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Peru Stater Spring 2009 Spring 2009 Vol. 54, No. 1

Taking the Helm

New President Impressed with Commitment to Education, Students

 For 10 years Peru State College has been on a roll. New programs have been added—both undergraduate and graduate—the infrastructure in excellent condition, and enrollment numbers continue to climb to record levels.  So, when the search for a new president of PSC began last fall, the goal was to find someone who could maintain momentum and build on the college’s successes.  After meeting Dr. Daniel Hanson, PSC interim President Stan Carpenter said he and the rest of the search committee knew they found the right person.  Carpenter, whose primary position is chancellor of the Nebraska State College System, ticked off several characteristics the search committee sought in a candidate: collegiality, a collaborative spirit, knowledge about higher education and the ability to understand the needs of a small, rural college.  The search committee also wanted someone who could “build bridges back to the greater community.” “Daniel soared to the top. He is thoughtful and knowledgeable, and brings a spirit of cooperation and inclusivity,” Carpenter said. “His

experience will be beneficial for the students, the college, the system and the state of Nebraska.”  Hanson, who currently serves as vice president of academic affairs and dean of the college at Waldorf College in Forest City, Iowa, holds a doctorate in instructional technology from Iowa State and a master’s degree in education and computer science from Mankato State in Mankato, Minn.  He will take the Peru State College helm this summer. Hanson has been a peer reviewer with the Higher Learning Commission of North Central Association since 2006, and a member of the editorial board of Quarterly Review of Distance Education since 1998.  Hanson said there are many things Dr. Daniel Hanson is the next he likes about Peru State, but certain President of Peru State College. things stand out more than others.  “I am impressed with the focus on He will arrive on the Campus of serving all students, the commitment A Thousand Oaks sometime this to providing a personalized education, summer. (Courtesy photo) and the relatively low cost for a liberal arts small college education,” Hanson  “It is also clear to me that there is said. a strong and committed faculty, staff,  He is also cited the recent and administration on the campus, investment in campus infrastructure and a committed and active group of and the strong commitment to on-line alumni,” Hanson said. programming, which he believes is  Before being nominated as a important for nontraditional students. candidate for president of Peru State, continued on page 4

College Offers Advantage Program  Serving students is the most important part of any college’s mission. The Nebraska State College System (NSCS) is making that mission even easier for Peru State and the rest of the Nebraska state colleges with its introduction of the Advantage program.  The program guarantees that firsttime freshmen who receive federal Pell Grants will pay no tuition at any

of the three for the 2009-10 academic year. To be eligible, participants also must be a Nebraska resident and be enrolled in at least 12 on-campus credit hours.  “The program provides the difference between the cost of tuition and the amount of all other awards for Pell Grant recipients,” said Stan Carpenter, chancellor of NSCS. “About one-third of students in the

College Focuses on Campus Enrollment  In the year 2000, 50 students were taking online classes through Peru State College. Today that number exceeds 1,500 and continues to grow, largely due to the quality of programs, faster and better delivery systems and the affordable cost of an education at PSC.  Now, PSC wants to see an enrollment explosion on campus as well. The Fall 2008 saw a one percent increase in the number of students attending Peru State, yet another alltime record. Total enrollment last fall was 2,307.  An increase in applications for next fall indicates PSC may well be headed for another record enrollment next year as well. But Stan Carpenter, interim president of PSC and chancellor of the Nebraska State College System, said PSC has no plans to take a “wait and see” approach.  “At this time, we have about 900 students on campus. Our goal is to reach 1,100, our optimum enrollment number,” he said. “We want the campus to remain relevant and vibrant.” continued on page 9

NSCS qualify for Pell Grant assistance, the NSCS Advantage icon to read and we are attempting to remove the most frequently asked questions the financial barriers many face. and more. If additional information Continuation in the program requires is needed, email NSCS Associate the recipient to receive a federal Pell Vice Chancellor Sheri Irwin-Gish at Grant every semester and to remain enrolled in one of the Nebraska State Colleges.”  For more information about the NSCS Advantage, visit the NSCS Website at Click on


Turning Economic Challenges into Opportunities

Dear Friends:  There has been a great deal of discussion and debate throughout the past several months about the struggling economy. Unfortunately, Peru State College is not immune to the economic challenges being faced throughout the country. I thought I would take this opportunity to discuss how we are being impacted and our plans to weather the financial storm.  These are very difficult times for the Nebraska State College System (NSCS). Earlier this year, Governor Dave Heineman recommended a 1 percent budget increase for the next biennium for the NSCS. If that recommendation holds, the NSCS will fall short of necessary funds to cover anticipated expenses to the tune of $6.8 million Stan Carpenter dollars. Peru State College’s share of that shortfall is $1.5 million dollars. future. In addition to streamlining  That is the bad news. The good our scholarship programs, we news is that, at this time, we will be created a third vice presidency to able to avoid layoffs and program cuts address enrollment management and on our campus thanks in large part student affairs. Michaela Willis has to our past financially conservative transitioned well into the role while behavior and good planning. Some continuing her duties as director of time ago, we asked our faculty and admissions. Among other new hires staff to do everything they could to are Vice President for Administration control expenses. and Finance Bruce Batterson and  We also engaged the entire campus Director of Computer Services Gene community and asked for their input Beardslee. They replace long-time as we worked through the budget employees Linda and Jay Jacobsen process. From their suggestions and who will retire in June. Finally, Stevan ideas, my Cabinet and I developed Schneider will fill the role of athletic plans for best and worst case scenarios. director.  We approached the process  These uncertain and difficult times determined to do everything we could make your support of our institution to avoid putting a greater financial more critical than ever. It’s because burden on our students as we don’t of your generosity that many of our see tuition increases as materially students are able to attend college. I solving our financial problems, nor encourage you to open your hearts are they politically wise or socially and wallets to those trying to better responsible at this time. their lives with a college degree.  That said, we are certainly not out of the woods. We plan to proceed Sincerely, through the next several months with an abundance of caution as further deterioration of the economy could lead to devastating cuts next year. We will continue to watch the legislative Stan Carpenter process and the economy very closely President to determine our next moves.  In addition to addressing financial issues, we have begun some necessary restructuring in order to put the college in a better position for the

Peru Stater Spring 2009

Stater Talk

 For some time you’ve been telling us to bring back the Peru Stater. Well, after all this time we’re back—and you have a lot to say about that as well.    We appreciate the time taken to send in your comments about the Stater, and in this section we share a selection. Please share your comments, suggestions and story ideas by sending them to Krystal Nolte through email,, by post, Peru Stater, c/o PSC Foundation, PO Box 10, Peru, NE, 68421-0010, or call 402-872-2395.  “The new Peru Stater is here, and it’s good. It’s also about people I knew in college…the newsprint is much better than the slick format.” – David Longfellow (’58)  “Very much enjoyed the most recent edition of the Peru Stater. Welcome back! I look forward to future publications.”—Willard Hunzeker (’46)  “Thank you for the wonderful fall issue of the Peru Stater. It was great to have it back again.”—Roselyn (Burd, ’84) Shaffer “I am thrilled to see the paper back in circulation.” –Tammy (Walters, ’05) Blobaum.  “I am very glad that the Peru Stater is back. I look forward to future issues and keeping tabs on my old college.”—Mary Lou Schriner (’68)  “We want to tell you how pleased we are that you have gone back to a format that we loved. It is so nice to get so much information, and in a form which we have always enjoyed. Thank you so much for listening to us.”— Jim (’51) and Phyllis (Rogers, ’50) Finkle  “It’s good to see a happy ‘Bob’ again. My wife, Lori (Last, ’78-80) loved her art classes with Mr. (Paul) Fell when she attended PSC. Keep up the good work.” –Byron Whitney (’84).  “Thanks a million for getting the Peru Stater back in circulation. We have really missed it!” – Max (’42) and Wilma (Miller, att. ’42) Jackson  ”We are so happy to have (the Peru Stater)—so wonderful it has been reinstated. Thanks for all you have done to make that happen.”—Elaine (Spier, ’58) Krumme  “What a thrill to receive the Peru Stater! I enjoyed it cover to cover.” —Julia (Whisler, ’90) Perry

College President Stan Carpenter Editor, Foundation Executive Director Kent Propst (’81) Assistant Editor Krystal Nolte (’04) Graphic Design Becky Johnson (’04) Photography Becky Johnson (’04) Dr. Bill Clemente, Professor of English Sports Zak Greunke (’10)

The Peru Stater is published by the Peru State College Foundation and is printed at Suburban Newspapers, Omaha, NE. Send your comments, news items and address changes to: The Peru Stater PSC Foundation PO Box 10 Peru, NE 68421-0010 You may also call us at 402-872-2304 or email us at


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Overcoming Obstacles in Tough Times

 It was the best of times, it was the worst of times….  With sincere apologies to literary greats like Charles Dickens, of which I’m obviously not, these are days filled with challenge and opportunity at Peru State College. No surprise: the economy is having a big impact on the College.  State budget constraints are hitting PSC, while students’ ability to pay for college – even an affordable one like ours – is stressed. Money to go to college has always been an issue with most PSC students, and times like this amplify the problem.  The PSC Foundation is certainly impacted, with our investment performance mirroring the markets, and many donors’ ability to give stymied. We face painful realities, too. Yet there is an unmistakable air of optimism in Bobcatland despite all of this. Why? Has the infamous native water clogged our mental capacities?  Not at all. Consider: • New President Dr. Daniel Hanson will bring new ideas and positive energy, experience at the

small Midwestern college level, and a deep respect for the traditions of Peru. He is determined to see Nebraska’s first college continue to flourish. • A renewed commitment to oncampus enrollment. On-line and off-campus programs have soared in recent years, to the benefit of Nebraska’s first college – and more importantly, to place-bound students served by those initiatives. Growth on campus has been slower, despite the many amazing improvements to our facilities. The College aims to make on-campus enrollment – the cornerstone of the institution - a priority, while maintaining its vibrant distance learning programming. • The silver lining to the economic cloud is that difficult times often prove a boon to quality, affordable small colleges like PSC. Students who otherwise might go to a private or out of state college often turn to a place like Peru. Of course, the conundrum is that

we face budget problems at a time when enrollment may rise, straining human and physical resources. But PSC has always gone above and beyond the call to meet students’ needs. • Several new faces dot the PSC leadership team, complementing a strong veteran faculty and staff. Great facilities and strong programs, while vital, pale in importance to any organization’s most valuable resource: its people.  Those are just some reasons we are bullish on the future, despite our challenges. They are by no means the only ones. Make no mistake: times are tough and the obstacles are formidable. Then again, we at PSC are battle-hardened.  We face an opportunity to build an even stronger Peru State College in these next few years, if we seize this Kent Propst opportunity. Without question, pubGo Bobcats! lic support will be hard to come by in the near future; we hope our famously loyal alumni will help Peru State ColKent Propst ‘81 lege take advantage of the opportuExecutive Director nity that is before us. Peru State College Foundation

College Seeks Ways to Tighten Its Belt  The economic downturn is forcing money they save. In the past, yearinstitutions across the country to end savings were returned to the state. tighten their belts. But according Additionally, the College is proposed to Stan Carpenter, chancellor of the to receive a one percent increase in Nebraska State College System and state support; however, even with interim president of PSC, Peru State, that, PSC still will face some budget Wayne State and Chadron State are reductions. But Carpenter’s goal is luckier than many. to “deal with the short-term economic  “We are fortunate that we are not problem and not do damage in the facing mid-year cuts,” he said. “I long run.” appreciate that the governor is  To ensure the best decisions are providing us this relief.” Carpenter made, he sought input from campus also said that Nebraska Gov. Dave groups. Heineman said he will allow the  “We have to figure out creatively colleges to carry into next year any how to manage the shortfall,” he

said. “If we can hold off spending on something, we will.”  Prudent and conservative fiscal management in the past, coupled with PSC’s enrollment growth, have lessened the impact of the worldwide economic downturn on the Campus of A Thousand Oaks. But the college is far from immune.  How will this affect upcoming renovation projects like the Jindra Fine Arts Building? “That project is going forward,” Carpenter said of the $5.5 million initiative.  To that end, the college has hired an

architect to begin drawing up plans for a total renovation of the building, including Benford Recital Hall.  “When Jindra is completed the quad and academic portions of our renovations will be done,” Carpenter said. “This is the last major piece.”  While the situation is much worse in many other states, PSC and other colleges and universities in Nebraska will be taking a hard look at personnel and programs to help them weather the storm.

Panorama of campus from 1924


Peru Stater Spring 2009

...Taking the Helm 1920s

Marcia (Hinton) Schwartz (’59)

Leone (Vanderford) Frenzen (’29),

of Benkelman, Neb., celebrated her 100th birthday on March 11, 2009.

volunteers at the Falls City (Neb.) Library and Arts Center’s new gift shop, ‘Lydia’s: Gifts Beyond the Books.’



Elsie (Parks) Borcher (’34), of Pawnee City, Neb., celebrated her 95th birthday in Dec. 2008. Elsie has six children, nine grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren.

Ruth (Alexen) Porter (’37), of

Lincoln, Neb., celebrated her 90th birthday on Nov. 6, 2008.

1940s Deloris (Matschullat) Seid (’43)

participated in the Longs Creek Village, in Auburn, Neb., Olympics. Events included corn husking, baking, obstacle courses, and shooting targets. Also participating was Ardith Wininger. Both women won several medals. More recently, Deloris celebrated her 83rd birthday on Oc. 11. 2008.

Pauline (Hellbusch) Meyer (’47),

of Fairbury, Neb., celebrated her 80th birthday on Dec. 15, 2008.

Dorothy (Grube) Niedermeyer (’47), of Johnson, Neb., celebrated her 80th birthday on Jan. 22, 2009. She has two children and two grandchildren.

1950s Lee (Stoddard) Ferguson (’52)

volunteers at the Falls City (Neb.) Library and Arts Center’s new gift shop, ‘Lydia’s: Gifts Beyond the Books.’

Dean Thiesfeld (’52) celebrated his 80th birthday on Nov. 19, 2008. Dean and his wife, Eilene (Beethe) (’51) live in Lincoln, Neb.

Ron Wenninghoff (’57) was an

Ruth Thies (’60), of Sterling, Neb.,

celebrated her 70th birthday on Oct. 25, 2008.

Gladys (Monahan) Mahoney Kuhlman (’61), of rural Sterling,

Neb., retired in May 2008 after teaching for 46 years at Sterling Public Schools. She now spends her time volunteering and substitute teaching. Gladys is very interested in hearing from her PSC classmates and friends; you can email her at ok35344@yahoo. com.

Berdean (Wilken) Young (’62) is a

member of the staff at First National Bank and Trust in Syracuse, Neb. that celebrated 125 years of service.

Dennis Crawford (’64) announced

his resignation from Auburn Public Schools, which will take place at the end of this school year. He has served as a social studies teacher and basketball coach, and reached a milestone with his 400th career coaching victory.

Hanson knew very little about the Campus of a Thousand Oaks. But he intends to change all of that very quickly.  “The first and most important thing I would like to do upon arrival at Peru State College is to immerse myself in the culture and history of the college,” he said.  “I plan to meet with members of the college community to learn more about the college mission, determine the core values of the institution, and identify the strengths, challenges and dreams of the constituents.”  Regional involvement benefits both the College and its neighbors, and Hanson’s commitment in that area shone through as well, Carpenter said. “It is important, especially in rural Nebraska, that PSC be intimately involved with our neighbors,” Carpenter said. “It builds support for the College, which helps us support the community.  Hanson and his wife, Elaine, are both involved in community activities,

something he said will continue when he moves to southeast Nebraska. It is not surprising, then, that his idea of community importance echoes Carpenter’s.  “Peru State College provides affordable educational programs that provide opportunities for traditional and nontraditional students,” Hanson said. “It can also serve as a catalyst for economic development through collaborations and partnerships with area businesses and communities. One of my challenges is to maintain current connections and develop new relationships within the service area,” he said. Said Carpenter: “We are all excited about Daniel coming to Peru State. I believe he will do a great job for Peru State.”  Hanson and Elaine have two daughters. Heather, 22, is a firstyear student in physical therapy at University of Iowa and Abby, 20, is a junior at Wartburg College.

Jerry Joy (’64), mayor of Stella, Neb.,

accepted an award for water fluoridation quality and his, along with board members, efforts in providing safe drinking water for the community.

Gail F. Kopplin (’66), Gretna, Neb., ran for District 3 of the Nebraska Legislature in 2008. Scott Price (’04) of Bellevue took the seat.

Cynthia (Meier) Weddle (’66)

retired in Oct. 2008 after 17 years as Activities Director at the Pawnee Manor in Pawnee City, Neb. Cynthia and her husband Ross Weddle, a Peru Prep grad, live in DuBois.

honored military veteran of the Unadilla (Neb.) area on Nov. 11, 2008, in a program hosted by the Unadilla School.

Anna (Anderson) Albrecht (’67),

Phillip Fahrlander’s (’59) paint-

chosen to be guest speaker at the Peru Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Banquet and Meeting on Dec. 14, 2008. Paul and his wife, Arlene (Borcher) Fell (’67) are Co-Presidents of the Board of Directors for the National Alumni Association. continued on page 5

ings were featured at the Governor’s Mansion in Lincoln, Neb. in the month of October 2008. Phil and his wife, Nadine (Adcock) (’59) live in Minden.

continued from page 1

Shubert, Neb., celebrated her 90th birthday on Oct. 25, 2008.

Paul Fell (’67), of Lincoln, Neb., was

Mark your calendar for

Homecoming ‘09   Homecoming and Halloween – talk about a frighteningly fun combination!   Plans are now underway for Homecoming 2009, set for Saturday, Oct. 31. More information will be available this coming fall as the day’s schedule is confirmed.   For now, mark your calendar and reserve the day for a special edition of Homecoming at Peru State College.   The theme will be “Nightmare on Hoyt Street”!


Peru Stater Spring 2009

The 1867 Society:

Hopkins’ ‘Payback for All Good Things’

 Tom (’53) and Patricia (Sailing, attd. ’53) Hopkins will be the first to tell you, Peru State College gave them a lot. After an injury cut short Tom’s football days at the University of Nebraska, and after a year in the Navy, he came to Peru.  The Weeping Water, Neb. native was a standout on Bobcat football teams that went 18-2 during his two seasons; he was active in Student Council, Dorm Council, Kappa Delta Pi, Blue Devils, and P-Club; and was a senior pick for Who’s Who.  But he’ll tell you “the best part for me” was catching the eye of Wymore, Neb. freshman business student Pat Sailing, a White Angel and along with Tom a class May Fete representative. They fell in love and have been married for over 54 years.  After teaching and coaching in Nebraska for a few years, Tom worked as a sales representative for a company that moved him to New Jersey, back to Nebraska, then Indiana. He climbed the ladder to vice president and, eventually, an owner of the firm before retiring. Pat spent over two decades serving the Lake County (Ind.) library system.  The Crown Point, Ind. residents’ love for the Campus of A Thousand Oaks – as Pat reminisced, a “beautiful campus where we met some very special people and learned from friendly, helpful faculty” - has never wavered. That affection helped them decide to include PSC as one of the beneficiaries in their estate plan, thus becoming members of The 1867 Society. “Peru in the will is merely payback for all good things,” Tom noted. They encourage other Peruvians to do the same.  The 1867 Society is a planned giving program which enables alumni and friends of Peru State College to give back to PSC by including it in their estate plans. Planned gifts to the Peru State College Foundation are a great way to help the College maintain its tradition of excellence for generations to come. To become a member of the 1867 Society, simply include the PSC Foundation in your estate plan, and notify the Foundation of your actions.  For more information about planned giving opportunities and the 1867 Society, contact: Sandy Fisher, or 402-872-2304 at the Peru State College Foundation

1867 S P e r u

S tate




Palma (Olson) Holding (’67), Eagle Grove, Iowa, celebrated her 75th birthday on Oct. 22, 2008.

ness’ class at Auburn (Neb.) High School in Nov. 2008. Pat currently works at State Farm Insurance.

Roger Lucas (’67), of Lexington,

Deborah (Coffelt) Mosier (’73, M’01) has been awarded Nebraska’s

Neb., retired from teaching in 2006 after 39 years of teaching. He would like to hear from some old college friends; his address is 1214 North Jefferson, Lexington, NE, 68850 and his telephone number is (308) 324-5613.

Patsy (Katz) Bohling (’69) retired as elementary music teacher at Auburn Public Schools in May 2008.

Jerry Eickhoff (’69), coach of the

Hampton High School basketball team, is at a milestone in his career. His current record is 647-221 leaving him almost tied for most wins in Nebraska high school basketball history with Ed Colleran of Spalding Academy, who has the most wins (a record of 648-327).

Greg Reinders (’69), of Council

Bluffs, Iowa, retired Jan. 26, 2007. After teaching for eleven years, he was employed by the Fourth Judicial District Department of Correctional Services as an Adult Probation/Parole Officer. He served as Lead Officer for most of the next 26 years. He and his wife, Jackie, have two grown children.

Linda (Dieckhoff) Vogel (’69) re-

tired as a second grade teacher from Auburn (Neb.) Public Schools in May 2008.

1970s Rebecca Lynch (’70) announced her retirement from her long-time position as sixth grade special education instructor for the district. She will leave at the end of the school year.

Dennis Watts (’70), of Topeka, Kan., celebrated his 60th birthday on Jan. 6, 2009.

Vicki (Hall) Beilke (’72), of Stella,

Neb., was honored at the Falls City Area Jaycees’ Distinguished Service Awards Banquet. Vicki was named Outstanding Educator of the year. Vicki has taught at Southeast Consolidated Schools for 34 years.

Ricki Valentino (’72, M’94) retired

from teaching after 34 years. She lives with her husband in Lincoln, Neb.

Patrick Castle (’73) was the guest

Tom (’53) and Patricia (Sailing, attd. ’53) Hopkins

speaker for the ‘Introduction to Busi-

2008 Music Educator of the Year award from the Nebraska Music Educators Association (NMEA). Deb currently teaches music and drama for Omaha Public Schools at Caitlin Arts Magnet School. Since 2006, she has been selected as the metro area’s lead teacher for the Carnegie Hall/Omaha Symphony Community LinkUP project. Also, Deb has conducted seminars in Miami, Fla. and in Omaha, Neb. She currently serves as a board member for the Nebraska Choral Arts Society, assisting with fundraising. Deb and her husband, Deveron (’73), live in Bennington, Neb.

Bob Winter (’74) is the owner, CEO,

and president of Distribution Inc., a company specializing in commercial warehousing and inventory management and delivery. He recently had to expand his business to meet today’s demand. His son Michael Winter (’08) is the third generation to join the family business, based in Lincoln, Neb.

Dennis Brady (’75) retired as sci-

ence teacher at Auburn (Neb.) Public Schools in May 2008.

Dan Cotton (’76) of Peru was rec-

ognized by the Nebraska Amateur Softball Association as a member of its Hall of Fame 2009. He has had a career in men’s fast pitch for 37 years.

1980s Tammy (Pike) Jeanneret (’80) was

recognized for her position at The Ambassador Health System, as Chief Information Officer, by the Nebraska City (Neb.) News Press in October 2008.

Christopher Hutt (’83, M’97), of Tecumseh, Neb., celebrated his 300th career basketball coaching win on Dec. 22, 2008. Chris is the Johnson County Central boys’ basketball head coach. Laurie (Graham) Schulte (’83) of Auburn, Neb. is leaving her position as K-5 music teacher at Calvert Elementary School. She will leave at the end of the school year. continued on page 6


Curtis Cogswell (’84) of McCool

Junction, Neb., has earned his doctorate from Texas Tech University. He was among 32 to be accepted from a poll of 800 to 1,000 applicants for the program. Curtis is currently the McCool Junction Public Schools Superintendant and is in his seventh year.

Renee (Pappas) Rowell (’84)

teaches in the College of Professional Studies for Bellevue University. She is the Program Director for both an undergraduate program in health informatics and for a graduate program in instructional design and development. She lives in Auburn, Neb.

Kelley (Combs) Ballue (’85, M’06)

started ‘Changing Spaces Senior Relocation Services’ in Dec. of 2007 with her sister, Linda (Combs) Cotter (’64). Based in Lincoln, Neb. and serving southeast Nebraska, the services help seniors make the transition to a smaller home and assisted living site.

Michael Apple (’86) is the new su-

perintendent of Schools at Hitchcock County, a consolidated school of the Nebraska communities of Culbertson and Trenton.

Sally (Martineau) DuBois (’86)

was hired for public relations and event coordinator at Nebraska City (Neb.) Lourdes Schools. She has served as Speech Coach for nine years at the school. Her husband, Laurence (’85), is still at Cooper Nuclear Station. The couple lives in Nebraska City.

Lori (Kimball) Gottula (’87)

volunteers at the Falls City (Neb.) Library and Arts Center’s new gift shop, ‘Lydia’s: Gifts Beyond the Books.’

Mick Hale (’87), of Omaha, Neb.,

works with the Durham Museum of Omaha as the Director of Education. He worked with the PSC Marketing Management class and Dr. Bill Snyder last semester to develop summer brochures for the museum.

Kathi (Flanagin) Mercure (’87)

of Tecumseh, Neb. was honored on May 7, 2008, at the Gold Star Salute for educators. She was one of the eight winners of the 2008 State Farm Insurance Companies Outstanding Educators Award. She was recognized for her continuing commitment to excellence in education as well as her many contributions.

Peru Stater Spring 2009

Randy Reeves (’87), of Meridian,

Miss., was selected by the State Veterans Affairs Board to serve as Director of the State Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Newton County. Randy served as an enlisted man in the U.S. Air Force and as an officer in the U.S. Navy with the rank of Commander following 27 years of military service. He is also a graduate of the Senior Executives Program at Harvard.

Maxine (Swett) Ward (’88) has

been named Southeast Community College in Beatrice’s (Neb.) Distinguished Alumnus. She worked on the Beatrice campus for over 30 years before retiring in 2004.

Lori ( Boesen) Carper (’89) is a

member of the staff at First National Bank and Trust in Syracuse, Neb. that celebrated 125 years of service.

Julie Vollmer (’89) is a member of

the Falls City Volunteer Ambulance Squad. They recently purchased a life-saving Zoll Autopulse device which will help them save lives.

Mike Williams (’89) has been principal of the Bertrand (Neb.) Community School for the past nine years. He and his wife, Amy, have three children.

1990s Neil Lunzmann (’90) was hon-

ored by the Reinke Manufacturing Co., Inc., a leading manufacturer of mechanized irrigation systems, for two major sales awards on Oct. 5, 2008 in Savannah, Georgia. The two awards were for highest selling territory manager and territory manager with the largest total sales increase. Neil and his wife, Bonnie (Cheney) (’79) live in Hickman, Neb.

Christine Matthews (’90) was

recognized for her position at Vanderveen & Goracke, LLC Certified Public Accountants by the Nebraska City (Neb.) News Press in October 2008.

Julia (Whisler) Perry (’90) with the Bank of Peru spoke to Auburn (Neb.) High School Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) students regarding their career choices.

Jill Grancer (’91) will begin a doctoral program in the fall. She will be earning her degree at the University continued on page 7

 Dr. James Nevitt, associate

professor of Psychology, and Dr. Greg Galardi, assistant professor of Criminal Justice, attended the Crime and Popular Culture Conference at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg. Nevitt presented “Student and Instructor Creative Collaboration: Using Your Own Graphic Novel to Teach an Honors Course About Serial Murder.” He discussed his creation and student perception of the course. Galardi presented “CSI Peru: Student Perceptions Regarding Crime Scene Investigation.” He discussed perceptions of assessment, course content and student career aspirations in the criminalistics field.

 Mr. Randy Waln, professor of

art, is one of 26 artists from across the country whose work appeared at the Macworld Conference and Expo Digital Art Gallery in San Francisco. Waln’s digital print “Atonement” also will be featured on the Macworld Web site for one year: Waln also was chosen by the Nebraska Arts Council to exhibit his work in the Fred Simon Gallery Exhibition Program in Omaha, Neb. Waln uses digital print imagery to create visual narratives. The Fred Simon exhibit is scheduled April 12-May 12.

 Mr. Ken Anderson, professor

of art, was invited to participate in the 10th International Shoebox Sculpture Exhibition at the University of Hawaii. The show is designed to challenge artists to create works that redefine the boundaries of small-scale sculpture by maintaining integrity and control of sculptural elements. The exhibit began March 1.

 Dr. Thomas Ediger, professor

of music and director of choral activities, was honored for his service at the Nebraska Music Teacher’s Association’s state conference where he was also named the organization’s 2008 Teacher of the Year. Ediger, a member of the faculty since 1979, directs three choirs and teaches courses in music theory/composition, music history, music education and applied music. A performer and composer, Ediger’s chamber operas include “A Fairy Tale Fiasco,” “As the Worm Turns,” “The Royal Conundrum” and “A Fruitful Deception: The Story of Angst and Tutti-Fruitti Land.”

 Dr. Dan Holtz, professor of

English and chair of the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, performed “From Bleeding Kansas to Old Virginny: Songs and Stories of the Civil War” at the annual holiday meeting of the Omaha Corral of Westerners International. The event was sponsored by the Nebraska Humanities Council.

Amazing Arthur At PSC

Arthur Silknitter (’97) has one of the best reputations in the midwest’s entertainment community, and he brought his act back to Peru State last fall. His “Amazing Arthur” routine is a one man act that incorporates magic, comedy, juggling, yo-yos, hypnotism, and more. He lives in Papillion, Neb. (Photo courtesy Becky Johnson)


Peru Stater Spring 2009

1940s Dorothy (Shively) Sierks (’47) and

her husband, John, celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on Dec. 24, 2008. The couple resides in Brownville, Neb.

1950s Lee (Stoddard) Ferguson (’52) and her husband, Bob, celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary in the fall of 2008. They live in Falls City, Neb.

1960s Lois (Layden) Gager (’61) and her

husband Shad celebrated their 45th wedding anniversary on Nov. 24, 2008. They live in Table Rock, Neb.

1980s Mary (Beccard) Farris (’82) and

her husband Nile celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary in August of 2008. Mary recently completed a master’s degree in special education from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. She is in her 20th year at the Nebraska Center for the Education of Children Who are Blind or Visually Impaired and is a member of the Nebraska Transition Practitioners Committee. Mary and Nile are also the owners of Valentino’s restaurant in Nebraska City. They have three children.

Charles “Chuck” Hummel (’82)

and Emily Webb were united in marriage on Dec. 20, 2008, at the Auburn Christian Church. Chuck is employed at ESU No. 4, while Emily works for Long’s Creek Assissted Living.

Roselyn (Burd) Shaffer (’84) and

her husband Dick, of Beatrice, Neb., celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Nov. 16, 2008. Roselyn retired from Health and Human Services, Crete and Geneva offices. They have four children and six grandchildren.

Darwin Gushard (’88) and Tricia

Petri (attended ’92-’93) were married on June 23, 2008 in Omaha, Neb. Darwin is a systems analyst with Sarpy County in Papillion and a volunteer coach with Omaha’s Cornhusker Flyers Track Club. Tricia is a stay-athome mom. They currently reside in

Ralston with their five children.

of Alaska.

season in 2008.

Beverly (Scott) Ramsey (’89), of Tecumseh, Neb., and her husband Wilbur celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Dec. 13, 2008. They have six children, 19 grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.

Merry Holliday-Hanson (’91),

Peggy Oliver (’94), with South-

of Roseville, Calif., accepted a new position with the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development as a Research Scientist Supervisor.

James Florence (’92), of Auburn,

1990s Susan (Den) Cade (’92) and her

husband Larry celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary on Feb. 1, 2009.

Joan (Rinne) Fink (’94), of Tecumseh, Neb., and her husband Jon celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Feb. 2, 2009. They have two children and nine grandchildren.

Jill Parker (‘97) and Ryan Scanlon

were married on Aug. 18, 2007 in Wahoo, Neb.

Sean Flanegan (’98) and Jodie Kluthe (’05) were married on April, 12, 2008 in Dodge, Neb. They live in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Sheri Stewart (M’99) and Robert

Neve were married on Aug. 8, 2008. Sheri is the educational director of, and is also employed by Omaha Public Schools. The couple resides in Lincoln.

2000s Brian Lemerond (attended ’99‘04) and Jessie Petersen were married

on Jan. 17, 2009 in Lincoln, Neb. Brian is employed at Trubuilt Construction.

Jonathon Cress (’00) and Charity

Schmitt were married on July 19, 2008 in Henderson, Nev. Johnathon is an art teacher and a football, wrestling, and swim coach at Silverado High School in Las Vegas.

Meagan McGuire (’01) and Dan

Sollee exchanged vows on July 3, 2008 in Colorado Springs, Co., where they currently reside.

Deborha Peterson (’01) and Shawn Ienn were married on June 7, 2008 in Omaha, Neb. Deborha is employed as an office manager at Gnuse and Green Law Offices P.C.

Valerie Richter (’01) and Stephen Carter IV were married on June 7, 2008, at Boys Town, Neb. Valerie is currently a community manager at the Lund Company.

continued on page 12

Neb., was honored on Jan. 16 for 25 years of employment at Cooper Nuclear Station (CNS) in Brownville. James is a simulator supervisor in CNS Nuclear Training.

Sally (Blessing) Hutt (’92), of Tecumseh, Neb., a teacher at Johnson County Central Schools was honored as Nebraska’s 2008 Outstanding Teacher of the Year. Sally received her award from Jack Moles (’80), superintendent of Johnson County Central Schools. Margo LaBrie (’92), of Aurora, Neb.,

took over as the head girls’ basketball coach in Hampton, Neb. She has coached girls’ basketball and volleyball for 15 years. Margo is also working on a second master’s degree in administration.

Elizabeth (Ely) Sickel (’92), of

Rulo, Neb., was honored at the Falls City Area Jaycees’ Distinguished Service Awards Banquet. Beth was one of the ‘Bosses of the Year.’ Beth is the general manager of Southeast Nebraska Communications.

Laura Osborne (’93), director of

Nemaha Against Drugs and Alcohol Abuse (NADAA) in Auburn, Neb., has expanded the program by adding new staff members. Among the new staff members is Kayleigh Baker (’09).

east Nebraska Consolidated Schools (Stella, Neb.), attended the Focus on Family Involvement Workshop at Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The training focused on increasing family involvement in students’ science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) learning.

Lori (Remmers) Gerking (’95) was recognized for her business, Lori S. Gerking Certified Public Accountant, by the Nebraska City (Neb.) News Press in October 2008.

Toni Vollmer (’95) joined the

faculty of St. Andrew’s School in Tecumseh, Neb. in January 2007. She is teaching pre-kindergarten classes. Toni previously taught at Falls City Middle School and Falls City Sacred Heart for 10 years, and lives near Falls City with her husband Mike.

Ruth (Hutton) Heywood (’96)

opened Heywood Hills Photography and Framing in Auburn, Neb.

Jill (Schulte) Govier (’97) of Pin-

nacle Bank in Omaha, Neb., graduated from Sarpy County’s eight-month leadership program.

Sarah (Haneline) Bando (’98) was

recognized in Oct. 2008 for her position at the Commercial State Bank, in Nebraska City, Neb., by the Nebraska City News Press.

Erica (Younker) Arehart (’99) has

art teacher at Auburn (Neb.) Public Schools in May 2008.

been named a senior project analyst within the Professional Services operating unit, responsible for analysis and support of Information Technology, Inc.’s (ITI) banking software. Erica has been with ITI in Lincoln, Neb. since 1999.

Mary Jane (Kern) Williams (’93)

Carrie Jeanneret (’99) participated

Terry Van Gundy (’93) retired as

retired as science and physical education teacher at Auburn (Neb.) Public Schools in May 2008.

Gary Barton (’94) of Nebraska

City, Neb., was honored on Jan. 16 for ten years of employment at Cooper Nuclear Station (CNS) in Brownville. Gary is a desktop support specialist in CNS Information Technology.

Brad Goracke (’94) was one of the

many State game biologists checking deer on the opening day of deer

in a Halloween costume party as a fundraiser for the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) club in Auburn (Neb.) - and won, dressed as a witch.

Debra Kubik (’99) painted Bry-

anLGH’s new Institute’s mural. It is located on the pediatrics floor of the hospital. With a little assistance from her son, the mural was completed in about five weeks. Deb is the grades K-12 area specialist with the Pawnee City (Neb.) Public Schools. continued on page 8


Luc McGhee (’99) has been named

Peru Stater Spring 2009

Where in the World are You?

SWOSU in 2006.

client service manager, responsible for managing client support and installation teams, at Information Technology, Inc. (ITI) in Lincoln, Neb. McGhee has been with ITI since 1999.

Amy (Hollesen) Wynn (’01) of

Terri (Shanks) Wusk (’99), a

Vanessa (Wager) Barrett (’02) was

licensed massage therapist in Nebraska, is a certified educator of infant massage for the International Association of Infant Massage (IAIM). Terri works at the Fillmore County Hospital and at her “Terri’s Midwest Massage” in Geneva, Neb.

2000s Todd Bohling (’00) was appointed

to director of sales and marketing at Infogressive Inc. in Lincoln, Neb. Todd is responsible for business development and marketing. Infogressive is an elite team of IT security professionals.

Kelly Eby (’00) teaches fifth grade

in Elkhorn, Neb. She entered her 18th year in education in 2008, having previously taught 17 years for Ralston Public Schools. Eby and her husband, Dave, have four children.

Sasha (Kuker) Rightsell (’00)

with Southeast Nebraska Community Action and Robin Sherman (’08) with Project Response were presented with a ceremonial check for $15,472.30 donated by the Nemaha County Gives Back program last fall. This money, raised by a Winter Festival put on by the Gives Back program, is being shared between Project Response and SENCA.

Clint Edwards (’01) is a new addi-

tion to Kearney (Neb.) High School, working as a student dean. He is responsible for the discipline among the 11th graders. Clint taught English at Columbus High School and was an administrative assistant at McCook High School, both in Nebraska.

David Kuser (’01), Auburn, Neb., was honored on Oct. 5 for 30 years of employment with Nebraska Public Power District. He is a work control scheduler at Cooper Nuclear Station. Judd Remmers (’01) was the co-

defensive coordinator and linebackers coach this past season for Southwestern Oklahoma State University and earned his master’s degree from

Auburn, Neb. is in her third year as Head Start Director and has been with South East Nebraska Community Action (SENCA) since 2006. recognized for her position at The Ambassador Health System, as Billing Specialist, by the Nebraska City (Neb.) News Press in October 2008.

Dr. Tonya Volk (’02), Chicago, Ill.,

earned her Orthodontic Certificate and MS in Orthodontics from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry in 2008. She was then offered a post as a Clinical Associate Professor. She also practices Orthodontics at Webster Dental in Skokie and Trapani Orthodontics in South Elgin and Algonquin, Ill. Tonya earned her DDS from the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Lincoln, Neb.

John-Henry Pearcy (’03), of

Papillion, Neb., was recognized by Cambridge Who’s Who for showing dedication, leadership and excellence in all aspects of military service. John has retired from the U.S. Air Force with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He also received Cambridge Who’s Who Professional of the Year in Military Defense in 2008.

Dale Kelly (formerly, Johnson) (’03, M’07) accepted a management

position at Yellowstone National Park as Assistant Location Manager at Grant Village, near Lake Yellowstone.

Diana Bantz (’04) of Stella, Neb. has

been with SENCA for two years and is the Head Start Training Coordinator. She is in charge of Data and Youth Services, also. Diana spends also speaks to youth about mentoring programs.

Ben Hagedorn (’04) has been

names project analyst, responsible for analysis and support of Information Technology Inc.’s (ITI) custom banking solution. Ben has been with ITI, in Lincoln, Neb., since 2004.

Nikki (Moody) Hayes (’04) is a

new face at Johnson-Brock Schools. She will work with students as a guidance counselor. continued on page 9

 The search is on for missing alumni. If you can provide a current home address for any of the people listed here, we will be grateful—and so, we hope, will they, especially when they start receiving the Peru Stater again.  Send information about missing alumni to Krystal Nolte at, call her at 402-872-2395, or mail your information to Krystal Nolte, PSC Foundation, PO Box 10, Peru, NE 684210010.

Class of 1949

Bryce Adkins Delbert Bowers Jean Oberst Bowers Neva Zook Buchenau Elaine Weichel Chartier John Clements Ralph Clevenger Wesley Cornwell Charlotte Rankin Cowden Helen Rowell Doll Betty Johanns Downey Mable Gawart Elya Jim Engh Donna Gerdes Anita Traub Glaze Loren Gore Annette Hawley Frances Dougherty Highfield Marilene Scheitel Hillmer Lela Edmonds Hron Esther Meints Huls Gloria Wright Jacobson Jean Jurgens Margaret Klein Phyllis Langston Mildred Lotter Martin Nelms Betty Hennings Noell

Lawrence Pientka Donita Robinson Janice Watton Rose Beverly Edmisten Roush Orma Sailors Robert Sailors Helen Kean Wells Lavae Urbauer Wight Thomas Womack

Class of 1959

Arval Bohn Keith Boyer Charles Brown Janet Casey Esther Cole Gerald Dollen William Duffy Charles Fritch Karen Remmers Gerdes Diana Gibson Donald Gray Agnes Hakel William Hervey Nancy Hohnroth Elsie Hullis Julia Kettman William Moore Ronald Noltensmeyer Susan Schneider O’Harra Alice Phillips May Reynolds Velma Rhinehart Royer Lavelle Schmidt Anna Schreiner Dorothy Shallenberger Alma Shorb Majorie Thomas Thompson Georgianna Quinn Udell Kenneth Walker Patricia Haith Whiddon Jerry Whitney Olive Wiig

B & Bs Offer a Change  Some planning an overnight trip to Peru State College but who prefer to stay somewhere besides a hotel/motel have discovered two Bed & Breakfast facilities near the College with ties to PSC.  Mark Mathews, longtime softball coach at Peru State College, and his wife Renee opened a bed and breakfast in Peru, Neb. Located at 800 Hoyt Street, the Mathews Bed and Breakfast offers three bedrooms and breakfast.

You can learn more about Mathews Bed and Breakfast at  Diane (Coover ’84) Thomas has been operating the Cassel Grove Homestead Inn for several years. Cassel Grove, located just two miles south of Nebraska City, Neb., offers two luxury bedrooms and a gourmet breakfast. To learn more about the Inn go to


Peru Stater Spring 2009

...Focus on Enrollment continued from page 1

 To that end, the College has put in place several programs that will boost on-campus enrollment: • The Campus Citizen Award gives incoming freshmen a $2,000 tuition waiver for up to two years if they have a 2.75 or above GPA and a 20 or above ACT (1410 or above SAT) score. Students must live on campus and register for at least 12 on-campus credit hours. To renew the scholarship as a sophomore, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA, live on campus, complete 12 oncampus credit hours per semester and show evidence of being involved in one or more campus activities. If the student takes on a leadership role, the award will be increased to $3,000. • The Campus Continuing Studies Award provides a $2,000 per year tuition waiver for two years for up to 60 individuals who are transferring from another college or university. To qualify, recipients must be a first-time Peru State student, have a minimum of 12 transferable hours and have a 2.5 GPA at the previous institution. They must register for at least 12 on-campus credit hours per semester. The scholarship can be renewed for a second year if the student maintains the GPA, completes a minimum of 12 oncampus credit hours each semester and is actively involved in one or more campus activities.  The two scholarship programs are aimed at increasing retention through their campus involvement and leadership focus, said Michaela Willis, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs. “Right now we have around a 60 percent retention rate. We hope to see that climb by six or seven percent within five years.” Other programs include: • A new approach to the Early Entry program, in which high school students receive credit for college courses taken while in high school. The number of college prep track students has grown by more than 40 percent over the past year. This program is a good way to entice students to continue at PSC after high school, Willis said.

• A reinstated Honors Program. Willis said this has a great appeal to the most academically gifted students and our faculty has worked to make the program interesting and challenging for students. • Developing new student activities that appeal to prospective students and current students. According to Willis, the College will bring in more speakers, offer more activities on the weekends (as a way to attract more students to live on campus) and provide more leadership opportunities. • Incorporating wireless capabilities on campus. In today’s competitive academic arena, this is a must, Willis said. • Increasing opportunities for students to work with faculty on research projects. The opportunity to do undergraduate research under the guidance of expert faculty is attractive to students who plan to attend a graduate program, Carpenter said.  Peru State’s status an open enrollment institution means it truly is a college of opportunity. It also means that not all new students are prepared for the rigors of college life, Willis said. Through the Academic Resource Center – which will be undergoing a name change soon students can get the help they need to stay in school.  More importantly, says Willis, ARC services allow students to find success upon graduation with the recent revitalization of career services for both current students and alumni.  Carpenter made it clear that the focus on on-campus enrollment will not diminish the College’s commitment to online programs, which have been extremely popular and successful at PSC.  “Because some people can’t go to college in the traditional way, we have to make sure they can still get the education they need,” Carpenter said. “Adult learners find our on-line programs to be a great way to get their degrees. So, we will not expand oncampus programs at the expense of online programs.”

Krystal Nolte (’04) earned a Mas-

ter’s of Business Administration in Marketing from Bellevue University in 2008. She continues to work at Peru State College Foundation as Alumni and Development Coordinator.

Scott Price (’04), of Bellevue, Neb., was elected to the Nebraska Legislature in the fall of 2008, for District 3. Scott is retired from the U.S. Air Force. He and his wife Jacqueline have three children. Jeremiah “J.J.” Willis (M’04), of Auburn, Neb., was appointed a member of the District #29, new technology committee. J.J. teaches at Auburn Public Schools. Bill Hayes (’05) completed his Mas-

ter of Arts Degree in History at the University of Nebraska-Kearney. Bill now works at the Lewis & Clark Visitors’ Center along with the Mayhew Cabin in Nebraska City, Neb.

Whitney Higgins (attended ’05-’08) has graduated from basic

military training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. The six-week training covered the Air Force mission, organization, military customs and courtesies, drill and ceremony marches, physical training, rifle marksmanship, field training exercises, and special training in human relations.

Anthony Johnson (’05, M’07)

began a new position as an instructional technologist at Cooper Nuclear Station, Sheridan Training Facility, in Auburn, Neb on Aug. 18, 2008. His wife, Rebecca (Oetjen) (’04) is a graphic artist with Peru State College’s marketing department.

Julie Lockard (’05) is the special

education teacher at Morrill (Neb.). She moved to Morrill from Lincoln, where she taught at Lincoln Christian for three years.

Tammy (Walters) Meyer (’05)

received the NSEA Rookie Teacher of the Year Award in 2007. She is also serving as Johnson-Brock’s Education Association President. She currently resides in Auburn, Neb.

Tia (Gottula) Miller (’05), of Au-

burn, Neb., was appointed member of the District #29, new technology committee. Tia teaches at the Auburn Elementary School.

Chad Peterson (’05) is a police of-

ficer with the Nebraska City (Neb.) police department. Chad attended a 14-week course at the Nebraska Law Enforcement Center in Grand Island. He received 607 hours of specialized training.

Tanya (Rice) Crotty (’06) has been

welcomed as one of the new teachers to the Johnson County (Neb.) Central School system. She will be teaching third grade. Previously, Tanya was a substitute teacher for area schools.

Thomas Dunekacke (’06) of John-

son, Neb., was recently promoted to Security Shift Field Supervisor at the Cooper Nuclear Station in Brownville. Tom has been at the station for two years.

Sarah Hay (’06) of Sabetha, Kan., visited Beatrice, Neb. to teach a 4-H painting workshop. She is an art teacher for first through eighth grade in Sabetha. Mindy Hughes (’06), of Brownville, Neb., has started a Master’s program in Anthropology at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln.

Kelli Johns (’06), of Lincoln, Neb.,

received the Junior Achievement (JA) Worldwide Rising Star Award for the year 2008. Kelli is the Lincoln JA program director and was recognized in the Midlands Business Journal’s “Business Minute” for her position and for being an interesting businesswoman.

Anthony (’06) and Randi (Fisher, ’08) Schmid are ‘teaching-parents’ at

the Virginia Home for Boys and Girls in Henrico, Va. They work with up to eight children, helping them learn to live in a family setting while implementing discipline, consequences and privileges.

Katy Billings (’07) placed third in

a 5K run to support Nemaha Against Drugs and Alcohol Abuse (NADAA) in Auburn, Neb. Katy was the first woman to cross the finish line, at 26:06.74.

Melissa Mahoney (M’07), of Hick-

man, Neb., is an eighth grade teacher in Beatrice and the head track coach for the high school. She and her husband have two children. continued on page 12


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Heath Baumann: From PSC to DC  Heath Baumann graduated from Peru State College in 2004 with a degree in business administration. Originally from Blue Springs, Neb., Heath now lives in Washington, D.C., where he is a financial advisor with the Hasenberg Group at Smith Barney. He specializes in financial management for small businesses and non-profits, retirement and estate planning.  Heath not only made many wonderful memories at Peru, but he says that his education “was a great foundation for [his] life.” He considers graduating from Peru State to be one of his greatest achievements, in addition to being accepted into the MBA program at George Washington University and starting his career in Washington.  His appreciation extends to PSC faculty, who he says, “were very pivotal in shaping [his] educational experience. Mr. [Bruce] Batterson, Dr. [Judy Green ‘72] Grotrian, Dr. [Bill] Snyder, and Linda Staples are all faces I sat in front of many an hour,” Heath added.

 Although Heath claims to have kept his “nose pretty clean” throughout his college career, he recalls “winter weather stranding people in Delzell Hall for weekends, leading to lots of mischief.  “I actually spent most of my weekends in Peru and really enjoyed the community. The best times at Peru were simple, cheap times when we were stuck in Peru with lots of time on our hands,” said Heath.  A testament of his love for PSC was coming back last fall. He gave a presentation to students about reallife expectations and starting their job search once school was over.  “It felt like returning home a bit and I was very excited to see the changes and progress,” Heath said.  Today, you can find Heath enjoying city life for its “vibrant cultures, theater and music scene, and of course the proximity to the nation’s seat of federal power.” In his spare time he likes to mountain bike and experience unique food, as well as help his fiancé, Lacey, plan their upcoming wedding.



Students Hear from Heath

Heath Baumann (’04) of Arlington, Va. was back on campus last fall to share his insights and expertise on launching a career after college. (Photo courtesy Becky Johnson)

Alum Inspires Businesswomen to Speak up Workers. Especially female workers who struggle with self-esteem and self-image issues, like standing up for themselves at work.  “You Go Girl!”  We’re eliminating your job.  That’s the title of one of her talks Joy Huber’s (’99) boss at Nelnet told aimed at women. Many don’t let her this four years ago. their bosses know their successes,  “I was in shock,” Huber said. “I Huber says, because they think that’s thought, ‘I’ve got to find another job bragging. But it’s not. within this company.’ But looking  Her business, Joy Huber around, nothing really excited me.” Presentations Inc., takes her around She’d been working at Nelnet for over the nation and Canada. a year, first in her dream job and then  She’s never nervous before a gig, in a job that wasn’t a good fit. Still in she says, because she knows her talk her 20s at the time, though, she figured will inspire and help people. she’d retire someday from Nelnet.  Here’s an example: You’re faced  Maybe things happen for a reason, with a conflict with your boss. You’re she thought. She’d always wanted to frustrated. Huber would have you start her own business, in business think about your choices and think communication. Maybe this was the about your attitudes. time to go for it, take her passion for  She would tell you to stay calm improving work environments and and take a deep breath before saying turn it into her job. anything. Then, when you’re ready,  Maybe it was time to combine that say something like: “Can you help me with her passions for talking to people to understand your position?” If you and helping them thrive. Bosses. still disagree, say these four words: “I Editor’s Note: Joy Huber graduated from Peru State College in 1999 with a degree in secondary education/language arts. This article was written by Colleen Kenney and ran in the Lincoln Journal Star Jan. 11, 2009.

see it differently.” Explain your point ( She sells CDs of view. & her book there. She has seven  Huber says it’s very important to not different articles she’s written there as just use the right words, but the right well, with free tips. tone and body language, too. “It’s not  “I’m really big in helping people get just what you say, but how you say it.” their passion back,” she says. “Why People tell her that her talks are go through life surviving when you enjoyable. That’s why she calls herself can thrive?” “Ms. En‘JOY’able.”  Some days, her office is an airplane seat or a hotel room. Some days, it’s her home in Lincoln. Sometimes it’s in Nashville. She’s an aspiring songwriter. She travels to Nashville maybe half a dozen times a year to promote her songs. She incorporates that passion in her talks, too, writing songs about the workplace.  “We Recruited a Dream … But the Nightmare Comes to Work Daily!” That’s one of her talks, aimed at people charged with hiring the best people. “Retaining Super Stars for Super Teams.” That one helps bosses keep their best workers motivated to do their best work.  Huber has a Web site Joy Huber


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Bauman Epitomizes Can-Do Spirit By Lori Kimball Gottula (’87)

Editor’s Note: This story first appeared in the Falls City Journal Sept. 12, 2008. It is reprinted in the Peru Stater with the Journal’s and author’s permission.

 It was May, 1995, and Julie Ramsey Bauman (’95) of Falls City, Neb, had just walked into the indoor track at the Bob Devaney Center in Lincoln. The mammoth auditorium was the Nebraska site for the CPA exam, and Julie was there to take the test, even though she had graduated from Peru State College just two weeks before.  The room was filled with CPAhopefuls, all seated at tables for two, all nervously tapping pencils against the desks, or scooting chairs into testtaking positions.  Sounds of nervous fidgeting filled te room.  Ratta-tat-tat, ping ping. Ratta-tt-tat. Scoot. Scoot.  Julie took her place, and pulled a pencil from her clear plastic bag. When the administrator entered the room, the sounds stopped. You could’ve heard a spider crawl.  Two days later, Julie and the other 1000 hopefuls dragged their weary selves out of the center. They waited three months for their test results.  Julie was one of 19 people who passed. Nineteen. That’s how difficult the CPA exam is.  And Julie passed all four sections— financial, tax, auditing, and business law—on her first try. It’s virtually unheard of. She scored a 96 percent on the business law section, a section that even lawyers often fail.  Julie Bauman was on her way to being Julie Bauman, CPA.  The daughter of John and Karen Ramsey, Julie was born in Auburn, and reared in Salem. She graduated from Dawson-Verdon High School in 1991.  While attending Peru State College, she worked at Hinky Dinky (now SunMart), and later worked as an intern at Prosser Professional Corporation, using both places to develop a solid work ethic.  “I watched as business owners that I knew on a personal basis climbed the ladder of success,“ she said. “And I knew that I wanted that success for myself someday.”  So she developed a business plan tht

included personal goals. 1) Marry her as I decided to set out on my own, high school sweetheart, 2) Graduate Julie Krebs from Sabetha contacted from college with a business degree, me about selling her bookkeeping 3) Pass the CPA exam, 4) Start a family, business and customer base,” Julie 5) Become a partner in a CPA firm, or said. “We literally went door-to-door, own her own business by age 30, and, asking her customers to remain with 6) Own her own building by age 35. me. Ninety-seven percent did, and  In 1993, when she was just 20, Julie most of them are still with me to this married her high school sweetheart, day.” Matt Bauman.  She rented office space in Falls  After marrying Matt, she became City, and in April 2002, she opened much more focused on the second the doors to her new business—Julie item on her checklist—graduating Bauman, CPA. A few months after from college with a business degree, the doors opened, she had her second with an emphasis in accounting. son, Kyle.  “My decision to attend Peru State  For the next five years, Julie built College was one of the best decisions the business with a philosophy of I’ve ever made,” Julie said. “Carol value-added service. “We will get the Ruck in the accounting department job done on time, and we’ll get it done was the toughest teacher I ever faced right the first time,” Julie said. in my life, and she weeded out the  To that end, she worked long days, people who weren’t going to make it and bid on every government or in the accounting field.” school contract or audit that came  Her instructor was also one of the available. As her business grew, she reasons that Julie was able to achieve hired new staff, seven in all. numbers 2 and 3 on her  Before she knew “My decision to checklist. it, Julie was facing  “Mrs. Ruck stressed attend Peru State another deadline on her every day tha the CPA checklist—item No. 6—to College was one of own her own building exam was important to a successful career the best decisions at age 35. So she started in business,” Julie said. I’ve ever made.” looking at buildings and “She worked as hard to empty lots in Falls City. prepare her students as her students  She and Matt finally found the worked to pass.” perfect location. It was a visible  The evidence of that instruction location, next to a busy intersection, is in the numbers. Of the 19 people and the lot was big enough that she who passed the CPA exam the year would be able to build her dream that Julie took it, two were recent PSC building based on her own designs grads. The other PSC student was in and include a huge parking lot. all of Julie’s accounting classes.  On April 15, 2008, ground was  After passing the CPA exam, Julie broken for the new building. In worked at Prosser’s in Falls City. August she moved into the new During that time, she had her first building. She was open for business. child, John. Number four on the Julie was 35 years old. checklist.  Checklist complete.  After maternity leave, she settled  Today, Julie Bauman and her staff back into her position at work. Before work in a beautiful office, primarily she knew it, number five on her on government, manufacturing, and checklist was looming—she wanted construction contracts because the to own her own business by the time areas have become so specialized that she was 30, and her birthday was just the training involved is sometimes around the corner. overwhelming.  “It was then that I decided to strike  Her firm also does business out on my own,” Julie said. “I was payrolls, prepares individual and scared to death.” She had no client corporate tax returns; performs base, no office space, no business financials and reviews; and audits plan. And she was pregnant with her for government entities, schools, second child. businesses, individual farmers, and  Little did she know, however, that manufacturing and construction someone was watching her. “As soon firms. In addition, Julie serves as

Julie Ramsey Bauman a financial consultant and advisor to firms that want to build their businesses, but aren’t sure where to start.  “In many cases, I can look over a corporation’s financial records, and see something that a business owner has overlooked simply because he or she has looked at it so many times,” Julie said. “I can also offer insight into a business’ strengths so the owner can maximize earning potential.”  Julie has also served as a consultant to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) in New Jersey, the organization that prepares and administers the annual CPA exam. The organization flew Julie to New Jersey to sit on a panel that completely revised the exam, incorporating new standards and tax laws. She sat around a table with accounting professors from Stanford and Harvard, as well as other “rock stars” in the financial world.  “We were there to work as peers and colleagues,” Julie said, “But I felt like I was sitting with celebrities.” Julie’s days can be long, especially during tax season, but she likes to be busy, and doesn’t like much idle time.  “I don’t require much sleep,” she said, “Which is a good thing in this business.”  So, what’s up next for Julie Bauman, CPA? Well, she’s not divulging any specifics about whether there’s a No. 7 on her checklist; but regardless of the goal, we can all guess the outcome.


Dana (Rodwell) Overfield (’07)

is a new teacher at Johnson-Brock (Neb.) Schools. She works as a music instructor for grades K-12 as well as a Pep Band sponsor.

Elizabeth (McGill) Gregg (’08)

teaches kindergarten at Wahoo Elementary in Wahoo, Neb. This is her first year teaching.

Nicole Lade (’08) has joined the faculty at Sterling (Neb.) Public Schools. She is teaching language arts and other classes and coaching junior high girls’ sports, also.

Melinda (Ogden) Scates (M’08),

of White Cloud, Kan., taught Native American traditions, specifically those of the Ioway tribes, at the Homestead National Monument of America Winter Festival.

Erin Scoville (’08) is the new Au-

burn (Neb.) Chamber of Commerce Manager. Erin is engaged to Chris Crawford (’08) who is employed with Ariens Corp., also in Auburn.

Kari Stallbaumer (’08) is the new

K-5 music teacher at Franklin Elementary and Grandview Elementary, both in Junction City, Kan.

Gina (Schechinger) Stutheit (’08)

is one of the new faces at St. Andrew’s School in Tecumseh, Neb. She is teaching kindergarten through second grade. Recently, Gina married Josh Stutheit.

Constance Walter (M’09) of Au-

burn, Neb. received a national Award of Publishing Excellence (APEX) for excellence in writing for the past Peru State College’s National Alumni Association publication, The Bobcat Banner. The award winning article, “To Catch a Thief,” was a profile on PSC Business Professor Dr. Jim Thomas.

Kayleigh Baker (’09) is a full-time

staff member with Nemaha Against Drugs and Alcohol Abuse (NADAA). Kayleigh works with youth in both Auburn and Johnson-Brock (Neb.) Public Schools.

Taylor Dunekacke (’09) is assistant

coach for the Humboldt-Table RockSteinaur (Neb.) Titan high school basketball team. He is head coach for the freshman squad.

Peru Stater Spring 2009

Amanda Pearson-Vanderbroek (’11) is a cast member of the Cider

House Theatre. She performed in the production “It’s a Scream,” in Nebraska City, Neb. during the month of October.

Crystal Richey (’13) recently

returned home from a tour in Iraq. She was presented with a certificate thanking her for her services from the VFW Auxiliary.

Friends Everett Browning , of Peru, was

recognized in the Nemaha County Herald with his restored 1919 Ford Model T Touring Car. Mr. Browning was a faculty member at PSC for 18 years, retiring in 1987.

Marcia (Reed) Friesen was rec-

ognized for her position at the Book Clinic by the Nebraska City (Neb.) News Press in October 2008.

Jeff Gerdes spoke at an Auburn

were married on May 10, 2008 in Omaha, Neb. Matt Pugh (’03), Ryan’s brother, served as Best Man. Ryan and Amy reside in Omaha.

Amy Silhacek (’03) and Sean Wil-

son exchanged vows on Oct. 11, 2008 in Monroe, Iowa. Amy is employed as a nanny in Des Moines.

Denise Witt (’03) and Andrew “A.J.” Mertens (’05) are engaged to

be married on May 9, 2009 in Lincoln, Neb., where they currently reside.

Heath Baumann (’04) and fiancé

Lacey Rosenbaum will be married Sunday, May 24, 2009. Heath lives in Arlington, Va.

Thye de Koning (’04) and Leigha Hunter exchanged vows on April 5, 2008 in Rushville, Neb. Thye is a recreational specialist with Lincoln (Neb.) Correctional Center, where they live.

Phillip Juilfs (’04) and Ashley Holthus (’09) were married on July

FBLA meeting regarding his position in sales.

4, 2008 in Tecumseh, Neb. Phillip is employed at Kerner True Value.

Dr. Alfred “Doc” Gigstad, of

Robert Shelburne (’04) and Rose Anderson (attended ’02-’06) are

Nebraska City, Neb., received the Nebraska Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) Spirit of Nebraska Award. The award is designed to promote a person that creates and fosters spirit in Greater Nebraska. Dr. Gigstad’s was a member of the Nebraska State College System Board of Trustees from 1995 to 2001.

Randy Gottula was recognized on

Sept. 26, 2008 for his many years of broadcasting high school and college sports in southeast Nebraska. Currently, Randy is in his 35th season of broadcasting. Head Coaches Mark Oliver and Don Hogue (’97), of Auburn (Neb.) High School and Falls City (Neb.) High School respectively, presented a football signed by the Auburn Bulldogs and Falls City Tigers to Randy. Randy’s wife Lori (Kimball) (’87), son Todd (’95), and daughters Shanda and Cassie (’07) were present for the surprise.

Robert Hemmingsen was re-

elected to the Board of School District 29 during the Nov. 4, 2008 elections. Bob and his wife Carol (Meyer) (’78) live in Auburn, Neb. continued on page 13

engaged to be married on June 6, 2009 in Omaha, Neb. Robert teaches 7th grade special education for Omaha Public Schools and is working on a Master’s degree in Special Education and Resource. Rose just graduated from Clarkson College with a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing and works at the Nebraska Medical Center, Solid Organ Transplant Unit.

Travis Buskirk (’05) and Courtney

Johnson were married on Oct. 11, 2008 in Fargo, North Dakota. Travis is employed by Thermo Fisher Scientific in Fargo.

Josh Ziemba (’05) and Amanda

Ham are engaged to be married on May 23, 2009 in Lincoln, Neb. Josh is a fire underwriter with State Farm in Lincoln.

Anthony Campbell (’06) and Julie

Hatzenbuehler were married on Oct. 25, 2008 in Beatrice, Neb. Anthony is employed with the Tecumseh (Neb.) State Correctional Institution.

Drew Donscheski (’06) and

Heather Bender were married on May 3, 2008 in Lincoln, Neb. Drew is a state police officer in Iowa.

Melissa McCullers (’06) and Jamie

Oestmann were married on Oct. 4, 2008 in Omaha, Neb. Melissa is attending Creighton Law School and works part time for a lawyer. The couple is making their home in Papillion.

Carissa Sievers (’06) and Jonathon Chandler (’07) exchanged

vows on Sept. 15, 2007 in Holdrege, Neb. Carissa is employed at Home Depot in Grand Island and Jon is employed at Cargill in Heartwell. They currently reside in Hastings, Neb. Included in the couple’s wedding party was Marie Sukup (’07) and Andy Breunig (’05).

Evi Steffens (’06, M’08) and Ralph Wusk (’06) exchanged vows

on July 19, 2008 near Auburn, Neb. Evi is an English teacher at Waverly (Neb.) High School. Ralph is a client service analyst at Information Technologies Incorporated in Lincoln.

Misa Misa, Jr. (’07) and Melissa Crom (’09) are engaged to be mar-

ried July 3, 2010 in the Tabor, Iowa area. Misa lives in Auburn, Neb. and works for the Tecumseh Correctional Institution. Melissa lives in Peru and is student teaching.

Gina Schechinger (’07) and Josh

Stutheit were married on June 28, 2008 in Westphalia, Iowa. Gina is a substitute teacher and employed part time at Behaven Day Center.

Danielle Shepler (’07) and Da-

mien Dempsay are planning an Oct. 10, 2009 wedding in Omaha, Neb. Danielle currently lives in Springfield, Neb. and is a pre-kindergarten and kindergarten teacher.

Michaela Starner (’07) and Jacob

Brooks were married on March 7, 2009 in Kearney, Neb. Michaela teaches 7-12 biology in Elm Creek, Neb.

Andrew Falk (’08) and Joni Adams were united in marriage on Aug. 8, 2008, at the Auburn Christian Church.

Reid Genuchi (’08) and Amanda White are engaged to be married July 18, 2009 in Bennet, Neb. Reid currently resides in Lincoln where he is a substitute teacher for area schools. Thomas Griebel (M’08) and Emily Edwards exchanged wedding vows on June 21, 2008 in Lincoln, Neb. continued on page 13


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Thomas is a mathematics teacher with Bellevue East High School. The couple resides in Bellevue.

Brandee Hahn (’08) and James

Goosman exchanged wedding vows on July 12, 2008 in Plymouth, Neb. Brandee is a preschool teacher at Blue Valley Community Action Head Start. A wedding trip was taken to Colorado and the couple resides in Jansen, Neb.

Kate McKim (’08) and Clint Zost (’09) were married on May 24, 2008

in Humboldt, Neb. Maids of Honor were Jessica McKim (’07) and Elizabeth McKim (’12). Karen Zost (’08) was a bridesmaid. Clint is employed as a Boone (Neb.) County deputy sheriff and Kate just finished student teaching. The couple resides in Albion.

Danielle Metzler (’08) and Shane Ryan (’08) are planning a July 11,

2009 wedding in Omaha, Neb. They currently live In Overland Park, Kan., where Shane is a police officer with the Olathe Police Department. Dani is a nanny and substitute teacher.

Sarah Naaf (’08) and Josh Mount (’09) exchanged vows on Aug. 9, 2008 in Peru, Neb. Sarah teaches reading intervention at Falls City Middle School and North School.

Amanda Stuckemeyer (’08) and Marcus Ackley (’09) were married

on Nov. 1, 2008. A reception was held in Humboldt, Neb.

Amy White (’08) and Noah Whitmore (’08) were married in a ceremony that took place Saturday, Feb. 28, 2008.

Michael Winter (’08) and Jennifer Brandenburgh (’09) are

engaged to be married Dec. 11, 2010 in Fremont, Neb. Mike works at Distribution Inc. which is owned and operated by his parents Bob (’74) and Lucy Winter. Jenny is a groomer. The couple lives in Lincoln.

Ashley Behm (M’09) and Keith

Hoff were married on Aug. 8, 2008 in Omaha, Neb. Ashley teaches at St. Vincent de Paul Elementary School Omaha.

Benjamin Ideus (M’09) and Kris-

tine Meyer were married on July 26, 2008 in Johnson, Neb. Ben teaches

high school special education in Auburn.

Allison Ruth (’09) and Michael

Gregg are planning a May wedding in Hamburg, Iowa.

Tahrae Bonnes (’10) and Austin

Richardson (attended ‘05, ‘06, ‘07) exchanged vows in the summer of 2008. The couple currently resides in Auburn, Neb.

Jennifer Johnson (’10) and Nicho-

las Flores were married on Sept. 6, 2008 in Lincoln. Jennifer is employed with TierOne Bank.

Laura Bernadt (’10) and Nicholas

Rademacher were married on July 26, 2008 in Tecumseh, Neb.

Rachelle Dorn (’11) and Jesse

Grof were married on June 28, 2008 in Cook, Neb. The couple resides in Tecumseh.

Jared VanLaningham (’11) and Amanda Stevens were married on Aug. 23, 2008 in Beatrice, Neb. Jared is a report, design and testing technician with TerraScan. The couple resides in Hickman. Erica Obermeyer (’12) and Anthony Janssen (’11) exchanged

Clyde Hunzeker, Peru Prep, of

Syracuse, Neb., was one of several veterans who went on the Heartland Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. Clyde is a member of the Mid-County Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary No. 5547, Syracuse, Neb.

Glen Krueger, outgoing Auburn

(Neb.) City Council Member, received an appreciation plaque for his service to the citizens of Auburn. He was a council member from Dec. 2000 to Dec. 2008. Auburn Mayor Bob Engles (’73) presented the plaque to Glen. Roger Lempke, Lt. General, was the guest speaker for a Veterans Day program held on Nov. 11 at the Sterling (Neb.) High School.

Stan and Sharon McCaslin are currently living in St. Louis, Mo. Sharon, who worked at PSC from 1971 to 1999, is library director at Fontbonne College. Stan, who also worked at PSC from 1971 to 1999, is semi-retired and teaching math, computer science and physics part time at two area colleges. Mary Alice (Parriott) Mertes, of

Peru, friend of the College and graduate of Peru Prep., celebrated her 95th

birthday on Oct. 5, 2008.

Sgt. Jeff Meyers attended a Ne-

braska Army National Guard CERFP Unit meeting in late Aug. Exercises with chemical, biological, and other materials were conducted. The Unit met with Vice President Biden.

Tom Shea is Upper Iowa Univer-

sity’s new head football coach for football. The Peacock program will be the sixth program that Shea has led as head coach. Tom was head coach at PSC from 1986 to 1990.

Annie Thomas, of Auburn, Neb.,

was selected as President-Elect of the League of Nebraska Municipalities. Thomas was Auburn’s mayor from 1994 to 2002 and is a member of the city council.

Dan Wenz, was honored at the Falls

City Area Jaycees’ Distinguished Service Awards Banquet. Dan was given the Community Service Award.

Katie Wray will oversee the Platts-

mouth Golden Living Center as its new executive director. Her husband Patrick is a retired Air Force Pilot who teaches accounting at Peru State College.

vows on July 26, 2008 in Auburn, Neb. Erica is employed at Wiggle Worm Daycare. The couple resides in Auburn with their daughter, Alexa.

Friends Tessa Bowen and Joseph Dunlap

exchanged vows on Aug. 15, 2008 in Loomis, Neb. Tessa is an instructional resource coordinator with Peru State College at Offutt Air Force Base. Scott Peery and wife Karen recently traveled to Venice, Italy for a belated honeymoon. On the last night, the couple enjoyed a gondola serenade through the city.

Mike Simon and his wife Lorna, of

Falls City, Neb., celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary on Sept. 14, 2008. The couple has three children.

Lloyd and Betty (Layden) Vrtiska celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on Oct. 24, 2008.

Peggy Groff and PSC students enjoy digital prints in professor Randy Waln’s Art Exhibit. (Photo courtesy of Dr. Bill Clemente)

Where in the World are You?

 The search is on for missing alumni from class of 1979. If you can provide a current home address for any of the people listed here, we will be grateful—and so, we hope, will they, especially when they start receiving the Peru Stater again.  Send information about missing alumni to Krystal Nolte at, call her at 402-872-2395, or mail your information to Krystal Nolte, PSC Foundation, PO Box 10, Peru, NE 684210010.

Class of 1979

Ross Baker Anita Cole Lisa Lloyd Guerra Julie Hartman Sue Higgins Francis Howlett Susan Dempster Howlett Willie Johnson Thomas Jones J. Kent Knoll Cynthia Smith Mahoney Rick McCown Patrice North Tim Schaefer


Peru Stater Spring 2009

PSC bids farewell to Doris Vrtiska

 While in college, Kim Vrtiska (‘90). Dr. Terri Vrtiska is Doris (Wagner, their other daughter. Arlene (Leimbach) Braun (attd. ’47) Vrtiska was  In her community, she was a early ‘30s) of Lincoln, Neb., passed a member of member of the Table Rock, Neb., Eula Redenbaugh (’40) of Boulder, away in the fall of 2008. the math honor School Board, the Table Rock Village Colo., passed away on May 14, 2007. society, Alpha Clerk, a member of the Table Rock Mildred (Ough) Strain (attd. Joseph Vacek (’40) of Houston, Tex., Mu Omega; the Methodist church and its historical early ‘30s) of Kearney, Neb., passed passed away in January 2007. Y.W.C.A.; and the society, the American Legion auxiliary, away on Nov. 22, 2008 at the age of 93. dramatics club.   the Pawnee County Promotional Dr. Frank Larson (’41) passed away Eunice (Burbridge) Naviaux (’35)  She served on Network, the Nebraska Legislative Dec. 25, 2007 at the age of 87. He of Omaha Neb., passed away on Jan. 7, served in the U.S. Army and also in the student council and the dorm League, and the Eastern Star. 2009 at the age of 95. She was also a  She was an avid and active supporter the National Guard, rising to the rank council. Peru Prep grad. Eunice taught music She was among 10 seniors in 1947 of Peru State College and, with her of Colonel and commander of the for the Omaha Public Schools from chosen to represent Peru State College husband, a former State Senator, 13th Evacuation Hospital. In the 1950s, 1948-78. She also played the violin for Frank served as head of medical in Who’s Who in American Colleges fought valiantly on behalf of Peru 20 years with the Omaha Symphony. and Universities. And she was the State College. The two were honored research, assistant chief of medical Eunice is preceded in death by her 1946 Homecoming Queen. for their efforts in 2001 when the new and tuberculosis services, and acting husband, Gerald Naviaux (’31, M’58).  That kind of involvement and Hoyt Science Building addition was chief of radioactive isotope services. leadership was to continue throughout named in their honor. Lauretta (Long) Roberts (’36): The He was also a faculty member at the her rich life.  But, perhaps, her most important University of Wisconsin Medical Foundation was notified in January  Doris died April 20, 2007, role was that of wife and mother. “She School from 1951 to 1989. From 1958 2009 that Lauretta, Prairie Village, surrounded by those who loved her was the love of my life, my best friend,” to 1988, he served as director of the Kan., had passed away. best—her husband Floyd and their said Sen. Floyd Vrtiska, her husband first consolidated hospital clinical Rose (Rerucha) Moravec (’37) three children—but her memory will of 51 years. laboratory service. passed away Aug. 12, 2008, in David live on in her commitment to family  The Vrtiska family and friends Phyllis D. (Dammast) Milstead City, Neb. and community. Two of their children established the Floyd and Doris (’41) died March 12, 2009, at the Mildred (Langpaul) Havel (’37) are, like their mother, alums of Peru Vrtiska Scholarship fund at PSC as a passed away Saturday, Feb. 7, 2009, at Ambassador Care Center in Nebraska State – Lori Vrtiska Seibel (‘84) and way to honor her legacy. City. She was a teacher for over 30 the Hooper Care Center. She was the years and a member and volunteer head of the food and grain section of to many organizations including the ASCS for 23 years. Red Cross. Wilma (Hunzeker) Gilliland (’38)  The search is on for missing alumni from the Class of 1969. If you LeRoy Redfern (’41) of Cedar Falls, of Humboldt, Neb., passed away in can provide a current home address for any of the people listed here, we Iowa, passed away on Mar. 12, 2007 the spring of 2008. will be grateful—and so, we hope, will they, especially when they start at the age of 87. He is survived by receiving the Peru Stater again. Merna Jensen (’38) passed away in his wife Nancy (Jones) (’42). LeRoy  Send information about missing alumni to Krystal Nolte at Beatrice, Neb. on Sept. 27, 2008. was a Peru native and served on the, call her at 402-872-2395, or mail your information to Harold Johnson (’38) of Auburn, PSC Foundation governing board for Krystal Nolte, PSC Foundation, PO Box 10, Peru, NE 68421-0010. Neb., passed away Jan. 1, 2008. many years. Larry Marcusson Class of 1969 Vivian (McKimmey) Lytton (’38) Ruth (Johnson) Thorston (’41) of Lynn Miller Gary Ahlin of Lincoln, Neb., passed away on Kansas City, Kan., passed away in Maxine Haning Myers Steven Anderson Jan. 27, 2009 at the age of 91. She 2007. Emanuel Narin Diane Bailey was a former professional piano Dr. Cecil Walker (’41) passed away Ronald Pendergraft Shirley Benson accompanist in Kansas City, Mo., on April 14, 2007 at the age of 91. William Racine Charlotte Overgaard Bonner past president of Jackson County Services were held in Fremont, Neb. Virginia Thompson Ruge Marjorie Willis Borgerding Medical Auxiliary, and Past President Barbara Derrick Schoenrock Steven Brodersen John “Bud” Rhodus (’42) of Missouri State Medical Auxiliary. Gary Schoenrock James Brown Pocahantas, Ark., passed away Dec. Vivian was preceded in death by her Margaret Zeiner Scribner Marilyn Birdsley Buchheit 26, 2008. He served in the Army husband Dr. George Lytton (’37). Sherry Schiesow Shaffer John Burch Air Corps and was a high school Dean Stuck (’38) passed away Jan. Jimmie Shilts Richard Carbone Principal at Syracuse (Neb.) Public 9, 2009 at the age of 89. He lived in Lawrence Shipman Moo Choung Schools for 38 years. Auburn, Neb. and served in the Navy Bill Smith D. Maree Finchem Irene (Bures) Slezak (’42) passed during WWII. He is survived by his Pamela Brown Smith Ronald Fine away in Geneva, Neb., on Nov. 10, wife, Mary (Knipe,’64). Meron Solonkyha Charlotte Loving Garcia 2008. Mildred (Parli) Stalder (’39) of Randall Turner Rafael Garcia Dr. Louis Vejraska (’42) of Omak, Humboldt, Neb., passed away June Harold Vanarsdale Mildred Hayes Wash., passed away on Dec. 19, 2007. 25, 2007. Thomas Vrabel Stewart Hitch Louis is survived by his wife Elda John Webster Cheryl Houseman Hoffman (Hamel) (’40). George Woods Terry Hutchings 1940s Daniel Koch Carl Wirth (’43) of Marshall, Mich., Gladys Grush (’40) of Falls City, continued on page 15


Neb., passed away on Jan. 16, 2007. She taught for several years in southeast Nebraska.

Where in the World are You?


Peru Stater Spring 2009 Alumnae, employee, and friend:

PSC bids farewell to Bea Patterson

 Bernice “Bea” Patterson (’90) died suddenly Jan. 17, leaving a void in the heart of family, friends and colleagues in Peru and at Peru State College.  She was a familiar figure both as an employee of PSC and member of the community. Hers was the first face students often saw when entering the Academic Resource Center, where she worked in recent years.  The “go-to person” for students, Bea did whatever she could to point students—and faculty and staff—in the right direction. And always with that wonderful “Bea smile.”  Bea also made her mark in the community. She was an early participant in the “Depot Gandies,” served as president of the Peru

Historical Foundation, spearheaded the Peru 150th anniversary celebration in 2007, and was an active member of the Peru Community Church, amongst other things.  A devoted wife, mother and grandmother, “Family meant everything to her,” said John Patterson, her husband of 24 years. “She did a lot of good things in her life.”  With John’s establishment of the Bea Patterson Memorial Fine Arts Scholarship with the PSC Foundation, she will continue to do good things. Additional gifts to the Scholarship fund can be sent to the PSC Foundation.

“Making room for sadness can clear the way for happiness, and then tears can be followed by smiles.” -- from Heartwings; found on Bea’s desk shortly after her death.

Pat Rooney: True Blue

passed away on Oct. 22, 2008. He was preceded in death by his wife Lois (Waggoner) (‘44).

Eunice (Buhrmann) Bogle (’44) of

Lincoln, Neb., passed away on March 1, 2007 at the age of 88.

Raymond Howard (’45) of San

Diego, Calif., passed away in April 2007.

Marjorie (Rogers) Hunzeker (’45)

Peru Prep, of Wahoo, Neb., passed away Oct. 18, 2007 at the age of 81. She is survived by her husband, Willard Hunzeker (’46).

Dorothy Stepan (’47) of Lincoln,

Neb., passed away on Jan. 16, 2007 at the age of 80.

Janis (Heim) Martin (’48) of

Dawson, Neb., passed away on Oct. 2, 2008 at the age of 79. She taught for over 40 years. Graveside services were held at Heim Cemetery in Dawson.

William Ottersberg, Sr. (’48) of

Pueblo, Colo., passed away on Mar. 20, 2007.

Stanley Cameron (’49) Peru Prep,

of Lincoln, Neb., passed away on Nov. 17, 2008 at the age of 82.

 Dr. Patrick O. Rooney, one of the few and the University of Minnesota. Southeast Nebraskans who attended Pat was a coach, teacher, administrator Lula Hohensee (’49) of Desert Hot Peru State through the U.S. Navy and university professor in Southern Spring, Calif., passed away on Jan. 3, officer training program in the early California for 55 years. He was the 2007 at the age of 100. 1940s, passed away in January in San charter superintendent in Ventura Alvin Krupicka (’49) of Luis Obispo, CA. and led the district for 21 years. Pat Philadelphia, Pa., passed away in  He attended Brownville schools, was also the charter superintendent in October of 2008. He served in the then graduated from Nebraska City Moreno Valley. U.S. Navy from 1951 to 1955. High School. He signed up for the  After he retired from public Navy and to his surprise was assigned schools, Pat taught USC as well as 1950s to Peru, where he was an outstanding California Lutheran and Azusa Pacific John Ware (’50): The Foundation athlete for the Bobcats, earning the Universities. Bert Swenson Award.  He remained a loyal Bobcat, was notified in January 2008 that  PSC inducted Rooney and other returning to campus often, helping John had passed away. Navy V-5 and V-12 mates who were to establish a scholarship to Robert Gausman (’51) of Fairbury, in sports into the PSC Athletic Hall of commemorate Peru’s V-5 and V-12 Neb., passed away Feb. 10, 2007 at the Fame in 1999. programs, and attending Northern age of 77.  After the war, Rooney excelled in California alumni activities. Kenneth Eugene Sipes (’51) sports at the University of Nebraska 79, passed away Feb. 9, 2009, at Bryan East Hospital in Lincoln. He served as a member on the Osceola (Neb.) city council and many other associations. Services were held Feb. 14 at the downtown auditorium in Osceola.

Julia (Martineau) Snider (’51) of

Falls City, Neb., passed away in 2006.

Daisies by the Student Center on the Campus of a Thousand Oaks.

Barbara (Falk) Kermoade (attd. ’52) of Council Bluffs, Iowa, passed

away on Nov. 12, 2008 at the age of 74.

Dr. Wilbur Scheitel (’52) of

Nashville, Tenn. Passed away March 15, 2009. After teaching and coaching for several years, he dedicated his career to the chiropractic practice, owning and operating clinics in Tennessee for many years.

Claudia (Case) Stanley (’52) of

Escondido, Calif., passed away on Dec. 3, 2008. She is preceded in death by her husband James D. Stanley (’59).

Betty (McKay) Munoz (’53) of

Fairbury, Neb., passed away on Nov. 19, 2008 at the age of 77. She taught for over 30 years and was the president of the Fairbury Education Association. She was the recipient of the Ak-Sar-Ben scholarship and also a Nebraska Writing Project. She is survived by husband Raymond (’52).

Estlene June (Slater) Janetzke (’55) 75, died at her home in Mount

Prospect, Ill., on Jan. 21, 2009. She spent her life teaching and loved to paint and travel.

Sarah (Stilwell) Beckmann (’56)

of Burr, Neb., passed away on April 2, 2008 at the age of 107.

Genevieve Grace (McFadden McNally) Lavett (’57) of Hayward, Calif., passed away on March 5, 2007 at the age of 85.

Eunice (Epley) Parrish (’58) of Tecumseh, Neb., passed away Jan. 21, 2009. Dorothy Bstandig (’59) of Dubois, Neb., passed away Feb. 3, 2007.

George Morrison (’59) died on Feb. 1, 2009. He had been a resident of Lincoln, Neb.

1960s Dorothy (Stevens) High (’60) of

Kearney, Neb., passed away on April 4, 2007.

Morris L. Keyt (’61) of Hartley,

Iowa, passed away on Oct. 25, 2008 at the age of 69.

Evelyn (Miller) Zabel (’64) of

Lakewood, Co., passed away on May, 16, 2007.

Irene (Hahn) Aitken (‘65) died on

March 3, 2009, at the age of 91. She was a very active church member who spent her life teaching. continued on page 16


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Where in the World are You?

Donna (Vacek) Puls (’65) of

Pawnee City, Neb., passed away Dec. 8, 2007.

Dora (Somerhalder) Koester (’67)

of Mesa, Ariz., passed way Jan. 6, 2007.

Robert Uhri (’67) of Stella, Neb.,

passed away on Oct. 17, 2008. Bob is survived by many family members including his son Mark Uhri (’95).

David Gunderson (’68) of Kansas

City, Mo., passed away on Jan. 1, 2007. He was a PSC faculty member from 1967 to 1970.

Jeneveia (Hall) James (’68) of

Verdon, Neb., passed away Mar. 10, 2007.

Mary Beth Kernes (’68) of Julian,

Neb., passed away on Oct. 10, 2008. She was a longtime teacher in the area and was involved in PSC activities.

Richard Seddon (’68) of Kalispell,

Mont., passed away on Aug. 19, 2008. He had a 30 year career with the Fire Service and retired in 2001 as Fire Marshal for the City of Kalispell.

Giles Smith (’69) passed away Nov. 29, 2007. He was truly proud of Peru State College. Giles continued his work with the Gering (Neb.) junior high track team until his death.

1970s Michael Whitten (’74) passed away

March 3, 2009, in Omaha. Michael was a loan officer at the time of his death.

Lynda (Teten) Glen (’77) Auburn, Neb., passed away on Oct. 11, 2008.

1980s Sharon (Miller) VanErt (’87) of

Union, Neb., passed away in August 2008.

Jack Dickerson (’88) of Shenandoah,

Iowa passed away on Jan. 18, 2009. He was a teacher for 15 years, following a long stint in the Armed Forces. Joining the Navy in 1959, he was assigned Officer in Charge of ConstructionRepublic of Vietnam. Later he worked for the Defense Communications Agency in Washington, D.C. and eventually transferred to the White House Communication Agency before retiring in 1979.

Laura Pierce (‘88) of Omaha, Neb.,

passed away on Jan. 2, 2009.

Julie A. Williams (’88) of Scottsdale, Ariz., passed away Oct. 22, 2008. Her parents, Ann (’80) of Gold Canyon, Ariz., and the late Scott Williams, were former faculty members at the College.

2000s Brandon Wamsley (attended ’05’08), of Nemaha, Neb., passed away on Dec. 6, 2008.

Friends of the College Nancy Emerson: The Foundation

was notified in January 2009 that Nancy had passed away. She was an instructor of sociology at PSC from 1977 to 2002.

Jack Hamilton passed away on April 2, 2007. He was a retired faculty member in the School of Professional Studies, where he had served as department chair. Mark Klemtsrud passed away on April 1, 2009 in Auburn, Neb. In 2006 Mark became a professor of speech, drama, and English at Peru State College. He was instrumental in the rejuvenation of the drama department at the college.

 The search is on for missing alumni from the Classes of 1984 and 1989. If you can provide a current home address for any of the people listed here, we will be grateful—and so, we hope, will they, especially when they start receiving the Peru Stater again.  Send information about missing alumni to Krystal Nolte at, call her at 402-872-2395, or mail your information to Krystal Nolte, PSC Foundation, PO Box 10, Peru, NE 68421-0010.

Class of 1984

Donnie Auxier Kenneth Calkins Paul Crawford Cary Culler Diana Devich Davis Evelyn Wieckhorst Ferguson Carl Lemon Joseph Marx John Moran Angela Ossian Anthony Roberts Glevon Covault Stephenson

Class of 1989

Susan Goldenstein Baker Ruth Bennett Bennett Samuel Binder Edi Eisenscher Tony Foster

Leslie McIntire Goering Kathleen Flanagan Hall Katherine Huffman Sarah Strong Jorgenson James Krohn Mitzi Marsh Willie Maxent Jeffrey McMillen Anastasia Mears Leslie Dyer Penney Kevin Recker Jeffrey Rownd Brian Schmidt Arch Sillman Christie Stanton Charlotte Surman Alma Washabaugh Lisa Bull Witmer Diana Wright

James Dean “J.D.” Levitt of

Springfield, Ill., passed away Feb. 6, 2009 at the age of 94. He taught speech at PSC from 1948-1972, advising the yearbook and directing the forensics teams. During that time he was active in Kiwanis and Toastmasters.

Lois Smith Miller passed away

Jan 8, 2007 at the age of 90, in Omaha, Neb. Lois was a PSC staff member for eight years.

Evaline (Batt) Duffey Palmer of Alma, Neb., passed away Jan. 25, 2008. She was employed at PSC in various capacities until her retirement in 1983. Patricia “Patsy” Shea passed away in December 2008 in South Dakota. She is survived by her husband Tom Shea, a former head PSC football coach.

Editor’s Note: Some of these notices appeared in a previous PSC alumni publication (“The Banner”), but because many alumni did not subscribe to that former publication, we are reprinting them here.

NAA Hosts Chili Soup & Hoops

The PSC National Alumni Association drew a large crowd to a chili soup dinner in conjunction with Bobcat women’s and men’s basketball games this past February. NAA Board members were on hand to greet alumni and friends and serve up hot soup and cinnamon rolls to an appreciative audience in the newlyrenovated Al Wheeler Activity Center. (Photo courtesy Dr. Bill Clemente)


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Like Father, Like Son:

Patrick Venditte Sr. (’67) and Jr.

Dr. Pat Venditte Sr. (’67, right) pauses with his son Pat Jr. during a recent trip to Florida, where the senior Venditte was watching his son play baseball in the New York Yankee organization. The younger Venditte is vying for a spot on the Yankee roster as one of the rarest commodities imaginable: the ambidextrous young man can pitch with both his right and his left hand. (Photo courtesy Jan Venditte)  In 1963 a young Pat Venditte was welcomed to the Peru State College baseball team by PSC Hall of Fame Coach Al Wheeler. “[Coach Wheeler] was, probably, one of the greatest coaches in the Nebraska College Conference,” claims Pat.  At that time the Bobcat baseball team traveled all over Nebraska in vans and an extended bus, “like a limousine,” Pat chuckled.  Baseball was always important to Pat, as much as Peru State was, and still is. “Of all the fond memories I have, the best have to be with the people I met during my four years at Peru State; we had a lot of fun.”  After graduation Pat moved back to Omaha, Neb., to the “old Italian neighborhood [he] was born and raised in.” He married his wife Jan and soon they had three children.    The oldest was his son, Pat Venditte Jr. Pat Sr. wanted to share his love for baseball with his son, Pat Jr., at an early age and help him to make great memories of his own. “I started working with him to play baseball at about three years old.”  By now, sports fans may recognize the name. Yes, that Pat Venditte Jr., the “switch-pitcher” who was drafted twice by the New York Yankees.  Pat Sr. said, “I taught him to pitch with both arms. It didn’t come easy. We had to plow through some awkward stages.”

 Pat Sr. knew how important pitching was to the game of baseball, being a catcher during his college career. Even better than a gifted pitcher, he reasoned, is one who could pitch proficiently with both arms. He started to have Pat Jr. write with both arms and work the left side of his body to strengthen the smaller hand, arm, and even leg muscles.  “I think he could pitch with both arms since he was five or six,” Pat Sr. said.  Today, you can hear the pride in a father’s voice as he talks about working with his son “literally, every day.” When you ask him, Pat Sr. will claim that he never gave a thought to the minor leagues, nonetheless, the major leagues.  “My concern was that he do well in what he was currently doing,” Pat Sr. noted. No worries, because Pat Venditte Jr. continues to excel. He was nominated for Reliever of the Year in 2008, has played for the Staten Island Yankees, and the hope is he is on his way to Yankee Stadium.  Pat himself still plays. He recently returned from Arizona, spending time playing the game he loves, and continuing to create memories.

1980s Darwin (’88) and Tricia (Petri) Gushard (attended ’92-’93) are the

proud parents of a son, Jarvis Ezekiel, born on Aug. 20, 2008. Jarvis was welcomed home, to Ralston, Neb., by his older siblings: Serenity, 13, Anthony, 12, Gabriel, 11, and Elijah, 8.

1990s Todd Crownover (’92) and his wife,

Candice, welcomed their fifth son, Isaiah Michael Crownover, on March 14, 2008. Isaiah was welcomed home to Yankton, S.D. by his older brothers: Lucas, Kaleb, Joshua, and Issac.

Erick Martinez (’03) and his wife,

Brooke, announce the birth of a baby girl, Ava Patsy, born on Nov. 30, 2008. Ava’s paternal grandma is Ann (Boring) Martinez (’76). The new family lives in Omaha, Neb.

Benedict Hagedorn (’04) and his wife, Jessica, announce the birth of a baby girl, Josiah Anne, on Sept. 8, 2008 in Lincoln, Neb. Steve (’04) and Brandy (Robbins) VanDerKamp (’03) are the proud

parents of a daughter, Abigail Lee born on Oct. 3, 2008. Abigail was welcomed home, in Peru, Neb., by her big brother Kobe.

Jason (’98) and Ronda (Reiman, ’99) Stinson are the proud parents of

Montsho (’04) and Jodi (Witt¸’04) Wilson announce the birth of a baby

Celeste (Nolte) Jones (’99) and her

Wendy (Alexander) Fulton (’05)

a son, Josh Evan, born on Nov. 4, 2008. Josh was welcomed home, to Syracuse, Neb., by his two older brothers Brendon, 6, and Jace, 2.

husband Luke are the proud parents of a daughter, Hallie Elizabeth Jones, born on Sept. 25, 2008. Hallie was welcomed home, to Falls City, Neb., by her sister Madison.

2000s Joel Conradi (’01) and his wife, Jennifer, announce the birth of a baby girl, Shiloh Shirley, born on Dec. 1, 2008. Shiloh’s paternal grandma is Shirley (Jacobson) Conradi (’01). Shiloh was welcomed home, in Olathe, Kan., by her two brothers Jacob and Jordan and two sisters Sandi and Sydni.

Jason Warner (attended in ’02-’03) and Kimberly McGiffin (’09) are the proud parents of a daughter, Jozie Jean Warner, born on Feb. 2, 2009. The new family lives in Nebraska City, Neb.

Aimee (Nebelsick) Harker (’03)

and her husband, Shawn, announce the birth of a baby boy, Boston Alan born on Oct. 28, 2008. Boston was welcomed home, in Nebraska City, Neb., by his big brother Preston Ray Wieckhorst, age 5, and sister Lextyn Raygon Harker, age 1.

boy, Dakari Kellen, born September 26, 2008. Dakari was welcomed home, in Lincoln, Neb., by his big sisters Mia, age 5, and Ja’Sara, age 1.

and husband Eric recently welcomed their new baby boy home. Wyatt Thomas Fulton was born Feb. 10, 2009.

Jessica (Hill) Stanley (’05) and her husband, Ben, are the proud parents of a daughter, Morgan Rylee Stanley born on Sept. 16, 2008. Morgan was welcomed home, in Auburn, Neb., by her sister MacKenzie, two years old.

Nicolas (’06) and Rachel (Haas) Richardson (’09) are the proud

parents of a son, Josiah Gilbert, born in August 2008. They live in Fairview, Kan.

Ryan Lowe (’07) and Shawna Culp (’08) announce the birth of a

baby boy, Brady Allan, born in September 2008.

Shane (’07) and Deena (Little, ’08) Whitford announce the birth of a baby girl, Layla Mae, born on Dec. 11, 2009. Layla was welcomed home, in Humboldt, Neb., by her big sister Zoey, 17 months.

Daniel Swinton(’09) and Kira Farris (’10) announce the birth of a

baby girl, Farris Loree Swinton, born on July 11, 2008.

Kristi Wintz (’10) and Adam Bek

are the proud parents of a son, Jadyn Levi, born Oct. 8, 2008.


Peru Stater Spring 2009

New Director of Athletics: Steve Schneider

intercollegiate athletics department, and he has his goals and his priorities firmly in sight.  “As a long time resident of Nebaraska and having competed against PSC over the years, I’ve always respected and appreciated the competitive nature of the athletic teams,” Schneider said. “What really stood out was the tradition and history of the institution and the support within the region. In the back of my mind I thought this sure would be a good place to work.”  Schneider joined PSC in April as athletics director. Bobcat faithful have high hopes that he will provide the leadership and stability necessary Steve Schneider to make PSC athletics more than just  Steve Schneider has spent many, competitive. many years staring across the field  Well aware of the rich history of or court at Peru State College athletic Bobcat sports, Schneider has no doubt teams. He’s had his successes, and a turnaround is at hand. Yet he knows he’s dealt with defeat at the hands of it will not happen overnight, and the blue-clad Bobcats. it won’t be easy. And on his watch,  Now, the veteran college coach and success on the playing field will not administrator has joined the Bobcat involve cutting corners.

 “We want to continue to emphasize the importance of student-athletes finding success in the classroom,” Schneider said. “We want them to graduate and move on to good careers.  “But part of athletics involves winning as well,” he continued.  Schneider is a Midland graduate who got his masters from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He spent 25 years as a coach and athletics administrator at Midland Lutheran College in Fremont, Neb. He spent much of the past year as A.D. at the College of St. Mary in Omaha.  “There is great potential at PSC,” he emphasized. “The coaches are committed to their programs and have put forth good effort. There is support from the administration to take athletics to a higher level.  “Great things are done with people and to date the most impressive thing about PSC has been the people that I’ve met,” Schneider added. “They have passion for the place and are excited about serving students.

Gridiron Fortunes Look Bright

Women’s Golf Tees Off

By Zak Greunke  Peru State football hit the gridiron and kicked off the 2008 season facing a tough schedule. The Cats had their struggles early as a young team with only six seniors, but in spite of that the team really came into it’s own over the course of the season.  The Bobcats were always very competitive, which included some thrilling games that came down to the wire. They compiled a final record of 4-6, and ended the season winning their final two games to build momentum going into 2009.  Junior defensive linemen Derek Phillips was named to the 2008 NAIA All-Independent team. To add to the post season honors, six ‘Cats received the distinction to being named NAIA Football Scholar-Athletes: senior Tony

Janssen, and juniors Derek Derr, Nate Jeter, Max Kathol, Lance Meyer, and Cody Wallinger.  The future looks very promising for the Bobcats who will be led by 17 seniors for the ’09 season under veteran Coach Terry Clark. Clark reported a large turnout of participants in spring practice, possibly the most in PSC history. Coach Clark said players to watch this fall will be senior defensive linemen Phillips and Quentin Coatney, senior running back John Noojin, and junior quarterback Curtis Thompson.  Clark also said recruiting has gone well, and said his veteran coaching staff put special emphasis on recruiting offensive and defensive lineman to add competition to those positions.

By Zak Greunke  Head Coach Maurtice Ivy leads the women’s golf team onto the course this spring and provides leadership to the two-member squad.  The team consists of sophomore Kendra Kratz, and freshman Avyn Vaden. The ladies season goes over

 “I need to spend time with the coaches, community members and alumni so we can develop a vision for the department – we need input from a variety of our constituencies,” he continued.  While he is extremely impressed with the condition of the Campus of A Thousand Oaks, and especially pleased with the new renovation of the Al Wheeler Activity Center, Schneider knows the challenges he faces.  “We need to secure the resources necessary to move the department to the next level,” he said. “We need to work on our outdoor facilities, too.”  He hopes to lead the Bobcats into a conference affiliation for all programs.  Those are ambitious goals, but ones Schneider believes are not only attainable, but essential in restoring PSC athletics to its former glory. Like any good competitor, he isn’t about to shy away from a challenge.  Bobcat faithful are just glad he’s on our side now.

the course of the school year starting in the beginning of September and lasting all the way into early May.  The team plays in various invitationals from anywhere in Missouri all the way up to South Dakota.

Bobcat Golf Classic May 29  The annual PSC Athletics Department Golf Classic is set for Friday, May 29 at Table Creek Golf Course near Nebraska City, and registrations are now being accepted.  The event, designed to support Bobcat student-athletes and athletic programs, is open to everyone; registration begins at 10:30 a.m. followed by a shotgun start at noon.  For more information or a registration form, go to or call the PSC Athletics office at 402/872-2350. The earlybird deadline is May 22.

Special Teams

Cornerback Fred Whitted Jr. (#24) leaps to block a kick during Bobcat football action this past fall. Whitted, a junior-to-be, and most of his teammates from last season will be back for a 2009 campaign that shows great promise. (Photo courtesy Angela Allgood)


Peru Stater Spring 2009

Lady Bobcats Continuing Softball Success By Zak Greunke  Entering his 16th season, head Coach Mark Matthews has another very solid softball team under his leadership that has promise for a great and successful season.  The Lady Bobcats are lead by five seniors who could finish their careers with the most victories for a group in Peru State College history, Mathews noted. The seniors include Jamie Wolbert, Nicole Mercer, Brittany Fry, Jen Siedlik, and Liz Cunningham.  Off the field, the ‘Cats have had tremendous success as well. The team was named to the National Fastpitch Coaches Association 2008 ‘Girls Got Game’ Top Ten All-Academic team. Juniors Fry and Wolbert earned top NAIA Scholar Athletes awards for Junior second baseman Kerra Brummer tosses the runner out their performance in the classroom.  The Lady Bobcats were picked third after making a diving stop in recent Bobcat softball action. (Photo in the preseason MCAC coaches poll. courtesy Angela Allgood) Over spring break, the ‘Cats played games in Tucson, Arizona for a chance Nicole Goodrich, junior Lauren Fiori,  At the plate, everyone on the squad to get some playing time in warmer and senior Natalie Zabel for quality has an opportunity to contribute to innings. Defensively, he cited seniors the scoring, Mathews said, as depth states. Fry, Siedlik, Mercer, Cunningham and and balance are a team hallmark.  Mathews said on the pitching Wolbert and junior Kerra Brummer as mound, he will look to sophomore key performers.

Yer Out!

Peru State Women’s Basketball on the Prowl

By Zak Greunke  The Lady Bobcats entered the 200809 campaign a young team. So young in fact that there wasn’t a single senior on the team, but that didn’t stop the ‘Cats from going out every game and playing to their fullest potential.  The squad started slow as expected, but finished strong with a record of 12-19 and 7-5 in conference play. That earned them a number three seed in the MCAC where they eventually fell to Haskell in postseason play.

 Off the court three Lady ‘Cats were named to the MCAC All-Conference team. Freshman Monique McDuffie and Courtney Janacek along with sophomore Avyn Vaden earned the honors. McDuffie was also named MCAC Freshman of the Year.  The Lady Bobcats look to build upon their success striving to aim for the top in the MCAC under the leadership of head Coach Maurtice Ivy, who is no stranger to success during her playing career at the University of Nebraska-

Lincoln.  Ivy listed her recruiting priorities as getting some point guards and an emphasis on players who can run up and down the court.  With all coaches and players returning for the 09-10 season, and optimism for a few more top-notch recruits, the Lady ‘Cats will look to shake things up on the court against the competition next season.

Men’s Basketball Aims to Rebuild By Zak Greunke  The 2008-09 Peru State men’s basketball team saw the addition of many new faces to the team along with a handful veteran players fans were familiar with. This year’s team was the first season under new head coach Troy Katen.  Coming into his new position late in the recruiting season last summer, Katen still was able to compile a solid class of core players to lead the Bobcats in the next few years.  The team, while competitive in most games, tooks its lumps this year, finishing with a record of 1-29. Despite the loss of four seniors, the future looks bright for the ‘Cats.  Katen believes the team has great potential to be a future contender in the MCAC. Katen said he is anxious to have a full year to recruit, and the newly refurbished Wheeler Center as a drawing card.  In some news off the court, junior Steven Burks was named to the MCAC All-Conference team. Burks led the Bobcats in points, rebounds, assists and steals while playing four different positions over the course of the season.  Katen said players to watch next season will include seniors Burks and Adam Blaylock, and junior Joe Gomez.  Recruiting priorities for Katen are looking to fill the inside positions with some height along with a couple point guards. There is a big effort to bring in some quality freshmen.  The 2009-10 edition of the Bobcats will be returning ten players on the squad that looks to rebuild itself into a program that upholds PSC traditions of excellence.

Baseball Team Looking for Strong Season By Zak Greunke  The team is led by four seniors; Gary  Spring heralded the beginning of Hall, Mark Houck, Nate Goodrich and the baseball season, and the Bobcats Will Hays. Hall, Houck, and Hays have come out swinging. were named MCAC All-honorable  Picked to finish fifth in the MCAC, mention for the 2008 season and the ‘Cats have started the year strong provide both the talent and leadership with a winning record through the the squad needs. early part of the season and playing  Coach Jason Cronin is in his fourth inspired baseball as they get into the season as the Bobcat skipper as he midst of conference play. leads the squad from the dugout.

 He said the team would be relying  The Bobcats had reached a record of on the pitching of junior Yimy 16-11 at press time and were growing Rodriguez, and sophomores Vincent stronger as the season progressed.   Eberhard and Matt Martin.  This year’s club has great promise  At the plate, look for senior to make its presence felt in postseason outfielder Hall and first baseman play, and has a strong foundation from Hays to provide the thunder, while which to build toward future success. Cronin said the defensive leaders will likely be senior third baseman Houck, and Hays and senior outfield Hall.


Inside this Peru Stater you’ll find … Taking the Helm: New President, Dr. Daniel Hanson Turning Economic Challenges into Opportunities: President’s Welcome

Page 2

Alumni Profiles

Page 10-11

Sports Update

Page 18-19

The Peru Stater PSC Foundation P.O. Box 10 Peru, NE 68421-0010


Page 1

… And much, much more about people you know! Address Service Requested

Where in the World are You?

 The search is on for missing alumni from the Class of 1999. If you can provide a current home address for any of the people listed here, we will be grateful—and so, we hope, will they, especially when they start receiving the Peru Stater again.  Send information about missing alumni to Krystal Nolte at, call her at 402-872-2395, or mail your information to Krystal Nolte, PSC Foundation, PO Box 10, Peru, NE 68421-0010.

Class of 1999

Fountain and garden near PSC’s adminstration building and College Theatre on the Campus of a Thousand Oaks. (Summer 2008)

Kenneth Anderson Lisa Cook Terrence Easter Leah Ebeling Robert Endorf Karen Gibson Kyla Hansel Cynthia Whitley Homan Christina Houser Kristine Hughes Lynn Jurgens William Kellner

Scott Lacy Alicia Landegent Nathaniel Leach Carrie Leong Jill Morfeld Lisa Parde Mandy Spangler-Hulsebus Price Blake Renner Amy Riggins Theresa Ethington Rotherham Stacy Schelbitzki Jacob Schmidt Kevin Stewart

S2009 Peru Stater  
S2009 Peru Stater