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Message From the President Dear Friends,

form lives, careers and communities.

In 1886, Elizabeth Harrison opened the door to higher education for women seeking training to teach kindergarten. The founding of Miss Harrison’s Training School was a new opportunity for an underserved population, and for the young pupils they would instruct. It is to this Training School that National Louis University traces its origins.

This is an extraordinary time for higher education. We are in an era of innovation and institutions are responding by offering a variety of improved educational delivery methods. This ranges from the development of new classroom models and online courses to the exploration of partnerships as a vehicle to open new doors. Partnerships like the one Mark Larson, National Louis alumnus and faculty member, writes about in this issue (The First Word, p3). We invite you also to read about how fellow alumni Scott Kartsounas, Toni Freeman, Vince Woods and Fallon Brooks committed to furthering their education and unlocked their doors. I hope you enjoy this edition of our Alumni Magazine and remember that at NLU, the door to education is always open.

One hundred and twenty seven years later NLU and the proverbial door Elizabeth unlocked is still open and welcoming students to new opportunities. Today we still maintain the pioneering spirit of our visionary founder and NLU still supports a tradition of open doors for students who have historically encountered barriers to higher education. By providing access to opportunity we can trans-

Best wishes,

Nivine Megahed, Ph.D., President

Institutional Advancement Staff John Bergholz, Vice President of Institutional Advancement

Jennifer Keller, Director of Development

Mark Donahue, Web Communications Editor

Brian Kush, Communications Manager

Matt Douponce, Associate Director

of Advancement Services

of Corporate and Foundation Relations

Mark Loper, Research and Prospect Analyst

Karen Galea, Director of Public and Private Funding and Florida Regional Development Officer

Danielle LaPointe, Associate Director

Kimberly Michaelson, Director of Alumni Relations

Table of Contents The First Word: Access to Ideas...................................... 3 Alumni Spotlight ................. 4 Letter From the V.P. of Advancement ..................... 5 Father, Daughter Take Part In

Jason Givan, Director of Advancement Operations

Carey Smith, Special Events Coordinator

Mallory Hitt, Administrative Assistant

Kaitlin Weiss, Annual Fund Manager

Alumni Relations

Make a Gift

Contact Kimberly Michaelson at

Contact Kaitlin Weiss at

A Life Dedicated to

312.261.3159 or

312.261.3913 or

Education................... 10 – 11


Commencement ........... 6 – 7 NLU Alumnus Has Company On The Cutting Edge ... 8 – 9

The First Word THE POWER OF CONVERSATION By Mark Larson ’93


believe in the power of conversation to shape thought and change minds. “And when you change your mind,” Stephanie Pace Marshall has written, “you can change the world.” For the past three years we, at NLU, have been offering broad access to big ideas in education through free conversations with great thinkers. In a special partnership with Chicago Shakespeare Theater and Golden Apple Foundation, we created an annual two and three-part series of discussion forums, now beginning its fourth year, on Theodore Zelden’s premise that “all invention and progress comes from finding a link between two ideas that have never met.” The series itself began with a simple conversation in the summer of 2010, when I had lunch with Marilyn Halperin, Director of Education and Communication at CST. I said that, in this time of significant turmoil for the field of education, I wished I could create a public dialogue. I wanted veteran educators who, for decades, have been engaged in the struggle for better schools to talk with their younger counterparts who are engaged in similar struggles today. In the next breath, Marilyn said, “Do you need a venue?” I talked with my colleagues at NLU that same afternoon. “In fact,” they said, “why don’t we do three?” Marilyn and I quickly joined forces with long-time friends of NLU and CST, Golden Apple Foundation’s

NLU’s fourth education forum series will take place in January and March of 2014.

CEO, Dom Belmonte, and Penny Lundquist, their Director of Professional Development. Soon the first series was being planned as part of NLU’s 125th anniversary, and, by happy coincidence, the 25th anniversary for both partners. On March 26, 2011, long-time progressive educators Deborah Meier, Bill Ayers, Sonia Nieto and, former New York Schools Chancellor, Harold Levy, sat down for a conversation with four educational leaders in the early years of their careers. Over the course of the next three years, our guests have included leaders such as Chicago Teachers Union president, Karen Lewis, Rev. Calvin Morris, Senator Miguel DeValle, and MacArthur Foundation Director of Education, Constance Yowell. We have also hosted authors Tony Wagner, Pauline Lipman, Kieran Egan, James Paul Gee, and Stephanie Pace Marshall. When asked why Chicago Shakespeare Theater was interested in


being a part of this series, Marilyn said, “Our work is so much bigger than what happens on our stages. Bringing people into our space to talk about the ‘big ideas’ that matter most as we look ahead at education in our country and beyond is an important part of our work.” Dom Belmonte added, “It has been my desire to make Golden Apple an active agent in education change activity. One aspect has been the convening of ideas and this series addresses that. We are seeking conversations of depth and intensity, but that are also civil. I’ve grown very weary of posturing and blame. I want to counter that with the old fashioned, lively art of conversation. Real conversation.” If you’re interested in big ideas, I invite you to save the dates: January 13 and March 3rd, 2014, and plan to join us for our fourth series which focuses on the place of innovation and creativity in the schools of the future. Be a part of the conversation. Minds may change, including your own.

Alumni Spotlight A MINT MUSEUM WITH AN NLU TOUCH By Brian Kush The Mint Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina is the first art museum in the state and the largest in the southeast. The day-to-day operations of this North Carolina landmark are the responsibility of Chief Operating Officer and National Louis University alumna Toni Freeman. Toni, B.A. Education ’78, handles the finances, accounting, facility management, and special events for the 77-year-old museum. “I handle everything except the art. When I started on the job the first thing they told me was not to touch the art,” Toni said with a laugh. Toni’s journey to becoming the COO of The Mint Museum started at National Louis University as a student in the College of Education. The Milwaukee, Wisconsin native liked the convenient location of National Louis University. It allowed her to live on her own, but still be close enough to go

Toni Freeman (with her current and senior-year photo) is currently the COO for The Mint Museum in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Toni has also served as board director for Hospice for Charlotte Region and Lincoln County, Teen Health Connection, and Habitat for Humanity. Currently, Toni serves as the President of Junior Leagues International and is a trustee for the YWCA (Young Women’s Christian Association) of the Central Carolinas.

“The skills I learned at National Louis University gave me the ability to take difficult concepts and explain it in terms that people can easily understand.”

After Toni graduated from National Louis University, she continued to work in education at the University of North Carolina in their student affairs department. Even though Toni did not stay in the education field, she credits her education from National Louis University for equipping her with the skills to succeed in her current position.

— Toni Freeman ’78 COO, The Mint Museum

“The skills I learned at National Louis University, while studying to become a teacher, prepared me for the numerous presentations and various workshops I give,” Toni said.

home on weekends. Toni lived on campus during her four years at NLU and was very active with her sorority, Delta Sigma Beta. Delta Sigma Beta was a community-service focused sorority and Toni’s time there inspired her to give back throughout her career. In the past, Toni has served as the chair of Women Executives for Community Services, a program that manages scholarships for nontraditional students.

“It gave me the ability to take difficult concepts and explain them in terms that people can easily understand.” As a result of all of Toni’s hard work and service to the community, National Louis University honored her with a Reach award in 2005.


Office of Alumni Relations Greetings! National Louis’ history of access is talked about a lot here because of the founding of this school. In my role as vice president for Advancement, it has been my pleasure to have had personal contact with alumni who credit NLU with giving them access to a high quality, affordable education allowing them to pursue fulfilling careers and lives. Our alumni have a variety of backgrounds and, while we have showcased some of them in our past magazines, there are far more stories of men and women whose goals were pushed forward by earning their degree at NLU. For instance, I’ve met with a JapaneseAmerican alumna whose family was held in an internment camp during World War II. She was given the opportunity to move to Chicago and care for an Evanston family’s children in exchange for leaving the camp. Encouraged to attend NCE, she later graduated and had a successful career as a teacher. Another alum whom I have had conversations with, a Marine who took classes on the DC campus, now has the awesome responsibility of ensuring the security of our U.S. Senators.

Connect With NLU “Like” us on Facebook and keep up with everything going on at National Louis University.



Come back to NLU and rediscover your love of learning as you take the next step on your professional path. Degree options include: nM  .A. programs in Psychology and Public Policy n M.A.T. program for aspiring teachers n MBA online or on campus

National Louis’ history has been built by alumni and students like these who have broken barriers to further their education and access their goals. Please enjoy reading stories about some of our proud graduates in this edition of the Alumni Magazine. And please, share your stories with us, too.

nM  .Ed. and Ed.D. degrees in several specialized areas of study n M.S. in Counseling n Ph.D. in Community Psychology n And many more!

John Bergholz

get started today 855.NLU.INFO (855.658.4636)

Vice President of Institutional Advancement


College of Arts and Sciences

Fallon Brooks (left) and her father Vince Woods graduated together at the 2013 NLU Commencement on June 22 in Chicago.

FATHER, DAUGHTER WALK IN 2013 COMMENCEMENT By Mark Donahue Commencement at NLU is a special time, as families look forward to seeing a student — a son, daughter, sister, brother or parent — walk across the stage and begin a new chapter in life. For one Chicago family this year, that excitement was double. Vince Woods, 56, and his daugh-

ter, Fallon Brooks, 29, both participated in commencement on June 22 at the Arie Crown Theater. It marked the end of a journey that both have said helped them grow closer while preparing them for the future. “I just think of the irony that I’m her dad, fifty-six, getting my bachelor’s


degree; she’s my child, twenty-nine, getting her master’s,” Vince said with a laugh, adding that he’s very proud of his daughter. The journey for each to NLU was a little different. Vince saw the importance of pursuing a degree for job security and as a way to advance. He’d already gotten his associate’s

College of Arts and Sciences “It was a lot of hard work, a lot of long nights, but we both really helped each other as best we could.” — Fallon Brooks ’13 M.Ed., Early Childhood Administration

degree in physical education from a city college and was working as an addiction counselor — a job he did full time while pursuing his Bachelor’s in Applied Behavioral Sciences at NLU.

chance to connect even further with Fallon, who spent a period of time living out of state. Now both are looking at the next step. Vince was able to turn his new bachelor’s into a promotion, as a mental health professional with Human Resources Development Institute in Chicago. Fallon plans to dive back into her work in CPS classrooms, setting her sights on becoming an early childhood education site manager. Ultimately she wants to own her own childcare center.

For Fallon, who works part time as a special education aide for high schoolers in the Chicago Public Schools system, she wished to sharpen her skill set beyond her bachelor’s studies with a Master’s in Education in Early Childhood Administration. Both said they truly enjoyed their NLU experience. Fallon liked the support she received from faculty and staff, and Vince gained new perspective that has helped him in understanding and communicating with his clients on the job.

It’s much to be proud of, and a big group of family and friends were on hand to cheer Vince and Fallon.

“One of the things that really made sense to me at my age is taking a look at your life and, say, something you’ve been doing for the last forty years and see today you need to change it or take a different look at it,” he said. “That was really amazing.”

Lauren Heidbrink, Ph.D.,CAS, published a law review article in the Spring 2013 issue of the American Bar Association’s Children’s Legal Rights Journal. Her article is titled “Criminal Alien or Humanitarian Refugee?: The Social Agency of Migrant Youth.” She also served as an invited guest at the Law and Society Association’s Early Career Workshop in Boston, where senior scholars in the research fields of law and social sciences mentor young faculty.

CAS News & Notes

As working adults, both father and daughter also appreciated how their programs gave them flexibility: a full-online cohort M.Ed. for Fallon and a 15-month intensive bachelor’s with Saturday classes for Vince. “Once I got in, it was just tailored to my life,” he said.

CAS Alumni In The News

Fallon began her NLU studies first in June 2011, with her father starting in January 2012 — and a new dimension in their relationship emerged, as father and daughter became peers in academics.

Diane Picciuolo, Human Services ’98, was recently featured in the book ‘Legendary Locals of Aurora’ for her work with the very successful Back to School Fair in Aurora, IL.

“We really just encouraged each other,” Fallon said. “It was a lot of hard work, a lot of long nights, but we both really helped each other as best we could. I think it kind of made us grow a lot closer, too.”

David A. Cavanaugh, M.S. Written Communication ’13, was recently featured in the Chicago Tribune’s “Passion Profiles.”

Vince, a father of three, agreed and said he’s had a


College of Management and Business NLU ALUMNUS HAS COMPANY ON THE CUTTING EDGE By Brian Kush National Louis University prides itself on being a school that provides access to education. Access to education, due to circumstances, can be tough for many people. In Scott Kartsounes’ case, it was being a working adult with a wife and two young children. National Louis University’s MBA program provided Scott the access to obtain his Master’s degree and move up in his company.

able program, but also had a very good reputation for quality, and good faculty,” Scott said. “I liked that the program was fast paced and I was able to complete the program in under two years. In the end, I think it was good pick.” Scott was right. The MBA program at National Louis University allowed him to finish the program at his own pace while balancing his life at home. Scott was in the MBA program with eight other working professionals, and the small class size allowed the instructors to work closely with the cohort and give special attention if needed.

Scott was recently promoted to Chief Technology Officer at Manufacturers’ News, Inc. Manufacturers’ News, Inc. is the nation’s largest compiler and publisher of industrial directories and databases. Located in Evanston, Illinois, Manufactures’ News, Inc. dates back to 1912.

After completing the MBA program at National Louis University, Scott was immediately promoted to Chief Technology Officer at Manufacturers’ News

Scott started at Manufacturers’ News, Inc. in 1999, right after he graduated from college, as part Scott Kartsounes of the information technology department. Scott helped Manufacturers’ News, Inc. develop new technologies to help customers access information in more efficient ways.

“I liked National Louis because it was very affordable, but also had a very good reputation for quality.” — Scott Kartsounes ’13 Chief Technology Officer, Manufacturers’ News Inc.

“Recently we launched an online subscription service where customers can get unlimited access to our database for an annual fee,” Scott said. “We also started a mobile app and an app for the tablet. It’s all about giving customers new ways, more convenient ways, to access our information.”

Inc. National Louis University made it possible for Scott to take the next step in his career. Scott is now focused on the future of Manufacturers’ News, Inc. and moving them forward in a rapidly-changing environment.

After working in IT for several years, as well as running his own software company, Scott gained a lot of business experience, but he didn’t have the foundational experience in business. He decided to take his career to that next level, he needed an MBA.

Part of the changing environment is the customer becoming accustomed to paying one monthly fee for unlimited services. We see this with companies like Netflix and Pandora. With that in mind, Scott has developed a new service called “Easy Select.” It’s a new subscription service that looks to shift Manufacturers’ News, Inc. from the traditional onetime sale to reoccurring revenue. Subscribers to Manufacturers’ News, Inc. can now access all the

With several options in the Chicagoland area in terms of MBA programs, Scott did his research and found that National Louis University was the best fit for him and his busy life. “I liked National Louis because it was a very afford-


College of Management and Business CMB News & Notes Deb New, MBA, Academic Project Manager, Provost Office, was the guest presenter for Methodology Madness: Completing Your Projects While Saving Your Sanity. New presented with Lou Russell, president and CEO of L+EARN and Russell Martin of NLU’s program redesign pilot project. This strategic project saw the creation and implementation of a rapid redesign process for three academic programs using the ADDIE design methodology (Analysis, Design, Develop, Implement and Evaluate).

CMB Alumni In The News A. Marcin Binczyk ’97, Business Administration, was named the general manager of supply chain design and engineering of the Steel segment for The Timken Company. Marcin joined Timken in 1997 as an analyst in Canton, OH. He had previously held management positions in global replenishment, order fulfillment, and supply chain. Marcin also held the role of deputy general manager of the Timken plant in Sosnowiec, Poland. Diana Lawrence, M.S. Management, was promoted to the position of Dean of Academic Affairs for the Digital Media and Arts College in Boca Raton, FL. Diana previously held positions as an academic dean and as a vice president at multiple locations for Education Management Corp. and with ITT Technical Institute as a teacher, associate dean, and academic dean.

Scott Kartsounes took part in the NLU Chicago commencement on June 22.

information they need for a monthly fee. “It’s a proud achievement for me because I think that’s the way that the future is headed,” Scott said.

Michael Cobb, M.S. Management ’98, has accepted the position of executive director for Hesed House in Aurora, IL. Hesed House is a not-for-profit organization that provides services for the homeless.

National Louis University is a place that helps students achieve their career goals. Scott advanced his career at Manufacturers’ News, Inc. thanks to the access provided by National Louis University. Scott can now make the necessary decisions to move his company forward.



she was just six years old to Florida A&M College. “You want to be like these young women in the dormitory doing all of these fun things. It was kind of a seed that had been planted there,” Mrs. Johnson said. It’s this same seed that she has spent her career planting in the youth whom she has taught.

By Kaitlin Weiss An educator for over 55 years, Mrs. Rose Johnson has had her heart in Chicagoland schools for most of her lifetime. From her first job at southside Chicago school, Carver Primary School, to her current Evanston home, Mrs. Johnson has spent a lifetime devoted to meeting children’s needs today in order to get them ready to face the world tomorrow.

Mrs. Johnson’s career in education has spanned the last half century. She has served on school boards: the board of trustees of Spelman College and the board of the Warren “Billy” Cherry Scholarship. She has been both a Chicago Public School and Evanston Public School teacher, as well as a reading specialist, and more. Her students can clearly see her legacy of powerful work being done in the Chicagoland area and beyond.

Mrs. Johnson’s family impressed upon her from a young age the importance of education. Coming from a family of teachers and with both of her parents having attended college for some amount of time, Mrs. Johnson said she learned that “It doesn’t matter where you are in life - education is key.”

“It was a lesson I learned that I think I have imparted to most of the children with whom I came in contact– that is if Mrs. Johnson can do it, if she went to this place and that place – then they know they can do it to or at least that there are possibilities.”

“It was kind of implanted without anyone saying anything that this is what you want to do,” Mrs. Johnson explained. Especially influential were her visits when

To begin her on the path for success, Mrs. Johnson

Rose Johnson ’79 dedicated over 55 years of her life to teaching children.


National College of Education attended Spelman College in Atlanta on scholarship for her undergraduate degree. “I spent four good years there, graduated in four years. It’s been a good ride ever since,” Mrs. Johnson said.

NCE News & Notes Edna Bazik, Ph.D., NCE, served as guest speaker and presented a session to mathematics education leaders from throughout the nation at the National Council of Supervisors of Mathematics (NCSM) Conference that was held in Denver. Dr. Bazik’s presentation was titled: Using Common Core State Standards in the Math Classroom by Engaging Students through Mathematics Problem Solving Activities and Tasks.

She returned to Chicago from Atlanta to teach, married, and had two children. As she and her husband decided a move to Evanston was best for their family, she turned to the National College of Education at National Louis to gain the ability to work in Evan-

“The best advice I can give is to treat each child as if he or she is your own. Sometimes you have to cut through the anger and the facades that children put up, the protective things, and get to the core of the child.”

Virginia M. Jagla, Ph.D., NCE, co-edited the book “Transforming Teacher Education through Service-Learning.” This book is part of the volume “Advances in Service-Learning Research,” in which she is the senior editor. The book includes the chapter, “Critical Discourse Analysis of Service-Learning Perspectives and Models: Transforming Teacher Education” co-authored by fellow NCE faculty members Antonia Lukenchuk, Ed.D. and Todd Price, Ph.D.

— Rose Johnson ’79 Retired Teacher

ston schools. Working as a reading teacher and taking care of two daughters, Mrs. Johnson attended classes at night after her husband returned home from his career. Mrs. Johnson graduated from NLU as her oldest was graduating high school and her youngest was graduating from middle school.

NCE Alumni In The News Kellie Manning ’01, was named the principal and curriculum director for Fall River School in Wisconsin.

Most of Mrs. Johnson’s childhood was spent in Chicago when schools were still segregated. She was inspired by “beautiful, caring [African-American] teachers, who by their example showed what teachers could be.”

Lynn Westerlund ’95, M.Ed., is the new principal for Parker Junior High School, District 161. Stephen Cummins ’12, Ed.D., was named the new director of public events for Chico State University in California.

This was ultimately her goal in her classroom. She wanted to set an example for her students by providing them the ability to see possibilities, and by giving them creative tools to access their dreams.

Scott Wuggazer ’03, M.A.T., has been promoted to assistant superintendent for special services for District 99.

“The best advice I can give is to treat each child as if he or she is your own. Sometimes you have to cut through the anger and the facades that children put up, the protective things, and get to the core of the child. Look at them as if they are yours,” Mrs. Johnson said.

Jessica Hutchison ’04, M.Ed., accepted a promotion to assistant principal at Washington School in Park Ridge, IL. 11


I give to National Louis because there is no way that I could possibly pay back National College of Education for the wonderful life I live. — Margaret Lindman B.A. Education ’50


The NLU Annual Fund provides for financial aid resources, improves academic programs, upgrades technology in labs and classrooms, retains outstanding faculty members and enhances campus life. For information on how to give to NLU, please visit FOR QUESTIONS ABOUT THE GIVING PROCESS, PLEASE CONTACT KAITLIN WEISS AT 312.261.3913

NLU Alumni Magazine: Fall 2013