Highlights Summer 2018

Concordia University, Nebraska was blessed with many successes this year. The following list includes some of the many accomplishments achieved by our faculty, staff and students. 

Student Highlights

April Bayer and Morgan German edited “Potpourri 2018,” the creative writing journal of Concordia’s English honor society, Sigma Tau Delta.

Vincent Beasley and Mary Janovich were awarded second place for their oral non-empirical research presentation on personality at the annual meeting of the Great Plains Students’ Psychology Convention in Topeka, Kansas, on March 16, 2018.  Their paper was titled, “The Relationships Among Failure and Satisfaction with Life.”

Kyrstin Brandl has been working as an intern at Sandhills Publishing since May, 2017.

Taylor Brockhaus was selected to participate in a mission trip associated with the Royal Family Kids organization, working with youth in South Africa.  She will travel there for two weeks to host a Royal Family Kids camp for children in the orphanage in Rustenburg, South Africa, during the summer of 2018.

Simon Brummond and Thomas Taylor presented their paper titled, “Effects of Self-Awareness During Social Media Exposure on Self-Esteem” at the annual meeting of the Great Plains Students’ Psychology Convention in Topeka, Kansas, on March 17, 2018. 

Curtis Byal, Jenna Habegger, Kelsey Higgins, Grace Lozier, Jessica Skerston, Annie Schmidt and Brook Wagner participated in the Collegiate Leadership Competition in Cleveland, Ohio, on April 6-7, 2018.

Cindy Campbell accepted a position at Columbus High School as an art teacher.

Maria Carabantes presented her paper titled, “Do Maternal Work Hours Correlate with Emotional and Behavioral Aggression in Early Childhood?” at the annual meeting of the Nebraska Psychological Society in York, Nebraska, on November 4, 2017.

Rachel Duhachek, Kathie Nguyen and Sabrina Hayter presented their paper titled, “Psychological Impact of Online Dating” at the annual meeting of the Nebraska Psychological Society in York, Nebraska, on November 4, 2017.

Karle Embretson worked as a marketing intern at Concordia Publishing House for the summer, 2017.

Heather Engdahl was awarded first place for her oral non-empirical research presentation on personality at the annual meeting of the Great Plains Students’ Psychology Convention in Topeka, Kansas, on March 16, 2018. Her paper was titled “Personality and Ethical-Decision Making.”

David Epperson, Britnee Fear, Madalyn Fousek, Jadyn High, Sarah Krause, Jacy Johnston, Susie Moll, Zachary Moll, and Andrea Wiese taught English as a second language, art, dance, science, sports, and robotics for five weeks in June and July 2017 at "Camp Imagination Station" and "Camp Crazy about Science!" at Buena Vista Concordia International School in Shenzhen, China, serving over 140 Chinese children in grades K-8.

Addy Fisher has been accepted into the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at the University of the Pacific.

Walker Fisher, Emily Hayes, Samantha Liermann, Austin Reese and Megan Vieselmeyer were inducted into Concordia’s chapter of Phi Epsilon Kappa last October. The Phi Epsilon Kappa Fraternity is a national professional fraternity for persons engaged in, or pursuing careers in, physical education, health, recreation, dance, human performance, exercise science, sports medicine, and sport management.

Le’Dontrae Gooden (Exercise Science) and Jenn Wright (Health and Physical Education) received the Major of the Year Award for Concordia on behalf of the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) of Nebraska.

Jonathan Grant has been accepted for an internship in Information Technology at Concordia Plan Services in St. Louis during Summer 2018.

Alyssa Hanson has been accepted into the Human Development and Family Studies program at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa, and has been offered an assistantship.

Emily Hayes, Emily Meisinger, Tanner Schwaninger, Isac Splattstoeser and Jerry Stepps collaborated with the University of Nebraska Extension Office and Fast Mart on the “Choose Healthy Here” project which encourages convenience stores to provide healthy options to their customers.

Laura Hedstrom was a finalist in the Regional Competition for Young Organists sponsored by the American Guild of Organists held in Iowa City, Iowa, in July 2017. 

Rachel Hoarty presented her paper titled, “The Effects of the Outdoors on a Child’s Use of Inappropriate Language” at the annual meeting of the Nebraska Psychological Society in York, Nebraska, on November 4, 2017.

Aaron Jackson, Mason Koertz, Allison Mackie, Jacob Roggow, and Caleb Staehr presented an organ recital for the “First Friday” concert series at St. Paul United Methodist Church, Lincoln, in February 2018. 

Emma Jacoby has been hired as a full-time graphic designer for the YMCA of Lincoln.

Sarah Johnson has been accepted into the Des Moines Art festival this summer as one of the ten young and emerging Iowa artists in the 180 that are selected to be in the festival from over a thousand applicants.

Jacy Johnston, Abby Protzmann, Emily Meisinger and Emma Gremmer were awarded the “Servant Leader” award for 2017-2018 by the Concordia Business Club. Jacy chaired the Graduate and Career Fair committee, Abby chaired the Leadership and Ethics Symposium, Emily chaired the Women in Business Luncheon, and Emma served as the Business Club president.  They all helped organize the Leadership Labyrinth event on campus.

Jacy Johnston has accepted a position at the 10th Federal Reserve District Bank in Kansas City, for summer 2018, serving as a supervision and risk management intern.

Samantha Liermann was named a recipient of the Dr. Jeffery Vessely Memorial Scholarship Award by Phi Epsilon Kappa. 

Elise Loomis has accepted an internship at LUX Center for the Arts in Lincoln for summer, 2018.

Elizabeth Plasek presented her poster titled, “A Quasi-Experiment Examining the Effect of Professor’s Location of Residence on Teacher-Student Interpersonal Relationship (TSIR)” at the annual meeting of the Nebraska Psychological Society in York, Nebraska, on November 4, 2017.

Hannah Rose presented a paper titled, “Narcissism and Tom Haverford of Parks and Recreation: A Character Study” at the annual meeting of the Nebraska Psychological Society in York, Nebraska, on November 4, 2017.

Hannah Rose has been accepted into the Masters of Science in Art Therapy program at Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas.

Mark Schmidt had his poem, “Partisan Politics,” published as a featured work for the online literary journal “Digging Through the Fat” in October 2017. 

Ann Spilker’s undergraduate research article, “Diet and Habitat Analysis of Barn Owls (Tyto alba) Nesting at Ponca State Park,” written with assistance from Dr. Joseph Gubanyi, was published in the September 2017 edition of “The Nebraska Bird Review.”

Jacob Sumpter received a grant from the Midwestern Regional American Music Therapy Association to attend the Midwestern regional conference in Iowa City, Iowa, this past March.

Austin Theriot composed a setting of Psalm 8 for women’s choir and piano which was premiered by Concordia’s Cantamus Women’s Choir in April 2018.

Jordyne Vanselow had her work featured in a solo exhibition at Primary Colors Gallery in Independence, Missouri, including large-scale mixed media drawings. She also had work accepted into “Drawing Discourse,” the 9th Annual International Contemporary Drawing Exhibition held at the University of North Carolina, Asheville. Her drawing, “DANGER: Do Not Stand or Sit,” was one of 48 pieces selected from more than 1,100 entries by 400 artists from eight countries. Her drawing also received one of four Juror's Choice Awards distributed at the exhibition and was published in the exhibition catalogue.

Jordyne Vanselow has been accepted into the Des Moines Art festival this summer as one of the ten young and emerging Iowa artists among the 180 artists that are selected from over a thousand applicants.

Amanda Von Seggern has been accepted into the Master of Science in Athletic Training program at Northern Arizona University.

Meredith Wohlgemuth participated in the Berlin Opera Academy in the summer of 2017, where she performed as the Second Spirit in “Die Zauberflote.” She will reprise this role in May 2018 at the Southern Illinois Music Festival Young Artist Program, while also performing Gioachino Rossini’s “Messi di Gloria.” 

Meredith Wohlgemuth placed second in the Regional National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competition in the Senior Classical Division.

Meredith Wohlgemuth has been accepted and will pursue her masters in voice at The Juilliard School conservatory in New York City.

Meghan Woodruff has been accepted into the Masters in Data Analytics and Statistics program at Washington University in St. Louis for the fall semester of 2018.

Faculty and Staff Highlights

Dr. Duane Aagaard, adjunct professor of Athletic Administration, concluded a three year term as president of the North Carolina Sport Management Coalition.

Dr. Duane Aagaard was a presenter at the NCCAAHPERD-SM Convention, “Sport Can Change the World: Utilizing critical thinking assignments in Sociology of Sport courses.”

Dr. Duane Aagaard established educational partnerships with UNC-Chapel Hill, Charlotte Knights, Carolina Panthers, Big South Conference, Joe Gibbs Racing, and the Charlotte Motor Speedway. 

Dr. Brian Albright, professor of mathematics, signed a contract to publish the second edition of his textbook “Mathematical Modeling with Excel.”

Dr. Brian Albright and Dr. Ed Reinke, professor of mathematics, will grade AP Calculus exams in June 2018. This is Dr. Albright’s 10th and Dr. Reinke’s 17th year grading.

Dr. Vicki Anderson, assistant professor of education, led a group of undergraduates on a trip to Shenzhen, China, where the students taught English, art, dance, science, sports, and robotics in two summer camps to students in grades K-8 at the Buena Vista Concordia International School.

Dr. Vicki Anderson was installed as the 2018 president for MidAmerica Teachers of English as a Second Language (MIDTESOL), a four-state consortium of ESL professionals in Nebraska, Missouri, Iowa, and Kansas.

Dr. Vicki Anderson presented a two-day series of seven professional development workshops and a keynote address for teachers and administrators in schools associated with the Lutheran Church – Hong Kong Synod at a conference hosted by Buena Vista Concordia International School in November.

Dr. Vicki Anderson presented “Hope that My Efforts are Not Going to Waste: Viewing Feedback through the Lens of a Model of Second Language Acquisition” in February at the annual Master of Arts in Language Teaching (MALT) Colloquium at the University of Nebraska Omaha.

Dr. Vicki Anderson and Dr. Amanda Geidel, associate professor of education, led a children’s ministry workshop, focused on working with children who have disabilities or come from diverse backgrounds, at Calvary Lutheran Church in Lincoln, Nebraska, in March.

Dr. Lisa Ashby, professor of English, will represent the State of Nebraska at the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) Annual Conference in May, 2018 in Providence, Rhode Island. The National VOAD coalition includes more than 50 of the country's most reputable national disaster-response organizations and 55 State/Territory VOADs, which represent Local/Regional VOADs and hundreds of other member organizations throughout the country. Dr. Ashby is president of the Nebraska VOAD.

Dr. Curt Beck, associate professor of business administration, led a group of undergraduates on a trip to Cleveland, Ohio, where the students competed in the Collegiate Leadership Competition on April 6-7, 2018.

Dr. Curt Beck served as the lead judge at the Heartland Division of the Collegiate Leadership Competition in Fort Hays, Kansas, on April 13-14, 2018.

Dr. Curt Beck and the Concordia Business Club announced a partnership with the People’s City Mission of Lincoln. The Business Club’s recycling initiative will benefit the People’s City Mission effort to help the homeless and support the Garuna Christian School in Kampong Chhnang, Cambodia.  The Concordia Business Club sponsors two children at the Garuna Christian School.  The PCM Toss Box is located at the Pac-N-Save in Seward.

Dr. Curt Beck, Dr. Gabriel Haley, associate professor of English, and Tim Heidorn, assistant professor of business administration, attended the Hillsdale College Free Market Forum in Houston, Texas, in October, 2017.

Rev. Dr. Charles Blanco, Nolan Harms, Dr. Jennifer Janousek, Chris Luther, and Rev. Russ Sommerfeld, in partnership with Mike Meyer and The Rock church in Seward and Central American Lutheran Mission Society (CALMS), will take a vision planning trip to El Pepinal, Guatemala from May 28 to June 1. This trip will assist these core team members in strategically planning future trips and equip them to lead student teams from Concordia, and in the future, will include activities and advancement in the areas of health, sports camps, VBS and church growth.

Dr. Jeffrey Blersch, professor of music and university organist, presented a series of hymn festivals for the 500th anniversary of the Reformation throughout the country in the fall of 2017, including two sold-out performances at the Kaufmann Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, on the 103-rank Casavant organ.

Dr. Jeffrey Blersch published the fourth volume of his series “A Thousand Voices: 7 Hymn Tune Preludes for Organ” with Concordia Publishing House in March 2018.  Also appearing in the 2018 CPH Catalog is his new arrangement of “God’s Own Child, I Gladly Say It” for choir, congregation, keyboard, and flute.

Dr. Jeffrey Blersch had his arrangements of “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” for choir, congregation, organ, brass and timpani, and “There Is A Green Hill Far Away” for SATB choir and piano named to the Editor’s Choice list at J.W. Pepper & Co., the world’s largest distributor of sheet music.

James Bockelman, professor of art, had his paintings displayed at the LUX Center for the Arts in Lincoln and featured in the exhibition “Spirit 2018” at the Museum of Nebraska Art in Kearney.

James Bockelman will speak at the Museum of Nebraska Art in Kearney in conjunction with their Reinhold Marxhausen exhibition, a retrospective curated from the collection of Concordia University.

 James Bockelman has been invited to prepare a solo exhibition of photographs and videos for “Project Project,” an independent arts space in South Omaha, in September.

James Bockelman, Seth Boggs, Justin Groth and Don Robson, art professors at Concordia, had their pieces featured in the Concordia Faculty Exhibition at the Norfolk Arts Center in Norfolk, Nebraska, in April and May.

Jennifer Bockelman, adjunct art instructor, was nominated for Best Two Person Exhibition by the Omaha Entertainment and Arts Awards for her contribution in the “Bockelman and Friedman Exhibit” held at the Fred Simon Gallery in Omaha. In addition, her work was included in the “Nasty Women Exhibition” in Queens, New York, “Catch and Take Hold” at Darger HQ in Omaha and “Being Human” in Lincoln.

Jennifer Bockelman was awarded two solo exhibitions, one at the Kimmel Harding Nelson center in Nebraska City and the second at the Bunker Arts Center in Kansas City, Missouri. Last summer, she attended the Brashnar Creative Project in Skopje, Macedonia, and this summer will participate in the D’CLINIC residency program in Zalaegerszeg, Hungary. 

Dr. Vicki Boye, professor of health and human performance, and her health promotion programming class collaborated with the University of Nebraska Extension Office and Fast Mart on the “Choose Healthy Here” project, which encourages convenience stores to provide healthy options to their customers.

Dr. Sara Brady, assistant professor of psychology, presented her poster titled, “Perceptions of Race and Color: Black Metaphors Affect Hiring Recommendations” at the annual meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in Atlanta, Georgia on March 2, 2018. Brady also was part of a research team whose manuscript, “Family Quality of Life and Partnership for Families of Students with Deaf-Blindness” was accepted pending minor changes for publication in the journal “Remedial and Special Education.”

Rev. Dr. David Coe, assistant professor of theology, reviewed Hermann Diem’s, “Die Existenzdialektik von Sören Kierkegaard.” “Zollikon-Zürich: Evangelischer Verlag, 1950, in Kierkegaard Secondary Literature: Tome IV: Finnish, French, Gallican, and German” edited by Katalin Nun, Jon Stewart and Sean Turchin, 225-28. Vol. 18 of “Kierkegaard Research: Sources, Reception and Resources,” edited by Jon Stewart, New York: Routledge, 2017.

Rev. Dr. David Coe’s article “A Place for Everything: Tackling and Teaching the Key Insights of Lutheran Ethics,” was published in “Issues in Christian Education” last summer.

Rev. Dr. David Coe led a workshop on “Discipleship” for LCMS Region 5’s annual college retreat in Salina, Kansas, in April, 2018.

Dr. Amanda Geidel, associate professor of education, presented at the Concordia University Early Childhood Conference in June in Seward. The title of her presentation was “The ABC’s of Classroom Adaptations.”

Dr. Amanda Geidel presented at the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) annual national meeting in Baltimore, MD in March. The title of her presentation was “How Student Teaching Influences Student Teacher Perceptions toward Inclusion.”

Dr. Elizabeth Grimpo, associate professor of music, created easy to early-intermediate piano settings of nine hymns for Volume 1 of “Jesus, Ground of Faith.” This is a graded piano series for developing church musicians and is published by the Music Conservatory of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Council Bluffs, Iowa. Future volumes are being planned. 

Dr. Joseph Gubanyi, emeritus professor of biology, and his student, Ann Spilker, published their research in the “The Nebraska Bird Review,” September 2017, The title of their article: “Diet and Habitat Analysis of Barn Owls (Tyto alba) Nesting at Ponca State Park.” 

Dr. Gabriel Haley, associate professor of English, had his article, “The Re-Enchantment of Education: C. S. Lewis’s “Idea of the Holy,” accepted for publication in a forthcoming issue of “The Journal of Scriptural Reasoning.”

Dr. Gabriel Haley will present a paper, “Contemplative Ductus as Lyric Aesthetic,” at the Twenty-First Biennial International Congress of the New Chaucer Society, which will be held in Toronto, Canada, in July 2018.

Dr. Gabriel Haley presented a session for parents, “The Hobbit, Narnia, and Reading to Your Children,” at the Wittenberg Academy Retreat, Camp Okoboji, Iowa, in May 2017.

Dr. Joseph Herl, professor of music, contributed chapters to two books: “Worship,” in A Companion to Lutheran Orthodoxy,” edited by Joar Haga and Sascha Salatowsky (published by Brill); and “Seventeenth-Century Lutheran Hymnody,” in A Legacy of Hymnists, edited by Benjamin Forrest, Mark Lamport, and Vernon Whaley (forthcoming from Cascade Books).

Dr. Joseph Herl had his article “Producing a Hymnal Companion Using Primary Sources,” written with Peter C. Reske, published in Hymns in Liturgy and Life: Proceedings of the International Joint Conference on Hymnology, Cambridge, UK.

Dr. Joseph Herl presented three sessions at the LCMS Institute on Liturgy, Preaching, and Church Music in summer 2017: “Doing Evening Prayer and Compline Well,” “What Happens When We Forget the Sacraments,” and “Preview of the LSB Companion,” the last with Peter Reske.

Dr. Joseph Herl lectured on “What Going to Church in the Sixteenth Century Was Like” at Concordia University in October and presented on “How the Latin Liturgy Formed Sixteenth-Century Lutheran Children in the Faith” at the American Musicological Society annual meeting in November.

Dr. Joseph Herl produced the third major update to the online “Hymn Tune Index” at the University of Illinois.

Dr. Joseph Herl served as external referee for paper proposals to Baylor University’s Colloquium on Church Music and the Reformation, held in September.

Dr. Joseph Herl continues to serve on the editorial board of “Cross Accent,” the journal of the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians.

Julie Johnston Hermann, Director of Global Opportunities, and Dr. Kristen Nugent, assistant professor of education, led a group of undergraduates on a mission trip to Guatemala where the students taught English, shared the love of Christ, and supported the mission of La Santa Cruz Lutheran Church in May of 2017.

Dr. Tim Huntington, associate professor of biology and criminal justice, gave a presentation at the Iowa Association of County Medical Examiners fall meeting and Educational Expo in September. Dr. Huntington serves as the forensic entomologist for the Iowa Office of the State Medical Examiner. He also gave a presentation, titled “Medicocriminal Entomology for CSIs,” at the Mid-States International Association for Identification in November.

Dr. Tim Huntington co-authored a chapter in the third edition of “Forensics Entomology: The Utility of Arthropods in Legal Investigations.” The chapter is entitled “Perceptions and Status of Forensic Entomology."

Dr. Tim Huntington consulted as a forensic entomologist in ten death investigation cases over the past twelve months from five different states and testified in murder trials in both Iowa and Florida.

Dr. Jen Janousek, associate professor and Master of Public Health Program Director, received the Health Education Teacher of the Year Award at the college/university level from the Nebraska Society for Health and Physical Education (SHAPE). She was recognized at their fall conference on November 6.

Dr. Jen Janousek along with Dr. Christian Albano from CUW, presented “Lutheran Public Health Programs and Consortium: A Call for Action” at the 2017 Association of Lutheran College Faculties conference in September.

Dr. Doug Kuhlmann, program director of athletic administration, co-authored an article entitled, “Encouraging Multi-Sport Participation in Athletic Programs” in the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) magazine, “High School Today,” which was published in the February, 2018 issue. 

Dr. Doug Kuhlmann served as the instructor for the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association’s Leadership Training Institute (LTI), “Liabilities for Sports Injuries and Risk Management,” in April, 2018.

Dr. Erica Lamm, assistant professor of communication, edited and published a special issue of “Listening Education,” a publication of the International Listening Association. The special issue was dedicated to the teaching of the listening course.

Dr. Shannon Leinen, assistant professor of business, and Dr. Kathleen Wheeler, assistant professor of education, presented a paper titled “Listening for Healing: Introducing Educators to the Use of Children’s Books for Bibliotherapy and Self-to-Text Strategies” at the International Listening Association conference in Omaha in 2017. The paper has been accepted for publication in the “National Social Science Journal.”

Billy Moore, reference and instruction librarian and Dr. Laurie Zum Hofe, associate professor of English, presented “Shifting the Labor in Research Writing from How to Why: A Study of Teaching/Writing the Research Paper in a First-Year Writing Course” at the Conference on College Composition and Communication in March.

Dr. Kristen Nugent, assistant professor of education, presented at the Nebraska International Languages Association Conference in Omaha, Nebraska, in October of 2017.  Her presentation was titled, “Build Student Excitement About Culture While Using the Target Language.”

Beth Pester, assistant professor of education, traveled to Belize City, Belize, in July 2017, to present workshops for Belizean educators in cooperation with the Central American Lutheran Mission Society and the Ministry of Education of Belize.  These presentations are associated with the efforts being made to improve the education system in the country of Belize.

Beth Pester and Dr. Bernie Tonjes, professor of education, attended the Association for Lutheran Secondary Schools and Lutheran Education Association Administrator’s combined annual conference in Orlando, Florida, in March 2018.  Concordia Nebraska Dual Credit Program hosted a Friday morning presentation where Tonjes presented information about the exciting future of the Concordia Dual Credit Program.

Beth Pester, Dr. Lorinda Sankey, associate dean of the College of Education, Health and Human Sciences, Dylan Teut, director of the Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival, and Dr. Bernie Tonjes presented at the Iowa District Lutheran Teachers Conference. Pester presented on young adolescent development, Sankey presented on faith integration, Teut presented on literacy, and Tonjes presented on brain development.

Dr. Jerrald Pfabe, Professor Emeritus of History and Spanish, will publish his article, “Crime in Seward County, Nebraska, 1869-1908” in the journal, “Nebraska History.”

Sue Roush, marketing and communications specialist and adjunct instructor, has been appointed by Gov. Pete Ricketts and confirmed by the Nebraska Legislature to serve a second 4-year term on the Nebraska Arts Council Board of Directors.

Dylan Teut, director of Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival, developed the classroom guide and materials for Lindsay Eager’s “Race to the Bottom of the Sea,” published through Candlewick Press.

Dylan Teut has been invited to chair the primary grade level of the “Putting Book to Work” program for the International Literacy Association annual conference in Austin Texas in July.

Dylan Teut presented non-fiction comprehension strategies and strategies for weaving literature into building classroom community at the Nebraska District Professional Church Workers Conference and the Read Aloud Nebraska conference this past fall.

Dr. Bernie Tonjes, professor of education and director of field experiences and Concordia dual credit was awarded the Association of Lutheran Secondary Schools (ALSS) Lifetime Membership Award.

Dr. Kathleen Wheeler was a guest consultant regarding reading for Christ Schools in Lincoln in 2017. 

Kelly Wheeler, adjunct Master of Public Health instructor, had her article “Using photovoice to explore quality of life factors of adults with Crouzon syndrome” published in the February issue of “Qualitative Health Research.”