The Crow's Nest -- May 16, 2016

Monday, May 16, 2016

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Crow's Nest

University recognizes 2015-16 academic achievements at Honors Convocation

Park University students, faculty and staff were recognized for their exceptional scholarly efforts from the 2015-16 academic year at the University’s annual Honors Convocation on April 20, held in Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel on the Parkville Campus. In addition to a number of departmental academic honors, the University acknowledged outstanding students and faculty with a variety of special awards.

Moira Potter and Zac JarrardThe most prestigious honor bestowed on any student at Park University — the Outstanding Parkite Award — went to seniors James “Zac” Jarrard (right), economics and political science/international politics major, Moira Potter (left), social psychology major in Park’s Honors Academy. 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. The awards are endowed by Dr. Elliot F. Parker in memory of his parents, Albert George and Jessie Bewley Parker.

The University also recognized its outstanding faculty with the presentation of the Distinguished Faculty Scholar Award to Dennis Kerkman, Ph.D., professor of psychology, and the Distinguished Humanities Faculty Award to Stephen Atkinson, Ph.D., associate professor of English.

Additional Presidential Awards presented:
          •  Louisa Davidson Hinde / Carolyn Hinde Zarkaryan Memorial Award — Steven Crooke, senior social work major, Vy Nguyen, senior business administration/international business major, and Karie Schaefer, director of residence life
          •  J.L. Zwingle Award — William Venable, assistant professor of management
          •  President’s Award for Teaching Excellence — Debra Sheffer, Ph.D., professor of history
          •  Provost’s Award for Teaching Excellence — Martha McClung, adjunct instructor of Spanish
          •  Excellence in Academic Advising Award — Eugene Matthews, Ph.D., associate professor of criminal justice administration

Read more about these awards and the award winners, as well as view a complete list of awards presented, including a list of Presidential Scholars, Outstanding Student Awards and departmental awards at

Jill Biden and Stephen TerryTerry represents Park University at White House event

Stephen Terry, Ed.D., senior director of operations, administration and compliance, represented Park University as part of a White House Convening on Operation Educate the Educators: Committed to Recognizing and Supporting Our Military-Connected Students event on April 13. Park was one of the original 100 college/university partners of the program. Second Lady Jill Biden, Ph.D. (with Terry in adjacent photo), and Secretary of Education John King Jr., delivered remarks to those in attendance. In April 2011, Operation Educate the Educators was jointly developed by the Military Child Education Coalition and the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, as part of the Joining Forces Initiative, an effort by Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama, to raise awareness of the challenges of military families. The initiative aims to teach colleges about guiding principles that would better prepare teachers to understand and address the needs of military children as they teach in the classroom.

Kena WolfWolf appointed associate vice president of campus center operations

Park University has appointed Kena M. Wolf as associate vice president of campus center operations. Wolf began her duties at Park on April 4. Wolf comes to Park following a 16-year stint at DeVry University, most recently serving as executive director of admissions for the past seven years. While at DeVry, she also served as director of high school programs (2007-09), director of admissions for its Midwest locations (2005-07) and assistant director of admissions (2000-05). She also has experience as a debate and speech teacher/coach at Manhattan [Kan.] High School and Arkansas City [Kan.] High School.

As associate vice president of campus center operations, Wolf is responsible for overseeing Park’s network of 40 campuses (other than the flagship Parkville Campus) across the country, providing strategic insight and leadership for both enrollment and fiscal growth. Thirty-three of Park’s campuses are based on military installations. Wolf earned a Master of Business Administration degree from DeVry’s Keller Graduate School of Management and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature (with teaching certification) from Kansas State University. Wolf and her husband, Ryan, have two sons, Kale (age 12) and Kaden (age 8), and the family enjoys baseball, camping and hiking.

Volunteers requested for Heart of America Stand Down

Park University’s Department of Military and Veteran Student Services, home of the Park Warrior Center, is looking for volunteers to support Kansas City’s homeless veterans during the region’s next Heart of America Stand Down event on Friday, May 27, from 8 a.m. to noon at the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Mo. Park faculty, staff and students will depart from the Herr House parking lot on the Parkville Campus at 7:15 a.m. to convoy to the event.

The Heart of America Stand Down brings together more than 70 community service groups and organizations from the Kansas City area to provide assistance and help rid the barriers that prevent homeless veterans from re-entering society as engaged, productive citizens and live more fulfilling lives. Assistance offered includes medical, substance abuse, legal issues, taxes, housing and utility assistance, family counseling, spiritual, mentorships, educational and employment opportunities, and haircuts. Approximately 500 veterans and dependents participated in the event last year.

Those interested in volunteering for the event should contact Wade Abel, assistant director of military and veteran student services, at or (816) 584-6530 by Thursday, May 19. In addition, the PWC is collecting donations of personnel hygiene items such as shaving cream, toothpaste, toothbrushes, shampoo and soap. Donations can be dropped off in Park Warrior Center. For additional information about the Heart of America Stand Down, visit

Jeanette PrengerPrenger recognized at “Hats Off to Mothers” event

Jeanette Prenger, ’09, and a member of Park University’s Board of Trustees, was highlighted in the April 2 issue of The Independent, Kansas City’s journal of society, as she was honored on May 6 at the Hats Off to Mothers luncheon in Overland Park, Kan., an annual event that recognizes mothers who have demonstrated the remarkable ability to balance family life, personal achievement and service to the community. The event is a benefit for Open Options, a nonprofit organization that provides programs, services and resources for people and families with disabilities in the Kansas City area.

Faculty, staff, student news

Park University students recently elected their representatives — executive board and senators — for the 2016-17 Park Student Government Association. Max Mohr, junior communication arts/photojournalism major, was elected president. Read about the rest of the PSGA executive staff and senators that were elected at

Dr. Silvia Giovanardi ByerSilvia Giovanardi Byer, Ph.D., associate professor and program coordinator of modern languages, presented a paper at the Kentucky Foreign Language Conference in Lexington on April 15. She participated on the panel, “Heroes Villains and (Mis)Representations in Italian Literature.” Her presentation was titled “Misfortunes, Tribulations and the Insults of Fortune in Della vera tranquillity dell’animo: Isabella Sforza’s Views on Reformation and Counter Reformation.” The paper provided a historical context for the stereotyped image in which Sforza has been captured and imprisoned in recent scholarship.

Gary BachmanGary Bachman, associate professor of social work, has been appointed to serve on the Council on Social Work Education’s Gerontological Curricular Taskforce. The taskforce will assist in developing and proposing specialized curricular models that undergraduate and graduate social work programs can use to implement and measure updated accreditation standards.

A Park University graduate student and alumna were honored by the Northland Regional Chamber of Commerce on April 27 at the NRCC’s annual Excellence in Education banquet in Kansas City, Mo. The banquet honors outstanding students, teachers, staff, volunteers and business supporters of Northland education. Ann-Marie Basye, who is pursuing a Master of Education in Language and Literacy, and Kela Waddell, ’07, MAT ’11, ME ’15, were recognized at the event.

Dr. Samuel ChamberlinAn article co-authored by Samuel Chamberlin, Ph.D., assistant professor of mathematics, has been published in a recent issue of the journal Algebras and Representation Theory. The article was on “Integral Bases for the University Enveloping Algebras of Cartan Map Superalgebras.”

A trio of faculty made presentations at the Central States Communication Association’s annual conference in Grand Rapids, Mich., April 13-17. Lora Cohn, Ph.D., associate professor of communication arts, Staci Mayo, instructor of communication arts, and Mark Noe, Ph.D., professor of communication arts and director of the Master of Arts in Communication and Leadership program, presented on a panel on “Finding Foundations with Adjuncts: A Roundtable Discussion of the Evolving Role of Contingent Faculty from Multiple Perspectives.” Cohn also presented a paper on the panel “Foundation of Democracy: The Rhetoric of Famous Michiganders.” In addition, she chaired a panel on “Underpinning Success: Collaborations Between High Schools, Community Colleges and 4-Year Schools.” Also, Cohn and Mayo presented on a panel, “Rediscovering the Founders: Creative Methods for Teaching Foundational Theory in the Millennial Classroom.”

Dr. Stacey KikendallStacey Kikendall, Ph.D., assistant professor of English, presented a paper on “(Im)Prudent Travel: The Struggle Between Public and Private Identities in Mary Wollstonecraft’s and Mary Shelley’s Travel Writing” at the Nineteenth Century Studies Association Conference, April 16 in Lincoln, Neb. The paper analyzed how Wollstonecraft and her daughter, Shelley, both Romantic era writers, negotiated the conflict between their personal and public personas by revealing or disguising certain imprudent actions in their travel writing.

Dr. Jolene LamptonJolene Lampton, Ph.D., associate professor of accounting and management at Park University’s Austin (Texas) Campus Center and area coordinator of the Master of Business Administration/Accounting program, presented a paper on “The Value of Relationships in the Study of Accounting” at the North American Accounting Society’s meeting during the MBAA International Conference in Chicago on April 14. Lampton’s paper showed how accounting educators can jump start relationship building strategies, especially for nontraditional students in accounting programs.

Manda Riley, senior social work major, won first place in a national poster competition at The Association of Baccalaureate Social Work Program Directors annual conference in early April in Dallas. Riley’s poster presentation was based on her capstone “Organizational Transformation Project,” which revolved around identifying barriers that interfere with the willingness of university students to utilize campus-based counseling services.

Shane SmeedShane Smeed, vice president of enrollment and students services, was appointed to the Planning and Zoning Commission for the City of Parkville, Mo., during the city’s Board of Aldermen meeting on May 3. The PZC is responsible for reviewing and making recommendations on zoning, development plans and subdivision plats, as well as reviewing and updating the city’s master plan.

Dr. Terrence WardTerrence Ward, Ph.D., assistant professor of public administration and area coordinator for public management, co-presented a session on “Developing Leadership Across an Organization” at the National School Boards Association’s annual conference in Boston on April 10. The presentation was on the leadership development efforts in the North Kansas City (Mo.) School District and the impact on developing staff to fulfill human resource needs of the district. In addition, Ward was elected to another term on the NKCSD Board of Education on April 5. Ward was subsequently elected president of the board.

Steve YoungbloodSteven Youngblood, associate professor of communication arts and director of Park University’s Center for Global Peace Journalism, presented a visiting scholar public lecture on “Reporting Syrian Refugees and Peace Journalism” in Overland Park, Kan., on April 21. Youngblood discussed how media coverage of Syrian refugees in Turkey (and elsewhere) has been usually negative, and has even made refugees’ lives more difficult. He reviewed irresponsible traditional reporting about migrants and a possible solution — peace journalism — that promotes better reporting.

SFE-Literary FestivalStudents, faculty and staff from Park University’s School for Education, along with eight community organizations in the Northland area of Kansas City, Mo., collected approximately 2,500 books to donate to Kansas City youth in the urban core during a literacy festival sponsored by the Nets Developmental League on May 14 at Longview Tract Park. Books were handed out to children who played in a basketball tournament over the weekend and those not given out will be donated to urban Kansas City schools.

Park In The News

Park University was featured in the Platte County (Mo.) Landmark on April 20. The article, which included quotes from Park President Greg Gunderson, Ph.D., and University Archivist Carolyn Elwess, provided a historical look at the University’s 140-year existence.

Park University was mentioned in a story that appeared in Fortune magazine on April 7. The story was on colleges that offer the best and worst bang for the buck, based on the 2016 PayScale College ROI Report that was recently released.

A photo of Park University President Greg Gunderson, Ph.D., and Brady Uden, 8-year-old son of Jayme Uden, Ed.D., dean of students, appeared in the Platte County (Mo.) Citizen on April 13. The photo was of Gunderson demonstrating to the younger Uden the art of sweeping in the sport of curling.

Lisa Wade McCormack, ’83, was part of a team that won a 2016 Regional Edward R. Murrow Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association. McCormack was a producer for an investigative report that aired in November 2015 on WDAF-TV in Kansas City on “Taking Ammunition Out of Kids’ Hands.” The award was presented in the large market television/investigative reporting category.

Adam Richardson, senior political science/American politics major, was quoted in an article that appeared in The Huffington Post on April 21. Richardson provided a comment about education reform as a key issue in politics.

David Radzynski, who earned a graduate certificate in violin performance in 2014 from Park’s International Center for Music and has served as concertmaster for the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra since spring 2015, was featured in a question-and-answer story that appeared in the April 24 issue of The Times of India. Radzynski mentioned the ICM and Ben Sayevich, professor of music/violin.

Shane Smeed, vice president of enrollment and student services, was featured by the University in a special “Education” advertising supplement that appeared in The Kansas City Star on April 17.

Derrick Williams, junior fitness and wellness major, and a member of Park University’s men’s basketball team, appeared in a photo for a story on the Australian Football League’s website. The AFL (also known as Australian rules football), held a combine for potential players in Los Angeles the week of April 25, and Williams was one of 18 participants.

The gala concert for Park’s International Center for Music at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Mo., on May 4 (which was was postponed to Sept. 7 due to an injury to Behzod Abduraimov, ICM artist-in-residence) was the focus of a feature article that appeared in The Kansas City Star on May 1. Abduraimov and Stanislav Ioudenitch, associate professor of music/piano, were interviewed for the story.

Betsy Keller, ’06, was featured in a story that appeared in the El Paso (Texas) Times on April 30. Keller was recently appointed El Paso County’s chief administrator and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the county.

Erik Bergrud, associate vice president for alumni, constituent and employer relations, and his wife, Kimberlee Ried, '16, appeared in a photograph in the April 30 issue of The Independent, Kansas City’s journal of society. Bergrud and Ried are the chairs for the Kansas City Ballet Guild’s 49th annual gala on Saturday, Oct. 1

Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Kevin Byrnes, ’75, was the focus of an article that appeared in the Redstone Rocket, a publication for personnel at U.S. Army Post Redstone Arsenal, Ala. Byrnes was featured as part of a series of articles about Vietnam veterans as the U.S. commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War.

Park University’s criminal justice administration program was featured in the May issue of Military Advanced Education and Transition magazine. The article on “The Many Faces of Criminal Justice,” explained the number of career options that await servicemembers turned criminal justice students. Greg Plumb, J.D., professor and chair of criminal justice administration, was quoted in the article.

Tom Cline, ’86, was highlighted in a story that appeared in the West Plains (Mo.) Daily Call on May 5. Cline, who has served as the Ozark County, Mo., prosecuting attorney for 21 years, announced his retirement.

Marc Porter, ’99, was featured in an article that appeared in The Oxford (Mich.) Leader on May 4. Porter was recently appointed president of Crossroads for Youth, a nonprofit treatment agency that serves at-risk youth.

As part of National Teacher Appreciation Week, staff at the Liberty (Mo.) Tribune honored their favorite superhero teachers. Kellie Houx, ’93, who serves as the newspaper’s editor, named Park University’s John Lofflin, professor of journalism, and Jerzy Hauptmann, Ph.D., professor emeritus of political science and public administration, who passed away in 2008.

Andre D’Elia, who graduated from Park University on May 7, was highlighted in a story that appeared on May 5 on the Futebol Interior website in Brazil, D’Elia’s home country. Translated page

A story about the new Kansas City streetcar line that appeared on WDAF-TV on May 6 included a mention about Park University’s mascot, “Sir George,” who was one of the first to get a ride.

Courtney Goddard, J.D., vice president and general counsel, and her children, Wyatt, 9, and Caroline, 7, were featured on the cover of the May issue of Mission Hills (Kan.) Living magazine, and the family was highlighted with a story.

Doug Davis, who plans to attend Park University beginning this summer, was the focus of an article that appeared in The Kansas City Star on May 15. Davis, who served two tours of duty with the U.S. Marine Corps in Iraq, lives with post-traumatic stress disorder, has been a part of the new Johnson County (Kan.) Veterans Treatment Court which  provides an alternative to jail for some veterans whose substance abuse, injuries, depression or stress related to military service probably contributed to their scrapes with police.

Upcoming Events

(All events are Central time)
     •  May 17 -- Ballyhoo, 5 p.m., Norrington Center, Parkville Campus
     •  May 19 -- Tinker Air Force Base (Okla.) Campus Center Commencement, 4 p.m., Tinker AFB Combined Club
     •  May 20 -- Maymester ends
     •  May 20 -- Malmstrom Air Force Base (Mont.) Campus Center Commencement, 1 p.m., Malmstrom AFB Auditorium
     •  May 20 -- Naval Support Activity Mid-South Millington (Tenn.) Campus Center Commencement, 1 p.m., Pat Thompson Recreation Center, NSA Millington
     •  May 21 -- Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  May 23 -- Whiteman Air Force Base (Mo.) Campus Center Commencement, 5 p.m., Mission’s End, Whiteman AFB
     •  May 27 -- Barstow (Calif.) Community College Campus Center / Victor Valley College (Calif.) Campus Center Commencement, 8 p.m., High Desert Church, Victorville, Calif.
     •  May 30 -- Memorial Day Holiday
     •  June 2 -- Cherry Point (N.C.) Marine Corps Air Station Campus Center Commencement, 9 a.m., Two Rivers Theater and Event Center, Havelock, N.C.
     •  June 3 -- Ellen Finley Earhart Nursing Program Pinning Ceremony, 1 p.m., Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel
     •  June 3 -- Beaufort (S.C.) Marine Corps Air Station Campus Center Commencement, 2:30 p.m., The Lyceum, Parris Island Marine Depot
     •  June 3 -- Little Rock (Ark.) Air Force Base Campus Center Commencement, 6:30 p.m., Jacksonville (Ark.)Community Center
     •  June 4 -- Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  June 6 -- Summer Session, Junemester begin
     •  June 9 -- Scott Air Force Base (Ill.) Campus Center Commencement, 7 p.m., The Regency Conference Center, O’Fallon, Ill.
     •  June 10 -- Fairchild Air Force Base (Wash.) Campus Center Commencement, 11 a.m., Red Morgan Event Center, Fairchild AFB
     •  June 10 -- Minot (N.D.) Air Force Base Campus Center Commencement, 6 p.m., James Crawford Airman Leadership School Auditorium, Minot AFB
     •  June 16 -- Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  June 17 -- Laughlin Air Force Base (Texas) Campus Center Commencement, 1 p.m., Anderson Hall, Laughlin AFB
     •  June 24 -- F.E. Warren Air Force Base (Wyo.) Campus Center Commencement, TBA, Fall Hall Community Center, Warren AFB
     •  June 24 -- Luke Air Force Base (Ariz.) Campus Center Commencement, 5 p.m., Club 56, Luke AFB
     •  June 25 -- Admissions: Get On Board Day, 8:30 a.m., Parkville Campus
     •  June 25 -- Davis-Monthan Air Force Base (Ariz.) Campus Center Commencement, 5 p.m., Mirage Club, Davis-Monthan AFB
Note: To view a comprehensive schedule for all events, including athletics and student life, visit