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“The world is but a canvas to the imagination.” — Henry David Thoreau

Wesleyan Journey to Italy Summer 2017



6 13 14 17 18 20 21 24

2 Homecoming & Family Weekend Highlights and Honorees

5 Celebrating 15 Years – Ken Hakoda Advances Music Department

7 What You Didn’t Know About Dr. Wasserman

11 Alumni and Corporations Give Back

16 Students Trade Pixels for Pencils in Italy

8 Alumna Prepares Kansans for Emergencies

14 Honoring Consuelo Choca Diaz

18 Graduates Set the World on Fire

15 Alumni Pay it Forward

23 Six New Coaches Take the Helm

Kansas Wesleyan University Fall 2017

Vice President of Advancement: Melanie Overton, Ed.D.

Contact is the official alumni magazine of Kansas Wesleyan University and is published by the office of Marketing and Communications.

Alumni Engagement Officer: Bryan McCullar

Managing Editor: Paula Hermann Senior Director of Marketing and Communications

Development Officer: Jennifer Rein G’10

Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications: Amy Adams Graphic Designer and Magazine Layout: Amanda Colgrove ’15

Senior Development Officer: Jody Jorns

Office Manager: Linda Baumberger Kansas Wesleyan President & CEO: Matt Thompson, Ph.D. Interim Provost: Damon Kraft, Ph.D.

Follow us on social media!

Board of Trustees Executive Committee: Emily-May Richards, Chair Jeff Bieber ’71, Vice Chair Jon Starks, Secretary Steven Michel, Treasurer Charlie Grimwood, Ph.D., Immediate Past Chair Kansas Wesleyan University Foundation: Ken Ebert, Chair Dale Bradley ’59, Vice Chair Kansas Wesleyan Alumni Council: David Branda ’76, President Randy Lamer ’06, Vice President Rick Dahl ’99, Treasurer Lori Trow ’82, Secretary

@goKWU or @KWUCoyotes

Writing Assistance: Amy Adams Layne Shirley ’17 David Toelle ’08

Send address changes to: Advancement Office 100 E. Claflin Ave. Salina, KS 67401

Photo Credits: Tanner Colvin ’11 Amanda Colgrove ’15 Asiria Ramirez ’17

Contact Information: Website: www.kwu.edu Alumni email: alumni@kwu.edu Advancement and MARCOM: 785-833-4341

For news about KWU, visit www.kwu.edu/news. To change your contact information or to share news, click the MYKWU portal on the top banner of our website: www.kwu.edu.

Kansas Wesleyan University

Read Contact Magazine Online: Website: www.kwu.edu/news

Kansas Wesleyan

A message from

Garrett Young ’17 receives the Professor Fran Jabara Leadership Award from President Matt Thompson.

President Matt Thompson Move-in is one of my favorite days of the year. There is so much energy on campus. Students are enthusiastic; parents show anxious excitement; our staff, which has been planning for this day for weeks, is thrilled to be welcoming students back to campus; and faculty have renewed energy to start the new academic year. This was my fifth move-in day, and I couldn’t be more proud of where we are as a university. Our perfect 3.0 financial rating, our secondconsecutive clean 10-year accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, and our stellar fundraising efforts for science and scholarships have set us up for stability now and in the future. As I looked out on the 200+ graduates at Commencement in May, I was again amazed at the students whom I greeted at my first Move-in day in 2013. They had developed into confident men and women—more than 25 were headed to graduate schools, the military and service work in South Africa. Many had earned a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) opportunity from the National Science

Foundation, and more than two dozen had taken Wesleyan Journey courses to Costa Rica, Italy or New York City. They were leaders in the classroom, across campus, in campus ministry, in our community, and on the performance stages, courts and fields of competition. In addition, alumni engagement with our students over the past year has been significant. Alumni are helping to mentor and guide our students through internships, job-shadowing experiences and even full-time employment opportunities. Read more about some of these great connections on page 15. If you ask alumni what was most meaningful during their time at KWU, most will respond with the relationships they built with the faculty. Beloved professors such as Consuelo Choca Diaz, Dr. Felix Wasserman and Dr. Yuan Chiang, remind us that students thrive in small classes because they have the chance to engage and get to know our faculty in ways that aren’t possible at larger universities. We are thrilled to welcome several new faculty members this year and look

forward to the scholarship and creativity they will bring to our classrooms. As we begin a new academic year, we have the chance to transform, inspire, encourage and mentor all over again. Our task is to prepare students to be agents of hope and change in their businesses, families, churches and communities. Our approach at Kansas Wesleyan is special and uniquely focused to serve the needs of our nearly 750 students. I’m blessed and honored to be part of the Kansas Wesleyan community. Coyote Proud,

Matthew R. Thompson, Ph.D., President & CEO Follow Dr. Thompson on Twitter @KWUPRES


Homecoming & Family Weekend Highlights Visit www.kwu.edu/homecoming2017 for a complete schedule of events. FRIDAY, OCT. 6

Noon–12:30 p.m. Golden W Social 1:30–4 p.m. 4–5 p.m. 6–8 p.m. 8 p.m.–Midnight 8 p.m.–Midnight

Welcome Lounge Martha (Wessling) Bieber Biology Lab Dedication/ Breakthrough Project Reception Alumni Awards Dinner and Campus Update Class of 1967 Reunion BASU Reception

SATURDAY, OCT. 7 8–10 a.m.

10–11 a.m. 11 a.m.

Noon–1 p.m. Noon–1:30 p.m. Noon

1 p.m.

3–4 p.m.

4–5:30 p.m. 5:30–6 p.m. 6 p.m.

W Club Breakfast and Athletic Hall of Fame Inductions 2007 Women’s Soccer Reunion hosted by Coach Kat Benton ’09, G’11 Women’s Soccer vs. Friends

President’s Lunch for Current Students and Families Choir Reunion Luncheon Alumni Baseball Game Men’s Soccer vs. Friends Showcase Concert Tailgating and Kids Zone Bissell Memorial Dedication Football vs. McPherson College

9 p.m.–Midnight BASU/MSU/MCA/MCSU Reunion and Dance

SUNDAY, OCT. 8 10 a.m.–Noon

Ecumenical Worship Service for BASU/MSU/MCA/MCSU

10:30–11:30 a.m. Worship Service at UUMC

Make plans now

to connect with alumni, students, families and friends during Homecoming and Family Weekend 2017, Oct. 6–8  Registration is due by Sept. 29 Register online at www.kwu.edu/homecoming2017  Reunite with your team, choir, club and classmates! There are numerous reunions taking place this year, and 11 individuals and two teams are being honored.  Bring the camper or open up the back hatch in the tailgating lot on Saturday afternoon. Set up the gas BBQ or enjoy the Sodexo buffet while you get your game face on for the big football game. Visit www.kwu.edu/tailgate for reservations.  Families can enjoy a casual lunch with Dr. and Mrs. Thompson — new to this year’s Homecoming and Family Weekend schedule.  Join us for the Alumni Awards Dinner! We’re introducing a new format at the brand-new Hilton Garden Inn on South 9th St.  Enjoy the traditional Showcase Concert, which will feature alumni choir members, who will also join our talented vocal students on the football field for the national anthem.  If you plan on attending the Hall of Fame Breakfast, please register in advance. This is traditionally a sold-out event, and we want to ensure that everyone has a seat.  Hotel discounts are available through our hotel partners; however, there are many community events occurring simultaneously. Make reservations well in advance.  A map of campus can be found at www.kwu.edu/map  Shriwise Dining Hall will be open throughout the weekend.

Contact the Advancement Office for additional information at (785) 833-4341 or email alumni@kwu.edu.


2017 Alumni Award Winners

The following have been selected to receive awards during the Alumni Awards Dinner and Campus Update on Friday, Oct. 6, at 6 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn in Salina: Heather Morgan ’95 ALUMNI ACHIEVEMENT AWARD Heather Morgan has made significant contributions to her home state of Kansas since graduating with a degree in Secondary History Education in 2002. After obtaining a Master in Public Administration from Kansas State University, she launched a 15-year career in public service, including positions with the governor’s budget office and the Kansas Juvenile Justice Authority. She was the first Leavenworth County manager, and she served as a lobbyist in Topeka for improved child welfare, health care and behavioral health care in Kansas. Currently, as the director of engagement and economic development, she serves as the executive director of Project 17 at the Kansas State University Advanced Manufacturing Institute. This initiative created a 17-county regional economic development project that works to address economic vitality, generational poverty, health and civic leadership issues throughout the 17 counties in Southeast Kansas. Lee ’65 and Marla ’64 Beikman ALUMNI SERVICE AWARD Once biology lab partners at KWU, Marla and Lee, who have settled near Dallas, TX, have found numerous ways to be engaged at KWU over the past five decades. Marla served on the Board of Trustees for nine years, including a stint as board secretary and several years as chair of the Advancement Committee. As Pioneer Society members, they have provided leadership gifts to the Graves Family Sports Complex and Mabee Arena, and have made numerous gifts to Fine Arts and a variety of special projects — many targeted to students — throughout the years. They also have joined the KWU Choir on international tours. Giving back was a value modeled by Marla’s mother, Margaret, who contributed funds in honor of Marla’s father, Everett C. Morgan ’37, to support the Morgan Strength Training Center and the Morgan Family Scholarship.

Dr. Meriah (Forbes) Moore ’11 YOUNG ALUMNA AWARD After graduating in 2011, Meriah (Forbes) Moore went right to work toward her goal of becoming a medical doctor. She graduated from the University of Kansas School of Medicine−Wichita in 2016, earning Alpha Omega Alpha and Gold Humanism Honors for academic performance and service. During her medical training, she served on the Committee for Academic and Professional Conduct and performed public health research about healthy food access in rural Kansas. A highlight of her medical training was caring for patients at Zimba Mission Hospital in Zambia, Africa. She is currently in her second year of an Internal Medicine Residency at Virginia Mason Hospital in Seattle, WA, where she focuses on primary care and quality improvement. Ken and Karen Ebert ALUMNI BY CHOICE AWARD Ken has been the team leader of a successful financial planning business for more than 25 years, where Karen also works as an administrative assistant. The Eberts are excellent examples of how a local business can engage in successful partnerships with a local university to which it has little affiliation. Ken has shared his financial acumen with the university by serving on the Foundation Board, in which his leadership has re-energized the Foundation’s Heritage Committee. He is currently chair of the Foundation Board and has also served as vice chair. Ken and Karen served as co-chairs of the 2016 Night with the Yotes, for which Waddell & Reed was the presenting sponsor. They opened their home in June 2017 to host more than 75 members of the Board of Trustees and Pioneer Society, in which they are members, and they can often be seen at a variety of athletic events. Waddell & Reed, a founding member of KWU’s Corporate Circle, has hired KWU business students as interns, recently transitioning one to full-time staff. For a complete description of award winners and Hall of Fame inductees, visit www.kwu.edu/homecoming2017.

BIOLOGY LAB DEDICATION Join us as we celebrate the opening of the Martha (Wessling) Bieber Biology Lab on Friday, Oct. 6, from 4 to 5 p.m. in Peters Science Hall Room 325. The lab, named in honor of Martha (Wessling) Bieber, the wife of Jeffrey Bieber ’71, is one of the improvements made possible by the Breakthrough Project. In addition to faculty-vetted teaching equipment, the lab will feature the artwork of Leslie Cusick Fernandes ’77. Alumni generously gave $340,000 to upgrade, install and maintain science equipment so that cutting-edge science and technology labs are available for use by KWU students. Improvements will also include a new physics lab, named in memory of Dr. Charles B. Creager, a former KWU physics professor, and the purchase, installation and endowment of chemistry, astronomy and computer science equipment. We are excited to welcome home four cherished science faculty—Dr. Yuan Chiang, Dr. David Fancher ’64, Dr. Arthur Neuburger and Dr. Wes Jackson ’58—to share in this celebratory moment.


2017 Hall of Fame Inductees For complete biographies, visit www.kwu.edu/homecoming2017 Kansas Wesleyan will induct five individuals and two teams into the Kansas Wesleyan Coyote Athletic Hall of Fame on Oct. 7, 2017, as part of Homecoming and Family Weekend activities. Inductees will be formally inducted at the Hall of Fame Breakfast on Saturday at 8 a.m. in Muir Gymnasium. Inductees will also be recognized Saturday evening during halftime of the football game.

 Trent Ainsworth ’00 Men’s Basketball Trent Ainsworth made a significant mark on the hardcourt. The leading scorer on the 2000 men’s basketball team, he accumulated 1,009 points in just two seasons. His 582 points his senior year ranks sixth in all-time points scored in a season, and his 55.7 shooting percentage ranks in the top five in program history.  Bob Davidson Media Representative For the past two decades as sports editor of the Salina Journal, Bob Davidson and the Salina Journal staff have been true promoters of KWU and the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference, making the Journal the go-to hub for information about KWU athletics.  Jolina (Garoutte) Kline ’97 Women’s Basketball, Soccer, Cross Country A multisport athlete, Jolina (Garoutte) Kline left her mark on the basketball court. A member of the 1996 NSCAA Women’s Basketball National

Championship squad, Kline was named NSCAA Tournament MVP and was selected to the AllTournament Team. She also played soccer and ran cross country for the Coyotes.

 Troy Martin ’95 Men’s Golf Troy Martin was a standout golfer in the early 1990s. In 1993 as a junior, he finished third in the KCAC Championships and third at the NAIA District 10 Championships. As a senior, he was named team MVP and earned All-KCAC and All-NAIA District 10 honors. He also helped coach KWU to a third-place finish in the 1995 KCAC Championships.  Dave Oliver ’72 Baseball Dave Oliver was one of the best sluggers in Coyote history. As a sophomore, Oliver batted .400 with 44 hits and 11 home runs. That season he was named the Dean Evans Most Valuable Player and was tabbed as the best college shortstop in Kansas. He also earned All-KCAC and All-District 10 honors at shortstop.  1999–2000 Men’s Basketball Team KCAC Champions NSCAA National Champions The 1999–2000 men’s basketball team won the KCAC for the first time since 1985–86. The Coyotes set a school record, posting 25 wins and claiming the KCAC regular-season title with a 12-4 record and winning a national championship in the now-defunct National Small

Special Reunion Groups to Include:  Class of 1967

 1999–2000 Men’s Basketball Team  Philharmonic Choir

 1957 Football Team  1982 Football Team

 1977 Cross Country Team  BASU/MSU/MCSU

 2007 Women’s Soccer Team

College Athletic Association. Coach Jerry Jones led Wesleyan through the NSCAA Tournament and won the championship game. Trent Ainsworth and Blake Turner were named NSCAA All-Americans. Danny Thomas, Tyler Christensen and Bryan Gardere were All-KCAC selections.

 2007 Women’s Soccer Team KCAC Champions NAIA Region IV Champions NAIA National Tournament The 2007 women’s soccer team had the greatest run of any KWU women’s soccer team. The Coyotes posted a 21-2-1 record and a perfect 9-0 record in the KCAC on their way to their third straight KCAC Tournament title. The Coyotes reached the NAIA Women’s Soccer National Championships for the first time, becoming the first KCAC team to ever reach that milestone. The Coyotes beat Embry-Riddle (FL) in the first round, then fell to No. 4 Concordia (OR) 2-0. The Coyotes set a school-record 18-game winning streak and posted a school-record 18 shutouts. The Coyotes set seven new team records, and Heather Muilenburg, the KCAC Offensive Player of the Year, set a new record for points in a season with 53. Head Coach Mike Dibbini ’99, G’02, was named KCAC Coach of the Year and NSCAA Great Plains Regional Coach of the Year. Kat Benton (now head coach of the women’s soccer team) was the KCAC Newcomer of the Year, and Marisa Brownell was the KCAC Defensive Player of the Year.



Celebrating 15 Years of Music Enrichment

His goal was growth. When Ken Hakoda first came to Kansas Wesleyan to lead the Choral Music program in 2002, the Music Department had just six students majoring in music. This fall, 28 students are majoring in Music, and about 80 others participate in one of eight performance groups. The stage in Sams Chapel has a steady stream of practices and performances, and the risers are filled to capacity. That evolution was the product of hard work by a lot of people, says Hakoda, who now chairs the department. “We have been very fortunate to have attracted the faculty that we have, and “Music enriches our we have a lot of support from lives. Performance is the community.” While humble, his a part of that. Music is partnerships, persistence integral to who we are.” and energy have been the – Ken Hakoda impetus for the near-capacity recruitment rosters. Hakoda has a hand in many community organizations that benefit his students. His involvement with Salina Community Theatre and Salina Symphony (he recently celebrated 10 years as conductor) gives students unique opportunities to perform in a variety of venues and styles and with skilled community and visiting musicians. He mentors young area musicians through the Salina Youth Symphony, which makes him an integral part of music development in the community and provides instructional opportunities for his Music Education students. He is also a visionary leader. Hakoda added musical diversity to the program by forming the chamber orchestra. This opened the door for string students and laid the groundwork for the Philharmonic Orchestra and several small ensembles, including the Honors String Quartet. Hakoda initiated the international choir tour program and has led two Wesleyan

Journey courses to Costa Rica. Both programs have taken students, many who have never been outside of the Midwest, to numerous countries, introducing them to new cultures and broadening their perspectives on the world. Hakoda is an accomplished musician with training in both choral and instrumental education, as well as theory and composition. He has composed more than 20 works and has won numerous awards. He has added a robust and talented group of faculty to the department. Dr. Jesse Henkensiefken joined KWU to lead the orchestra program and in 2014 started the KWU International Music Festival. Prizewinning pianist Dr. Tatiana Tessman teaches as an artist-in-residence. Opera singer Rebecca Copley heads vocal studies. Karen BabcockBrassea, who has a breadth of professional dance experience, directs the theatre and helped to add a Music Theatre major in 2016. The results can also be seen in the successful careers of graduates of the Music Department. Performance majors are pursuing opportunities from New York to Hollywood. Music Education majors are teaching across the state of Kansas and throughout the U.S. The popularity and quality of the music performance groups has become attractive to many non-music majors as well. About 60 percent of the choir is made up of students from other departments. “Music enriches our lives,” Hakoda said. “Performance is a part of that. Music is integral to who we are.” Hakoda’s next goal is to make Kansas Wesleyan the top small school at which to study music in Kansas. “We want music and theater students to know that they have a place here, and that they are welcomed and important,” he said “We want students to be proud of being a Coyote.”

Ken has led the Kansas Wesleyan Choir on singing tours through China, England, Ireland, Hungary, Austria and the Czech Republic. Ken has invited many renowned musicians to visit directly with KWU students, including composer John Leavitt. Ken has more than 20 published works for band, orchestra and vocal ensembles. Ken has earned a number of accolades for his work as a composer, including the 1998 Claude T. Smith Phi Beta Mu Composition Contest and the 1996 MMEA Collegiate Composition Contest. KWU ensembles have been invited the past two years to perform at the Kansas Music Educators Association (KMEA) In-Service Workshop.

Did you participate in Music while at KWU? Join your fellow KWU alumni during Homecoming & Family Weekend for a reunion to help celebrate Ken’s 15 years at KWU. For a full schedule of events, visit www.kwu.edu/homecoming2017.

Coyotes Share and Sharpen Talents Across the Globe Nourishing Young Lives in Africa

Sophomore Hannah Walter volunteered over the summer for the Janada Bachelor Foundation for Children (JBFC) in Tanzania, Africa. JBFC provides a safe home for 48 girls who have been abandoned and abused. It also provides a quality education for almost 400 children, health care, and around 400 pounds of nutritious food a week from its sustainable farm. Walter helped with planting vegetables and fruits at the foundation’s farm, served meals at the school and sorted donations. A member of the Coyote basketball team, Walter shared equipment and jerseys with the community’s new girls’ basketball team.

Aperture Aptitude

Alleigh Weems, a junior majoring in Communications, participated in a photography internship at the Salina Journal this summer. She worked under head photographer Tom Dorsey. Her photos appeared in the paper throughout the summer, including on the front page of the paper, which reaches more than 50,000 readers. Weems also shoots for The Advance, KWU’s campus newspaper.

Crazy About Cats

MiKayla Chiles, a senior pursuing a degree in Biology with an emphasis in zoology and a

minor in Ecospheric Studies and Community Resilience, completed an educational zookeeper internship at the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita this summer. MiKayla hopes to one day work with big cats.

Laser Focused

Taylor McClain, a senior majoring in Physics, participated in a Research Experience for Undergraduates, sponsored by the National Science Foundation, at Kansas State University. She worked in the J.R. Macdonald Laboratory helping to build and test new detectors that will be used by researchers to study how molecules change when hit with intense laser pulses.

Networking with Techsperts

Laura Nivens, a senior majoring in Computer Information Systems, earned a full scholarship, sponsored by the Sustainable Horizons Institute, to attend the Society of Industrial and Applied Mathematics Conference on Computational Science and Engineering that was held in Atlanta in February. The conference enabled in-depth discussions on a variety of computational efforts that address large-scale science and engineering challenges, while also promoting the training of the next generation of computational scientists.

Top: Hannah Walter and the Janada Bachelor Foundation for Children (JBFC) in Tanzania, Africa; Left: MiKayla Chiles completed a zookeeper internship at the Sedgwick County Zoo; Right: Laura Nivens at Google Fiber in Atlanta.

Helping Hands

On April 23, the Student Government Association planned Project H.E.R.O., the annual studentrun day of service. Almost 100 students participated in work at Big Brothers Big Sisters, Ashby House, local parks, UUMC, the Smoky Hill Rehabilitation Center and the Domestic Violence Association of Central Kansas.

Pop-talk in SoCal

Communication and Marketing major Katlyn “Kat” Davis, a junior, presented her paper, “The Disney Model: How the House of Mouse Shapes Gender Roles,” in the gender studies division of the national conference for the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association (PCA/ACA) in San Diego on Thursday, April 13.

Wisdom on Stage

Kansas Wesleyan University students presented at the Alpha Chi National College Honor Society annual convention in Louisville, KY, April 6-8. Alissa Kim, a senior psychology major, was selected to present “Parental Gender Difference

on Attitudes Toward Corporal Punishment.” Brittany Clancy ’17, a pre-physical therapy/exercise science major, presented “The Effect of Added Weight (Backpacks) on the Metabolic Cost of Walking at Various Grades.”

Speaking of Success

Debate and Forensics team members brought home six individual national championships and numerous other awards from the Christian College National Forensics and Debate Tournament. The Coyotes competed against 20 colleges and universities from across the United States. Alex Vore ’17 brought home two national championships: varsity Lincoln-Douglas debate and varsity Lincoln-Douglas speaker. Freshman Megan Kline also captured two national championships — novice extemporaneous speaking and novice after-dinner speaking. Junior Dakota Yates was the national champion in varsity extemporaneous speaking, and sophomore Autumn Zimmerman was declared the national champion junior varsity parliamentary debate speaker.

Left: Nearly 100 students volunteered during Project H.E.R.O.



Professor Ignited Students’ Drive for Lifelong Learning

Guest writer Margaret Williams Norton ’61 spent 35 years as an art history teacher. Her inspiration came from Dr. Felix Wasserman’s classes in German, Renaissance and Reformation, and Political Geography. “I completed two challenging graduate programs following KWU, but I never experienced higher expectations or greater knowledge than that possessed by Dr. Wasserman,” said Norton, who followed Wasserman’s career at Marquette University for this story. Below, Norton shares the story of Wasserman before and after his 14-year tenure at KWU.

Teachers have the ability to transform lives, yet we often don’t know much about their lives or what they did after we moved out of them. Dr. Felix Wasserman was one of those educators whose tough love made us better students and whose brilliance made us better people. The challenges and tragedies weaved throughout his life, his impressive international scholarship, and his achievements in the years following retirement from Kansas Wesleyan are known to very few. For those who had the privilege of being in his classroom, I affectionately share the following. Dr. Wasserman’s 14-year tenure at KWU began in 1951, where he taught German, French, Spanish, Greek, humanities and political geography. He emphasized a connected world view and drew directly from his elite and rigorous education in prestigious German universities, offering students unusual and challenging opportunities to view the rarified scholarship of Germanic classical learning. Most Kansas Wesleyan students enrolled in one of his classes. A bonding experience for students of the 1950s and ’60s is the recollection of Dr. Wasserman and how hard he worked to keep our attention (Achtung!). He engaged

“His family spoke of his great rapport with students in his earliest days in Mannheim. His great sense of humor, self-deprecation and flashing insights into life, literature, and art, a clarity in presentation won him many a follower.” – Marquette University Archives in outrageous antics to this goal, standing atop his desk or repeatedly circling the room. Dear reader, understand that I know that these antics would be unforgivable in any other classrooms, but this was Dr. Wasserman. On campus we recall his bag of books, and in his office and classroom, hundreds of art reproductions. For some (I include myself ), Dr. Wasserman’s standards were almost unreachable, so we can identify with comments from his later students at Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI. One wrote that he didn’t mind receiving a D in Dr. Wasserman’s class because he learned so much. Another wrote this: “He didn’t hesitate to give low marks, as ‘the bad apples spoil the good.’”

A year before he was granted emeritus status, he was bestowed the honor of having the 1964 Coyote yearbook dedicated to him. Following retirement, he taught graduate literature and art to students at Marquette until the end of his life in 1976. He was beloved in the university’s prestigious German department and well known and supported in the city’s German heritage population. Called “a man of magnitude” by the Marquette Tribune in 1976, Dr. Wasserman, professor for the ages, had published articles in 22 academic journals in three languages (German, French and English), some while teaching at KWU, and some while researching in Switzerland during summer visits.

Felix Ludwig Wasserman, a lifelong professed Humanist (agnostic), was born in Mannheim, Germany, in a long-established Jewish family. During World War I, he served in the German army, and in 1920 he received a Ph.D. from the University of Freiburg. He began teaching in Mannheim and married art historian Gertrud Friedman in 1926. In the 1930s, because he was non-Aryan, he was forced from his position. As the Wassermans fled Germany in the late 1930s, Dr. Wasserman’s wife was captured by the Nazis and died at Auschwitz in 1938. Felix moved to the U.S. during the same year. In 1940, he began teaching at Southwest College in Memphis, TN. There, as the war unfolded, he co-wrote a series of World War II geography articles. Research for the article and photo obtained through Research: Special Collections and University Archives, Raynor Library, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI


Prepared First Emergency Management Graduate Readies for Crises Teri Smith ’14 had already accumulated a robust resume of field experience when she entered the Emergency Management program at KWU in 2013. She had 18 years at the helm as Douglas County’s emergency manager, had earned the 2009 Kansas Emergency Management Professional of the Year award, and had established herself as a leader in her field by serving on committees for national emergency management organizations and joining relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina. It was this field experience that drew her to Kansas Wesleyan’s program, which provides significant experiential learning credit for professionals seeking an Emergency Management degree. “I wanted to gain a more in-depth understanding of my work,” said Smith. “My children had graduated, and it was my turn to pursue my dream to go to college.” While looking for degree options, she asked for advice from Jim DuBois ’03, whom she knew from his emergency management work in the state. It just so happened that DuBois had taken on the roll of interim director of the new Emergency Management program at KWU. “I had very good guidance from people at Kansas Wesleyan,” Smith said. “They bent over backward to help me. Everyone I worked with was wonderful and willing to work with me.” As part of her core coursework, Smith worked on a project that required her to meet with individuals from a different faith background. That project helped her to see the work she was doing in Douglas County from a fresh perspective. “As emergency managers, we need to think about how to work with a diverse community. We need to plan and prepare for everyone’s needs.” “As the emergency Smith was one of the inaugural students in the Emergency management workforce Management program, launched in 2013, and completed her gets older, the field needs requirements in just a year. She was the first graduate of the program. young professionals. “As the emergency management workforce gets older, the I love that there is a field needs young professionals. I love that there is a program that I can recommend to others.” program that I can Smith is currently the Government Affairs chair of recommend to others.” the Kansas Emergency Management Association and — Teri Smith ’14 serves as president of Region VII of the International Association of Emergency Managers. She developed a signature program in Douglas County, called the Pursuit of Preparedness Campaign, which was designed to reach 150 students in Douglas County and their families to teach the importance of having an emergency kit; staying informed of emergencies; and knowing what to do before, during and after an emergency or disaster situation.

For more information about the emergency management program, visit www.kwu.edu/emergency.

Flexible Program Benefits Professionals and Undergraduates Emergency managers not only respond to the fallout caused by natural and manmade disasters, they help communities plan and prepare for such crises. Kansas Wesleyan offers on-ground and fully online Emergency Management degrees, accommodating the schedules of traditional undergraduates and current professionals with experience in law enforcement, the military, school/facility management, government and firefighting. Dr. Lonnie Booker came to KWU to launch the program in 2013, with a wealth of expertise in law enforcement and natural disaster response. He is a regular speaker at Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) conferences and has implemented numerous training opportunities for the region. KWU’s Emergency Management program partners with Crisis City, a world-class multiagency emergency training center. The university also enjoys strong partnerships with local, regional, and national emergency management experts and organizations. A unique collaboration with Kansas State Polytechnic’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) program gives students a chance to enhance their degree with a minor in UAS. “The Emergency Management online degree allowed me the freedom to complete my degree while being active-duty Air Force. The instructors work to ensure that class projects provide hands-on experience with real-world application,” says TSgt Leroy Smith-Whaley ’17, senior emergency actions controller at the AFNORTH-Tyndall Command Center at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida. Smith-Whaley became the first online Emergency Management degree recipient, which he received this year.

“The Emergency Management online degree allowed me the freedom to complete my degree while being activeduty Air Force.” — TSgt Leroy Smith-Whaley ’17 First online EM degree recipient


Advancing the Mission The Board of Trustees returned to campus in June for its triannual meeting. Among the agenda items were approving the 2017–18 budget and in-depth conversations about the strategic plan. The board bid farewell to longtime trustees, Randy St. Clair ’66 and Marla Beikman ’64, who served for 19 and nine years, respectively. St. Clair was board chair from 2013 to 2017, and Beikman has served as board secretary and chair of the Advancement Committee. Jeff Wells ’92 was also recognized for his nine years of service as he completed his term. Emily-May Richards was welcomed in as chair of the Board of Trustees. She assumed the role from Charlie Grimwood, Ph.D., who completed his two-year term and will serve as immediate past chair for a year. Jeff Bieber ’71 moved into the vice-chair position. Jon Starks was elected secretary and Steven Michel remains treasurer. Barry Weis ’10 was elected to his first term as a trustee. The Kansas Wesleyan University Foundation Board recently elected Ken Ebert as its new chair. He has served on the Foundation Board since 2012. The board welcomed two new members, Theresa Kepple ’86 an alumna of the Asbury School

This spring, Kansas Wesleyan University received reaccreditation from The Higher Learning Commission (HLC). It is the second time in as many decades that the university passed all criteria with no follow-up action required. Through a process of peer review, the HLC accredits degree-granting institutions of higher education.

Marla Beikman ’64 and Randy St. Clair ’66 served a combined 28 years on the Board of Trustees.

of Nursing and the director of programming for First United Methodist Church of Castle Rock, CO, and Robert Meyer ’73 a certified financial planner. The essential function of the Foundation Board is to be an auxiliary association for the financial aid and provide assistance to the university. Its work contributed to the university receiving the highest possible Financial Responsibility Composite Score (3.0) from the U.S. Department of Education, which reflects the overall financial health of an institution.

In addition, the university recently received the highest possible Financial Responsibility Composite Score (3.0) from the U.S. Department of Education, which reflects the overall financial health of an institution. The U.S. Department of Education develops a composite score on a scale of negative 1.0 to positive 3.0, based on financial ratios that measure factors such as net worth, operating losses and the relationship of assets to liabilities. The department released its numbers in March 2017, and the report is based on data from the 2014–15 academic year.


Emily-May Richards Chair, Trustee CFO/COO, Shoptaw Group Atlanta, GA

Barry Weis ’10

Trustee Marketing director, Great Plains Manufacturing Salina, KS

Ken Ebert

Foundation Board Chair Team Leader, Waddell & Reed Salina, KS

Theresa L. Kepple ’86

Foundation Board Member Director of programming, First United Methodist Church of Castle Rock, CO

Robert L. Meyer ’73 Foundation Board Member Certified financial planner, private wealth advisor, owner, Ameriprise Financial De Soto, KS


Partnerships with Corporations Have Mutual Benefits FOUNDING MEMBERS B&K Bonding, LLC Dennis Berndt ’92 Blue Beacon International, Inc. Trace Walker and Mike Walker Callabresi Heating & Cooling, Inc. Jerry Callabresi Champion Seminars Phil Coleman ’68 Eagle Technologies Jeff Burris ’88 Dave Hiechel ’87 Andy Kratzer ’87 Milton Larson ’82 Dale Swindler ’82 First Bank Kansas K Coe Isom Kent Lambert Insurance Agency Kent Lambert ’72 Marshall Motor Co. Larry Marshall S&B Motels, Inc. Stanley Weilert Sunflower Bank Mollie Hale Carter

KWU recently launched a new community partnership initiative that increases scholarship dollars for students and provides numerous benefits for local businesses. The Corporate Circle is an elite group of regional businesses that value a partnership with KWU. Thirteen corporations have joined the circle since it was launched this spring, each committing $2,500 to the university’s Annual Fund and receiving benefits such as priority access to the Career Development Office, free meeting space, employee discounts for the M.B.A. program and free professional development for employees. “We are excited to have these businesses on board,” said Melanie Overton, Ed.D., vice president of advancement. “Member businesses are using our facilities, partnering with our academic programs and hiring our students. This is a win-win.” “When we were approached about


UMB Bank

Partner with academic departments to sponsor seminars for employees

Waddell & Reed Ken Ebert

Design an internship or job-shadowing program

joining the Corporate Circle, we saw it has an opportunity to support an important organization in our community. There are also some attractive benefits to us, including access to KWU conference rooms, internship possibilities and invitations to special events,” said Kent Buer, president and CEO, First Bank Kansas. “We currently have at least one of our employees that plans to take advantage of the discount for the M.B.A. program.” The goal, says Overton, is to find ways for Corporate Circle members to interact meaningfully with our students, including working directly with faculty, administrators and coaches to try to identify candidates for open positions, and designing internship or jobshadowing experiences. If your business is interested in joining the Corporate Circle, please contact Dr. Melanie Overton at 785-833-4341.

Receive discounted rates for KWU’s annual continuous improvement conference Host board meetings on campus with no facility usage fees

Employee discounts for the M.B.A. program Receive the latest information on higher education, job reports, workforce statistics, etc.

Each year, KWU awards nearly $8 million in scholarships to deserving students. In 2016–17, the annual giving grew to a record $1,073,319 in support of our students. Thanks to the members of our inaugural Corporate Circle, our growing Pioneer Society, and our rising Alumni Association membership, KWU is helping to meet the financial needs of today’s students while maintaining solid overall financial health to ensure a strong future.


Advancing the Vision/Sacred Heart Jr/Sr High School Roy and Donice Applequist Jeffrey Bieber ’71 Blue Beacon International Bruce Culley Brad and Sandy Delker Dr. David ’64 and Patricia Fancher William H. Graves Family Foundation Great Plains Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church John and Mary H. Hart Foundation Barbara A. Hauptli ’54 Dale C. Olson ’46 Jack and Donna Vanier

LOCKWOOD CIRCLE ($10,000–$24,999)

Barbara Arensman-Snyder ’53 and Dale Snyder Lee ’65 and Marla ’64 Beikman Melba Borger Estate Edward Doherty ’47 Joseph and Virginia DuPont ’71 Ken and Karen Ebert The Hon. William P. ’76 and Linda Graves Kent ’72 and Pat Lambert Marlene Lee ’61 Robert Loyd ’68 Miller Family Charitable Trust The Rev. Paul Mugler ’53, ’56 Jerry ’59 and Margaret ’61 Norton

James and Emily-May Richards Salina Regional Health Foundation Darwin L. & Delma M. Sampson Fund Joy ’58 and Leo Schell Randy ’66 and Mary Ann St. Clair McDowell (Mac) Steele University United Methodist Church, Kansas City, KS Verla Nesbitt Joscelyn Foundation

T. W. ROACH CIRCLE ($5,000–$9,999)

Advantage Trust Company Ellene ’66 and Richard Austin Dale ’59 and Susan Bradley Richard and Joyce Brown Senators Robert and Elizabeth Dole Tom and Lou Ann Dunn Pauline Eaton ’49 Dr. Dean Ellison ’80 and Mary Ann McElligot Dr. Frederic ’62 and Carolyn Gilhousen Nadim ’65 and Sally Haddad John ’73 and Beth ’73 Hartshorn Milt ’82 and Cheryl Larson Marshall Family Foundation/ Larry and Barbara Marshall Morrison Foundation Trust/Roger & Sissy Morrison Salina Supply Co. Dr. Roy and Grace Smith Karen and James Tumlinson Dr. Gary and Mary Anne Weiner

SCHUYLER CIRCLE ($2,500–$4,999)

B & K Bonding Drs. Mark and Trish Bandré Dr. Robert ’66 and Patricia Bruchman Clark, Mize & Linville, Chartered Phil Coleman ’68 Eagle Technologies, Inc. First Bank Kansas Focus on the Future Foundation Dr. Richard and Angie Frisbie Gordon ’67 and Joyce ’67 Gorton Katie Hoffner and Tim Foist K Coe Isom Kansas Area United Methodist Foundation Kansas Independent College Fund William ’44 and Betty Keeler Jack and Donna Lennon Dr. Darrell ’60 and Eula ’60 Megli Merck Partnership for Giving James ’66 and Eileen ’66 Moon Robert ’71 and Patricia ’69 Murray Jim ’77 and Charlotte Nelson Frank ’54 and Jeanne Norton Jeanette Otto Jane ’80 and Brady Philbrick S & B Motels, Inc./Stanley Weilert Rodger Salkeld Steve ’65 and Jewelda Scofield The Rev. Dr. Marshall and Janice Stanton Sunflower Bank Dr. L. Edward Jr. ’64 and Fu Sing Temple Dr. Matt and Jennifer Thompson UMB Bank USA Wrestling-Kansas, Inc. J.W. Welch ’72

STANTON CIRCLE ($1,886–$2,499)

Pioneer Society members gathered at the home of Ken and Karen Ebert on June 16 for the annual spring social. Pictured left to right: Charlie Grimwood and Mary ’98 and John Quinley

Ray Beach ’66 David Branda ’76 Martin ’66 and Wanda Brotherton Lois Clegg ’74 Andrew ’64 and Linda Deckert Dianne Fahring ’74 Dr. Wes ’58 and Joan Jackson Judy Joyce-Calcote KWU Alumni Association Dr. Patricia Ann Michaelis ’71 Steven and Pamela Michel Bryan and Peggy Minnich Mary ’98 and John Quinley Chester Ross ’52 Eugene ’60 and Glenna Sheets Dick ’69 and Sarah ’70 Short United Methodist Higher Education Foundation


Left to right: Rafael ’06 and Renee (Anderson) ’06 Mendez, Emily-May Richards, Dr. Ginny Bevan ’56, and Lou Ann Dunn and Tom. Below: Marcy and Kent Buer

STOLZ CIRCLE ($1,000–$1,885)

James and Betsy Alexander Lucerne Anton ’76 Darryl Keith Ashley ’82 Charlie Ault-Duell ’05 and DeMay Grunden Paul L. Beckmann Family Foundation/ Roberta Beckmann Bennett Autoplex Inc. Bennington State Bank Lila Berkley Mike and Debra Berkley Dr. Kent and Dena Berquist Dr. Ginny ’56 and Warren Bevan ’56* Dr. Aaron ’65 and June Blair Brad and Jane Botz Philip ’71 and Linda Bowman The Hon. Dan ’62 and Dorothy ’61 Boyer The Hon. Benjamin Burgess Jr. ’61 Callabresi Heating & Cooling Dr. Yuan and Grace Chiang Carlene Childs Dr. Rebecca Chopp ’74 and Frederick Thibodeau Rebecca Copley and Don Johnson Stephen and Cindy Crawford Marshall ’62 and Sandra Crowther Sylvia D’Angelo ’73 Phyllis Deckert Disabled American Veterans

Jaclyn Douglass ’79 Kenneth ’63 and Janet ’64 DuBois Mary ’66 and William Fitzhugh Al ’65 and Kathy ’67 Franzen Robert P. ’69 and Micaela Gibson Dr. Charlie and Pat Grimwood Eric ’64 and Mollie ’63 Haberer The Rev. Duane Harms Brian ’63 and Pat Hogan Lloyd Holbrook ’59 Jeffrey Horlacher ’76 Larry ’57 and Barbara Houdek Dr. Karen ’68 and Gerald Johnson Dr. Kathleen Barrett-Jones and Jerry Jones Steven Kim Marilyn ’68 and James Kirk William Knox Dr. David ’79 and Susan Laha Dr. James ’79 and Tamra Larzalere Sarah Anne ’61 and James Lindblad C. Robert Lindsley ’57* and Darlene Harris-Lindsley ’55 Ty Lohman ’95 Trisha Marietta ’71 The Rev. Loren ’56 and Donna ’57 Marler Marshall Automotive Group The Rev. Bruce Marshall ’60 and Janice Rundle Marshall ’61 Dr. Gordon and Evelyn Maxwell Dr. Donna McKinley ’66 Michael and Connie McLoughlin Robert ’73 and Karen Meyer Dr. Roger ’67 and Linda Michaelson Mark Miller and Julie Sager Miller Mitchell Real Estate, Inc. Brian ’89 and Crystal Mitchell MJT Enterprises, Inc. Cheryl ’68 and Donald Monaghan David Michael Mortimer ’67 Kathryn Mummery Jeffrey ’85 and Darlene Nicholson Barbara Marshall Nickell Byron ’72 and Sandy ’73 Norris Kaye ’57 and Barbara Pearce Pete and Rita Peterson Robert ’58 and Karen ’58 Pinkall Peggy Piper *Deceased

Kay Quinn ’84 Michael and Susan Ramage John ’91 and Jennifer ’92 Redding Martha Rhea Kay ’64 and Max Russell Salina Charities League Salina Rotary Club Salina Symphony Diane Sampson Wayne Schneider Marlene Selden ’55 Alan ’61 and DeAnn ’62 Shirling Larry ’78 and Joy Smith Solomon State Bank Jon and Kathy Starks Sunset Properties United Methodist Thrift Shop, Ness City Don and Robin Vandegrift Vidricksen Distributing Co., Inc. Jeff ’92 and Marcia ’91 Wells James and Diane Wilson WPX Energy William ’62 and Judith Yeager Dr. Carolyn Hofer-Zimmerman and Mark Zimmerman

MAYO CIRCLE ($500–$999) Matt Drinkall Marcus ’79 and Michelle Greene Ken and Jessica Hakoda Mike and Paula Hermann Dr. Steven and Anne Hoekstra Lois Madsen ’15 and Christopher Curry Bryan McCullar Dr. Melanie and Charles Overton Jan ’17 and Bill Shirk

Pioneer Society members provide annual support for the university in the amount of $1,000 or more ($500 for alumni who graduated within the last 10 years, faculty and staff). If you are interested in joining the Pioneer Society, please contact Jody Jorns, senior development officer, at 785-833-4341.


A Gift of Knowledge “The enthusiasm she brought to the classroom and her ability to demonstrate the logic of Spanish made learning much easier.” — Joseph DuPont ’71


ver the course of 40 years of teaching at Kansas Wesleyan, Consuelo Choca Diaz had the opportunity to touch the lives of many students through language, literature, cultural experiences and music. “As a student at KWU, I was 1,300 miles away from home. It was something I had to get used to,” Joseph DuPont ’71 explained. “Consuelo opened her home to students with festive parties

and after-school events. I was introduced to plantain and other new foods. The enthusiasm she brought to the classroom and her ability to demonstrate the logic of Spanish made learning much easier.” That personal support has led DuPont to create an endowed scholarship in her honor. The scholarship will benefit English and Music students who have financial need. “How do you repay someone

who, over the years, was always in your corner with wisdom and encouragement? Helping to start an endowment to honor the spirit of such a beautiful person, while she still continues to motivate and inspire those around her, is perhaps the greatest gift KWU has given me. It is my sincerest hope that others will add to this starting point in the months and years to come.” Diaz was born in Havana, Cuba. At age 34, she left Cuba with her two young children, Michael and Sylvia (D’Angelo), to escape the dictatorship of Fidel Castro. After living in the United States for five years as a student, she applied to become a U.S. citizen. This September will mark the 50th anniversary of her citizenship. Diaz studied piano in both Cuba and the U.S. She earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Missouri in languages and literature. She went on to earn a master’s degree in Spanish studies, French and Portuguese and worked toward her doctorate at the University of Kansas, lacking only her dissertation. In 1968, she began teaching at Kansas Wesleyan. Diaz is very touched by the generosity of this endowed

scholarship and happy to be remembered. She wants her students to know that, although her eyesight is failing due to macular degeneration, she is still playing piano by memory and exercises daily. Diaz has many fond memories of her students and her time at Kansas Wesleyan University, especially participating in talent shows. If you would like to contribute to the Consuelo Choca Diaz Scholarship, any of the more than 185 KWU endowed scholarships, or if you would like to honor a member of the KWU family, please contact Jennifer Rein at 785-833-4338 or jennifer.rein@kwu.edu.


Paying it FORWARD >>>> KWU students often comment on the value of engaging with alumni. There are numerous opportunities for our graduates to make a significant difference on the university and in the lives of our students. The most common are financial gifts, which expand scholarship opportunities and enrich the student experience through facility upgrades, academic “Our alumni and enhancements and business leaders general operating have gifts and talents dollars. There are also that can benefit our many other ways students in many ways.” alumni can pay – Dr. Melanie Overton it forward. Tom White ’71 helps recruit students in New Jersey, working with the KWU Admissions Office to attend college fairs and to meet with prospective students. Rafael Mendez, J.D. ’06, who serves on the Board of Trustees, visits classrooms when he returns to campus for board meetings, sharing career advice and leadership development with business students. On a recent visit,

he told students about a leadership development program sponsored by Acosta, the company for which he serves as senior director of sales and marketing, and offered to review resumes of students who were interested in applying. While he had no influence on whether students would get interviewed, Tremaine Twitty ’16, G’17 was selected for a full-time position in the elite program. Alumni across the country have opened their homes or have hosted gatherings and dinners for fellow Coyotes in their community. Charles “Ron” Williamson ’70 and Judy Nelson Marturano ’69 recently hosted an event in Denver, and several other events are scheduled in cities across the country. Other friends of the university have found talent among our students. Tom Wilbur, president of Bank VI, hired Taylor Johnson as an intern and was so impressed by her skills that he recommended her for a position at the State Banking Commission. She began her employment this summer. Ken Ebert, president of Waddell & Reed,

has hired several students as interns and recently promoted Mitch Kufahl ’17 to a full-time employee. M. Olaf Frandsen, editor of the Salina Journal, and local banking leader Larry Britegam have served as executives-in-residence in a now-popular M.B.A. course that invites a different local business leader to instruct one course a week during the semester. “Our alumni and business leaders have gifts and talents that can benefit our students in many ways,” said Melanie Overton, Ed.D., vice president of advancement. “I would encourage anyone to reach out about internship or job-shadowing opportunities within their organization. There are many folks from whom our students could learn a great deal. Imagine what an incredible experience it would be for a student who is home for break in Arizona, California or Texas to shadow a graduate who is making advances in their shared field of interest.” If you would like to pay it forward, contact Dr. Overton at 785-833-4341.

Front row: Lloyd Holbrook ’59, Samantha Philbrick ’10, Dave Branda ’76 and Patricia (Homm) Schiefen ’73 Back row: Marlene (Danills) Whiteker ’68, Jennifer Rein G’10, guest, Judy (Nelson) Marturano ’69, Jane (Danills) Philbrick ’80 and Charles “Ron” Williamson ’70

The High Plains alumni chapter joined forces with Colorado alumni for a KWU gathering on July 23. Lunch at the Denver Chop House was followed by a Colorado Rockies baseball game.

Also attended but not pictured: Jeff Bieber ’71, Margie (Nelson) Chatfield ’71, Martin Brotherton ’66, Calvin Brown ’93, Theresa Kepple ’86 and Gary Longfellow ’71

CALLING DALLAS ALUMNI Traves Liles ’15 and Zack Brown ’13 are exploring forming a Dallas alumni chapter. Those interested should email theTRAVESty92@outlook.com.



Sketching la dolce vita I

magine visiting the idyllic landscapes and ancient architecture of Italy without pulling out a camera. That’s exactly what 12 students did on their Wesleyan Journey course, “Italy through the Ages: A Visual Journey,” in May. The challenge for students wasn’t just traveling to a new place, but rendering that experience with paper, pencil and paintbrush. Most of the students in the course were not art majors, so they started by learning the fundamentals of sketching from Assistant Professor of Art and Design Neil Ward. Then they traveled to Venice, Florence, Siena, Rome, Pompeii and Sorrento, setting their cameras to the side and picking up sketch pads. Students explored the art treasures, deep history, culture and breathtaking landscape of Europe’s boot-

shaped peninsula. “It was the trip of a lifetime. Drawing everything we saw not only allowed us to truly experience the culture, but it gave us a way to document the trip that will be cherished for the rest of our lives in a way that pictures couldn’t,” said Heather Koester ’17, who majored in Elementary Education. Ward designed the course to encourage students to slow down the sometimes rapid pace of travel and immerse themselves in their surroundings. “Some of the students were nervous about drawing,” Ward explained. “The goal was not great sketches, but to see and spend time with the details.” As is intended with Wesleyan Journey courses,

students learned more about the world and themselves through travel. “Now as I travel, I have learned to put down my camera more and just enjoy the moment and the culture around me,” Koester said. A new group of students will have the opportunity to travel to Italy in May. Students can also choose to explore homelessness and food insecurity in Seattle; education in Costa Rica; risk management in London; meditation and cooperative service at Shambhala Mountain Center in Colorado; or leadership in Washington, D.C., and New York City. Learn more about our Wesleyan Journey courses at www.kwu.edu/wesleyan-journey.

Given that only two KWU students studied abroad between 2004 and 2014, we made a significant commitment in 2014: to learn whether removing the cost barrier would encourage our students to study abroad or away from campus with a KWU professor and a small group of peers. So, we announced to students that we would fully fund one journey for each student who wished to go. Now, 60 KWU students are participating annually in domestic and international trips, and our assessments reveal tremendous value to the individuals who participate and to our campus culture. While we are thrilled with this growth, we recognize that fewer than 20 percent of eligible KWU students are participating. So we are embarking on a fundraising campaign to endow the Wesleyan Journey to continue this growth in a sustainable manner.

Above: Sketches from Angelique Archuleta’s sketchbook. Middle left: Emma Reitz sketches Trevi Fountain in Rome. Middle right: Students pose for a photo on the Spanish Steps in Rome. Bottom: Front: Neil Ward, Angelique Archuleta, Asiria Ramirez ’17, Elizabeth Nims ’17; Back: Brandy Mauldin ’17, Samir Lopez Chahin, Kendall Carter, Mitchell Byers ’17, Heather Koester ’17, Emma Reitz, Layne Broeker, Arianna Townsend and Dr. Meredith Drees gather for a photo in front of Mount Vesuvius, Italy.

“It was the trip of a lifetime.”

– Heather Koester ’17

18 Catherine “Claire” Massey ’17

The Class of 2017 ready to take on the world.

Setting the World on Fire The Class of 2017 had ambitious goals! Nearly 30 indicated they were heading to graduate school, and one was leaving for South Africa for a summer immersion project. From master’s programs in Athletic Training and Sports Psychology to doctorate programs in a variety of fields, KWU Coyotes are beginning new chapters that will help them be change agents in their communities and in the world.

2017 Jabara Recipients

Catherine “Claire” Massey ’17 and Garrett Young ’17 received the Professor Fran Jabara Leadership Award, a statewide award presented to graduating seniors for their entrepreneurial traits and participation in activities, business-related initiatives and leadership. Massey, a Marketing major who also played golf for the Coyotes, is a licensed insurance agent with Salina State Farm agent Dauane Briggs. Young earned his degree in Business Management, was a national qualifier in track, and earned second place in The Best of KWU research contest with his entrepreneurial Retail Running Store. Young is enrolled in the KWU M.B.A. program and is a graduate assistant in the Athletic Department, focused on corporate sales.

Zhichen “Will” Liu ’17 University of Central Florida Doctoral Program | Physics

A native of Beijing, China, Liu made a significant impact at KWU. He was honored with the Outstanding Math Graduate Award and the Outstanding Young Physicist Award. Liu graduated cum laude with a dual major in Physics and Mathematics and a minor in Computer Programming. He is interested in pursuing a career in space science.

Diego Sanchez ’17

Western State Colorado University Master’s Program | Environmental Management An Ecospheric Studies and Community Resilience (ESCR) major, Sanchez was instrumental in establishing the campus compost initiative, which he organized while at Whispering Cottonwood Farm, an outdoor laboratory for ESCR majors. He is enrolled in the Master in Environmental Management (MEM) program at Western State Colorado University, where he is a graduate assistant. A member of the track and cross country teams, Sanchez graduated cum laude and received the Outstanding Biology Student Award.

Kayla (St. Laurent) Eschliman ’17 Kansas State University Doctoral Program | Organic Synthesis

Eschliman was a standout in the Chemistry Department. She earned a spot in the prestigious Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program, sponsored by the National Science Foundation, in which she spent a summer doing research at KSU. A member of the choir and a Presidential Ambassador, Eschliman is pursuing a doctorate in Organic Synthesis at Kansas State.

Carly Tallon ’17

Asbury Seminary | Master of Divinity Tallon is enrolled in the online Master of Divinity program at Asbury Seminary. A Christian Ministry major, Tallon was also a member of the choir.

Jacob Lunz ’17

University of Nebraska Doctoral Program | Physical Therapy Lunz, who graduated summa cum laude, received the Department of Sport and Exercise Science Achievement Award at graduation. He was a leader on campus, serving on the Student Government Association and Fellowship of Christian Athletes, as a resident assistant and as a member of the men’s basketball team.

Dustin Mayfield ’17 Police Academy | Coppell, TX

Winner of the Outstanding History Award, Mayfield, who graduated cum laude, is completing employment testing with the Coppell, TX, police department where he is interested in working in the narcotics division.


Faculty and Staff News and Accomplishments At the Honors and Recognition Dinner in May, Dr. Stephanie Welter, associate professor of Biology, received the Faculty Distinguished Service Award, and Paul Green, production manager in the Department of Communication Studies and Theatre Arts, received the Administration/Staff Distinguished Service Award. The Student Government Association recognizes KWU administration, staff and faculty through the distinguished service award. The faculty and staff recipients were voted on by the students. Dr. James Townsend, associate professor of chemistry, received the Exemplary Teacher Award. Criteria for selection include excellence in teaching; civility and concern for students and colleagues; commitment to value-centered education; and service to students, the university and the community. The recipient of the KWU Exemplary Teacher Award is chosen by faculty peers. The award is sponsored by the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church. Dr. Annie Hoekman ’03, G’05 and Dr. Jacob Ogle were granted tenure in the spring. Tenure is awarded by the university as a deserved recognition of academic achievement, personality, character and quality of services of the individual concerned. Dr. Hoekman and Dr. Ogle have also been promoted to associate professor. Dr. Annie Hoekman ’03, G’05 has successfully completed her Ph.D. in Occupational and Continuing Education from Kansas State University.

Dr. Tatiana Tessman has successfully completed her Doctorate of Musical Arts from the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. Dr. Damon Kraft is serving as interim provost, and Janeane Houchin, R.N., M.S.N., and Dr. Kristy Rodriguez are sharing the responsibilities of assistant provost for the 2017–18 academic year. Mike Guernsey retired from plant operations this spring after 10 years of service to KWU. Gary Harmon, director of forensics and debate, recently updated his book “Argumentation and Debate: A Strategic Perspective” with co-author Ken Troyer. Kirk Cusick has accepted the position of instructor of Biology. He earned his master’s degree from Fort Hays State University. He serves as co-director of KWU’s Ecospheric Studies and Community Resilience program and is co-steward of the nationwide Resilience Consortium. Dr. Ruth Mirtz, who has served as library director for the past three years, has moved into a faculty role in the English Department. KWU welcomes to the staff Scott Jagodzinske as campus minister. Scott has been serving in the role on a limited schedule for the past year. Jerri Zweigardt, M.S.N., is now an assistant professor of Nursing and the nursing student success coordinator. Niki Wilson ’16 was promoted from a graduate assistant to a full-time, shared role within Career Services and the Albert Nelson Student Success Center.

New Hires Michael Bell, Ph.D. – Assistant Professor of Physics and Mathematics Steve Blue – Landscaping and Groundskeeper Melissa Calvillo, M.S. – Instructor of Nursing Lesa Dunn, M.S. – Assistant Professor of Sports & Exercise Science Erin Gallion – Admissions Counselor Charlotte Garrett – Associate Director of Admissions for Graduate and Online Studies Polly Howell, M.S.N., C.S.H.E. – Nursing Simulation and Skills Lab coordinator/assistant professor of Nursing Patrick Klenda – Athletic Trainer Madison Natt, Ph.D. – Visiting Assistant Professor of English Carl Rowles, D.M.A. – Director of Bands/music professor John Swagerty – Assistant Director of Plant Operations Kelley Weber, M.L.S. – Library Director Dale White – Director of Plant Operations Monica Zilioli – Interim Director of the Albert Nelson Student Success Center

Nearly 40 members of our faculty and staff are KWU alumni. Front row: Kat Benton ’09, G’11, Yadira Toraya ’13, LonDarius Thomas ’17, Palmer Bosanko ’17, Joshua Tackett ’11; Second row: Niki Wilson ’16, David Toelle ’01, G’08, Diego Cocon ’14, G’17, Joseph Bondio ’17, Howard Mahan ’16, Haley Thompson ’16; Third row: Amanda Colgrove ’15, Courtney Miller ’15, Tyler Tyson ’15, Ryan Showman ’04, Sandrina Hallahan ’16, Nicole Serrien ’02, Annie Hoekman, Ph.D. ’03, G’05; Back row: Pedro Martinez ’15, Lois Madsen ’15, Justin Taylor ’16, Jasmin Dauner ’13, Karissa Swenson ’11, Nate Hancock ’16 and Garrett Young ’17 Not pictured: Mark Ayala ’17, John Burchill ’80, Jessica Fuller ’09, Paul Green ’09, Neal Jeffery ’12, G’15, Angela Keopraseuth ’99, Jennifer Long ’13, Brandon Maio ’16, Joe Morrissey ’15, Matt Myers ’15, Braxton Peck ’15, Eric Reed ’15, Jennifer Rein G’10, Frank Roth II ’68, and Katherine Sweeney ’93, G’05

Class Notes 1967

Leverne E. Backstrom is the president of the board of the Katherine Dunham Centers for Arts and Humanities in East Saint Louis, IL.


Joseph DuPont has come out of retirement and purchased the Red Rose Diner on Route 6 in Towanda, PA. He is also taking glider lessons.


Daryl J. Callahan, D.O., recently joined Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas as the company’s medical director of quality improvement, disease management, care coordination and medical policy.


The Rev. Nathan Stanton is the new director of congregational excellence for the Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church. Stanton serves on the KWU Board of Trustees.


Mike Baumberger is the new South Central Kansas alumni chapter representative.


Angela Rhodes works for Huffman Independent School District in Texas as a social studies curriculum coordinator. Justin Rhodes is working for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, State Parks Division, as a regional director for Southeast Texas.


Rachael Trujillo works for Academy District 20 in Colorado Springs, CO.

Pictured left to right at the wedding of Daniel Moss ’15 in Zion National Park in Utah: Mitch Kufahl ’17, Zach Montalvo, Tyler Odey ’17, Devin Rizzo-Foden ’17, Garrett Walker, Regan Jeffery ’15, Daniel Moss ’15, Lindsey Weaver ’16, Kenny Diaz ’16, Adam Schneck ’14, Colton Spresser ’16 and Kaleb Whitehair ’17.


Melissa McCoy and her husband, Casey, both former Marines, were featured in a Salina Journal story on the Fourth of July. The story also featured Emergency Management student Bernie Botson.


Lindsay Huenefeld has been hired as the director of Sunflower Adult Day Services in Salina. Shelby Babcock married Eric Davis ’10; they met on their KWU recruiting visit.

Dustin Dooley, Ed.S., was recently named principal at South Middle School in Salina. Dooley has a master’s degree and a doctorate in district leadership. He was formerly the principal at Solomon Middle and High School and is chairman of the Kansas Association of Secondary School Principals. Steven Willis and his wife, Rachel, welcomed a son, Paxton. Steven is the director of community corrections for the Fifth Judicial District in Kansas.


Zachary Foster has been teaching physical education in Thornton, CO, for 10 years. Alyssa (LeClair) Crawford is a vocational rehabilitation counselor for the state of Kansas at the Department for Children and Families in Hays, KS.


Jordan and Andrea (Shaw) Hanslovan announced the birth of their son, Ammon Ward Hanslovan, born Jan. 25, 2017.

2009 Dwight Preston ’84, had some help from several of his 1982 KCAC Championship football teammates and KWU Athletic Hall-of-Famers at his 26th annual Preston football camp and mentoring program in Center, TX. Pictured left to right: John Brooks ’82, Elliott Edwards ’85, David Harris ’85, Dwight Preston ’84, John Preston ’81


Nate Showman was recently named principal of Salina Central High School. Showman began his teaching career at Salina South High School as an English teacher before a 10-year stint teaching and three years as an assistant principal in Arizona.

Steve Tilson has been named head boys’ soccer coach for Salina South. Amy Butala Pihl and her husband, Derek, recently celebrated the birth of their second daughter, Elsie Ann.


Eric Davis received the Bank VI Hero of the Week Award in May. Davis is a paraeducator at Sunset Elementary School in Salina.

2012 2013

Olga Silverman earned her M.S.E. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Kansas. She also presented her sixth paper, “Is Elliot Alderson the New Hamlet? Shakespearean Motives in ‘Mr. Robot, Season One,’” at the PCA/ACA conference in San Diego. Zachery Brown was hired as the assistant district attorney in the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office.


Cassandra Wuest, a KWU double major in Biomedical Chemistry and Chemistry, has received the 2017 Perfusion Education Scholarship at Barry University (FL). Lindy Peterson and Justin Thacker ’13 were married on Sept. 9.


Vanessa Kresin has been hired as the girls’ basketball coach for Madison High School in Madison, KS. Kaitlyn Schwartz G’17 will serve on the Big Brothers Big Sisters of America National Marketing Committee for 2017–18. She is the volunteer and development coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Salina. Collin English is teaching U.S. history and economics at Tolleson Union High School in Tolleson, AZ. He is also the running backs coach for freshman football and assistant coach for varsity softball. Alyssa Lane is the orchestra teacher at Salina South High School. Eric Schwerdtfager works at Clinical Reference

21 Linda JoAnn Kornegay ’87 of Castle Hayne, NC, passed away on Sept. 12, 2016. Virginia Kay (Wardyn) Morse ’92 of Ochelata, OK, passed away on June 9, 2017. Tony R. Studt ’93 of Concordia, KS, passed away on May 3, 2017. David A. Davis ’96 of Hope, KS, passed away on May 13, 2017. Kassandra Jo “Kass” Serene ’06 of Salina, passed away on June 14, 2017. Leah Reay ’13 of Wildomar, CA, passed away on Jan. 22, 2017. Capt. Mike Sweeney ’92 gave blood June 16 during an American Red Cross drive to honor Leah Reay ’13. Reay, who had worked as a nurse at Salina Regional Health Center, was killed in a car crash in January. Her husband, Kevin Reay ’11, formerly an officer with the Salina Police Department, talked with Bridget Weiser, vice president for student development.

Laboratory in Shawnee Mission, KS, one of the largest privately held clinical testing laboratories in the U.S. Traves Liles has completed the Walmart management training program and is working as an assistant manager in the Dallas area.

Charles “Charlie” Lee Novak ’55 of Sarasota, FL, passed away on March 28, 2017.


Warren M. Bevan ’56 of Salina, passed away on March 21, 2017.

Karen Martinez was named the head tennis coach for Cumberland University in Lebanon, TN. Layne Broeker is a fifth-grade teacher at Ross Elementary in Topeka, KS. Layne Shirley was selected to be the eSports manager for the NAIA.

In Memoriam

David Soderberg ’56 of Salina, passed away July 1, 2017.

Carl McDonald ’57 of Chapman, KS, passed away on June 30, 2017. Virginia L. Near ’60 of Central City, NE, passed away on April 26, 2017. Andre Toth ’60 of Pinconning, MI, passed away on May 25, 2017.

Frances “Fran” Gilley ’41 of Roseburg, OR, passed away on Aug. 12, 2016.

Cornelia “Coni” Witters ’62 of Salina, passed away on Oct. 30, 2016.

Jeanne Frances Stephen ’44 of Woodbridge, VA, passed away on July 29, 2016.

Edwin “Ed” Taylor ’65 of Thornton, CO, passed away on April 3, 2017.

Irene Meyer ’46 of Abilene, KS, passed away on June 22, 2017.

Don Rectenwald ’69 of Salina, passed away on Dec. 25, 2016.

Adrian P. Bal ’49 of Los Angeles, CA, passed away on Sept. 20, 2016.

Michael Fardella ’70 of Leawood, KS, passed away on May 25, 2017.

Lorene Carper ’50 of San Antonio, TX, passed away on July 17, 2017.

Doris Ilene (Altman) King ’71 of Salina, passed away on March 16, 2017.

Helen Lucille Boggs Gugler ’50 of Salina, passed away on April 24, 2017.

Lowell F. Parrish ’71 of Minneapolis, KS, passed away on April 6, 2017.

Kenneth Raymond Root ’50 of Chapman, KS, passed away on June 3, 2017.

Dr. Frank Summerfield ’71 of Raleigh, NC, passed away on July 1, 2017.

Tracy Dilling ’51 of Salina, passed away on Aug. 8, 2017.

John Gregory Mathena ’73 of Topeka, KS, passed away on June 16, 2016.

Richard D. Shively ’51 of Caldwell, ID, passed away on Nov. 14, 2016.

Robert Mack Shrader ’73 of Topeka, KS, passed away on Jan. 31, 2017.

Dorothy Ann Schmiedeler ’53 of Salina, passed away on April 23, 2017.

John M. Pihl ’80 of Salina, passed away on March 14, 2017.

Randall “Randy” Bemiss, head men’s and women’s golf coach for six seasons, passed away on May 19, 2017. Coach Bemiss built the men’s program into a contender in the KCAC but really made his mark with the women’s program. In 2015, his women’s team won its first KCAC Championship; Kamie Rash ’14, G’16, was the individual champion and was the first Coyote ever to advance to the NAIA Women’s Golf National Championship. His team was the 2017 KCAC runner-up. He was selected by his peers as the KCAC Women’s Golf Coach of the Year in 2015 and 2017. Prior to coaching at Kansas Wesleyan, Coach Bemiss served as a golf instructor at Colby Community College, was a teaching professional at Cassville Country Club in Cassville, MO, was a private instructor for several professional golfers, and owned and operated the West Valley School of Golf in Glendale, AZ. Before he passed, Randy mentioned that his only regret was not securing a better indoor practice venue for his golf program. His vision was having a simulator for this team to use in the winter months. Memorial gifts are being designated for the golf program to enhance the indoor practice site. Half of the proceeds from the 2017 Coyote Cup went toward the cause. C. Robert Lindsley ’57 passed away on June 19, 2017, at age 82. Bob and his wife Darlene HarrisLindsley ’55, have been active Salina alumni. They were Pioneer Society members and attended many local chapter events, campus activities and athletic events. Bob served three terms on the Kansas Wesleyan Board of Trustees and was also a member of the Foundation Board. An accounting major, Bob worked for Evans Grain Company (purchased by Koch Industries) in Salina for 40 years, first as an office manager and then a chief financial officer. After Bob’s first wife passed, he reconnected with Darlene, whom he had met while attending KWU. Bob was a member of First United Methodist Church, Salina Rotary Club and the Salina Country Club.


Caring & Compassion KWU Rolls Out Online R.N. to B.S. Degree The need for nurses continues to grow, and standards are shifting toward those who hold a bachelor’s degree. The shortage is especially dire in rural communities. To help meet this need, Kansas Wesleyan University will now offer a fully online R.N. to B.S. with a major in Nursing program. The program allows nurses who already hold an unencumbered Registered Nursing license to leverage their experience to complete a Bachelor of Science with a major in Nursing in an accelerated study.

It is designed to prepare students for professional advancement. The program will begin in January 2018. The program consists of a minimum of nine courses offered in eight-week sessions. If applicants have maximum transfer credits, the program can be completed in one calendar year of full-time study and costs under $14,000. The tuition rate is guaranteed for two years. Students will be able to apply for up to 35 credit hours of experiential credit toward their degree. This allows nurses who have been working in the

field to benefit from that experience. Learn more at www.kwu.edu/rnbs. The addition of the R.N. to B.S. program is part of KWU’s transition from the Bachelor of Science in Nursing to the Bachelor of Science with a major in Nursing. The university will now offer two tracks — a four-year program for pre-licensure students and a one-year program for those who have their Registered Nursing license. The B.S. with a major in Nursing program will offer the same level of nursing skill for graduates as a B.S.N. The B.S. with a major in Nursing is the result of a careful analysis

For the love For the Love of the game of the Game

81-year-old Leaves Mark 81-Year-Old Leaves Mark League on Senior League on Seniors’

“I’m not ready to put down the bat yet.”

You are only as old as you feel, and if you feel like swinging a bat at age 81, you do it. That’s the philosophy of Mike Kirkpatrick ’59, who has been playing softball for the past 16 years. Among the oldest players in the Senior Softball-USA (SSUSA) Senior League, Kirkpatrick still has a competitive spirit and the physical agility to keep stepping up to the plate. “I am still very competitive,” he said. “And I really love playing. As you get older, the social aspect of the game becomes almost more important than the physical aspect.” Over the past decade, he has traveled across the western United States with his California-based teammates and friends. He has a

and revitalization of the Nursing curriculum at KWU. The new degree will be community-focused with required courses such as Personal, Community and Global Health, and Community Health Nursing. “We believe it is part of our missional responsibility to offer a Nursing program to help meet the needs of the community,” President Matt Thompson, Ph.D., said. “The most recent site visit from the Kansas State Board of Nursing was extremely positive.” The university has submitted formal application to the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for accrediting the B.S. with a major in Nursing. “This will be a new program CCNE will review. Since we met all requirements except historical pass rates on the review of the B.S.N., we are in an excellent position to be accredited with the B.S. with a major in Nursing, as pass rates are not a factor with new programs,” President Thompson said. CCNE will visit next spring. If the program is approved, KWU will receive notification in fall 2018.

drawer full of tournament T-shirts, but his shelf—adorned with championship rings, watches and trophies—tells the story of a player who has proven to be a force on the diamond throughout his senior years. His team has won five California state championships and nine SSUSA Championship tournaments, including world championships in 2006 and 2011. He has been named to seven AllTournament teams and has twice been named MVP. Kirkpatrick hadn’t picked up a bat in 45 years when he began playing for SSUSA at age 65. He still suits up twice a week for games in a recreational 55+ league in Arizona and plays in a few SSUSA tournaments each year. He played center field most of his career but switched to first base to accommodate an injury to his throwing arm. “People don’t typically think of softball as a lifelong sport,” said Kirkpatrick. “I’m slowing down, but I’m not ready to put down the bat yet.”


Introducing KWU’s Newest Coaches

Kat Benton

Diego Cocon

Kat Benton ’09, G’11 returned to KWU as the fourth coach of the women’s soccer program in March. Benton played two seasons for the Coyotes in 2007 and 2008, leading the team to back-toback KCAC regular season and tournament championships. Benton served as an assistant coach under Mike Dibbini ’99, G’02, at KWU from 2009 until 2013, with a focus on recruiting and coaching the junior varsity squad. She also was active in the Salina Soccer Club, serving as director of academies, assistant director of coaching, and as a coach. Benton has also served as a head coach in the Kansas Olympic Development program since 2013 and has been the head coach of the Sporting Kaw Valley Premier GU11 and GU12 teams in Manhattan, KS, since last June. She was named the KSYSA Girls Competitive Coach of the Year in 2016.

Diego Cocon ’14, G’17 was named the head men’s soccer coach in March. Cocon spent two years as a graduate assistant for the KWU women’s soccer program. He helped coach the Coyotes to two KCAC regular season titles, one KCAC tournament championship and back-to-back appearances in the NAIA Women’s Soccer National Championships. Before taking the graduate assistant position at KWU, Cocon also served as a student assistant for the KWU men’s program for the 2014 season. He also played at KWU for two years, twice earning NSCAA All-Plains Region and First Team All-KCAC honors during the Coyotes’ back-to-back KCAC regular season and conference tournament appearances in 2012 and 2013.

Head Women’s Soccer Coach

Head Men’s Soccer Coach

Randy Syring

Kelsey Kieborz

Randy Syring will join the KWU golf program starting January 1, 2018. Syring has been the head golf professional at the Salina Country Club since 1988. He was named one of the top golf teachers in the state of Kansas by Golf Digest and one of the best teachers in the Great Plains by Golf Magazine. He has taught numerous professionals on the PGA Tour, the European Tour and the Asian Tour, along with several state amateur champions, collegiate players and high school state champions. He also played professionally on tours in Florida and California in the 1980s and played collegiately for Marymount College. Howard Mahan ’16 will continue the role of interim head coach through January.

Kelsey Kieborz joined KWU as head dance coach in May. She brings experience as an instructor and choreographer at the Prestige School of Dance in Salina, a position she has held since 2015. She directed choreography for Prestige’s competition team. Kieborz previously served in a similar role at Jackie Creamer’s Dance Studio in Hays, KS. She was on the dance team at Fort Hays State, Barton Community College and Johnson County Community College.

Head Golf Coach

Head Dance Coach

Honored were: Neal Saskowski ’78, Kyle Saskowski, Bob Reynolds ’72, Dave Wilson, Mike Malone ’70 and Jim Raubenstine ’94

Luke Samford

Head Cross Country and Track and Field Coach Luke Samford was elevated to the head coaching position for the track and field and cross country teams in July. Samford joined the KWU staff in August 2016 as an assistant coach after two years as a graduate assistant at Mercer University in Macon, GA. Before Mercer, Samford coached at Sewanee (TN) and Kennesaw State (GA). Samford ran competitively for the University of Idaho.

Jenni Showman Head Cheer Coach

Jenni Showman joined the KWU coaching staff in May. She was the head cheer coach at Salina South High School, serving two tenures in that position: from 2006 to 2012 and again in 2016–17. She also coached swimming and diving at South. Showman teaches kindergarten at Heusner Elementary and previously served as an autism and behavior consultant for USD 305 for four years.

“The Chain Gang”

was honored with the Gerald Lilly Award at the 2017 Night with the Yotes in August for its extraordinary commitment to Coyote athletics. As a group, the gang managed the chains at football games for a combined 130 years.

w e i v e R g n i r p S s c i Athlet 24

Success in the Classroom

KWU had 16 winter and spring sports student-athletes earn Daktronics-NAIA Scholar Athlete honors. Howard Mahan ’16 was named CoSIDA Academic All-District and went on to become a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-American in the men’s at-large category in the college division. A total of 102 student-athletes earned Academic AllKCAC honors. Football led the way with 19 honorees, while volleyball had 17 honorees. Eleven KWU teams earned NAIA Scholar-Team status, finishing with a team GPA over 3.0 for the year. Women’s basketball earned a spot in the NAIA Academic Top 25 from the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association. Volleyball earned the American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award for the eighth straight season.

Men’s Basketball

The men’s basketball team, under first-year coach Anthony Monson, finished the 2016–17 campaign 13-19; the best record in a season since 2008–09 and tying for most conference wins in a season since 2009–10. Ryan Hill was named to the All-KCAC team.

Women’s Basketball

Women’s basketball reached the KCAC semifinals as Coach Ryan Showman ’03 led the Coyotes to a 20-win season for the second time in his career, with a 20-12 record. Karlie Steinle ’17 and Jenna Farris ’17 were named All-KCAC, and Steinle became KWU’s first women’s basketball All-American since 2011, earning Honorable Mention All-America honors.


In the program’s first full season of competition, the wrestling program had a national qualifier in Ty Wilson. The program achieved many

successes during its inaugural season, hosting the first-ever KCAC Invitational, finishing third. Tanner O’Donnell was voted Most Outstanding Wrestler, and Matt Oney was selected KCAC Coach of the Year. Six wrestlers in the event posted third place or higher finishes.


Softball had another outstanding season, winning the KCAC Tournament for the third time in four years and earning a spot in the NAIA opening round. KWU finished 35-16 and 17-5 in the KCAC; nine players earned AllKCAC honors.

Men’s Tennis

Men’s tennis had the best season since the program was revived in 2001. The Coyotes were 12-5 overall and 6-2 in the KCAC. The Coyotes made their first appearance in the KCAC Tournament since 2009 and nearly knocked off nationally ranked Bethany in the tournament semifinals; three players earned All-KCAC honors.

Indoor Track

In indoor track, KWU qualified the men’s 4 x 800m relay team for the NAIA National Championships. The team of Luke Maddox, Keaton Schelir, Sebastian Ramirez and Garrett Young ’17 finished 24th overall in the event.

Track and Field

Jessica Gardiner and Trail Spears ’17 were national qualifiers in outdoor track and field. Gardiner set a new school record in the javelin with a throw of 41.52m and won the KCAC championship in that event. She finished 17th at the NAIA National Championships. Spears finished 36th in the NAIA marathon.

Women’s Golf

Women’s golf finished second in the final KCAC women’s golf standings after the second leg of the conference championships. KWU shot the low round of the tournament on the final day. Kiah Rash and Palmer Bosanko ’17 were named to the All-Tournament team, and Rash, Bosanko and Tiara Diaz were named AllKCAC. Kansas Wesleyan mourned the loss of Head Golf Coach Randy Bemiss in May. KWU created and named the Randy Bemiss Coyote Lifetime Achievement Award in his honor, to recognize someone who has devoted his or her lives to KWU and KWU Athletics. Bemiss was posthumously named as the award’s first recipient at the Coyote Cup on June 17.

Fall Athletics Preview

The Coyotes have traditionally launched their fall sports season as strong contenders in the KCAC. In fact, in each of the past three years, KWU has emerged from the fall season leading the KCAC Commissioner’s Cup standings.


Football is on an impressive two-year 19-4 run. Coach Matt Drinkall begins his fourth year leading the program. The roster is stacked with nine All-KCAC players returning, highlighted by offensive lineman Ayrius Brown, and defensive linemen Christian McQueen and Kretien Webb. Leading tackler Garrett Updegraft also returns. A pair of new players to keep an eye out for on the gridiron are Delon Stephenson at defensive back and Alex Kiriluk at tight end.


Volleyball will be in the hunt for another KCAC title. The Coyotes will face top competition in the conference from Ottawa and Tabor. Fred Aubuchon is the dean of the KWU coaching staff, starting his ninth season at head volleyball coach. Valerie Most, an NAIA All-American in 2016, is a top returning player, along with fellow seniors Kelsey Plummer and Hannah Reynolds. The Coyotes return seven players with starting experience from a year ago. Kortney Cunningham is a key newcomer to keep an eye on this season. Follow the Coyotes all season on

Cross Country

The cross country teams will be very young in 2017 after losing a tremendous amount of runners to graduation last year. Head Coach Luke Samford is in his first season after serving as an assistant coach last year. The door is open for several freshmen to find their way into the top five for the Coyotes. The top returnee for the women’s squad is sophomore Bailie Troll. For the men, Mickey Sarafin, the KCAC champion in the mile last year, is the top returnee, and a pair of top newcomers, Jacob Lovell and Josh Terrazas, will be top contenders. The Coyote men’s team will look to qualify for a third straight NAIA Nationals berth this season.

Second Team All-KCAC selection last year and returns to anchor the backline. Sophomore returner Alyssa Skobis will play a big role for the Coyotes in the midfield. Top newcomers for the Coyotes include freshmen Krysta Catone and Angelica Guerrero.

Men’s Soccer

The men’s soccer team looks to be one of the top teams in the conference in 2017. Diego Cocon ’14, G’17, takes over the reins of the program after serving as a graduate assistant for the women’s soccer team the last two years. Cocon also played soccer at KWU for two years. The Coyotes return two All-KCAC players in Luke Walters and Cam Hunter. There will be many newcomers on the pitch for the Coyotes this season as the team graduated 13 players last year, including several starters. Top newcomers include Radley Arnold and Diego Rodriguez.

Women’s Soccer

Women’s soccer will continue its run as one of the top teams in the KCAC. Kat Benton ’09, G’11, takes over as head coach, returning to KWU after a stellar playing career with the Coyotes. The team returns three First Team All-KCAC selections in Valerie Ochoa, Antonia Burrell and Jane Potter. Renee DeAnda was a

Twitter @KWUCoyotes

KWU livestreams home games in high definition. For more information, and to view the full sports schedule, visit www.kwucoyotes.com.

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“I chose to stay at KWU to complete my M.B.A. degree because I love the people that I met during my undergrad experience. Plus, I could finish the entire program in a year for just under $15,000.”

–Christopher Alford ’16, G’17

ACCREDITED by the Higher Learning Commission Start your application today! Visit www.kwu.edu/MBA, contact Charlotte Garrett at charlotte.garrett@kwu.edu or call 785-833-4419. You had a great undergraduate experience at Kansas Wesleyan, and we invite you to come back to earn an MBA completely online. The program, designed for the working professional, includes hallmark M.B.A. courses as well as a variety of customized courses. And you can get it all for a great price! Advance your career with an online M.B.A. from KWU this year. Next sessions start Oct. 23 and Jan. 17.

Profile for Kansas Wesleyan University

Fall 2017 Contact Magazine  

Kansas Wesleyan University Fall 2017 Contact Magazine

Fall 2017 Contact Magazine  

Kansas Wesleyan University Fall 2017 Contact Magazine