The Crow's Nest -- May 22, 2015

Friday, May 22, 2015

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Crow's Nest

Welcome to The Crow’s Nest

After weeks of deliberations and design changes, the Office of University Relations and Development is pleased to announce Park University’s new internal newsletter, The Crow’s Nest. Royce Skocny, admissions representative, was one of three individuals to suggest the new name of the newsletter, but his was submitted first (and two weeks earlier than the other two submissions), and he will receive a $100 gift card, courtesy of Park University President David Fowler and the fund started by gifts from the Board of Trustees for employee recognition.

In addition, a new newsletter for external constituents, such as alumni, members of Park’s various boards and community members, will be developed. The Park Manifest was the name selected for this newsletter, and Ken Austin, director of projects and solutions in the Office of Information Technology Services, will also receive a $100 gift card.

Thank you to all the faculty and staff that submitted more than 90 suggestions for the name of the newsletters.

Park University’s 140th anniversary kickoff event set for June 11

Park University will kick off its 140th year in higher education and recognize the success of the past year, including the renovation of Mackay Hall's iconic clock tower, a new sculpture installation, new academic spaces and more. This exciting event will be held on Thursday, June 11, starting at 3 p.m. at the Copley Quad patio on the Parkville Campus. Join Park faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members as the University celebrates and thanks its supporters. Those planning to attend are asked to RSVP to Danita Hodges, executive assistant to the vice president for university relations and development, at or (816) 584-6209.

Ray Kincaid and Pauline PlantiveauAcademic achievements recognized at Honors Convocation

Park University students, faculty and staff were recognized for their exceptional scholarly efforts from the 2014-15 school year at the University’s annual Honors Convocation on April 15, held in Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel on the University’s Parkville Campus. In addition to a number of departmental academic honors, the University acknowledged outstanding students and faculty with a variety of special awards.

The most prestigious honor bestowed on any student at Park University — the Outstanding Parkite Award — went to seniors Ray Kincaid, elementary education major, and Pauline Plantiveau, interior design major. The Outstanding Parkite Award is given to one senior female and one senior male student on the University’s Parkville Campus who best exemplify the ideals of the University in their character, conduct, scholarship and student activity participation.

Dr. Patty RybergThe University also recognized its outstanding faculty with the presentation of the Distinguished Faculty Scholar Award to Patricia Ryberg, Ph.D., assistant professor and program coordinator of biology. The award pays tribute to a faculty member who shows evidence of commitment to high standards of excellence in the area of scholarship: teaching, discovery, integration and/or service. The recipient also shows effective and innovative connections between teaching and research, especially by undergraduate student involvement and participation.

To view a complete list of awards presented during the Honors Convocation, including additional Presidential Awards, a list of Presidential Scholars, Outstanding Student Awards and departmental awards, visit

Best Value School 2015Park University earns “best value school” designation for second consecutive year

For the second straight year, Park University is one of 15 colleges/universities nationwide to receive a Best Value School distinction from University Research & Review. Park is the only college/university based in the Kansas City region to earn a spot on the list, and is one of two Missouri schools to be honored. UR&R examined nearly 8,000 postsecondary schools based on criteria established by higher education experts. The organization weighed net cost, accreditation, variety and quality of programs and student satisfaction to determine the top schools for distinction. UR&R, an organization dedicated to improving the process of how a student selects a postsecondary education, was created by former college/university presidents, provosts, professors and chief executive officers to recognize unique and reasonably priced American universities and colleges. For more information about the Best Value School Award and the list of distinguished schools, visit

UR&R also named Park to its list of the “Best Ten Colleges You Never Heard Of.” UR&R said of Park University, “About half of Park’s enrollees take their courses online; almost 90 percent are part-time students and around 80 percent are 25 or older. One-third of its students are from foreign countries. Park prides itself on dealing with situations unique to those serving in the Armed Forces.”

University earns rankings, honors

Online Military Education, a website dedicated to providing information about colleges/universities that accept the G.I. Bill, has ranked Park University No. 15 on its “Best Online Colleges for Military and G.I. Bill” list. OME cited Park’s “wide range of military friendly degree programs in a huge selection of class formats and locations…With a low net price, Park University provides a flexible, high quality education at an affordable cost.”

Park's online Bachelor of Science degree in computer information systems management has been ranked No. 16 on’s “Students Before Profits Award” based on affordability. The award was created to promote nonprofit colleges and universities offering online degree programs that put students before profits and education before the bottom line.

Robin DuanePark alumnus awarded Distinguished Service Medal

Robin L. Duane, ’13, who recently retired as the command sergeant major for the U.S. Corps of Cadets, U.S. Military Academy, was honored with the Army’s Distinguished Service Medal on April 15. Duane was recognized for “exceptionally meritorious service in a duty of great responsibility,” covering the dates from Sept. 1, 2005, through August 31, 2015. Duane’s assignment as the command sergeant major of the U.S. Corps of Cadets completes his career of 31 years of distinguished service to the nation. Duane was a member of the U.S. Army Special Forces (Green Berets), served five tours of duty in Afghanistan, was actively involved in the training of the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police, and he authored an article, “The Afghanization of Afghan Security” in June 2014 that appeared in Small Wars Journal. In the adjacent photo, Duane (right) receives the DSM certificate from Brig. Gen. John C. Thompson III, 75th commandant of the U.S. Corps of Cadets. (Photo credit -- Staff Sgt. Vito T. Bryant/ U.S. Military Academy Public Affairs)

Stylus StaffPark student newspaper wins awards at MCMA conference

Park University’s student newspaper, The Stylus, earned 33 awards at the annual Missouri College Media Association conference, April 11 in Maryville, Mo. Competing in Division 3 (small 4-year colleges and universities) of the awards contest, The Stylus brought home two of the biggest awards from the conference for the second year in a row — the Sweepstakes Award, given to the newspaper earning the most award points, and the Best Newspaper Award. The latter award required three issues of the newspaper to the submitted and judged on the overall quality of the writing, photography and design of the publication. Submitted entries were from the Spring 2014 and Fall 2014 semesters.

Kalli Cheffey (nine) and Christina Runyon (eight), co-editors, came home with 17 individual awards between them, with Cheffey earning five first place awards. The Stylus’ adviser is Ashley Vasquez, adjunct instructor of communication arts. A complete list of awards can be found at

Brian ShawverShawver authors book on fictional composition

A book authored by Brian Shawver, associate professor of English and chair of the Department of English and Modern Languages, has been published by University Press of New England. Shawver’s book, Danger on the Page, is an analysis of various issues involved in fictional composition, in particular, those dealing with characterization, setting and plot. Though written for a general audience, it is also intended to be used as a secondary textbook in creative writing classrooms. The book was commissioned by the publisher as a follow-up to Shawver’s 2013 book about the linguistic elements of fictional composition, The Language of Fiction.

Dr. Stacey KikendallKikendall book review published in journal

A book review by Stacey Kikendall, Ph.D., assistant professor of English and program coordinator of English literature, has been published in the winter 2014 issue of The Latchkey: Journal of New Woman Studies. Kikendall reviewed Mrs. Grundy’s Enemies: Censorship, Realist Fiction and the Politics of Sexual Representation. In addition, Kikendall presented a paper at the International Popular Culture Association / American Culture Association Conference, April 1 in New Orleans. The paper, “Neo-Victorian Biofiction and the Case of the Two Amelias,” uses Jacques Derrida’s idea of differánce to explore how a popular contemporary mystery series negotiates the (un)ethical appropriation of a historical figure.

Steven YoungbloodYoungblood, CGPJ receive grants for peace journalism projects

Steven Youngblood, director of Park University’s Center for Global Peace Journalism and associate professor of communication arts, received two grants totaling $4,800 for peace journalism projects. The University for Peace, established in Costa Rica as a treaty organization that grants master’s degrees in five peace-related areas, presented Youngblood with a $2,500 travel/stipend grant for him to serve as a consultant, April 21-26, where he reviewed its courses and curriculum, provided advice on upgrading peace journalism content and delivered lectures. In addition, Youngblood received a $2,300 short-term Fulbright-Hays Program grant for a peace journalism project in Kuwait, May 18-22. Facilitated through the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait, Youngblood is teaching a peace journalism seminar for professional journalists, students and professors.

Nominations open for University’s Athletics Wall of Honor inaugural class

It’s said that good things come to those who wait. For Park University Director of Athletics Claude English, the wait is over, and soon he’ll see a career-long goal come to fruition, as nominations are now open for the inaugural class of inductees into the Park University Athletics Wall of Honor. Nomination criteria, procedures and other information are located at

The Wall of Honor’s 2015 class will be selected by a committee of staff, faculty, alumni and students, as well as at-large community members. Nominations for the inaugural class are due by Monday, June 1. The initial induction ceremony for the Park University Athletics Wall of Honor will be at the Wall of Honor Breakfast, Monday, Oct. 12 at The National Golf Club of Kansas City. The event will be held in conjunction with Park’s annual golf scramble tournament. For more information about the Athletics Wall of Honor, visit

Parkville Campus accounting majors awarded scholarships

Two Park University accounting majors, Tyler Kahclamat and Brooke Kunkel, both juniors, have each received a $1,250 scholarship from the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants Educational Foundation. Scholarship winners were selected based on a point system, rating grade point average, educator recommendations, leadership potential (honors, awards and activities) and essay.

Park sponsoring Vietnam traveling tribute

Park University is a premier sponsor of a traveling Vietnam memorial wall that will be set up at the National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial in Kansas City, Mo., May 22-25. This traveling wall is an 80 percent scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Park is sponsoring the volunteer tent for 400 veteran volunteers during the weekend. Stephen Terry, assistant dean of military and veteran programs, is coordinating the volunteers, and those interested in volunteering for the event should contact Terry at for available times and details. For more information about the event, visit, and check out the video about the event at

Dr. Laurel HillikerHilliker presents research at death education conference

Laurel Hilliker, Ph.D., executive director of the Center to Advance the Study of Loss and assistant professor of sociology, presented research at the Association of Death Education and Counseling’s annual conference, April 9 in San Antonio. Hilliker’s presentation, “The Multicultural Landscape of Funeral Rituals in the U.S.,” discussed the healing power of funeral rituals held in a communal landscape and the meaning of death rituals. She noticed research studies on a variety of ethnic, cultural and social backgrounds, and she engaged the audience in exploring ways to support and respect the bereaved person/family who choose rituals and grieving practices of a cultural background that differ from the majority of those offering the support.

Greg PlumbDr. John HamiltonCriminal justice faculty present at conference

Two Park University criminal justice administration faculty, John Hamilton, Ph.D. (left), associate professor, and Greg Plumb, J.D., professor and chair, presented papers at the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences annual meeting, March 3-7 in Orlando. Hamilton presented “Does Transformation Occur During Mediation.” Hamilton’s paper discussed transformational mediation in which it is argued that participants involved in a mediation process grow in two specific areas — the ability to better formulate and express their individual concerns, and the ability to better understand and value the other person’s concerns and issues. Plumb presented “Use of Lineups in the Kansas City Area Today.” His presentation was about how often Kansas City area law enforcement agencies use live traditional lineups. According to Plumb, the results show that with a couple of exceptions, traditional lineups are not used; the most common pre-trial identification method is via photos, generally using computers.

Dr. Gregory Claycomb

Dr. Jeff Kimmons

Dr. Brian Hoffman

Scott HagemanNPS faculty present at Kansas Academy of Science conference

Faculty from Park University’s Department of Natural and Physical Sciences collaborated to present three papers at the Kansas Academy of Science’s annual meeting on March 28 in Pittsburg, Kan. Scott Hageman (far left), associate dean of the School of Natural and Applied Sciences and associate professor of geology/geoscience, Brian Hoffman, Ph.D.(second from left), professor of biology and mathematics, and Jeff Kimmons, Ph.D. (second from right), assistant professor of biology, collaborated on “Morphometric Analysis of Upper Cretaceous Champsosaurus sp. (Choristodera) Vertebrae: Implications for Taphonomy, Sampling Bias and Ontogeny,” presented by Hageman. The paper examines 100-plus vertebrae of a distant crocodile relative from the Hell Creek Formation in Montana. Hoffman presented two papers co-authored with Hageman and Greg Claycomb, Ph.D. (far right), associate professor and program coordinator of chemistry, detailing the anatomy of Upper Cretaceous shark teeth by scanning electron microscopy. The first, “Triple-Layered Enameloid in Teeth of the Late Cretaceous (Cenomanian) Durophagous Shark Ptychodus rhombodus,” indicates that this shell-crushing shark from the Western Interior Seaway of Kansas needs to be reclassified. The second, “The Dental Ultrastructure of the Late Cretaceous (Masstrichtian) Freshwater Guitarfish Myledaphus pustulosus,” presents the first examination of the tooth structure of this common freshwater ray from the Hell Creek Formation. Abstracts for the papers can be viewed at

Dr. Harry WhiteWhite presents seminar on forensic investigations

Harry White Jr., Ph.D., adjunct instructor of criminal justice administration, presented a one-week seminar on forensic investigations to students in the School of Law at Yantai University in China. The seminar focused on the many issues related to the collection, preservation and analysis of both physical and testimonial evidence in criminal and civil investigations. The information included hands-on activities related to the identification and classification of fingerprints, the sources and uses of DNA evidence, and the accurate methods of crime scene reconstruction in support of fact determination settings.

Dr. Terry WardWard presents at conferences

Terrence Ward, Ph.D., associate dean of Park University’s Hauptmann School of Public Affairs and assistant professor of public administration, made presentations at two conferences recently. At the National School Boards Association Conference on March 21 in Nashville, Tenn., Ward presented “Development and Use of a Data Warehouse to Inform Individual Student Instruction.” The presentation profiled a data warehouse that captured all performance data for nearly 20,000 students over their K-12 educational career in one school district. Ward also presented a poster in February at the Association for Education Finance and Policy conference in Washington, D.C., on “The Threat of Economic Development Incentives on Public Education Funding in Missouri."

Pirate Praise employee recognition program

In Park University’s quest to encourage a high-performance culture, Roger Dusing, associate vice president and chief human resources officer, has announced Pirate Praise 1.0, a peer-to-peer employee recognition program. Pirate Praise allows any Park professional to applaud the work of any other professional. Specifically, Park faculty and staff are encouraged to recognize those who go beyond their normal work expectations to serve students or otherwise advance the University, and to thank those who truly exemplify our core values. For more information about Pirate Praise or to begin to recognize your Park colleagues, login to MyPark – Offices – Human Resources – Pirate Praise.

Library launches new online catalog

Park University’s McAfee Memorial Library has launched a new online catalog, a project that has been seven months in the making. Benefits include:
          •  Access to 70 million items via the MOBIUS library consortium and Colorado Research Alliance
          •  Delivery to any MOBIUS member library within three to four business days
          •  Borrow items in person from any MOBIUS member academic library
          •  Borrow e-books from Colorado Research Alliance member libraries
Access to the catalog can be found on the library website,

Park University community request to assist with Nepal earthquake relief

The death toll in Nepal has surpassed 8.500 and will likely continue to rise. Thousands more are injured or remain unaccounted for. The 7.8 magnitude quake on April 25 was powerful enough to rock the Himalayas, causing avalanches on Mount Everest, killing climbers. In the capital city of Kathmandu, homes and historic cultural structures collapsed, burying people. There have been multiple powerful aftershocks. The devastation in surrounding villages is even more dire.

Park University student groups have gathered together to support relief efforts. All monetary contributions collected will be sent to Heart to Heart International, an Olathe, Kan., nonprofit organization which strengthens communities through improving health access and providing humanitarian development worldwide. 100 percent of your donation will go to Heart to Heart International programs. Park students have collaborated with Heart to Heart International in the past to provide relief following devastating disasters in Indonesia and Haiti.

As Park University President David Fowler noted in a recent e-mail about this tragedy, “We pride ourselves in providing personalized education in a caring community environment. It is at times like these that we must, even more so than normal, extend ourselves to others who have suffered such deep loss.” Your donation will ensure that Nepalese residents get the assistance and support they need in this time of tragedy. Visit to contribute today.

Human Resource Services announces new hires, transfers/promotions

From April 1-30
          •  Sara Benne, Copy Center Specialist, Copy Center, Parkville Campus
          •  Matthew Caldwell, Campus Safety Officer, Department of Campus Safety, Parkville Campus
          •  Bradley Drake, Groundskeeper, Office of Facilities Services, Parkville Campus
          •  Teena Gray-Hale, Assistant Director, Austin (Texas) Campus Center
          •  Anna O’Rourke, Site Manager, F.E. Warren Air Force Base (Wyo.) Campus Center
          •  Gabriela Sa Teles, Web Services Manager, Office of University Relations and Development, Parkville Campus (previously served as web designer)
          •  Matthew Van Hoesen, Chief Financial Officer, Parkville Campus (previously served as interim CFO)

Park In The News

Park University’s “You Look Like Pirate Material” marketing campaign was the focus of a blog story that appeared on the Inside Higher Ed website on April 22.

Park University President David Fowler; Jeanette Hernandez Prenger, ’09, a member of Park’s Board of Trustees; and Terry Christenberry, a member of Park’s School of Business Finance Program Council (and spouse of Board of Trustees Chair Ann Mesle), were named to the Kansas City Business Journal’s “Power 100” in the April 17 issue. The list consists of individuals who get things done in the Kansas City business community. “For some, power is derived from the number of employees or money their direct. Others are thought leaders or experts at connecting people…These are people who can call anyone in the business community and have that call returned,” the KCBJ explained.

David Devaney, ’10, was featured in an article that appeared in the April 15 issue of the Finger Lakes (N.Y.) Times. Devaney recently authored a book, They Were Heroes: A Sergeant Major’s Tribute to Combat Marines of Iraq and Afghanistan, which presents moving portraits of warriors, and tales of heroism of those who fought in deadly conflicts and placed their lives at risk to ensure the safety of fellow Marines.

Aimee Gray, adjunct instructor of interior design, was featured in an article that appeared in the April 16 edition of the Liberty (Mo.) Tribune. Gray is the principal architect of A3G Architects.

A story about Capt. Scott Ford, ’01, assuming command of the 650th Regional Support Group headquarters company in Las Vegas, appeared on the Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System website on April 13.

Greg Plumb, J.D., professor and chair of criminal justice administration, was elected to a two-year term as an alderman for the City of Parkville, Mo. He was appointed to the position in May 2014.

Adam Potthast, Ph.D., associate professor and program coordinator of philosophy, chair/program coordinator of liberal studies, and program coordinator of peace studies and religion, was interviewed for a story that appeared on KCTV in Kansas City related to Pope Francis accepting the resignation of the leader of the Kansas City-St. Joseph Roman Catholic Diocese who failed to report a suspected pedophile priest.

A concert featuring Park University International Center for Music students and the Kinnor Philharmonic Orchestra on the Parkville Campus on April 19 appeared in a review on April 22 in KCMetropolis, Kansas City’s online journal of the arts.

Jeremy W. Francis, ’03, M.P.A. ’06, Ph.D., who serves as a special agent with the FBI in Chicago, appeared in interviews throughout the PBS program “Frontline” on “American Terrorist” that premiered on April 21 (he first appears at about 7:30 into the program). The program focused on the investigation of American-born terrorist David Coleman Headley who helped stage the November 2008 siege in Mumbai, India.

A story about Steve Tingler, Park University assistant softball coach, appeared in the Smithville (Mo.) Herald on April 22. Tingler was recently reappointed as head coach for the Smithville High School softball team, a position he had resigned from in 2010 after serving in the position for 14 seasons. He will continue his assistant coaching duties with the Pirates softball squad.

Cristian Fatu, ’10, and his wife, Victoria Martirosyan Fatu, ’10, were featured in a story that appeared on West Virginia Public Broadcasting on April 24. The 22-minute audio story includes samples from their CD, “New Beginnings.”

Toni-Rochelle Ford, assistant professor of marketing, was interviewed for a story that appeared on WDAF-TV in Kansas City on April 27. The story focused on the “pink tax,” the idea that products marketed to women cost more than the same/similar items marketed to men.

John Hamilton, Ph.D., associate professor of criminal justice administration, appeared on “This Morning with Alex Jensen,” a radio program in South Korea, on April 27. Hamilton was interviewed on the proper intervention of police force/authority.

Stories about the wedding of David Chesher, domain administrator in the Office of Information Technology Services, and his new bride, Jihan, being interrupted by a helicopter rescue mission in California, was featured on Kansas City television stations on April 30 and May 1. A climber had to be rescued from a cliff adjacent to their oceanside altar.
          •  KMBC:
          •  KSHB:
          •  WDAF:

Brad Kleindl, Ph.D., dean of Park University’s School of Business, appeared in a photo in the ACBSP (Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs) Update quarterly newsletter (page 11). The photo was a part of an article on “Spring Break in Mongolia.”

Upcoming Events

(All events are Central time)
     •  May 22 -- Maymester Session ends
     •  May 22 -- Barstow (Calif.) Community College Campus Center / Barstow (Calif.) Marine Corps Logistics Base Campus Center Commencement, 9 p.m., Barstow Community College Gym
     •  May 25 -- Memorial Day Holiday (all University offices closed)
     •  May 26 -- Beaufort (S.C.) Marine Corps Air Station Campus Center Commencement, 1:30 p.m., The Lyceum, Parris Island (S.C.) Marine Depot
     •  May 28 -- Cherry Point (N.C.) Marine Corps Air Station Campus Center Commencement, 9 a.m., Two Rivers Theater and Event Center
     •  May 29 -- Naval Support Activity Mid-South Millington (Tenn.) Campus Center Commencement, 6:30 p.m., Crosspointe Baptist Church, 8850 Highway 51, Millington, Tenn.
     •  June 1 -- Summer Session, Junemester Session begin
     •  June 1 -- Laughlin Air Force Base (Texas) Campus Center Commencement, 4 p.m., Anderson Hall, Laughlin AFB
     •  June 4 -- Mountain Home Air Force Base (Idaho) Campus Center Commencement, 4 p.m., Gunfighter Theater, Mountain Home AFB
     •  June 5 -- Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  June 5 -- Ellen Finley Earhart Nursing Program Pinning Ceremony, 1 p.m., Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel
     •  June 5 -- Malmstrom Air Force Base (Mont.) Campus Center Commencement, 2 p.m., Malmstrom AFB Auditorium/Theater
     •  June 11 -- Park University 140th Anniversary Kickoff, 3 p.m., Copley Quad Patio, Parkville Campus
     •  June 11 -- Scott Air Force Base (Ill.) Campus Center Commencement, 7 p.m., The Regency Conference Center, 400 Regency Park Dr., O’Fallon, Ill.
     •  June 12 -- Fairchild Air Force Base (Wash.) Campus Center Commencement, 3 p.m., Red Morgan Event Center, Fairchild AFB
     •  June 12 -- Minot (N.D.) Air Force Base Campus Center Commencement, 6 p.m., Jimmy Doolittle Center
     •  June 13 --
Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  June 19 -- Luke Air Force Base (Ariz.) Campus Center Commencement, 5 p.m., Club 56, Luke AFB
     •  June 20 -- Davis-Monthan Air Force Base (Ariz.) Campus Center Commencement, 2 p.m., Clarion Hotel, 4550 S. Palo Verde Road, Tucson, Ariz.
     •  June 24 -- F.E. Warren Air Force Base (Wyo.) Campus Center Commencement, 7 p.m., Fall Hall Community Center
     •  June 26 --
Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  June 26 -- Little Rock (Ark.) Air Force Base Campus Center Commencement, 6:30 p.m., Jacksonville (Ark.) Community Center
     •  June 26 -- Junemester Session ends
     •  July 4 -- Independence Day (Parkville Daytime Campus closed)
     •  July 6 -- Julymester Session begins
     •  July 10 -- Hill Air Force Base (Utah) Campus Center Commencement, Noon, Davis Conference Center, 1651 N. 700 W., Layton, Utah
Note: To view a comprehensive schedule for all events, including athletics, visit