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Faculty News - Summer 2015

Published Sunday, July 12th, 2015

Find out what's new with WSC faculty.

Dr. Kelly Dilliard

Dr. Kelly Dilliard, associate professor of Earth science, was selected as one of participants in the 2015 season of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Teacher At Sea Program. The program is designed to provide teachers with hands-on participation in scientific research with the hopes that they will bring this knowledge back into the classroom. The program was originally established for primary school teachers, but occasionally they accept college faculty as participants. Dilliard was one of 25-30 other Teachers at Sea this summer. Her cruise occurred during May, helping with a Right Whale survey off of Rhode Island aboard the Gordon Gunter. Dilliard reports that the college’s Earth science program purchased a state of the art stream table (Em2 Geomodel) from Little River Research and Design. A stream table represents a small-scale physical model of a river, complete with recirculating water and "sediment." The sediment is composed of recycled plastic and creates a more realistic scale than regular sand. Various river processes can be observed, including sediment transport and deposition as well as cutbank erosion. Students can make various calculations using the model as well as experiment with different stream set-ups including putting in barriers and culverts. The stream table will be used in various Earth science courses including Introduction to Geology and Environmental Geology. It will also be used for science outreach through the A. Jewell Schock Natural History Museum. 

Dr. Tammy Evetovich

Dr. Tammy Evetovich, Dr. Donovan Conley and Paul McCawley from the Department of Health, Human Performance and Sport, coauthored a research paper titled “Postactivation Potentiation Enhances Upper- and Lower-Body Athletic Performance in Collegiate Male and Female Athletes” that was published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 29(2):336-342, 2015. The paper represents a collaborative effort examining data related to the effects of postactivation potentiation on athletic performance from several research projects completed in the HHPS Human Performance Laboratory.

Dr. Kris Fox

Dr. Kris Fox, associate professor of allied human sports physiology, reports that the college exercise science program has successfully met the established educational program criteria in strength and conditioning and has been recognized by the National Strength & Conditioning Association. This is a three-year recognition status. The exercise science program has received this recognition in 2002, 2005, 2008, 2011, and 2015. 

Jim Hansen

Jim Hansen, lecturer in the CTIS department, continues involvement with IBM's Academic Initiative, which includes access to software downloads, hardware, training and course materials, most at no charge. Through this collaboration, WSC mainframe students have access to IBM mainframe computers located at Marist College in New York State

Dr. Don Hickey

Dr. Don Hickey, professor of history, consulted with the U.S. Post Office on four stamps commemorating the War of 1812.  Hickey is quoted on the sheet of the last stamp, which was issued Jan. 8, 2015, to mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans.  Hickey's tenth book, Glorious Victory:  Andrew Jackson and the Battle of New Orleans, was published in April by Johns Hopkins.  

Dr. Mike Hull

Dr. Mike Hull, assistant professor of physical sciences, has been accepted to present recent research findings on positive impacts of reformed physics curriculum. The talk will be at Tokyo Gakugei University in Japan this August and potentially at the Physics Education Society of Japan annual meeting in Fukuoka immediately following. The research findings have been submitted for publication in Physical Review.

Dr. Karl Kolbeck

Dr. Karl Kolbeck, assistant professor of music, performed as part of the ICA Professors Ensemble at the 2014 International Clarinet Association ClarinetFest held July 30-August 3 at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, La. Kolbeck, along with fellow clarinetists from Texas, presented a lecture recital titled Chamber Music at the inaugural Clarinet Colloquium held June 11-13 in Dallas.

Dr. Brian Kufner

Dr. Brian Kufner, assistant professor of human resource management, presented "What Students Need to Know to Not Get Fired," at the 2015 National Business Education Association (NBEA) National Convention held March 31- April 4, in Chicago. 

Dr. Michael Marek

Dr. Michael Marek, professor of electronic media, had a paper titled "Environmental factors affecting Computer Assisted Language Learning success: A complex Dynamic Systems conceptual model" published in the Computer Assisted Language Learning journal. He presented a keynote address titled "The integration of technology and language instruction to enhance EFL learning" at a Technology Enhanced Language Learning-Special Interest Group (TELL-SIG) conference in Taichung, Taiwan. Marek also presented a paper titled "Creating Sustainable Task-based CALL Instructional Design" at the 16th International CALL Conference in Antwerp, Belgium. The paper has been published in the proceedings of the conference.

Dr. Max McElwain

Dr. Max McElwain, professor of communication arts and faculty adviser for the Wayne Stater, was invited to the fall meeting of the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics in Washington, D.C., in September. His account of the meeting, "Empty rhetoric on slowing sports spending," was published in the Lincoln Journal Star on Oct. 17. On Flag Day, June 14, an opinion page commentary on the recent passing of his father appeared in the Omaha World-Herald, titled "American flag represents diverse range of freedoms and choices."

Marlene Mueller

Marlene Mueller, professor of art, had a drawing selected for the Norfolk Arts Center 8th Annual Juried Show (April 2 – May 1). “Duality” a charcoal and chalk work on paper was awarded “Best of Show” in the competition, which featured the work of area artists from northeast Nebraska. Mueller also coordinated and co-chaired a presentation on animation at the national FATE (Foundation in Art Theory Education) conference March 25-28 in Indianapolis. (w/art)

Dr. Dave Peitz

Dr. Dave Peitz, professor of chemistry, served as research adviser for the following students’ projects: Mariah McAfoos presented "Synthesis of eugenol derivatives as the basis for a comprehensive series of organic laboratory exercises" at the American Chemical Society Regional meeting in Columbia, Mo.O, Nov. 13, 2014; Zachary Reisen presented "Expanding the uses of liquid carbon dioxide as a solvent for undergraduate chemistry reactions" at the American Chemical Society Regional meeting in Columbia, Mo., Nov. 13, 2014; chemistry students Mariah McAfoos and Jon Davis presented "Reactions of eugenol and eugenol derivatives for organic synthesis laboratory and techniques" at the 135th Nebraska Academy of Sciences annual meeting, April 17 in Lincoln; and chemistry student Zachary Reisen presented "Developing liquid carbon dioxide as a solvent for organic synthesis", at the 135th Nebraska Academy of Sciences annual meeting, April 17 in Lincoln.

Joshua Piersanti

Joshua Piersanti and 12 Wayne State graphic design students collaborated with the A. Jewell Schock Museum of Natural History to create a large-scale timeline, illustrating the geological and biological history of the Earth. Thanks to funds from Service-Learning, the 16' x 6' timeline was professionally printed on aluminum composite and is on display in the museum in the Carhart Science building. Piersanti and 10 Wayne State graphic design students collaborated with the Wayne Junior/Senior High School to restore a large damaged historical photograph of the Wayne Junior High football team during the fall. The photo, recently uncovered, dates from 1956 and was taken in front of the former High School building. Thanks to funds from Service-Learning, the restored photograph was professionally matted and framed, and is on display at Wayne Junior/Senior High School. Piersanti, Chris Holton, and 28 Wayne State graphic design students collaborated with the college's Conn Library to restore damaged historical photographs dating from the early 1900s of the campus, faculty, and students, during spring semester. Thanks to funds from Service-Learning, the restored photographs were professionally matted, framed, and are scheduled to be delivered to the Library to be exhibited in buildings across campus. (w/art)

Dr. Lesli Rawlings

Dr. Lesli Rawlings, assistant professor of geography, will have her paper, "Creating an Interactive Web Map: A Service-Learning Project Aligned to the Geospatial Technology Competency Model," published in the October-December 2015 issue of International Journal of Applied Geospatial Research. The paper is based on her class exercise, where students create an interactive Google Map for the City of Wayne, which depicts historic buildings and artwork in the downtown area.

Dr. Gretchen Ronnow

Dr. Gretchen Ronnow, professor of literature, taught academic and professional writing courses at the Ural Federal University in Ekaterinburg, at the Barnaul State Pedagogical University and at the Poly-Technical University in May 2014 in Barnaul, Siberia. Some of the lectures and workshops were for university faculty of all disciplines intending to improve their English and writing skills, and some of the classes were for university students planning to become teachers of English.

Dr. Tara Wilson

Dr. Tara Wilson reports that Wayne State College was approved to have a Chi Sigma Iota chapter to recognize graduate students seeking a degree in clinical mental health counseling. Chi Sigma Iota is an international honor society that values academic excellence in counseling. It seeks to promote a strong counseling identity by promoting scholarship, research, professionalism, leadership, advocacy, and excellence in counseling, and to recognize high attainment in the pursuit of academic and clinical excellence in the profession of counseling. Ten new members were welcomed in the inaugural class. Current officers include: Paula Peterson, president; Kelli Means, vice president; Cassandra Hoffart, treasurer; Erin Polacek, secretary; and Tina Wickersham and Ashton Ohde, historians. Wilson serves as the chapter faculty adviser and Dr. Branis Knezevic serves as the backup chapter faculty adviser.