers, advanced degree aspirations, and successful roles as global citizens and thought leaders.
Along with sending our students out into the world, Ohio Wesleyan also brings the world to campus. We currently enroll students from more than 30 countries. Both in and outside the classroom, our international students bring valuable perspectives to every discussion of world events and help the entire student body understand global issues in ways they might not otherwise consider.
This emphasis on a worldwide perspective is not new to Ohio Wesleyan. From our founding, we have believed that a liberal arts education helps students develop the qualities necessary for leadership and innovation. Students here expand their world view and learn to look beyond traditional boundaries for answers, to challenge long-held assumptions, to appreciate diversity of cultures, and to embrace new ideas and technologies.
In addition to our curricular enhancements, we also are renewing our physical facilities to provide the best learning and living environment for our students. One of our newer campus additions is the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center at Ohio Wesleyan University, a business accelerator and education center created in collaboration with the City of Delaware and Delaware County.
The center provides students with hands-on opportunities to help conduct business and market research, create launch plans, and provide other services to help community entrepreneurs turn concepts into companies. Every outside entrepreneur using the center offers at least one student internship.
In addition, we continue to improve the residential experience with new donor-funded Small Living Units, Honors House, and House of Black Culture. Our first on-campus apartment complex, which houses 124 senior students, opened in 2021, as did our fully renovated Smith Hall, a custom-designed living and learning community for first-year students.
We have more to cheer about, too, when it comes to our Battling Bishop athletes. We offer 24 varsity athletics – 12 for women and 12 for men – with the newest addition being men's wrestling. In fall 2022, our first esports team begins competition. In addition, the OWU Marching Band adds energy and excitement to athletics and other campus and community events.
In the midst of change, Ohio Wesleyan's commitment to community service remains strong; each year, more than 80 percent of our students participate in service locally, nationally, and internationally. This traditionally includes spring break Interfaith Service teams, with recent missions in the United States and in Dominica, El Salvador, Rome, Belize, Nicaragua, Honduras, Vietnam, and at the Mexican border. Interfaith Service teams are one more way OWU students encounter the world.
I am honored to lead Ohio Wesleyan during this exciting time of change and growth. My sincere hope is that you will explore everything Ohio Wesleyan has to offer, connect to the campus community (and the world!), and find yourself at home here. OWU truly is for YOU.
Under Rock's leadership, Ohio Wesleyan has:
Locally, President Jones serves on the boards of the Strand Theatre and the Community Foundation of Delaware County, where he chairs the Investment Committee.
He also is the past president of the North Coast Athletic Conference and a current member of the NCAC Presidents' Council; president of the University Senate of the United Methodist Church; immediate past chair and a current member of the Board of Directors of the Great Lakes Colleges Association; a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Ohio; a member of the Board of Governors of Wesley Theological Seminary, and a former member of the Board of Directors of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
He and his wife, Melissa Lollar Jones, have three adult children.