Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Dakota Wesleyan University campus will be closed on Friday, July 4, for the Independence Day holiday weekend.
This includes the McGovern Library and Java City, as well as offices. The library will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday, July 3, and Java City will be closed Thursday.
Regular office hours and library hours will resume Monday, July 7.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Jared Stearns, of Canton, was recently awarded the Accounting Program Completion Scholarship from the South Dakota CPA Society.
Stearns, a junior at Dakota Wesleyan University, was the only student awarded this scholarship for the 2014-15 academic year, amounting to $7,500. He is an accounting major who also tutors, is a member of the DWU cross country team, a member of Enactus (business club), and is employed by the accounting department at Trail King in Mitchell. He is the son of Craig and Lee Stearns of Canton.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Katherine Johnson, of Mead, Neb., was recently awarded the Accounting Excellence Scholarship from the South Dakota CPA Society.
Johnson, a junior at Dakota Wesleyan University, was one of five students awarded this scholarship for the 2014-15 academic year, amounting to $7,750. She is an accounting major and member of the DWU women’s basketball team and Enactus (business club), as well as elected Student Senate treasurer for 2014-15. She is the daughter of Tim and Annette Johnson, Mead.
Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Dakota Wesleyan University is once again featured on CollegesofDistinction.com, an online college guide that takes a fresh look at colleges and universities appealing to students’ unique and varied interests.
Dakota Wesleyan is the only South Dakota college listed on the site and this is its fifth year.
High school college counselors and educators nominate colleges and universities for recognition by Colleges of Distinction, which then evaluates each school based on qualitative and quantitative research. The colleges and universities are not ranked and instead are members of a consortium of other equally impressive schools.
Colleges of Distinction looks beyond rankings and test scores to find colleges that are the ideal places to learn, grow and succeed, according to its press release. The selection process reviews factors including the school’s first-year experience, general education program, experiential components of the curriculum, the strategic plan and alumni success and satisfaction.
“We focus on colleges that are deeply dedicated to students' learning,” said Tyson Schritter, executive editor of Colleges of Distinction. “Schools designated as ‘Colleges of Distinction’ offer innovative learning experiences that educate, nurture and transform students."
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
The spring semester dean’s list at Dakota Wesleyan University includes 211 students.
To qualify for the dean’s list, a student must have a semester grade point average of at least 3.5 on a four-point scale. They also have to complete at least 12 hours of academic work during the semester. The following students have been named to the dean’s list.
Aberdeen – Ariana Arampatzis, Austin Hieb
Armour – Lydia Ymker
Artesian – Jo Anne Oberg
Ashton – Shayna Frost
Baltic – Glenn Scotting
Belle Fourche – Tyler Burr
Big Stone City – Kayla Mielitz
Blunt – Macey Chambers
Box Elder – Lisa Stanley
Britton – Jade Hoisington, Kyle Hoisington
Brookings – Lauren Fitts, Bailey Gummer, Katelynn Runge
Bruce – Jace Goodfellow
Burke – Skyler Heyden
Canistota – Alex Robertson
Canton – Abby Carpenter, Abigail Fossum, Jessica Fossum, Jared Stearns, Jasmin Vant
Castlewood – Kelsey Little
Chamberlain – Makenna Hancock, Kelli Swenson
Clear Lake – Eric Lundberg
Colome – Michael Rohde
Corsica – Breanna Blom, Angela Cleveland, Linnaea Johnson, Kris Menning, Lacey Reimnitz, Megan Reimnitz, Kayla Vanden Hoek
Crooks – Trae Bergh
Dell Rapids – Lindsay Merry, Tanner Munk
Edgemont – Elizabeth Humiston
Estelline – Daniel Mitchell
Ethan – Chase McBrayer, Kira Stammer
Fedora – Cal Wiese
Geddes – Shelby Steele
Harrisburg – Heather Willett, Heidi Willett
Hartford – Caleb Heiberger
Hill City – Pamela Getman
Howard – Jolee Drown, Andrew Schwader, Kelli Smith
Hurley – Celeste Beck, Stephen Lee
Huron – Sara Hines, Kristin Pratt
Iroquois – Leah Wienbar
Kennebec – Danielle Anderson
Kimball – Natalie Munger, Jesse Taylor
Lake Andes – Kelsey Kniffen, Krista Winckler
Letcher – Lindsey Miller, Lacey VanLaecken
Madison – Jessica Neises, Cody Warns, Kelsey Warns
Marion – Kolleen Matthies
Mellette – Landon Fischbach
Miller – Shaney Davis
Mitchell – Tatyana Brown, Zachary Ciavarella, Cherokee Durant, Kayla Geraets-Majercik, Miranda Goldammer, Tiffany Hogen, Krista Huber, Brittney Kaufmann, Serina Lesnar, Zachary Lippert, Cynthia Loeske, Mareisha Marvin, Dillon Miles, Morgan Millar, Andreau-Joseph Miller, Jenna Miller, Madison-Ainsley Miller, Emily Mizrahi, Chelsea Moody, Joseph Nagel, Christopher Nemec, Rachel Reichel, Jordan Reiner, Joshua Schmitz, Marissa Tubbs, Briana Weiss
Mount Vernon - Jordan Adam, Amanda Dixon, Megan Hart, Emma Otterpohl, Delayna Paulson
Parkston – Erica Herrold, Samantha Mogck, Ann Thury
Pierre – Matthew Bader, Michael Hardwick, Alexander McGuigan, Travis Moodie, Tyson Moodie, Dustin Paulsen, Tyler Sarringar
Plankinton – Chase Kristensen, Elizabeth Morrison
Platte – Cheyenne Durant, Emily Olsen, Matthew Randall, Kayla Summerville
Presho – Jaylen Uthe
Rapid City – Matthew Britt, Amanda Burton, Nicole Gleich, Megan Johnson, Alisha Lascelles, Lauren Tadlock
Renner – Shelby Vosburg
Scotland – Aisha Abbink, Jaymie Barrett, Haley Brunke, Chelsea Raker
Sioux Falls – Andrew DeVaney, Chance Huber, Tiffany Johnston, Kylie Keiser, Zachary Schneider, Sarah Teeslink
South Shore – Jordan Buchholz
Spearfish – Blaine Bacon
Stickney – Adam Bormann, Kyle Gerlach
Sturgis – Alexandra Kuehler
Tea – Andrew Becker
Tripp – Samantha Sandau
Tyndall – Kodi Larson, Travis McDonald, Tara Ronke, Jared Van Winkle
Vermillion – Hannah Ford
Volga – Tyson DeGroot
Wagner – Tristen Scherr
Wall – Madeline Bauer
Warner – Briana Jung
Watertown – Emily Pengilly, Nicholas Tschakert
Waubay – Jonathan Wieger
Wessington – Paige Mehling
Wessington Springs – Sarah Mentzer
White – Autumn Schmidt
White Lake – Beau Byrd
Winner – Austin Calhoon, Anthony Husher
Woonsocket – Kayla Collins, Amber Hiles, Emily Olson, Stacy Treib, Eric Warkenthien
Yale – Lexy Timm
Yankton – Tiffany Fiechuk, Brook Woehl
Out of State
Gilbert – Analisa Morel
Glendale – Daniel Maman
Bakersfield – Colleen Hannum
Chula Vista – Alexandra Davis
Moss Beach – Cody Silveria
North Hollywood – Anthony Cervantes
Pearblossom – Trever Devestern
Temecula – Lindy Snook
Arvada – Jerry Stravia
Brighton – Tiffany Sharp
Grand Junction – Heather Banister
Loveland – Breanna Clark, Dyrani Clark
Windermere – Michael Claar
Burlington – Jonathon Knight
Tetonia – Braiden Jorgensen
Lindsborg – Ian Lackey
Balaton – Lori Lima
Dawson – Sarah Zaiser
Fairmont – Joseph Fitzgerald
Marshall – Brooke Louwagie
Rochester – Bryce Berletic
Saint Paul – Logan Massop
Worthington – Cassandra Landgaard
Corvallis – Jake Capko
Huson – Alecia VanTassel
Roundup – Marisa Soderberg
Blair – Adam Jahnel
Gordon – Macy Piper
Mead – Katherine Johnson
Naper – Jonathan Alford
Norfolk – Payton Baker
Orchard – Sarah Twibell
Polk – Mackenzie Stevens
Jamestown – Sterling Hubbard
Surrey – Taylor Kuhn
Denton – Thara Ali Said
Lakeview – April Barnett
Casper – John Fabrizius
Gillette – Alexis Wilde
Jackson – Christian Doyle
Sheridan – Erin Deibele
Winnipeg– Hailey Unger
Thursday, May 22, 2014
Space is still available for youth interested in participating in three June science camps at Dakota Wesleyan University.
Camps will take place June 9-13. “Minecraft Mathematics” is a camp for fourth- and fifth-graders; “Art & STEM” and “Robotics” are camps for sixth- through eighth-grade students. All camps will be on campus and will run from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. each day. The cost of each camp is $75.
The camps will take place in partnership with the South Dakota Innovation Lab and the PAST Foundation as a way to introduce students to transdisciplinary, problem-based learning.
To register, either click here or go to https://pastinnovationlab.org/students/bridge-programs/.
Monday, May 19, 2014
Dakota Wesleyan University welcomes a new campus pastor this summer, the Rev. Eric Van Meter.
Van Meter comes to DWU from Arkansas State University, Paragould, Ark., where he served as campus pastor since 2007 – a calling inspired through self-discovery.
“My time as a student in campus ministry was the transformative experience of my adult life,” he said about his own college experiences. “Through both the way I was loved and the way I was expected to show love to others, I discovered a way of living that was more beautiful than anything I’d imagined before. When I found out I could serve God, love others, and even get paid to do it, I realized that ministry was the vocation for me.”
Van Meter is a graduate of Arkansas Tech University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, and Asbury Theological Seminary with a Master of Divinity.
He will begin at DWU on July 1, succeeding former campus pastor Brandon Vetter who will assume fulltime duties for Fusion on July 1, as well. Fusion, a weekly worship service held on campus, was originally a collaboration between DWU and the First United Methodist Church, but its growth led to it becoming a church of its own and Vetter was called to lead it.
“Brandon and the students have made such a great situation here, and Denise and I felt so at home when we visited,” Van Meter said.
At Arkansas State University, Van Meter served as campus pastor and helped grow and stabilize its campus ministry to a group that regularly trains and guides 50 to 70 young adults each year. Prior to ASU, he served as the executive pastor at St. James United Methodist Church in Little Rock, where he assisted to supervise a staff of more than 30 full-time employees, conducting weekly worship to a congregation averaging 1,000.
The decision to come to Dakota Wesleyan was not made lightly, as Van Meter said he and his wife prayed over the decision to return to the Dakotas, having served United Methodist Campus Ministry in Rapid City from 2002-2004. With all his experience in campus ministry being at state schools, people close to him began suggesting his gifts would fit perfectly in a Christian university setting.
“As I started to look around and I came across DWU, it was everything I was looking for: a strong ministry connected with campus life, a great place for my family, and an opportunity to teach in a classroom setting,” he said.
He and his wife, Denise, and children, Zachary, 10, and Jonathan, 8, will make their home across the street from campus.
“Everything worthwhile that I’ve done in my life has frightened me at least a little; the same can be said for moving to DWU — I’m very excited, but also a little nervous,” he said. “I’m coming into this with a lot of ideas and hopes. I’m confident we’re going to continue to do beautiful ministry at DWU, and I’m excited to help create that in the years ahead.”
Thursday, May 15, 2014
Dakota Wesleyan University will partner with Northridge Baptist Church as a host site for the Global Leadership Summit Aug. 14-15.
Click here for registration information.
DWU’s Sherman Center will be the location for the two-day Summit, telecast live from the Willow Creek Association (WCA) campus near Chicago to more than 300 locations in North America. More than 170,000 church, business and organization leaders participate each year.
Founded in 1992, WCA is the organization behind the Global Leadership Summit. According to its website, “the Summit is a world-class experience for leaders who want to get better. Everybody has influence and the responsibility to lead well. When cultivated in a culture of Christ-centered leadership, your influence can change lives and the organizations in which you lead. Leaders worldwide leverage the Summit to sharpen their skills and to unleash the full potential of their teams.”
The Rev. Ben Payne of Northridge Baptist Church is enthusiastic about this opportunity.
“The Global Leadership Summit has been growing and is now being simulcast around the world in more than 90 different countries,” Payne said. “We feel that hosting this premier leadership training event will raise the level of leadership in all sectors of our region. Good leadership is vital to all organizations and our hope is that anyone who is in a position of influence in our area will prioritize this event for themselves and their team. If they do, their entire organization will benefit.”
Speakers at this year’s Summit include:
- Tyler Perry – Filmmaker, actor and philanthropist
- Jeffrey Immelt – President and CEO of General Electric
- Susan Cain – best-selling author of “The Power of Introverts”
- Wilfredo De Jesus – senior pastor, New Life Covenant Church; Time’s 100 Most Influential People 2013
- Patrick Lencioni – best-selling author, “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team” and one of Fortune Magazine’s Gurus You Should Know
- Carly Fiorina – former CEO of Hewlett-Packard and Fortune magazine’s Most Powerful Woman in Business for six consecutive years
- Joseph Grenny – social scientist for business performance
For a full list of speakers, go to www.willowcreek.com/summit.
The local event chairwoman is Fredel Thomas, director of the Kelley Center for Entrepreneurship at DWU. Thomas has attended the Summit at the Sioux Falls site in the past and is pleased to bring the opportunity to Mitchell.
“We all get into ruts in our day-to-day life,” Thomas said. “When I went to the leadership conference, I found myself reenergized with the hope and enthusiasm I need to be a leader in my work, in my volunteer commitments and in my family. Those two brief days will provide the opportunity to hear from incredible leaders whose experiences and wisdom can provide the clarity of purpose from which we all can benefit.”
For more information or to register, visit www.willowcreek.com, or contact Deb Weitala at email@example.com.
Friday, May 9, 2014
The Dakota Wesleyan University awarded 206 degrees on May 3 during Commencement services at the Corn Palace.
Dr. Terry Grindstaff, a 1999 graduate of DWU and this year’s Commencement speaker, shared with students the importance of taking advantage of opportunities and always being ready for them, for they are often unexpected.
Grindstaff, of Omaha, Neb., is an assistant professor at the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions at Creighton University, Omaha, Neb. He told students that preparation and goal-setting are the best tools for success.
An Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters was awarded posthumously to Ann Mitchell, accepted by her husband, Dr. Dave Mitchell, and their daughters, Patti Duffy, Fort Pierre, and Nancy Mitchell, Philadelphia. Dr. John Husmann, associate professor of history at DWU, was awarded the prestigious Clarke Award for Teaching Excellence by Steve Clarke and his sister Megan Luther on behalf of the Clarke family.
To view all the graduation galleries, click here.
The following is a list of degree recipients:
Master of Arts in Education degrees:
Baltic – Nancy Brekke, education with history emphasis
Chamberlain – Carissa VanderLey, education with history emphasis
Crooks – Andrew Johnson, education with history emphasis
Dell Rapids – Jason Fersdahl, education with history emphasis; Drew Gillogly, educational policy and administration
Estelline – Alex Foster, educational policy and administration
Faith – Deanna Fischbach, education with history emphasis
Huron – Jerica Gamber, education with history emphasis; Candice Klipfel, education with history emphasis
Ipswich – Angela Kulesa, education with history emphasis
Isabel – Prairie Grate, education with history emphasis
Lemmon – Tim Pelkofer, education with history emphasis
Mitchell – Cindy Kiner, educational policy and administration; Seth Mernaugh, education with history emphasis; Stephen Morgan, education with history emphasis; Adam Schorzmann, educational policy and administration
Rapid City – Rebecca Baker, education with history emphasis; Eric Elder, education with history emphasis; Tracy Freidel, education with history emphasis; Jeannine Gibson, education with history emphasis
Salem – William Walker, secondary education certification and degree
Sioux Falls – Erica Bell, education with history emphasis; Brant Deutsch, education with history emphasis; Jared Fredenburg, education with history emphasis; Sylvia Gill, education with history emphasis; Lisa Griebel, education with history emphasis; Kristie Haffner, education with history emphasis; Tamra Huffman, education with history emphasis; Robyn Ventura, education with history emphasis
Springfield – Christopher Gubbrud, education with history emphasis
Tea – Jenae Ruesink-Cross, education with history emphasis
Viborg – Jamie Healy, education with history emphasis
Yankton – John Notheis, education with history emphasis
Oak Lawn – Kevin Kelly, educational policy and administration
East Grand Forks – Michael Lukkason, educational policy and administration
Lincoln – Rene Cardona, educational policy and administration
North Platte – Jacob Brandl, educational policy and administration
Casper – Paul McVey, education with history emphasis
Master of Business Administration-Strategic Leadership degree:
Mitchell – Traci Loecker
Onida– Elizabeth Lamb
Rapid City – Kasha Roberts
Tripp – Fredel Thomas; Angela Van Pelt
Bachelor of Arts degrees (names followed by *** indicates Summa Cum Laude, ** Magna Cum Laude; and * Cum Laude):
Aberdeen – Austin Hieb, communication; Tyler Severson, history education
Alexandria – Amanda Hart*, sports management and English
Bison – Preston Liebelt, sport, exercise and wellness
Chamberlain – Kelli Swenson***, leadership and public service and business administration; Tina Lein***, elementary education and special education
Elk Point – Nicholas Hutcheson*, elementary education
Ethan – Shelby Andersen**, elementary education; Matthew Tuttle, elementary education
Freeman – Joshua Korn, business administration
Harrisburg – Autumn Krueger, religion and philosophy
Huron – Eloisa Hernandez, digital media and design; Christopher Sterrett, wildlife management; Eric Witte, sport, exercise and wellness
Kimball – Jordyn Heath, elementary education; Natalie Munger*, graphic design
Lake Andes – Sarah Garcia, biology
Lennox – Bret LaCroix, history
Martin – Shawna Evans, human services
Mitchell – Zachary Ciavarella*, mathematics; Elizabeth Cope, human services; Andreau-Joseph Miller, history; Whitney Morgan, accounting; Joseph Nagel, English; Amee Patel, human services; Vicky Schaefer, behavioral science; Theresa Wheeler, human services
Mount Vernon – Amanda Dixon, psychology and history; Kendra Thomas, human services
Parker – Cody Duerksen, business administration
Pierre – Austin Munyon, wildlife management; Linsey Peterson*, sport, exercise and wellness
Plankinton – Erica Fett, psychology; Chase Kristensen*, leadership and public service; Elizabeth Morrison, music; Ashley Tipton, elementary education
Platte – Emily Olsen**, business administration; Joseph Selvig, history; Kayla Summerville***, human services and criminal justice
Presho – Skyler Eriksen**, elementary education
Rapid City – Amanda Burton***, individualized major and criminal justice; Eric Moller, criminal justice; Nickolas Sterling, business administration;
Sioux Falls – Jennica Berry, sports management; Derek Carlson, entrepreneurial leadership; Derrick Dunn, sports management; Eric Fjerestad, general education; Megan Hazelrigg, human services; Ross Leonhardt, sports management; Anthony Muilenburg, business administration
Spearfish – Drew Joachim, sport, exercise and wellness
Wagner – Mitchel Breen, communication; Talia Peters*, elementary education
Watertown – Kayla Leininger***; elementary education; Trent Robbins***, mathematics and business administration
Wessington Springs – Jordan Von Eye, criminal justice
Winner – Kyle Higgins, sports management
Yankton – Valerie Hummel*, religion and philosophy and psychology
Glendale – Daniel Maman**, sport, exercise and wellness
Lakewood – Richard Rios, human services
Moss Beach – Cody Silveria, history
Brighton – Tiffany Sharp*, biology
Grand Junction – Heather Banister, sports management
Loveland – Breanna Clark***, business administration and leadership and public service
Miami – Alexis Moore, communication
Canton – Benjamin Hatcher, business administration
Chicago – Shekela Qualres, human services
Chicago Heights – Carde' Pennington, sports management
Sioux City – James O’Halloran*, criminal justice
Lawrence – Jamar Reese, individualized sport administration
Inkster – Michael Lee, sports management
Adrian – Shea Klooster, criminal justice
Faribault – Christen Hildebrandt***, history education
Milan – Micaela Erickson*, business administration
Mountain Iron – Nicholas Pecha, sports management
Oakdale – Tobias Kaplan, sport, exercise and wellness
Pipestone – Chane Amdahl, Christian leadership and history
Reading – Emily Ruml, elementary education and special education
Billings – Dalton Smith, sport, exercise and wellness
Bladen – Caitlin Bruckman**, elementary education and special education
Fremont – Aaron Cox, criminal justice
Lincoln – Travis Johnson, business administration
Irving – Carlos Mora, history and psychology
Casper – Sterling Dockweiler**, history education
Winnipeg – Jillian Dickson, psychology
Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees (names followed by *** indicates Summa Cum Laude, ** Magna Cum Laude; and * Cum Laude):
Corsica – Megan Reimnitz**, theatre
Bachelor of Science degrees (names followed by *** indicates Summa Cum Laude, ** Magna Cum Laude; and * Cum Laude):
Alexandria – Lindsey Kayser, nursing
Britton – Kyle Hoisington, wildlife management
Clear Lake – Eric Lundberg*, athletic training
Corsica – Angela Cleveland, nursing
Edgemont – Elizabeth Humiston*, athletic training
Emery – Heidi Berg*, nursing
Geddes – Shelby Steele**, biology
Hill City – Pamela Getman***, accounting
Iroquois – Leah Wienbar, biology
Lesterville – Ashley Fischer, nursing
Mitchell – Tiffany Hogen, nursing; Emily Mizrahi, nursing; Nancy Mutziger**, accounting; Taylor Piper, athletic training; Jordan Reiner*, athletic training; Debra Teger, biology education
Murdo – Carson Moore, accounting
Parkston – Samantha Mogck, nursing
Pierre – Tyler Sarringar***, athletic training
Sioux Falls – Myranda Blunt, nursing; Kimberly Johnson, nursing
Stickney – Stephanie Teel***, biology education
Sturgis – Alexandra Kuehler**, biology
Tulare – Aimee Lenocker, biology education
Wessington – Paige Mehling, athletic training
Woonsocket – Jedd Schlicht, biology
Kansas City – Erika Carpenter, biology
Lindsborg – Ian Lackey, athletic training
Mora – Rachel Eberhart, nursing
Associate of Arts degree:
Huron – Rebecca Fischer Sipple, criminal justice
Associate of Science degree in nursing (names followed by * indicates graduating with honors):
Baltic – Michelle Arends
Brandon – Michelle Olson
Canton – Kelsey Olson
Dell Rapids – Michelle Pierce; Megan Witte
Dimock – Brooke McBrayer
Harrisburg – Rosalee Renken
Huron – Alexis Fiorini*; Ashley Kingdon; Jay Larson; Lindsey McCaskell; Kristine McGirr; Angela Mott; Miranda Olson; Kristin Pratt*
Iroquoise – April Leichtenberg
Kennebec – Danielle Anderson*
Lake Andes – Jenna Winckler
Letcher – Lora VanOverschelde
Mitchell – Kristin Gebel; Zachary Lippert*; Molly Neugebauer; Jenna Schmaltz; Renee Schroeder; Alexis Semmler; Lacey Vittitoe
Mount Vernon – Sara Deinert*
Parkston – Sara Konrad
Redfield – Trenice Pehrson*
Reliance – Nicole Schindler
Sioux Falls – James Dietz; Megan Hatwan; Kristin Hendrickson*; Dana Mutschelknaus; Rosa Nordstrom; Kassi Sether; Patrick Verley*
Warner – Briana Jung*
Wentworth – Sarah Johnson
White Lake – Audrey Chapman
Wolsey – Ashley Styer
Woonsocket – Maria De La Rosa*
Lancaster – Kathryn Anderus
Rock Island – Holly Lunde
Luverne – Jessica Behr; Sara Vorderbruggen
Pipestone – Jessica Meyer
Thursday, May 8, 2014
Dakota Wesleyan University took time Thursday to honor and recognize employees for their years of service, their credit to the university and to say farewell to those moving on to the next phase in their lives.
During the employee recognition breakfast, DWU awarded Professional Excellence Awards for spring; the winners are Karen Knoell, university registrar, and Dan Miller, associate professor of communication and theatre director.
Knoell, winner of the Professional Excellence Award for staff, was described in her nomination letter as dedicated and dependable, willing to work extended hours and volunteer for committees.
“She is very much respected by faculty and staff which is so important to holding the role she does,” states the nomination. “Karen is thoughtful, detailed, and prompt in her work. She allows the academic registration process to flow smoothly, with solid planning and wonderful problem-solving abilities.”
Knoell has also taken on the responsibility as co-chairman of the program prioritization committee on campus, which includes reading and assessing reports from every program and department on campus.
“Weekly meetings and nightly reading have become the norm for her this year as she remains dedicated to meaningful outcomes of the process. It takes a dedicated, respected and unbiased approach to carry out such a charge. She has put in many hours to ultimately help the university’s mission.”
Miller, winner of the Professional Excellence Award for faculty, has brought musical theatre back to campus with huge productions like “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” and this year’s “Les Miserables.” In fact, for “Les Mis,” Miller dedicated his entire spring break to building the set in the Sherman Center, with the help of several students. He is also responsible for creating a Bachelor of Fine Arts program, making DWU the only private school in the state to offer a B.F.A.
“Dan has cultivated a loyal and able cadre of students who do incredible work both on and off the stage,” stated his nomination. “Many of these students, often without being enrolled for credit, are involved in multiple productions over their careers, showing incredible growth, and demonstrating amazing dedication and a willingness to sacrifice by fulfilling multiple duties, often in the more unsung aspects of theatre.
“Even for students who are not majors, theatre provides students with incredibly valuable experiences in taking personal risks, gaining confidence and leadership skills, appreciating the value of being part of a larger team with well-defined roles in which you must learn to depend on each other, … Dan does an excellent job in bringing these aspects to the forefront of students’ minds, and mentoring students both on and off the stage to achieve excellence.”
Other Professional Excellence Award winners this year were: Monty Bohrer, associate business professor and director business, and Dan Bonte, assistant director of admissions, for the summer term; and Diane Sandhoff, dean of the Donna Starr Christen College of Healthcare, Fitness and Sciences, and Malik Stewart, talent adviser, for the fall term.
The Presidential Award for Outstanding Service was awarded to Leah Rado, sports information director.
“Behind the success of Dakota Wesleyan University this past year have been countless individuals whose commitment to excellence makes the stories of our students possible. However, few are probably aware of the many hours behind the scenes of one individual. Well beyond midnight and on most weekends, Leah Rado is writing press releases, figuring the stats sheets, submitting reports to the GPAC – all in an effort to tell the compelling story of accomplishment by not just our athletic teams, but the story of our student athletes,” said DWU President Amy Novak when presenting the award.
Rado balances multiple work duties for the athletic department as well finding time to chaperone three past DWU mission trips in and out of country.
“Today, we recognize Leah Rado as a true servant leader of Wesleyan; why? Because, each and every day, Leah puts everyone else’s story above her own,” Novak said. “Today we recognize her for just that – serving so that others may shine – serving that so others may know the compelling story of DWU athletics, and serving with a level of excellence that is the envy of the GPAC.”
Length of service awards were also presented to the following employees: five years: Mark Halling, assistant professor of education, administrative chair; Curt Hart, athletic director; Carol Lazenby, comptroller; Joan Lubben, assistant professor of math; Terry Lundeen, director of residence life; Mari Olson, public relations specialist; Brian Patrick, assistant professor of biology; Wim Rosendahl, systems administrator and programmer; Mark Steichen, biology instructor; and Jeremy Tosaya, head men’s soccer coach.
The following were recognized for 10 years: Elwin Hohn, McGovern Library custodian; John Husmann, associate history professor; Amy Novak, university president; Cherie Ramsdell, assistant professor of graphic design; and Cara Weise, enrollment services administrative assistant.
The following were recognized for 15 years: Lori Essig, vice president for university relations; Sean Flynn, history professor; and Donna Gerlach, campus nurse.
The following were recognized for 20 years: Missy Herr-Valburg, director of admissions; and Lori Solberg, bookstore manager.
The following were recognized for 25 years: Linda Hofer, day care director; Judy Lehi, circulation, acquisitions supervisor; Tim Mullican, biology professor; and Diane Sandhoff, nursing professor, director of the R.N. program and dean of the Donna Starr Christen College of Healthcare, Fitness and Sciences.
The following employee was recognized for 30 years: Wyonne Kaemingk, nursing A.A. program director.
The following employee was recognized for 35 years: Michael Farney, mathematics professor and department chairman.
Two DWU employees announced their retirement, Adele Jacobson and Nancy Sonne.
Jacobson, a professor in the nursing department, has worked for Dakota Wesleyan since 2005. Jacobson retires from the position as administrative chairman of the Arlene Gates Department of Nursing.
Sonne, an assistant professor of nursing at DWU, has worked for the university since 2002.
Kim Mohr, assistant professor of nursing at DWU, worked with Jacobson and Sonne for the past seven years.
“Both of these women have been servants for DWU,” Mohr said when asked to share a memory of her coworkers. “To make a great life, one must think about how you make the most of the time spent ‘in between’; where you were and where you are going. These small details are really what has made both Nancy and Adele great people and coworkers. I so appreciated the personal cards of encouragement and recognition from Adele. I also received many emails and hugs from Nancy of the same sort, since we weren’t on the same campus. They are in service to others, which is truly what we are all about.
“Adele has been an extremely hardworking, committed leader who led by example and showed her commitment to DWU nursing every day,” Mohr continued. “She has a great way of encouraging others and is committed to excellence every day. Nancy has been a quiet leader in our faculty who I consider to be a mentor and friend, encourager, great team player, and committed to the success of each and every one of her students. She is one of the kindest and most sincere people I know, but also has a balance where she will stay true to her values and speak her opinion when asked. That is why I respect her so much.
“There is a saying that you become great by helping others become great and that is so true with both of these women.”
Campus pastor Brandon Vetter isn’t retiring, but he is stepping down from his position at DWU this summer to lead the Fusion worship services full time. Vetter, who is a 2003 alumnus of DWU has been at the college since 2006. DWU recognized his service to the campus, to the First United Methodist Church and the community on Thursday as the campus wishes him luck on his next venture.
“Brandon Vetter leaves a remarkable spiritual leadership legacy at DWU,” Novak said. “When he first came, chapel attendance was near 25. Today, worship has grown to nearly 150 students, faculty, and staff and the campus is more deeply involved in regional and international mission work than ever before.
“From planting the new Fusion worship community to supporting global mission trips, from building discipleship programs to invite people to come to know Christ, to introducing Jesus through media, Brandon has witnessed the evangelical spirit of Christ, who said, ‘Go out and make disciples.’ We are grateful for his passion, leadership, energy and the truly remarkable spiritual transformation he brought to our campus.”
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