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Harry Price & Other Faculty Contemplate “Why I Teach”

















’m new to Stetson and to the editorship of this magazine, even though I have been a longtime university magazine editor at such places as Washington University in St. Louis and Loyola University Chicago. As the new editor, I set out to meet as many faculty, students and administrators as I could to discover what makes the university special. I’ve found that each university is different and has its own unique thumbprint and identity. I call it “the character of the place.” It didn’t take me long to identify Stetson’s character as a place with a high-quality academic reputation, distinguished faculty and lovely campus. But the university’s character goes deeper than this. There’s a special connection between the faculty and their students. Stetson faculty talk about learning at the same time they discuss teaching. The two are inseparable to them. They view mentoring as an important part of the two as well. And mentoring, teaching and learning are what this issue is about. Rather than merely reporting on the teaching that takes place here, we decided to flip the paper due assignment and ask several professors to write about “Why I Teach.” We wanted them to reflect on their career choice and to hear their insights into teaching at Stetson. We also asked several students and graduates to write about their favorite Stetson professors. In that regard, we posted on Stetson’s Facebook page a call to all to tell us about their mentors. We were flooded with responses. You will find them inside this issue in the Letters section of the magazine. During my interview with Provost Elizabeth Paul, Ph.D., for an article on the future of teaching, she described Stetson’s distinctive reputation for academic rigor, how the university encourages close relationships between students and their professors and how the university makes its students aware of their responsibility to the world. “Stetson is a rigorous learning environment,” she says. “We put rigor first for a reason.” —Bill Noblitt Editor, STETSON Magazine








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Spanish Professor Bob Sitler convenes class on Stetson’s Palm Court.

Staff President Wendy B. Libby Vice President for Marketing Greg Carroll Editor and Art Director Bill Noblitt Photographer Will Phillips Production Coordinator Leslie Perkins Contributing Staff Janie Graziani Mary Anne Rogers Davina Gould Brandi Palmer Writers Renee Garrison Ronald Williamson Viviana Vasiu Lauren Robbins Class Notes Editors Cathy Foster Amy Scaturro Dedes



IFC First Words Reflections on the issue

12 Why I Teach A few Stetson professors reflect on why they do what they do.

2 Letters Your favorite mentors

4 Beginnings News about Stetson 11 First Person A student discusses her experience 38 Inquiry Research and scholarship at Stetson 40 Games Women Hatters go to the dance 42 Alumni Distinguished alumni award winners

STETSON Magazine is published three times a year by Stetson University, DeLand, FL 32723 and is distributed to its alumni, families, friends, faculty and staff. The magazine is printed on FSC-certified paper. The College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business Administration and School of Music are located at the historic campus in DeLand. The College of Law is in Gulfport/St. Petersburg. The university also has two satellite centers: The Tampa Law Center and the Stetson University Center at Celebration near Orlando.

18 My Favorite Professor Alumni and others discuss their favorites.

44 Classes

52 Endings Provost Beth Paul says it’s all about learning 53 Parting Shot A photo of Palm Court at dawn

24 Great Teaching Elevates Our Humanity Associate Provost Karen Kaivola discusses the importance of great teaching. 28 Teaching the Practical Students learn the practical in the Roland George Investments Program. 30 Info at Blurring Speeds The duPont-Ball Library faces a future where the definition of information has blurred. How will this technological haze affect teaching and learning at Stetson? One trivia note: The duPont-Ball is celebrating 125 years as a federal depository library, the oldest in Florida. 32

The Future of Teaching Massive Open Online Courses are changing the way classes are taught. How will they change teaching at Stetson?


RESP NSES our favorite mentors

We asked you on Stetson’s Facebook page to tell us about your mentors … and, boy, did you respond. Don Musser, senior professor of religious studies, who taught me that Baptists are people, too (:-)). Seriously—I had lost my 15-year-old son to a drunk driver the year before I returned to college at Stetson, and Don Musser helped me wade through the feelings and beliefs I harbored as a result. He taught me how to “do theology” with my brain, not just with my upbringing and preconceived notions. After graduation from Stetson, I went on to seminary at Candler School of Theology—not anything I had ever imagined in my wildest dreams. — Sharon Sturgis Tonjes ’94 Toni Blum, associate dean and professor of psychology. — Nicole Michelle Schunk ’08 Dwaine Cochran, professor of psychology. — Carol Morgan ’76 Bette Elizabeth Deane Heins, professor of teacher education. — Kristy Brown ’04



Jean West, professor of music! My very first semester I had a meeting with her about my poor midterm grades, and she told me something that I’ll always keep with me: Don’t let a bad attitude get in the way of your dreams and goals. It was her words that propelled my future success and turned my academic career in a positive direction. Now that I’ve started graduate school I repeat her mantra in my head whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed with not only schoolwork, but with life. She is an incredible asset to the Stetson community, especially within the School of Music! — Ginamarie Francolino ’11 Toni Blum, professor of psychology. I owe her so very much. — Shayna Hintze, Junior Carolyn Nicholson, professor of marketing. — Jason T. Reese ’11 Elisabeth Poeter, associate professor of modern languages and literatures, who encouraged me to think critically and laid the foundations for my interest to pursue graduate study in German. — Matt Sherman ’09 Without a doubt Rosalie Scaturro Carpenter, assistant dean of students! And I think that many students would agree! — Amanda C. Fishman-Hellinger, Senior Kimberly Reiter, associate professor of history. Incredibly passionate about her subject and, perhaps most important, passionate about inspiring every incoming generation of students to better themselves. Reiter is that rare professor who can teach both majors and those simply taking prerequisites with equal finesse and find that each group genuinely leaves their time with

her engaged and a better student. She is both supportive and challenging. Without Reiter’s support and belief, I would never have made it as far as I have — and there are many, many other students who would agree with me. — Ryan Lynch ’09 Rosalie Scaturro Carpenter, assistant dean of students! — Melissa Brooke Vereen, Junior Rosalie Scaturro Carpenter, assistant dean of students! She is a shining star and shaped my life through my years of learning from her at Stetson! — Madison Orr ’10 Michele Skelton, associate professor of Integrative Health Science, who never let me settle for anything but the best and always had my absolute best interest in mind! — Tara Formisano, Senior Michele Skelton, associate professor of integrative health science, who helped me be accepted to the graduate school of my dreams and then later was gracious enough to hire me as her colleague. She was an encourager and knew just how hard to push. I am the professional I am today because of all that she did for me. — Marilyn Cortes, Senior Dwaine Cochran, professor of psychology—by a mile. I took 18 credit hours with him, so I claim to have “a minor in Dr. Cochran.” He turned me on to a career I would have otherwise never considered, so I owe a large part of my success and happiness to him. Plus, he has such an inspiring personal story that also changed my life and the way I view health and fitness. Love him!! — April Farson Bailey ’98

Dick Westervelt! The man lived for Stetson athletics. Not only was he the voice of the Hatters on the baseball field, but football as well. He would be thrilled about all of the freshman baseball players and transfer players who have come in this year and would know all about each and every one of them just in time for the season start Feb. 15. He would likely be doing the same for the football team! He was the announcer for the final Stetson football game, and it would have been great to have him back on the mic this year. God rest his ever-announcing soul! — Katie Westervelt, Junior Bernard Harding, history of American popular music. I loved his passion for jazz and the piano. RIP, Dr. Harding ... — Tobin Birney, Senior Judge C. McFerrin Smith, professor of American judicial process, has mentored me since college. He has assisted me with every aspect of my career, from choosing Stetson law to what job offer to accept. He has had a major impact on my professional career. — Brittany Green Gløersen ’08 Greg McCann, professor of accounting and director of the Family Business Center. He is ahead of the curve in preparing Stetson students for their future. — Sarah Elizabeth Hancock ’12 Dr. Emmett Ashcraft in the math department, 1968. Took me under his wing and taught me the stars in the sky, taught me to use the antique planetarium and give shows to elementary school students. It was part of my work-study and gave me a lifelong love of the sky. I will never forget .... — Tina Wolf-Wiley ’72

For me, many of my teachers were amazing mentors, especially Dr. Craig Wood Maddox, associate professor of music, and Dr. Michael McFarland, associate professor of communication and media studies. But in the interest of including a non-faculty member, I would have to say Patricia M. Fort, wife of Dr. Robert Fort, who was an adviser for Sigma Alpha Iota when I was president of the chapter. We would have lunch downtown every Friday and talk business and even more. I learned so much from her that year and really cherish those memories. She’s an amazing woman who, while not on the faculty, continues to support Stetson and its students every day. — Amy Traugh Longtin ’00 William R. Nylen, professor of political science, taught with such passion for his subject area that he inspired me every day. — Amanda Sharkey Ross ’99 When I was there, I probably would not have picked Dwaine Cochran, professor of psychology, but now looking back, I see that he was always there for me, guiding me and helping me and supporting me with great wisdom. I keep remembering more and more influential professors … getting a Stetson education is truly a transformative experience. — Carol Morgan ’76 That's hard... I would have to say Peter May, professor of biology, is one of the professors who I could not have done so well without. He really helped show me and others that biology is not only interesting ... it can be darn funny. There is also Phillip Lucas, professor of religious studies. He was always honest with us and of course caught us whenever we were BS-ing through things ... And he taught that sometimes you do your best work just by starting with, well, utter ridiculousness. — Hannah Tennyson, Senior Sims Kline, associate professor and research librarian; he was an unbelievable resource with practically EVERY PAPER I had to write. — Julia Joy Morgillo, Senior Betty Thorne, professor of decision and information sciences. She is so very passionate about her subject. I don’t know if you will ever meet someone who is more passionate about statistics than she is. She is also a huge inspiration regarding her faith

and what she has been through in life. She always stressed to work hard, have fun, and remember what is really important in life. — Robbie Harper ’02 Major General Claude H. Chorpening. I had him for engineering and math my freshman year (’64’65). He had retired as a major general from the Army. He taught two courses a year (one in fall and one in spring) for which he was compensated $1. Not sure if that was semester or year ... ha ha. Chorpening was an awesome man. He was the most demanding teacher I ever had. — Bob Murch ’68 Elizabeth Dershimer:) — Stephanie Parnell Leach ’03 Kwan-chen Ma, professor of business, is a great mentor. He cares deeply for all his students. He encourages his students to be the best they can be and more. He even hires students at his personal business to ensure they learn more and obtain real-world experience for the job market. He stays in touch with students many years after graduation to know how they are doing and what they are doing. He is a great networker to help students with obtaining jobs after graduation. He is a great mentor! — Gage Gorman ’03 John Pearson, professor of English, and Julie Schmitt, assistant professor of theatre arts—more than they’ll ever know. The little things taught in class helped me. Pearson was easygoing and very helpful to me as a first-year student. Schmitt’s charisma in class was infectious!! I still refer to things I learned in her class as a working actress. — Ariel Azul John Booth, who taught statistics in the School of Business Administration, was very helpful as I considered whether to pursue a career as a CPA or as a lawyer. — John Paul Parks ’78 Lori Snook, associate professor of English, inspired, encouraged and enlightened me so much so that although I was a finance major, I ended up with an English minor just so I could take all of her classes! — Myndi Giebels Haggart ’97 Don Musser, senior professor of religious studies, has provided me with some great insights. He continues to

help guide me in my academic career. — Jennifer Tyre Lancaster, Senior Charles Vedder, professor of sociology, inspired my critical thinking, and Dr. Terri Witek, professor of English, honed my pen to carve the words as I truly intended, fear be damned. And Dr. Phillip Lucas, professor of religious studies, who showed me how to delve into the deeper mysteries of my self/soul and the belief systems of this chaotic mad sphere called Earth ... All of whom I owe a gracious thank you, for as much as I drank it all in in my youth, it resurfaces like pleasant ripples in the lake of life. — Will Lewis ’81 Michael Denner, associate professor of the Russian studies program. Stetson is fortunate to have such a charismatic and brilliant professor in its midst. — Bimini Lee Wright ’11 My top three would be Elisabeth Poeter, associate professor of modern languages and literatures; Nick Maddox, professor of management and international business; and Rosalie Scaturro Carpenter, assistant dean of students. But there are many others as well (Joshua Rust, assistant professor of philosophy; Mike Bitter, professor of accounting; Monique Forte, late professor of management; and Nathan Wolek, associate professor of digital arts, to name a few). — Brad Brubaker, Senior Management and International Business Professor Nick Maddox! — Chelsea Knox, Senior Kimberly Reiter, associate professor of history, and Kimberly Flint-Hamilton, associate professor of sociology and anthropology. They gave me a voice to write my story, my truth and my history. They legitimized my research and encouraged me to go on when I felt like I couldn’t any more. — Amy Neubauer, Senior Michael Rickman, professor of music, without a doubt! Besides being a fantastic teacher, he was (and still is) a constant source of motivation, inspiration and wisdom for me. From our lessons to our chats about music or aesthetics or anything over coffee, his impact on my life has been profound. — Wade Meyers, Senior Bruce Bradford, professor of geography and environmental science.

He taught me to try new things and that whatever I want to do is never out of reach—I just need the desire to do it. He’s been so helpful in many different ways. I couldn’t imagine going through my first few years without him. — Kara Stephens, Junior Elizabeth Dershimer, teacher education!! — Liz Bornhorst, Senior Wow! The first name that rushed forward was Dean Etter Turner (1940s) ... feet rooted in the past, she still tried to understand all the women in her charge and make change (seemed slow to us sometimes). She had grace and patience: faced physical challenges with grace and courage. But there were so many others...Robert Sherer, history professor; American Studies Professor John Hague ... Stetson may be unique in how great the ties are. — Janice Baric Bartolotta ’72 For the Lady Hatters, we would love to mention Kendra Gilbertson and Michael Gonzalez from Stetson University Club Sports! Without their guidance and help starting the club team, who knows what lacrosse would look like here at Stetson. I think we owe them a ton for making sure our club was a pioneer in the club sports and lacrosse world. From every team member past and present, we thank them! — Stetson Lady Hatters Lacrosse Club Wow, so many to choose from. I’d have to highlight Dr. Michael Branton, professor of mathematics and computer science; Dr. Bruce Bradford, professor of geography and environmental science; and Dr. Eugene Huskey, professor of political science. — Gary Sipe ’01 Dr. Rick Medlin, professor of psychology, was someone who inspired me to be better, saw something in me that I did not see in myself, and just genuinely cared about his students. — Patty Goodridge Costley ’98 STETSON Magazine welcomes letters to the editor. However, we ask that you focus your letter on a topic or article in the magazine. Send letters by email to, by fax at 386-822-8925, or snail mail to Bill Noblitt, Office of University Marketing, 421 N. Woodland Blvd., 8319, DeLand, FL 32723. Because of space limitations, we may edit some letters.




Isn’t She Luverly “Welcome to my office,” says the Dean of Green about the 150 acres that make up the Stetson main campus. We tour campus in pursuit of an answer to the question, “How do you keep the place so beautiful?” “It’s a staggering amount of work,” says Dean of Green David Rigsby, manager for grounds and senior assistant for special projects. “Thanks to the support of our president (Wendy B. Libby) we’ve been able to expand our staff and get the tools we need to do the job right. “But it’s the 17 crew members and 12 students who truly make the campus sparkle,” he explains. “They deserve all the credit.” Rigsby sends crews every morning to the north and south sides of campus to mow the grass, pick up leaves and clippings, trim and edge, and generally tend to the green areas. In the afternoons, they frequently start over. The crew members who work tirelessly to keep the campus pruned and pretty are making a difference. President Libby has noticed the 4


difference too. When she first arrived on campus as the new president in 2009, she says: “It wasn’t as pretty as I thought it could be.” Libby established a larger budget to hire more groundskeepers to take better care of the campus. And she hired Carol R. Johnson, a landscape architect with a great deal of experience with private colleges. “She helped us communicate Stetson’s values and priorities through the beauty of our campus,” Libby says. Working with outside vendors, Rigsby oversaw a massive revitalization of campus, first razing Stetson Hall to offer students more green space and then widening every sidewalk in Palm Court. He also planted more than 20 new palms on the quad. “We wanted a pedestrian feel to Stetson so we also moved parking to the edges of our campus,” he explains. Both Libby and Rigsby point out that the campus vistas are connected in understated ways. Stetson’s roadways, pathways

and sidewalks are subtle visual links not easily recognized at first glance. “I’ve always thought of Stetson as a series of open-air rooms,” says Rigsby, a landscape architecture graduate who is quick to declare, “I’m not a licensed landscape architect.” Soon, the crews will transition the campus from the winter Ryegrass to Bermuda as Florida switches from one of its two seasons. Rigsby seems to know the name of every tree, bush and blade of grass on campus. More than 30 years working at Stetson as the Dean of Green helps him do that. His own history is just as interesting as the campus’s. Rigsby began as head of the DeLand Parks Department and later became the city’s mayor. Today, the campus is peppered with students who string hammocks between palm trees, who play and study in open green spaces and who ride longboards on the Hatter Highway to class. And Rigsby and his crew smile. —Bill Noblitt

Longboards at Stetson Screech. Schr-eech. Zoooooooom. Every sharp twist, turn and swerve makes your heart stop. A longboard. And another one. And yet another. Why all these longboards that seem to have sprung up like palm trees all over campus? “It’s a quick way of getting here to there,” says junior Andrew Roles. “You choose which one looks coolest. Mine has this crazy hand explosion on it.” And they’re expensive. “They can cost hundreds of dollars,” says freshman Steven Clemmer. “But it’s worth it. Mine has an eyeball

An Apple iPhone 5 panoramic view of the luverly Palm Court.

Zoom goes freshman Danielle Grisham.

with wings.” Longboard names sound like rare birds — bumtails, flatnoses and drop-throughs. And don’t call my longboard a skateboard. That’s insulting. You might think students only ride longboards outside. Not so. “I was trying to get used to my longboard by using the walls in my residence hall,” says sophomore Holly Saulsbery, resident of Nemec Hall. If you’re considering one, practice before conquering the Hatter Highway. Otherwise, it might conquer you. —Viviana Vasiu

Bluemner in Bloom Before Oscar Bluemner, now defined as an American modernist painter, began his watercolors and other paintings, he sketched landscapes near his grandmother’s house in Jerichow, Germany. He was a young man then. Susanne Eules, Ph.D., coordinator of the Homer and Dolly Hand Art Center and adjunct professor in modern languages and literatures, became fascinated with the idea of finding the places he sketched. At those spots, she took photos replicating the exact angle of the Bluemner sketches. Bluemner drew some of the

sketches and pastel drawings while visiting his grandmother and other relatives in Jerichow. Others occurred after he first came to the U.S. and later decided to visit the art galleries of Europe, where German expressionism, futurism and cubism were the art avant-garde. Digging through the Bluemner Collection in the Hand Art Center, Eules found more than 160 Jerichow-related works, including those from 1888-91 before the artist came to the U.S. and those from 1912 when he revisited his homeland and the European art galleries that would profoundly affect his later art.

“Although many of the drawings were landscapes, many others were of people, including those of fishermen, ferrymen and farmers,” says Eules, a former museum director, curator, educator and researcher in Germany. The exhibit, titled “Oscar Bluemner’s Germany: Juxtaposing Jerichow,” took place at the Hand Art Center on the Stetson campus Jan. 25-April 29. “Bluemner lived in dire poverty after committing himself fully to the life of an artist,” Eules says. “It’s ironic because one of his oil paintings sold at auction in 2011 for more than $5 million.” —Bill Noblitt STETSON


BEGINNINGS Professor Hari Pulapaka at his highly rated Cress Restaurant.

Cress for Success A glass of fine, vibrant wine. A carefully prepared gourmet dish, sprinkled with the freshest ingredients and passion. The perfect place to unwind and delight all your senses. Think you can only find this quaint restaurant in the big city? Not anymore. Look no further than Cress Restaurant, located in the little town of DeLand, Fla. Zagat, the nationally renowned hospitality rater since the 1970s, has recently selected Cress Restaurant as No. 1 in the Greater Orlando area. Cress may as well be referred to as the jewel of dining in Central Florida. “It’s an amazing accomplishment,” says Hari Pulapaka, Ph.D., executive chef and coowner of Cress Restaurant who also happens to be an associate professor of math at Stetson. Wonder how in the world the name Cress came about? “I was cooking in Alaska in the summer of 2005,” Pulapaka recalls. “My wife and I got married there. We were daydreaming about having our own house and restaurant. We thought about several names, and Cress sounded 6


cool. Also the word is reminiscent of the words ‘fresh,’ ‘garden’ and ‘vibrant,’ which is what Cress Restaurant is all about.” Cress is also a restaurant that is community oriented. For instance, Pulapaka sometimes has cooking demonstrations in the Stetson cafeteria, and in April, the restaurant organized a dinner at a farm. The recipe for success at Cress? “Hard work, dedication, talent and education,” states Pulapaka, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Orlando. But that’s not all. Jenneffer Pulapaka, Hari’s spouse, general manager and co-owner as well as a local podiatrist, is a key part of the restaurant’s success. A great dish could come to life only with the right choice of ingredients. “I use the finest ingredients and support the local farms,” he explains. “I pick the ingredients myself at the farms and put in the same passion as I would if I was cooking for myself at home,” he adds. More important, they make sure that not only the food is up to speed with the latest trends but also the atmosphere. “Jenneffer has a lot to do with the creation of the atmosphere. She makes sure it is current and fresh. I would describe it as intimate/trendy/inviting.” Picture Mumbai, India. Spice. Exotic flavors … Pulapaka grew up there, and you can bet that this has influenced his cooking style at Cress. “We always have around two to three curry selections that are very popular,” he says. “Indian food is well seasoned, bold and vibrant, which captures what my cooking is all about.” While Hari takes care of the cooking, Jenneffer is in charge of the fine wine selection. “Jenneffer tastes and handpicks each wine on the menu. She understands what people would like to drink and what goes with each dish. It’s not just about how good the wine is: It has to pair well with the dish,” he says. —Viviana Vasiu

Stetson Law Students Win BIG Stetson University’s College of Law has continued its winning tradition in national, regional and state advocacy competitions this year, and the season isn’t even over yet. It was a clean sweep at the National Professional Responsibility Moot Court Competition in Indiana, where Stetson won every award at the March event. In a Stetson-Stetson final round, the team of Erin Okuno, Kevin Crews and Morgan Vasigh won the championship, and Michelle Reilly, Adriana Corso and Erin Dolan took the runner-up title.

The former team won the Best Respondent’s Brief Award, and the latter won Best Petitioner’s Brief. Okuno received Best Oralist awards for both the preliminary rounds and the final round. Erica Emas, William Gower III, Andona Zacks-Jordan and Charles Strauss won the American Association for Justice Regional Mock Trial Championship in Miami. The team went on to the national championship in April in New Orleans. Stetson’s Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot Team of Paul Crochet, Meagan Foley, Michael Rothfeldt,

the teams. Amar Agha and Erik Johanson won the Best Petitioner’s Brief Award and were finalists in the National Veterans Law Moot Court Competition in November in Washington, D.C. A second Stetson team of Michael Millett and Michelle Reilly tied for Best Respondent’s Award. Elizabeth Constantine was awarded Best Cross Examination at the Professor Bernie L. Segal Golden Gate University Criminal Mock Trial Competition in November in San Francisco, Calif. Constantine and teammates Barbra Goyanes, Novaes and Jared Williams presented before a 12-person jury in the final round. —Davina Gould

Experiencing the U.S. Senate

Lisa Tanaka and Alex Zesch won a pre-moot competition in Miami sponsored by The Florida Bar International Law Section. Foley was named the Best Oralist of the competition for the second consecutive year. In March, Sharon Galantino, Caitlein Jammo, Bradley Muhs and Carly Ross finished second and won the runner-up Memorial Award at the South SuperRegionals of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition in New Orleans, La., also advancing to the international finals in Washington, D.C. Andrew Harris, Julia McGrath and Victoria San Pedro won the prestigious New York City Bar’s 63rd Annual National Moot

Court Competition in January. Associate Dean Michael Allen and Professor Louis Virelli coached the team. Stetson won The Florida Bar Chester Bedell Mock Trial Competition on Jan. 18 in Orlando for the 20th time in 30 years. Stetson’s two squads faced each other in the final round of the competition. Brandon Blake, Claudette Goyanes, Diego Novaes and Adriane Ovcharenko won the competition, and Gower was named Best Advocate. Gower, Emas, Erica Farawell and Austin Miniard placed second in the competition. Professor Lee Coppock, Matt Easterwood, JD ’07, and Judge David A. Demers, JD ’68, coached

Since its humble beginnings in 1970, the Floyd M. Riddick Model U.S. Senate at Stetson University has inspired thousands of students in one of America’s oldest institutions. As the nation’s first and oldest college-level Model U.S. Senate, it gained a national reputation for excellence in civic education. This year, new technology was incorporated into the proceedings: Student senators were encouraged to tweet about their activities while 25 journalism students blogged and reported about it. “We wanted to give it a 21st-century feel,” says student coordinator Robert Jones, a junior political science major. Jones, who portrayed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, says a 10-member student committee began reviewing legislation last September. Each senator was assigned a bill, and, once chosen, each bill was edited down to five manageable pages. “Without quality legislation, discussion suffers,” Jones explains. Now in its 42nd year, the event educates college students about the legislative process in one of the nation’s oldest political

institutions, the U.S. Senate. In March, 46 Stetson students and 54 visiting students from colleges and universities across the nation gathered at the DeLand campus to debate the issues. Bellarmine University, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Goucher College, Bridgewater State University, Valdosta State University, Florida Southern College, Santa Fe College, The University of Florida and The University of North Florida participated in the three-day event. Former Florida Gov. and U.S. Sen. Bob Graham delivered the keynote speech and interacted with students in five legislative committees. Stetson professors T. Wayne Bailey, Ph.D., Anne M. Hallum, Ph.D., and David L. Hill, Ph.D., have helped the Model U.S. Senate grow into what it is today. “We hope to give students an appreciation of the legislative process,” explains Bailey. “Occasionally, we have students who become angry — even cry — during the session, and we tell them that’s the way the real Senate works.” He recalls that the former U.S. senator from Kansas, Nancy Kassebaum, always wore a certain flower on her lapel. “Our student did, too,” he says with a smile. “The object of role-playing is for each student to say and do what the real senator would do.” Jones heard about the program while still a student at DeLand High School and has participated in the Model U.S. Senate for three years. A self-described “political junkie,” Jones believes the experience “gives me a far greater understanding of how policy is made.” He hopes to go to law school and dreams of running for public office one day — a plan that pleases Bailey. “We hope to further the core values of this university, such as an appreciation for diversity and an understanding of different constituencies,” he says proudly. “Democracy depends on participation.” —Renee Garrison STETSON



Keeping Us Safe Stetson University hosted two community forums in March to discuss issues raised in the aftermath of the recent school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn. Topics included mental health services, safe schools and communities, and violence in public places. “As educators and parents, we must strive to understand the roots of the tragedy and the best ways to seek change, for that is what communities of higher learning do,” says William J. Ball, visiting professor of political science and one of the organizers of the forums. “Through information and dialogue, our community can respond to tragic events like this in a thoughtful manner and be better prepared,” Ball continues. “This is critical work for us, given our underlying values that define our community: self-knowledge and growth, active intellectual exploration and informed citizenship that lead to community engagement and social justice,” says Stetson President Wendy B. Libby. “Stetson is the significant partner that can champion the change we need in this world,” Libby adds. The forum’s panel on Safety at Schools and Campuses included: • Candace Lankford, vice chairwoman, Volusia County School Board; • Robert Matusick, director of public safety, Stetson University; • James Ramsay, Ph.D., chair of the Homeland Security Department, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University; and • Bob Lambert, lieutenant, Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, The second forum on Mental Health and Violence in Schools, Campuses and the Community was held March 20. Panelists included: • Amy Hall, Ph.D., Volusia County District counseling specialist, Student Support Services; STETSON

• Ivan Fleishman, Ph.D., licensed psychologist in DeLand, Fla.; • Nancy Jacobsen, LMFT, licensed marriage and family therapist in DeLand, Fla.; and • Meghan Walter, Ph.D., coordinator, school counseling program at Stetson University. In addition, Libby sent via email to everyone on campus a link to a 28-minute video titled “Shots Fired on Campus.” The video outlined the steps to take if an active shooter was on campus. “With thoughts of the Newtown tragedy still in the front of our minds, now is the time to review what our own response should be — individually and collectively — should an active shooter event occur at Stetson,” she writes in the email. The Center for Personal Protection and Safety, which works with more than 1,100 colleges and universities nationwide, developed the video. You can listen to the forums at stetsonuniversity —Janie Graziani

Stetson Wins Marketing Awards Stetson received eight awards at the CASE District III Conference. The Council for Advancement and Support of Education’s criteria for the CASE awards include writing, editing, professional execution of publications, design, technical quality and creativity. Stetson won one Grand Award, two Awards of Excellence and five Special Merit Awards. CASE is a nonprofit organization that is “education’s leading resource for knowledge, standards,

advocacy, and training in alumni relations, communications, fund-raising, marketing and related activities.” Members of CASE believe that “education improves lives.” The annual CASE awards honor and recognize outstanding programs and individuals from the districts. Stetson is part of CASE District III, which is the Southeast district. It is the second-largest district with more than 3,500 members. “CASE gives us the opportunity to take things we work on, whether websites, programs or media sources, and put them up against other universities to calibrate and see how we compare to other schools,” says Stetson Vice President for University Marketing Greg Carroll. Awards presented to Stetson at the 2013 CASE Conference include the Grand Award for Green or Sustainable Publications for VISUAL, a magazine used to recruit students to the university; an Award of Excellence for Programs and Projects for the Crisis/Issues Management Plan, Razing Stover Theatre; an Award of Excellence for Online Innovation/Experimentation for Stetson Today, an online daily communication website for the university family and the public; a Special Merit Award for Publications/Viewbooks/Magazines for VISUAL; a Special Merit Award for Recruitment Series for Law Academic Specialty Programs; a Special Merit Award for Website or Microsite for the Admission Web Portal; a Special Merit Award for Branding/Identity Program or Campaign for Campus Signage; and a Special Merit Award for Alumni Relations Project/Event or Program for the Homecoming 2012 Green and White Game and Food Truck Bazaar. —Lauren Robbins

Law Student Wins Photo Contest Conner Kempe, a first-year student at the Stetson College of Law, won an Ocean Conservancy photography contest for his photo titled “Edge n’-Pop.” The proceeds from the contest support the Ocean Conservancy’s mission to protect and preserve marine wildlife. “There are a lot of fantastic images that have been submitted to the contest, so it’s incredibly rewarding to see that one of my pieces has come out at the head of

New Stetson Music School Dean Thomas Gilmore Masse.

Law student Conner Kempe's winning photo made the Ocean Conservancy’s viewers stand up and take notice.

the pack,” says Kempe about the above photo, which features one of his favorite hobbies, kiteboarding. It’s one of the 23-year-old’s most recent photos and was taken in February at Skyway Bridge in St. Petersburg, Fla. Kempe hopes that the image captures a sense of both what people experience out on the water as well as the ocean’s natural beauty. “Growing up in Florida, I’ve always had a strong affinity for the ocean,” he explains. “That’s why I was interested in entering the contest.” The winning photograph was by popular vote with a donation

from each voter. “I’m glad to see that my photo inspired so many people to help marine wildlife,” says Kempe. Outside of his interest in photography, Kempe also has a passion for law and economics. He studied money, banking and finance at Dartmouth, where he was also a star varsity football quarterback. Kempe wants to have a career that blends his business interests with law. You might also find him fishing and diving in Florida waters. After all, he’s a multitalented athlete as well as photographer. —Bill Noblitt

New Music School Dean Named Thomas Gilmore Masse, Ph.D., has been named the next dean of Stetson’s School of Music. Masse joins Stetson from Yale University, where he serves as associate provost for the arts. “I am delighted to join this distinguished community of faculty, staff and students,” says Masse. “I have long admired the quality of Stetson’s educational and artistic training and look forward to working with all members of the campus community.”

Masse was selected following a national search led by a committee of faculty, administrators, alumni, Board of Advisor members and trustees. “Tom is recognized and respected nationally and internationally as a leader in music and higher education,” says Provost Beth Paul. “I am confident that with Tom’s dynamic leadership, the Stetson School of Music will continue to flourish as an excellent music school.” As dean, Masse will provide strategic, collaborative leadership for the School of Music, including academic programming and quality of learning, faculty recruitment and development, budget and personnel management, with strong partnership in enrollment management, alumni and community outreach, fundraising and institutional advancement. “We are thrilled to have Tom join our faculty as dean, and we are confident that he is the right person to lead Stetson’s School of Music during this exciting time in music education,” says Stetson President Wendy B. Libby. A clarinetist, he has performed as concert soloist, chamber artist and orchestral musician throughout North America, South America, Europe and Asia and has taught and presented master classes throughout the world. Masse earned a doctorate in musical arts from the University of Michigan. —Janie Graziani STETSON



Stetson Named Tree Campus USA For the second year in a row, Stetson has been named a Tree Campus USA, giving the university national recognition for the work it does on campus to support a healthy outdoor environment. “Trees directly benefit people by providing shade to buildings, walkways and outdoor spaces. It also provides teaching opportunities,” says Cynthia Bennington, Ph.D., associate professor of biology. “In addition, trees help reduce atmosphere carbon dioxide levels, stabilize soil, and provide habitat for birds and other wildlife.” Tree Campus USA, a national program, honors universities for effective campus forest management. The campus has to embody five standards, including a tree advisory committee, a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and the sponsorship of student service-learning projects. In 2012, Stetson went above and beyond the five requirements needed to be titled a Tree Campus USA. With Bennington’s help, Stetson created two main goals to strengthen campus conservation efforts: to continue the development of the Volusia Sandhill Teaching Landscape and to identify areas on campus that can become “tree banks” with native understory. Stetson has done this 10


through events, such as “Save a Sandhill Day,” “Science Saturday” and numerous volunteer hours of planting trees on campus. In December, Stetson also received a STARS Bronze Rating in recognition of its sustainability achievements from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). STARS, the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System, is a new program that measures and encourages sustainability in all aspects of higher education. “Stetson has long supported environmental and social responsibility as core values,” says Wendy B. Libby, president of Stetson University. “We are proud to be charter members of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment and welcome the opportunity to build on this commitment through STARS participation.” STARS is a transparent, selfreporting framework for universities to measure their sustainability performance. Participants report achievements in three overall areas: education and research; operations; and planning, administration and engagement. With the support of faculty and staff, Tony Abbot, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of geography and environmental science at

Stetson, worked with students to establish baseline data on sustainability practices at the university for 2010-11. “We are very proud to have achieved a STARS rating for our sustainability accomplishments. We look forward to watching our sustainability efforts grow and improve through the STARS program,” says Abbott. “STARS was developed to provide high standards for recognizing campus sustainability efforts,” says AASHE Executive Director Paul Rowland. “Stetson has demonstrated a substantial commitment to sustainability and is to be congratulated for its efforts.” —Lauren Robbins

TEDx at Stetson Glancing at Facebook last December, Michelle Vergara, a junior in behavioral economics, noticed a friend’s posting about a TEDx event at the University of Florida. Intrigued, Vergara visited the website. It didn’t take long for her to determine that Stetson University would be a perfect venue to host such an event. After consulting with Emily Richardson, Ph.D., associate vice president for Boundless Learning, Vergara submitted an online application for a “TEDxStetsonU” license. Two weeks later, she got it. “They were quick to tell me everything we could and could not do,” Vergara recalls. “There are specific guidelines and a strict set of rules for participating.” Here are a few. The event must be a one-day happening with no panels, no break-out sessions, usually no lecterns. And, by the way, no speakers could be paid to present. According to the TEDx website, “Events held at universities and organized by both students and administration have shown the benefit of a captivated audience and groups of engaged volunteers poised to make

meaningful change.” Led by students with faculty assistance, TEDx and its mission are “to foster learning, inspiration and wonder — and provoke conversations that matter.” “I‘ve always been interested in learning life lessons outside the classroom,” says Vergara, who helped coin the event’s title: “Significance in Action: Inspired Learning.” She believed TEDxStetsonU was ambitious in two ways: It got people to think outside of the conventional learning process, and it challenged people to turn those lessons into action. TEDx was started in 1984 as a conference to bring people together from three worlds: technology, entertainment and design. The world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers are challenged to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes or less. Stetson’s March presentation joined more than 1,400 TED talks currently available. “It’s wonderful to have an event to showcase Stetson talent in such a popularized medium,” says Richardson. “Typical class lectures last 50 minutes and are held three times each week,” Richardson adds. “How fun is it to think you can learn something in 18 minutes? This demonstrates a new way of learning.” A committee of students, faculty and staff selected six speakers for the event: Luke Ford, a sophomore philosophy major, spoke about “Creativity and Imagination”; Kai Eckenrode, a senior communications and media studies major, addressed “Gender and Masculinity”; Andy Dehnart, lecturer in communication and media studies, chose “Reality TV”; Mario Rodriguez, assistant professor of communication and media studies, spoke on “Privacy Issues”; Ben Collins, assistant pastor of First United Methodist Church, addressed “Evolution of Faith”; Steven Carrillo, ’11 (Psychology), chose “Anonymous Champions” as his topic. —Renee Garrison


“The mind-body connection reappeared throughout all my courses. I soon found myself making connections between my integrative health courses and my other classes in other disciplines.”

My Integrative Health Science Program Experience B y Ta r a F o r m i s a n o Stetson Senior


here else could you casually strut into your professor’s office, unleash your life problems (academic or not) and leave feeling good as new? Stetson University’s Department of Integrative Health Science is where such family relationships take place. In fact, the program creates a community where students build sturdy relationships with their professors that not only strengthen their abilities as scholars, but also enhance their overall character and marketability. I, Tara Formisano, a senior IHSC student at Stetson University, am living, breathing proof of such creations. I came to Stetson convinced that I absolutely wanted to become a medical doctor, but I was a little more uncertain about my major. As a science nerd, I initially majored in biology, but by the end of my freshman year, I decided I wanted to pursue a major that focused more on the “human” aspects of science. That’s when I discovered integrative health. I met with Associate Professor Michele Skelton, Ph.D., the Lynn and Mark Hollis Chair of Health and Wellness, and we hit it off immediately. I quickly fell in love with the program and became one of its biggest advocates. Students are definitely NOT a number in the IHSC program. Rather, they are an integral part of the IHSC curriculum. The studentprofessor relationship in the IHSC department is reciprocal. This means that both students and professors work together to develop the best tools and methods for meaningful teaching and learning. Furthermore, the integrative health science curriculum revolves around the famous “mindbody connection.” The basic idea behind this

“connection” is that our minds and bodies function as one unit. If one component is “off,” then everything is “off.” In other words, the IHSC program takes a holistic approach to teaching its students about health science in a way that’s applicable to their day-to-day lives. For example, as a former varsity softball player at Stetson, I depended on my mind and my body to work harmoniously in order for me to play my best. The beauty of being an IHSC student is that the program teaches us exactly how to keep these two components in balance. The “mind-body connection” reappeared throughout all my integrative health courses. I soon found myself making connections between my integrative health classes and my other classes. While I am an IHSC major, I am also a French, chemistry and gender studies minor. Believe it or not, I have been able to apply concepts learned in anatomy and physiology, exercise physiology, health and wellness, and research and statistics (all IHSC required classes) to all my minor classes. In other words, students are able to apply what they learn to their own lives. They understand how this new knowledge relates to a whole host of other subjects, such as sociology, medicine, psychology, law, communications, health, health policy and nursing. Of course, many of the integrative health students are in pre-med, but many also plan to go into other fields, including chiropractic medicine, nursing, veterinary medicine, sports medicine, physical therapy, occupational therapy, naturopathic medicine, exercise physiology, research and much more. In short, there are many career choices

when they graduate with an integrative health degree. And the integrative health program perfectly prepares its students for success in future graduate programs. I know this because I’m currently in the process of interviewing for medical school. As pointed out, I’ve benefited immensely from the close relationships I’ve developed with all my integrative health professors. They wrote intimate and detailed medical school recommendation letters that gave insight into what I’m like as a student and as a person. Moreover, I want to go into osteopathic medicine, which revolves around — that’s right — the “mind-body connection.” As such, the program has given me the tools and knowledge to be successful in medical school. There are other benefits. As an IHSC student, I participated in a research project and presented my findings at research conferences in Chicago, Florida and Wisconsin. The IHSC program offers other unique opportunities, such as studying at the cadaver lab at the University of Central Florida Medical School, exploring medicinal plants at our own medicinal herb garden, or taking part in a T’ai Chi flash mob to help my fellow students relieve their stress levels. Ultimately, the integrative health science program offers more than just an exceptional educational experience. It offers a strong community where its students thrive both as scholars and as individuals. It offers us the chance to make lasting friendships with both students and professors. It also provides us with unique undergraduate opportunities rarely found at other universities. Finally, we reap the program’s benefits for the rest of our lives. STETSON


English Professor John Pearson asks himself, “I love this job, but why?”

12 12


Why I Teach


Not So Much a Teacher as a Guide By John Pearson, Ph.D.

ike everyone, I’ve often been asked what I do for a living. The question is more complicated than it seems because I teach hardly explains what I really do, and in many respects, it is downright misleading. I teach sounds like I impart knowledge and skill to a group of people, as someone might teach others how to mamba or rebuild a carburetor. I’m in English, and over a century ago the famous literary critic and rhetorician I.A. Richards said that to study English is to study the universe: the books my students read and the papers they write consider the universe and everything in it. I’m not so arrogant to think that I teach everything. If I do anything in the classroom, I try to convince people that they can think and learn and do whatever they want so long as they work hard and are sufficiently committed to the project of becoming. Is that teaching? I’m not sure. I’m rarely asked why I do this, but it’s a good question: Why do I go into a room of first-year college students and try to help them become effective writers? Why do I sit with my class of senior English majors and graduate students and talk about the American novel? Why do I spend months, and in some cases years, reading, researching and writing about American literature and address my work to a larger community of scholars?

To influence lives, to pass on knowledge, to help others see what they see. The reasons are many why Stetson professors choose teaching as their passion. What do they gain? Read on.



I love this job, but why? The best answer I can come up with is this: amazing people. I work every day with people — students, faculty, staff, administrators — throughout the university who are among the best people I’ve known. We are smart, spirited, engaged (well, maybe not always on grammar review day), and we believe that through education we can radically improve the quality of life for everyone. I talk about books with terrific people who love the conversation. Yesterday in the American novel class, a particularly gifted student asked the class about the social construction of identity in Light in August. The conversation darted from one person to another without respite for much of the class. Even as we moved on to other topics, I felt incredibly fortunate to be working with a group of students who think about complex ideas that have just as much to do with who we are as they do about the novels we read. Their ability to draw from a variety of disciplines — in this case, psychology, sociology, history and literary theory — only reinforces my belief that everything we teach at Stetson becomes a vital part of our students’ understanding of the world and of their place in it. Teaching gives me the opportunity to learn, to be a student of my discipline and its practice, and my students are among the best mentors I’ve known. In first-year seminars and many first-year writing courses, for instance, I have worked with gifted teaching apprentices, many of whom now have graduate degrees and classes of their own. Recently, I attended a wedding of two former students, Jen and Cory. Jen was an undergraduate teaching apprentice, working with me for two years in first-year writing courses. While we worked together in the classroom and in conversations afterward, Jen taught me much about teaching, especially the art of listening attentively. I owe her much, and watching her marry Cory, whom she met on their first day as Stetson students some seven or eight years ago, I felt incredibly fortunate to be part of this moment in her life and to include her on the long list of people who have taught me how to do what I do. Teaching gives me that. I do this work because it is deeply satisfying and always surprising. One would think that after 25 years at Stetson and over 30 standing in front of the classroom, I’ve experienced just about everything there is for a teacher to experience. 14


Think again. Rarely does a day pass without a moment in class when I am shocked — usually in a good way — by something someone says or does. Like many in this profession, I cannot imagine a life without the daily challenges and pleasures of working with individuals who are assuming control of their intellectual and professional lives during the four years they study at Stetson. Sometimes I think I’m not so much a teacher as I am a guide or even just a walking companion to dozens of people who arrive on the first day of FOCUS, a Stetson orientation program for new and transfer students, and who leave soon after graduation. It’s great work. John Pearson, Ph.D., is an English professor at Stetson University.

Passion and Respect By Greg McCann, J.D.


s I approached my 30th birthday many, many years ago, I took stock in where I’d been—a few careers and some moving around, both with varying degrees of satisfaction. I asked myself: What was I going to do with my life? First off, I knew I wanted to find a career that aligned with my values and my passion. After months of reflection, deep dialogue and self-assessment, I chose teaching because it’s a strong fit for me. Before beginning my new profession, I spent a long evening asking my best teacher, Jeff Davis from the University of Florida College of Law, endless questions about teaching. Near the end of that evening he said that the essence of being a good teacher encompassed two attributes: having passion for what you teach and respecting your students. I have always tried to live by those two traits of a good teacher. So why do I teach? I teach because what drives me in my career and my life is working with people who want to grow personally and professionally. Teaching at Stetson has given me this opportunity in ways I doubt possible at many other universities. As a teacher, I believe it’s most important to help my students become aware of who they are and assist them in aligning their character and reputation with that self-awareness. I want to work with them to craft a value-based definition of success and help them define a plan for how to accomplish their goals. These efforts become something more inno-

Business Professor Greg McCann believes it’s important to help his students become aware of who they are.

vative and intimate than teaching. As a matter of fact, they embody personal and professional development. So when a student wants to begin her career outside of her family’s business and Armani hires her, I am grateful to have played a role. When a second student wants to work with the next generation of American families of abundance and becomes a nationally renowned expert, I applaud her success. When a third student wants to test his mettle and see if he can become a professional golfer and succeeds, I take pride in his accomplishment. If I can help students see their potential, define success on their own terms and craft a practice or plan to make that happen, then I am the most fortunate person in the world. Greg McCann, J.D., ’81 (Accounting) has been awarded both the School of Business award for teaching and Stetson’s highest award for teaching, the McEniry Award (in 2003). He is the founder and director of the Family Enterprise Center (for almost 15 years) and recently was named director of the EMBA program.

We work hard in our classes, and then they enter the counseling world for a year of practicum and internship. The greatest joy comes as I watch them transform before my very eyes into competent, caring, visionary professionals. Not only do they make a lasting impact on their clients, they also inspire their supervisors and co-workers with their creativity and enthusiasm. I am inspired by their commitment as they often juggle full-time jobs, families and other responsibilities. Teaching is a labor of love. Great teachers touched my life, and I can now touch the lives of my students. My students, in turn, go out and touch the lives of their clients and families, creating a ripple effect that makes the world a better place. Seeing them dedicate their lives in service to others as counselors, supervisors and leaders in national organizations is a humbling experience. I love the quote by Mother Teresa that says, “We can do no great things — only small things with great love.� Teaching is a series of small things done with great love and passion that transforms lives. Leila Roach, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Counselor Education.

Forever the Student By Leila Roach, Ph.D.


believe that a love of teaching begins as a student. The warm encouraging words of a teacher who guides you through an exciting adventure of knowledge, opening doors to new worlds and new ideas. I had many wonderful teachers and mentors throughout my life, and I dedicate this piece to each of them. Teaching means a commitment to lifelong learning and building relationships with students that nurture their development. One of the things I love most about teaching is the ability to experience the journey taken by my students. They arrive in graduate school full of anxiety and excitement about what lies ahead. The journey is not always easy. They struggle with developing a professional identity, gaining skills, understanding theories, learning about culture and their own biases, and grappling with ethics and a myriad of other issues.

Counselor Education Professor Leila Roach believes teaching means a commitment to lifelong learning. STETSON


A Time of Wonder B y Te r r y F a r r e l l , P h . D .


ach day I experience things in the natural world that simply amaze me. It is the pungent smell released by a native plant whose leaves I’ve crushed between my fingers. It is the sound of a pistol shrimp snapping shut its claw with a “pop” that seems impossibly loud for such a small animal. It is the rich color patterns I see in the scales of a snake I’m holding. The best way to share my amazement is to teach. My teaching is a two-way street. Stetson students share their amazement with me. They bring fresh eyes, ears and ideas to topics I once thought I understood. For example, one of my students, Jolie Sciturro, thought we could determine if rattlesnakes actively defend their young against predators. I was skeptical. She was enthusiastic, determined, correct and had a good experimental design. We soon published a journal article based on her senior research. In recent weeks, I’ve been talking to another student, Alonnah Creswell. She thinks that gopher turtles may play an important ecological role in dispersing plant seeds. I’ve thought about Florida turtles for two decades without ever asking this question. She might be right. We’ll have to see how her senior research project goes. Teaching at a strong liberal arts college also involves learning from diverse colleagues. I’ve grown by discussing genetic algorithms with a math professor, corporate social responsibility with business faculty, and the implications of the Minnesota twin studies with members of our psychology department. We are a community of scholars. In 1820, the poet John Keats reacted to Newton’s physical explanation of why rainbows occur and also foresaw the coming revolution in biology. He suggested that science would “conquer all mysteries by rule and line” and, thereby, “empty the haunted air” and “unweave a rainbow.” Keats clearly felt that a detailed understanding of the natural world negated both its mystery and beauty. The opposite is true. Knowledge guides our senses. Understanding biology weaves the huge diversity of plants and animals into a wonderful mosaic rather than a fragmented set of images. Charles Darwin grasped this idea when he wrote: “There is a grandeur to this view of life …” Knowledge helps us find a rainbow and then informs us to look for its faint, perhaps more beautiful, mirror image. My hope is that my teaching will encour-



age my students to develop similar values and, therefore, compel them to conserve the natural world. Most important, I teach because I want Stetson students to see the immense beauty of our natural world. Terry Farrell, Ph.D., is professor of biology and the Brown Faculty Fellow.

A Spark to the Imagination By Harry Price, Ph.D.


hy do I teach? There are many answers to this question so I will respond by simply stating that I teach because I believe that education is as important as personal freedom. I was raised to understand that an education levels the playing field and provides a person with the tools needed to adapt and survive the many challenges one encounters in life. I was also raised to understand that an education doesn’t guarantee success, but it makes the chances of being successful much greater. As I grew up attending public schools, my teachers were very inspiring. I wasn’t the best student, but my teachers always believed in me and kept pushing me to do better and live up to my potential. My teachers had a tremendous impact on me. It’s because of them and my family that

Chemistry Professor Harry Price became a teacher to pass on his love of learning. I went to college. During my college days, I had many wonderful professors, people who were truly dedicated to the education of their students. I got to know many of my professors and began to understand the significance of what they did. These remarkable people had the power to spark my imagination and push me to perform at a level I never thought possible. Their love of teaching, their love of knowledge and their desire to pass on their knowledge made me realize that theirs is a noble profession. It’s a profession that felt right to me, and so I decided to continue my education after college and ultimately received my doctorate in chemistry. After receiving my doctorate, I decided to become a college professor so that I

To Make a Difference By Luz Estella Nagle, J.D.

Biology Professor Terry Farrell shares his amazement of nature with his students.


Law Professor Luz Nagle wants to help her students make ethical decisions.

Music Professor Tim Peter feels fortunate to align his love of music with teaching. could pass on my love of learning, my love of science, and my knowledge and insights to my students just as my professors had done for me. Teaching for me is my way of giving back, my way of changing a life for the better. Harry Price, Ph.D., is a chemistry professor.

A Sense of Joy B y Ti m o t h y P e t e r , P h . D .


love teaching. I love the opportunity to help students become more passionate about their chosen subject. Learning and performing music is a very personal experience for both the student and the educator.

I feel fortunate, as many of my colleagues do, to align my passion for music with a career in higher education. There is something special about working as a faculty member on a university campus. I remember my first day of class at Stetson in August 2012. The SU Concert Choir was beginning rehearsals, and I knew that I needed to do my best at making a connection with these students. Previously, I had developed what I considered a thoughtful and efficient rehearsal plan for that initial day. Even though I have been in the undergraduate rehearsal room and classroom for more than 20 years, I had butterflies in my ample midsection, and a case of cottonmouth reminiscent of the pregame jitters of my high school basketball games. All of a sudden, I was 17 and a bit unsettled. Then it happened as so many faculty experience it: The students rolled in with energy and passion. They became my remedy and filled me with a sense of joy in my work. Working together in that rehearsal room, the students ultimately energized me with their openness, eagerness and honesty. I knew I was at the right place. I knew on that very first day at Stetson that I had great opportunities to stir their passion for singing and communicating beauty in a musical context. At the end of that first class, a young man approached me and said: “Dr. Peter, I am so excited to learn so much this year. Welcome to Stetson!” Did I mention that I love teaching? Timothy Peter, Ph.D., music professor, is director of choral activities for Stetson’s School of Music.

became a lawyer to make a difference in society, and I believe my career has embodied this sense of service. I first worked with poor and disaffected clients as a newly minted attorney. I then served as a judge to help civil society during a dark time of narcoterrorism and violence in Medellin, Colombia. I later worked at Microsoft to protect the intellectual property of hardworking engineers and software developers from copyright pirates. I draw on these experiences to help teach and form future lawyers. I know that teaching the law is a great responsibility that requires care and consistency. It is vital to remain mindful that as a law professor I have an opportunity to teach our students to make ethical decisions, to advocate for those who cannot represent themselves, to use the law for public good and not for personal advantage, and to be passionate stewards of the rule of law. I teach courses in international law. Although they are not required courses, I try to emphasize that in our increasingly globalized world, lawyers have a duty to understand international law and its relevance to our own domestic laws. I like to draw from current events to craft hypotheticals that my students can use to learn how international law applies to real-world situations. I want them to understand how those laws impact us all as global stakeholders. International law can touch any lawyer unexpectedly. Even a lawyer practicing family law in a small Florida town might at some point have a case that involves recovering a child who was taken abroad by an estranged parent. That lawyer needs to know the international law that protects children from abduction. Whenever I see the light come on in the eyes of a student who learns the importance of international law, I feel fulfilled. I have students tell me that studying international law changed their focus and influenced who they want to be as a lawyer and as a human being. A law professor can receive no greater validation than to experience that kind of affirmation. Luz Estella Nagle, J.D., is a law professor at Stetson University’s College of Law. Her specialty is international law. STETSON


My Favorite Professor How do Stetson professors influence the next generation of scholars? Through involvement in their research, through hands-on experiences, by calling to make sure they’re okay.




A Personal and Mentoring Role B y C l ay H e n d e r s o n ’ 7 7

recently encountered one of our longtime School Board members, and our conversation went straight to politics. “Perception is reality,” she said. “It’s what I learned in political science class at Stetson.” It was a telltale sign, a unique signature item. It was another of Political Science Professor T. Wayne Bailey’s students in elected office, and she was quoting the master. For 50 years, Wayne Bailey, Ph.D., has been the solid foundation of Stetson’s political science department. He has taken a personal and mentoring role in the lives of so many students, and the connection has extended for decades after their graduation. Long before people casually used the word “network,” Bailey had placed dozens of students in positions of influence all across Florida and advised any number of former students on their successful campaigns for elective office. Bailey continues to teach and mentor long after graduation. “You have only so much political capital, so spend it wisely,” he has repeated to countless former students new to an elected position. I can’t tell you how many future Florida leaders I met as a student while standing in line outside his office to gain entry into a small room so crammed with books and papers there was usually only room for one seat. What goes around comes around, and there is no exception here. In my 35 years since graduation, I could not count the number of times the phone has rung with a familiar deep and melodious voice on the other end. He would give a gentle reminder that you had volunteered

“Political Science Professor T. Wayne Bailey has taken a personal interest in the lives of so many students, and the connection has extended for decades after their graduation.” — Clay Henderson ’77



to speak to his class, and he would like you there tomorrow. You changed your plans whatever they were. Bailey offered one constant piece of advice, and it has always been by example. I have never heard him speak ill of another person no matter how despicable the candidate or elected official. In these days of unprecedented political polarity, it is always great to see politics of good words and good will. Bailey has left his mark all across our community. A bronze plaque in the rotunda of the Volusia County administration center essentially defines him as a founding father of our charter government. It also is a not so subtle reminder that he has left his mark on so many of us in public service across the land. Clay Henderson is senior counsel for Holland and Knight.

Developing Fortitude B y Sa r a h Jay ’ 0 0


rom the day he met us, Don Musser, Ph.D., senior professor of religious studies, imagined who we might become. Then he did his utmost to make it happen. In my freshman year, Musser’s student assistant was a senior. Consequently, at the end of second semester, I knocked on his door and hearing his characteristic half-Southern, halfPennsylvania drawl, “Come in,” I stepped into Don’s office and declared, “I want her job when she graduates.” He hired me on the spot. Something about Don encouraged that ambition. Over time he pulled strings so that I had an office with a nameplate on the door. He wanted me to “get used to it.” As a teacher, he was forming my professional identity. Likewise, he invited me to collaborate on revising a textbook and to coteach his intro course. On the bottom of one of my papers, he scrawled in red ink: “This would make a good entry for the Sam R. Marks Research Paper in Biblical Studies.” Musser earned his doctorate from the University of Chicago Divinity School. During my junior year, it seemed he decided that I should (or would) go there for graduate school. Every month I’d find the school’s magazine on my desk. At an Honors Conference in Chicago, he drove our group to the school and traipsed us all over the campus in freezing weather. He must have known the Oxford-style buildings and the intellectual electricity of the students would hook me. Musser once said that his vocation as a



Don Musser helped form Sarah Jay’s professional identity and with a raucous sense of humor. professor was to help young people develop fortitude for the times of suffering that all people face. He did this by exposing us to ideas that would hit us right in our intellectual hang-ups and steer us away from straw castles and with a raucous sense of humor. He treated us with the care one might give sons and daughters. The jewel of being taught by Musser is that our relationship didn’t end when I graduated from Stetson. Those four years were simply its foundation. Musser officiated at my wedding and at my ordination. He’s preached in all the churches I’ve pastored, and he’s even mailed me hot peppers from his garden. By partaking in joy and struggle, along with fried catfish and many cups of coffee, he intentionally changed our student-teacher relationship into a friendship of equals. I still know who’s in charge, though. The Rev. Sarah Jay is an ordained minister in the American Baptist Churches USA and is currently writing a book titled Love That Bites: The Quest of Adoptive Parents for Their Son’s First Chance.

A Meaningful Opportunity By Marcela Bonells, J.D. ’12


enrolled at Stetson’s College of Law because of its intimate atmosphere, its wide variety of environmental law courses and its renowned and helpful faculty members. Indeed, I worked with Law Professor Royal C. Gardner III, J.D., director of the Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy, as his research assistant and biodiversity fellow. My experience working for him helped shape both my law school experience and professional career. Gardner introduced me to the fascinating

world of wetlands law and policy through the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, an international treaty for the conservation of wetlands. During this experience, I became quite familiar with its Secretariat, where I currently work as a scientific and technical support officer. At the end of my first year of law school, I approached Professor Gardner for career advice and opportunities to become more involved in the environmental law field. Instantly, he was willing to help me, encouraging me to attend on-campus events and to enroll in environmental law-related courses. Later, on learning that he was looking for a research assistant, I applied for the position. Shortly thereafter, I began working for him on diverse projects in the field of environmental law and policy, including various projects for the Ramsar Convention. My part in these projects led to an externship in summer 2011 at the Ramsar Convention Secretariat in Switzerland and ultimately to my current job. None of this would have happened without Stetson’s commitment to providing students with meaningful learning opportunities, inside and outside the classroom. And it definitely would not have happened without Gardner’s support and guidance. I continue to work closely with him through the Ramsar Convention. The convention re-

“Royal Gardner is more than a law professor. He is also a great mentor … At Stetson you can develop relationships with faculty that will remain with you for the rest of your life.” — Marcela Bonells, J.D. ’12

Stacey Mann has Dixon Sutherland to thank for putting her on her career path.

cently appointed him chair of the Scientific and Technical Review Panel. That’s the subsidiary body of the convention charged with providing scientific and technical advice to the other bodies, including the Secretariat, Conference of the Parties and the Standing Committee. Gardner is more than a law professor. He is also a great mentor. I encourage students to approach professors and ask them for guidance. It is surprising how much richer your academic experience can become once you do that. At Stetson, you can develop relationships with faculty that will remain with you for the rest of your life. Marcela Bonells is scientific and technical support officer at the Ramsar Convention Secretariat in Switzerland.

A Friendly Reminder B y S tac ey M a n n ’ 0 7


don’t know if it’s fair to say that Dixon Sutherland, Ph.D., professor of religious studies, is my favorite professor. I’m not even sure he was the most entertaining or even the most amusing. I certainly can’t say he was the most inspiring. However, at this point in my life, I can say

that I would not be where I am today without the help and encouragement of Sutherland. Sutherland served as the Edmunds Scholar adviser. The Edmunds Scholars met with him once a month to give updates on how badly we (the students) overcommitted ourselves to various projects and responsibilities. During my first semester at Stetson, I must have walked into his office at least once a week with some new life crisis. For the most part, it was stress from being overloaded. Other times, I desperately needed to hear some reassurance that, yes, everyone else also feels this way, and no, the world would not suddenly collapse if I didn’t do well on a paper. I actually have Sutherland to thank for what most people call a “career path.” I first came to Stetson as a music performance major. I played viola. Two weeks into music theory, I discovered that I had a severe inability to understand isotonic scales and a near painful proficiency in sight singing. Forget about keyboard. As an Edmunds Scholar, I was required to maintain a certain GPA. One day after tests were handed back, I came to the inevitable conclusion that I could not continue as a music major. Therefore, I walked into his office in a panic and asked him to immediately put me in a different set of classes. It could be anything, ceramics, whatever. It didn’t matter. It’s funny,

but I can’t remember what other classes I took my first semester except for Sutherland’s class on “The Ethics of Peace and War.” I remember it because in that class he taught me the difficulty of making impossible decisions. How do you make the best decision or any decision in a scenario where nobody wins? After that, it was bioethics. If you have one heart and eight people who need it, whom do you give it to? What is the cost of a human life? This is the study of ethics. This is now what I do. Sutherland did have a profound impact on my professional development. Perhaps more important, he cared about me. He cared about the personal me that lived and breathed, ate and slept (ideally at least seven hours) and had a social life. I remember sometime during spring semester my junior year when I crossed paths with him on the quad. He asked me how I was doing and what I was up to. I told him I was probably going to go back to my room to do some homework. He paused, looked at me and said, “Stacey, it’s Friday night.” This was supposed to mean, “Shouldn’t you be out having fun?” Even now, he still has to remind me that it’s important to balance work with the rest of my life. I recently sent him an email about all the things I was trying to cram into my last semester at Harvard. He responded: “Don’t forget the social world.” Thanks for thinking about me, Dr. Sutherland. And don’t worry: I’ll put a note in my schedule. Stacey Mann graduated this spring with a master’s of theological studies from Harvard Divinity School. STETSON


Hall was always ready to help in his unique style. He would never just give you the answer. He cared a lot more that you understood how logic works. You could memorize all the facts you wanted to, but doing so would get you nowhere. I even created a poster for my dorm: “Logic is struggle and then more struggle.” At the end of the semester, Hall said he wanted me as his teaching assistant. Warrior student. Mission accomplished. Viviana Vasiu, a pre-law/English major, is also student editor of this magazine.

A Changed Life

Viviana Vasiu thanks Ronald Hall for helping her become a warrior student.

Struggle and More Struggle B y V i v i a n a Va s i u , S o p h o m o r e


s usual, the same “beloved” logic student interrupts Ronald Hall, Ph.D., professor of philosophy, with his series of annoying questions. Hall patiently listens each time until he grows increasingly impatient—and then “snaps.” “Don’t BS me!” declares Hall as a tense silence forms like a cloud over the classroom. No one dares breathe or laugh. I remember my own embarrassing moment. On the first day of logic class, I walked in a few minutes early and found him staring at me with bewildered eyes as if to say, “What are you doing here?” “Is this the logic class?” I asked. Uh-oh. I suddenly realized that I’d interrupted a class in session. “This is the philosophy class. Come back in 15 minutes for logic,” said Hall with a dismissive smirk. I murmured an embarrassed “thank you” and left. I wasn’t sure if this student and faculty relationship was going to work. But I was determined to try anyway. Another day, he came into class and was already asking us about the validity of this argument: If she loves me, then she will call me before midnight. She does not love me. Therefore, she does not call me. Everyone grew silent and confused. I knew this was my chance. “It is invalid, Dr. Hall, as this argument constitutes denying the antecedent,” 22


By Isa Adney ’09

I said with a clear voice while looking straight into his eyes. Hall smiled smugly and then asked me several times: “Are you sure?” I stood my ground. “Completely sure.” He then asked the class if they agreed with me. The class to a person disagreed, stating that the argument sounded perfectly valid. “Care to change your answer, young lady?” asked Hall. “No, Dr. Hall.” He then wrote down the argument on the board. After another five to 10 tense minutes of interrogation, he declared: “The young lady is right. It is invalid.” Hall had just become my favorite professor. It only got tougher, though. Hall used the Socratic method to teach us logic. The method is famous for stinging students with uncomfortable ideas through pointed questions to get to the heart of the matter. In other words, the Socratic method gets others to evaluate their own beliefs and values. Since I want to become a lawyer, I loved it. Hall would never settle for anything less than my best. My mind needed to be razorsharp for his class. He challenged us to the point that only around 10 students remained in class from the 30 students who showed up the first day. Or, maybe, I should say survived. “Dr. Hall, we should all receive a diploma calling us ‘Stetson Logic Veterans’ once we complete this class,” I said sarcastically. Everyone, including Hall, laughed and nodded. It was more of a nervous laugh because we were all still struggling with sentential proofs, logic problems that can require mentally seeing 14 steps ahead before finding the answer.


’ll never forget her walking up two flights of the antique wooden stairs of Elizabeth Hall in the middle of the hot Florida summer with books to help me with my senior research paper in one arm and her tiny newborn baby in the other. I had recently won the Stetson Undergraduate Research Experience (S.U.R.E.) grant and was spending the summer doing undergraduate research with my mentor Rebecca Watts, Ph.D., assistant professor of communication and media studies. Despite technically not having to work in the summer and having just

I remember being amazed at how Professor Rebecca Watts was able to balance teaching, research, writing and motherhood and still find time to give me her personal attention.” —Isa Adney ’09

had her second child, Watts was there for me throughout the entire term, giving me confidence to complete such a large academic project. At the time, she was also working on her book. As a young woman, I remember being amazed at how she was able to balance teaching, research, writing and motherhood and still find the time to give me (and any student who asked) personal attention. After I graduated from Stetson, I wrote a book called Community College Success (NorLights Press, 2012). I emailed Watts shortly after the book was published and thanked her for her guidance with my undergraduate research and for her inspiring example. I told her how she gave me the confidence to write a book while working full time and completing my master’s in education. One-third of the book is dedicated to teaching students why it is necessary to connect with professors in college. In the speeches I give at colleges across the country, I cite the opportunities I was given because of my relationship with Watts. Because of her, I won the S.U.R.E. grant, traveled to a new country for the first time (England), traveled to New Orleans to present my undergraduate research, was the commencement speaker, and won the Etter McTeer Turner Award at graduation. When I list these accomplishments in my speeches, I tell my audience: “I’m not telling you all this to say ‘look how awesome I am,’

because anyone can get these opportunities. I’m telling you this to show you what kind of impact one professor can have on your life.” I’ll never forget standing up at the podium to speak at graduation, knowing that many of the graduates were thinking, “Who is this girl?” I was a community college transfer student who commuted and only attended Stetson for my final two years. I knew I had made it up there because of Dr. Watts. I also knew that because of her and Stetson, my life would never be the same. Isa Adney recently published a book called Community College Success.

The Look By Camellia (Arab) Olds ’10


lisabeth Poeter, Ph.D., associate professor of modern languages and literatures, was one of the very first professors I met during my first semester at Stetson. Our German II class gathered in a dim room on the third floor of Elizabeth Hall. My best friend and I were outsiders, new students coming into a group of students who already knew each other from the previous year’s German class. I was sitting on top of a desk with my feet resting on the chair when Poeter entered the

Camellia Olds remembers Elisabeth Poeter’s knowing look “that can say so many things.” room. She gave me a look, one that I learned to love, though it could strike fear into the hearts of many. I’d describe “the look” as a piercing stare that can say so many things. It can say, “Stop that,” or it can also say, “That’s exactly right. Good job.” I hope I can master “the look” someday. I quickly learned from “the look” to get off the desktop and sit myself down in the chair. So began my life as a German minor at Stetson, and it was a wonderful beginning. After that, Poeter would comment many times how that first impression of me sitting on top of the desk and standing out from everyone else would always be how she would remember me. Poeter never, ever let me do less than my very best. When I was too timid to speak up in class, she made me feel that what I had to contribute was worth overcoming my fears. She went out of her way to teach a small German literature course for my friend and me so we could satisfy our degree requirements and graduate on time. She is always welcoming to students and willing to help them when asked. Her guidance helped me on multiple occasions when I was unsure of what direction to take, both in my personal and academic life. Her no-nonsense attitude and self-discipline were something I admire and hope to emulate as I continue my journey into adulthood. Camellia (Arab) Olds works as a global marketing associate for a small business. STETSON



Great Teaching Elevates Our Humanity By Karen Kaivola, Ph.D. Associate Provost for Faculty Development and Professor of English

Political Science Professor Eugene Huskey, Ph.D., an expert on Russian affairs and policy, brings his love of learning into the classroom. He received the McEniry Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2007 and the John Hague Award for Outstanding Teaching in the Arts and Sciences in 2012. He has also won Stetson’s Hand Prize for Faculty Research on two occasions. STETSON



reat teaching elevates our humanity. It motivates and inspires. It liberates and transforms. From its earliest days, Stetson has understood excellence in teaching as rooted in a “vital contact” between professor and student. Our first president, John F. Forbes, Ph.D., described it in words that still resonate today: Buildings, libraries and apparatus are good and give added power, but the vital contact of students with a vigorous and stimulat ing mind and heart — this is the sine qua non of a successful education . . . The most important thing is to find men and women of large heart and mind, apt to teach and full of enthusiasm and stimulating power . . . to develop in the student the habit of independent judgment — of investigating statements and principles for oneself, and thus for oneself discover their truth or falsity. Indeed, attracting faculty “of vigorous and stimulating heart and mind” still provides the crucial foundation for excellence in teaching at Stetson. Good vs. Great Teaching While good teaching imparts knowledge and develops skills, great teaching does much more. It helps students perceive connections among disparate facts and ideas, determine what matters in a sea of information, and get beyond the surface to deeper levels of meaning. It helps students learn to solve difficult problems, using the best available evidence and methods. It alerts students to the presence of beauty where they could not see it before — whether in an art studio, a poem, a mathematical equation, a concert hall, a business plan, a legal brief, a philosophical argument or a natural science lab. It challenges them to pursue justice, to apply ethical principles to professional practice, and to use their talents not just for their own ends but in the service of others. It motivates them to move beyond the limits of their own experience and perspective. It inspires them to seek truth and to value wisdom. The magic of great teaching arises, still, from “vital contact.” Great teachers bring who they are — an authentic presence, a full humanity — to their work with students. In so doing, they create the conditions for engaged connection and trust. And trust is what enables students to take the risks required



for deep and transformative learning. New Knowledge, New Thinking To deepen their capacities as teacherscholars, Stetson faculty must continually and flexibly adapt to new knowledge in their fields, new generations of students, new pedagogies, and new technologies. By remaining vitally connected to their own learning — in disciplinary, interdisciplinary and instructional arenas — faculty bring new ideas and energies to the classroom. By their own example, they show students what it means to be open to the challenge of new ideas, to be willing to push oneself into unfamiliar territory, and to be able to abandon old understandings when new knowledge requires new thinking. Great teaching requires periodic reflection and renewal. To create these spaces for faculty, Stetson offers workshops and reading groups on teaching and learning. Each year, several members of the faculty participate in national or regional conferences on teaching. A Teaching Square On campus, faculty can join a “Teaching Square,” where they observe colleagues at work in the classroom or lab — the goal is not to evaluate others but to reflect on one’s own teaching. Other campus offices provide important support as well. The Learning Technologies group, for example, offers workshops on how new technologies enhance instructional goals and deepen student learning, and the Office of Institutional Research keeps faculty apprised of how Stetson fares on national surveys of student learning and engagement. Similarly, those in Student Success provide important perspectives, based upon the work they do with students outside the classroom, on the effectiveness of various teaching approaches, methods and strategies. Significant support for excellence in teaching comes, not surprisingly, from the faculty itself. Over the past several years, Phillip Lucas, Ph.D. (Religious Studies), director of the FirstYear Seminar (FSEM) Program, has organized brown-bag lunches and topical workshops for FSEM faculty. Becky Watts, Ph.D. (Communication and Media Studies), director of Junior Seminars, has brought together faculty teaching these interdisciplinary seminars to share strategies, challenges and successes. Greg Sapp, Ph.D. (Religious Studies), the Hal Marchman Chair of Civic and Social Responsibility, has developed workshops for faculty interested in revising or developing a course with a service learning/community engagement component.

Significant support for excellence in teaching comes, not surprisingly, from the faculty itself.

English Professor Shawnrece Campbell, Ph.D., is an expert in African American literature and gender studies.

Innovation Fellows in Technology This year, two inaugural Faculty Innovation Fellows in Technology, Derek Barkalow, Ph.D. (Biology), and John Tichenor, Ph.D. (Decision and Information Science), are pursuing new strategies for deepening student learning with technology. They, too, will share what they learn from those inquiries with others. Our plan is to appoint additional fellows in a wider range of areas in the years to come, so as to engage the broader campus community with emerging ideas and best practices in teaching and learning.

Awarding Great Teaching It is significant that the highest honor Stetson bestows upon a faculty member is the McEniry Award for Excellence in Teaching. It is, I think, equally significant that so many Stetson faculty members are nominated for this award each year. That alone conveys a powerful message, not only about how deeply invested we are as a community in great teaching, but also about how many Stetson faculty excel as teachers in the eyes of their students and colleagues. The list of McEniry Award winners is impressive and inspiring. (The list is posted online at

affairs/media/McEniryHX.pdf.) The range of faculty and disciplines represented among those honored with the award reveals, too, the various forms, personal styles and instructional approaches that great teaching can and does take. From the time they arrive at Stetson, new faculty join a campus culture that takes teaching seriously, and they are supported by chairs, mentors and senior colleagues as they develop as instructors who meet Stetson’s high expectations.

peer observations, annual reflections on teaching and opportunities to discuss teaching with mentors and senior colleagues. Working in a culture so deeply committed to teaching provides, perhaps, the most important influence of all. For it is the culture itself — our collective history, traditions, commitments and aspirations — that both supports and holds us accountable for achieving impressive things as we engage each new generation of students at Stetson University.

Peer Observations That developmental process includes regular

Karen Kaivola is associate provost for faculty development and professor of English at Stetson. STETSON



Right up front, first day, the boss lays down the law. This is no picnic. No easy ride. No light discussions of theory this and hypothetical that. Security reports are required of analysts. Presentations, too. Required. Miss one, and you’re out. Be late, be locked out. Miss two sessions, you’re gone. If the boss thinks you aren’t contributing, you’re gone. Oh, yes. This is real money. Every analyst here is legally liable for it and ultimately has one purpose, one practical goal: make more money. Nathan Cox listened to the daunting standards, looked at his friends and gulped. “We were like, ‘Whoa. We’d better get our act together.’ Not saying we were going to slack off, but it was, well, it was real life,” recalls Cox, a finance senior. The boss is K.C. Ma, Ph.D., director of the Roland George Investments Institute.

BBA ’10, an analyst for a New York City investment bank. Hunter, Jungk and Cook, like all top George students, worked for pure excellence: thorough, unimpeachable research, unassailable presentations on solid securities and, in the end, portfolio profit, which pays for program expenses. “It’s my job to simulate as close as possible the classroom learning to real-world situations. We are here to make money,” says Ma, who has exemplary teaching credentials and years of business experience. He owns a hedge fund and brings market reality into the classroom everyday. Students work in an environment with the same standards and challenges as his hedge fund, he says. “The money in George classes is the same and as real as the money in my fund a block away. Why should the decisions be different?”

ment experience. Mrs. George stressed that failure, as well as success, must be part of the learning experience and insisted that students have a majority voice in decisions. The pioneering program she founded is unique in its conception and design. People have heard of this program. Across the nation and internationally, people who pay attention to investment education. They know about it because it’s arguably the best student investment program in the nation. And it’s a 2012 national champion in management of both stocks and bonds. The program’s student-managed portfolio, grown to almost $3 million, has won 12 national championships and three second places in the last dozen years in nationwide competitions against the best university programs. That pretty much rules out luck in favor of proven effectiveness

The analysts are 20 upper-class finance students accepted into the highly respected Roland George Investments Program. Its classes are a bit different from others at Stetson. “When you screw up in a typical class, only your grade suffers,” says Ma. “But in this program, we lose real money, and we’re legally liable due to being fiduciaries.” That means students are ethically and legally entrusted with someone else’s money — almost $3 million. “Applying theory to practical application is what the George Program is all about,” says Charlie Cook, BBA ’12, an asset management analyst in Pennsylvania. “By the time we get into the program, most of us have spent three years studying accounting, finance, marketing, management and other business subjects.” “The program removes the wall between theory and practice,” says Ryan Jungk, BBA ’10, an analyst for a New England firm. “It’s real analysis, real money, real presentations, real performance. My other classes gave me a foundation to generate ideas, but RGIP allowed me to test them, tweak them, rip them up and start new ones. I never felt I was working for a grade.” “I think more than anything else, the program provides real-world practice in a safe and constructive environment,” says Justin Hunter,

They aren’t different. That’s the beauty of the program. “They should already have learned all the basics and theories before coming here. Now each student must apply theory to make it work in practical circumstances,” Ma says. In other words, it’s time to take what they’ve learned and practice it on the incredibly level, cold and heartless playing field of Wall Street. “Wall Street doesn’t care about your excuses, your age, sex or race,” Ma tells fledgling analysts. “There is no white money, no black money, there is no female money, no male money, no young money, no old money — there is only smart money and dumb money.” Investment theory and practice is like riding a bicycle, says Dr. Jennifer Foo, finance department chair and George faculty member. “I can describe the theory of riding a bicycle, but unless students actually get on the bicycle and learn to apply the theory, they can’t ride,” she notes. “Knowing investment theory will not help them unless it’s realized through the actual practice of investment.” That echoes the words of Roland George, whose wife, Sarah, made the half-million-dollar gift that began the program in 1980. Annoyed at colleges that taught only investment theory, George believed that students learn best from hands-on portfolio manage-

in educating student analysts who consistently land jobs in leading financial companies as money managers, security analysts and brokers. The secret of its success is no secret. Alumni and employers spread the word. “It’s hard not to sound arrogant,” says Cook, “but I was in an analyst training class with students from Cornell, Duke and several other great schools, and I was much better prepared and knowledgeable of fixed income securities than most of my peers. The RGIP gave me a huge leg up.” “At first, I did think the standards were a little steep for college students,” says Cox, “but as the weeks went on, I realized it was worth it and an awesome experience for the workplace. Plenty of students leave or quit. If you cannot perform, what happens? You quit, or you’re asked to leave, or, if this was real life, you’d be fired.” “Some people do quit because it is a lot of work, and they decide to drop the class,” says Luis Ocejo of Mexico City, a senior finance major. “But I have talked to classmates, and all agree that this program gives us a huge advantage over other students. I like how strict Dr. Ma is because he really prepares you for the real world.” “My departing words for every class,” says Ma, “are the same: ‘Make your first $1 million before you’re 25.’ ”

Teaching the Pra

28 28


B y R o n a l d W. W i l l i a m s o n


The boss is K.C. Ma, Ph.D., director of the Roland George Investments Institute. STETSON



INFO AT BLUR It’s easy today to access information online, so what will the future hold for academic libraries? We know what’s taking place with new technologies and how they are changing something as simple as how we read books. How will academic libraries define their roles in this evolving and fast-moving technological landscape? Abraham Lincoln said, “The best way to predict your future is to create it.” For hundreds of years, academic libraries measured their success by quantifiable facts: the number of volumes held, the number of periodical subscriptions, the square footage of a building, the number of seats, the gate count and the number of librarians and library staff. Prestige and quality were then easy to detect: The more items in the collection, the better the budget and the library’s influence.

Stetson’s academic library faces a future where the definition of information has blurred. How will this technological haze affect teaching and learning? 30


These data have little to do, however, with our own library’s quality and how it serves Stetson’s faculty, staff and students today and tomorrow. We need new ways to measure our success. For example, measuring how well we meet the changing information needs of our faculty and students. As information providers, we must realize that the very definition of “information” has blurred. While it is now cliché to say that students are “wired” 24-7 (and, in reality, they are “wire-less”), it is a given that today’s students expect instant information gratification. The library should be in the forefront of providing instant access to current events, as well as providing after-the-fact analysis of events in the form of primary and secondary resources. New services, such as instant downloads and

the ability to acquire e-books without charge until a title is used a minimum number of times, will allow libraries the flexibility to offer immediate, targeted, on-demand access. We’re already exploring ways to directly deliver books and articles to a faculty member or student’s personal computing device of choice. That device can be a reader, a notebook, a laptop or smartphone. As the need for space declines for physical materials, such as books and magazines, virtual space will increasingly define the academic library of the future. Digitization of special library collections will allow libraries to focus increasingly on collections unique to the institution (e.g., archives, faculty and student research). But physical space will remain important. At Stetson, we are creating “a sense of place”


By Susan Ryan Dean of the duPont-Ball Library and Digital Learning

for our library — a place that is so much more than a repository of information. Students use the library not only as a research and study space, but also as a gathering place — for group projects or just meeting friends. We have recently added a “collaboration station” where students can sit at a table around a large screen monitor and work together from a single laptop. Planning is under way for our library to house more teaching and learning spaces — tutoring centers, for example. We can repurpose space that once held large book stacks and include more versatile, multipurpose spaces that focus on student needs. Increased collaboration will expand the role of the library within Stetson and beyond. Our library is engaging in partnerships with other campus units — IT, Academic Support,

Student Success, International Learning (World), and Boundless Learning — to make all of us more student-centered. Above all, academic librarians must partner with faculty to ensure that our collections, facilities, technology, instruction efforts, librarians and staff support the information needs driven by an increasingly student-centered curriculum. Fostering information literacy and fluency is an area that is ripe for such collaboration. Information literacy involves the ability to locate, evaluate and effectively use information, while information fluency combines information literacy with critical thinking and relevant computing and technology skills. Classroom faculty and librarians will

increasingly work together to ensure Stetson students graduate with the type of information fluency that will serve them well as they navigate an information-rich world. Considering all of the current changes and those that will come our way, we are continuously asking what the “right” direction for Stetson’s library may be. It’s almost impossible to predict the future. However, the successful academic library will be a forward-thinking, innovative place while being flexible enough to respond to a fast-changing environment. And our academic library will remain important because it supports good teaching and research on our campus. Despite all the uncertainties, it’s an exciting time for Stetson’s duPont-Ball Library. We hope to see you here to watch us create our future. STETSON


The Future of Teachi By Bill Noblitt



With the advent of Massive Open Online Courses like Khan Academy and those from Stanford and MIT, the future of teaching is now. Stetson experts look at the state of teaching and predict its future.



walk into Associate Professor John Tichenor’s office on the fifth floor of the Lynn Business Center and see a poster promoting jazz great Miles Davis and his landmark album Kind of Blue. We begin our conversation about the future of teaching by talking about jazz and how I delight in the jazz classics performed by Davis, John Coltrane and Chet Baker. Tichenor tells me he performs with a jazz band every Tuesday night at Café Da Vinci in DeLand. We have an immediate connection. Tichenor, Ph.D., uses this episode to describe the personal interaction that’s closely tied to teaching at Stetson. He doesn’t see that changing despite the advent of technological advances, such as Massive Open Online Courses (better known as MOOCs) and free online course content from Khan Academy, Stanford, MIT and Harvard. “You didn’t come in here and rush into your interview questions,” he says. “We began by talking about jazz and then went on to the business at hand. We began with simple human interaction, and that’s the way we teach at Stetson. “This is who we are. This is what we value.”



As an example, Tichenor describes how a student came into his office seeking help with a statistics problem. “First, we began with a conversation that didn’t touch on his reason for being here,” he recalls. “Then I helped him work through the statistics problem, and the light went on.” Nonetheless, will MOOCs change the way Stetson professors teach their courses? “The future is now!” declares Tichenor, explaining that a blend of high tech and high touch will guide teaching in the future at Stetson. “I already refer my students in statistics to Khan Academy,” he explains. “They can visit the site 24/7 at their convenience. They don’t have to wait for me to help them.” Tichenor points to the statistics textbook, Statistics for Business and Economics, authored by Betty Thorne, Ph.D., Stetson’s professor of decision and information sciences. The book includes a module where students can do their homework online. Using the module, statistics students have three chances to answer each problem and can get immediate feedback on their progress. “We should adapt our teaching to take advantage of this new technology,” he says. Tichenor believes Stetson has moved away from the Sage on the Stage to the Guide on the Side. “Our students need to be partners in the process,” he explains. “This new technology helps them do that.” He offers one warning, however. “If we give up the face-to-face contact, we get away from mentoring and move away from who we are.” Rigor, Relationships, Responsibility Like Tichenor, Beth Paul, Ph.D., Stetson’s provost, contends that the future of teaching and true learning calls for a partnership between the student and the teacher. The old teaching model of the professor solely lecturing from the front of the class is outdated, and so she believes mentoring gets lost, and learning goes unrealized. “Learning is the goal best realized by professors and students working side by side,” she explains. While acknowledging that technology is changing the way we teach, she says: “We’re in a dynamic time where technology is the driving force. Many in higher education are running to catch up to the hot new technologies and then figure out how to adapt them to learning. It should be the other way around — if learning is our goal, how can new technologies help us to achieve that goal, or not?” Paul says MOOCs are “causing waves bigger than a tsunami.” “But the more we investigate them the more we realize that MOOCs aren’t all they’re 34


cracked up to be.” These types of courses can help intensely inquisitive students of all ages explore areas of interest, but many of these courses still use a lecture format with little (or no) interaction between the speaker and the student. MOOCs currently dominate the educational conversation and have stimulated discussion and opinion nationwide. For example, Siva Vaidhyanathan, Ph.D., the Robertson Professor in Media Studies at the University of Virginia, writes in the Chronicle of Higher Education: “… (MOOCs) do not simulate a classroom experience, and constitute—at best—the efficient yet static delivery of course content. The delivery of course content is not the same as education.” He contrasts the MOOC experience with classroom teaching as the difference between “playing golf and watching golf.” In a blog post, Marilla Svinicki, Ph.D., education psychology professor at the University of Texas at Austin, whose university plans to institute a MOOC, agrees: “Even the very successful Khan Academy is founded on a lot of delivery of information, granted by a very gifted deliverer. But information is not synonymous with understanding, and delivery is not synonymous with education.” Svinicki describes learning as focusing on key concepts in a topic, and it “means making connections with a learner’s prior knowledge.” Svinicki goes on to point out that “learning means actively processing the incoming information, digesting it, working with it, summarizing, paraphrasing, applying it.” To Svinicki, “Learning also requires that the learners’ attempts receive guiding feedback.” This last point disturbs her the most. “That works pretty well in areas where there are ‘correct’ answers that can be evaluated readily by a computer, but there’s a ways to go before it works in more complex content that involves decisions and judgments.” Stetson’s Paul elaborates: “Technology, as good as it is, should not change Stetson’s mission of engaging students in small interactive classes, close student-faculty alliances and collaborative approaches. “We have to be smart in the ways we use technology,” she adds. “It should advance our mission and make the character of learning a richer experience and not be something we do just for the sake of doing.” Stetson President Wendy B. Libby, Ph.D., echoes Paul: “Although we have our summer school online courses and online LL.M.’s at our College of Law, the key is to

never let the technology supplant our mission. Technology should enhance it.” Paul also believes that a richer learning experience takes place with rigor, relationships and responsibility. She’s talking about providing Stetson students with academic rigor, encouraging close relationships between faculty and their students, and instilling in Stetson students a responsibility to others and to the world. Richardson’s Crystal Ball The future of teaching? “Let me bring out my crystal ball,” says Emily Richardson, Ph.D., associate vice president for Boundless Learning. Like other professors interviewed for this article, she notes the changes taking place in how professors teach. “When I was a college student,” she remembers, “I listened to professors who were the holders of all the knowledge about their disciplines. I would then go to the library, look through a card catalog and research the topic further. “Those days are gone,” she declares. “The information is readily available on the Inter-

“Finding connections across the disciplines is the key to deeper learning that leads to better solutions in the real world.” — Sue Ryan net. Therefore, the job of the teacher needs to change.” As she looks into her crystal ball, the future seems cloudy. “We don’t know what jobs will be out there 10 or even 20 years from now, so how do we teach for the future?” She believes the best a professor can do is to help students develop the skills to find relevant information, interpret it, and make connections through critical and creative analysis. Learning these liberal arts skills will give Stetson students a leg up in any career, according to Richardson. “We know so much more about how people learn,” she explains. “And how they best learn depends on the individual. Some need to see the information in a visual format, others need to read it, while still others need to experience it.” One purpose for Boundless Learning is to help Stetson faculty transition to a different set of skills that often involves technology. Thus, Richardson calls Boundless Learning the home for teaching innovation. It’s Not About the Technology Technology has obviously come a long way

in enhancing the learning experience. Here’s a case in point: The iPad and other tablets are amazing learning tools. A student taking an anatomy class, for example, can download an app that shows a human’s three-dimensional musculoskeletal structure. The student can then move her fingers across the tablet screen and twist and flip the figure in any direction threedimensionally. This activity shows them how the parts of the body all work together. Touch a bone on the tablet screen, and suddenly the highlighted area comes alive with the name and function. Even with advances like the iPad, Shelley Gross-Gray, director of learning technologies at Stetson, asserts: “It’s all about the learning and not the technology.” She says technology should be used to help Stetson professors spend time mentoring their students and helping students find meaningful connections with what’s learned. Right now, Gross-Gray is working with the Stetson Executive MBA program to introduce iPads into the learning environment. iPads by themselves are mindless tools. But put into the hands of all the students in a class, along with

their professor’s, and boundless resources are now at the fingertips. Executive MBA students are busy, working professionals and are on the move. The iPad can help them manage their assignments, hold an unlimited number of books and textbooks, and contain meaningful apps that all the students can use together. Another way professors can use technology to improve learning is to use Flipped Classrooms, according to Gross-Gray. “Flipped classrooms are changing the way we teach courses,” she explains. In these types of classrooms, students have already studied the day’s material before arriving in class, maybe by viewing a video on Khan Academy, using the Internet to do more in-depth research, or reviewing audio, video, and/or PowerPoint presentations provided by the professor. But this is where the rubber meets the road: During class, professors present groups of students with hard-nosed practical work and questions to help them master a topic. In this way, the class becomes a problem-solving and critical-thinking environment, since instructors use technology to streamline the learning process. Professors are then free to tutor students STETSON


in class when they get stuck on a problem. In this model, students frequently tutor other students, so there’s lots of collaborative learning and peer instruction taking place. “In this classroom environment, professors mentor their students more deeply, and the discussion is much more robust,” Gross-Gray stresses. Professor Schultheis Has a Vision Alicia Schultheis, professor of biology, has a vision. This vision is the result of her reflection and research on how to keep a Stetson education relevant for her students. She studies the literature on how students learn and has come away believing that professors must teach differently in order for their students to truly think critically, retain what they learn, and improve their academic performance. In her vision, she is a facilitator of learning rather than a lecturer of knowledge. In order to be effective, she believes professors need to embrace a learning-centered environment, like the one Gross-Gray proposes, rather than a teacher-centered one. She points out that a teaching-centered learning environment is easy to recognize. There’s a lectern in front where professors stand and lecture their students. “There’s a low level of engagement on the part of the teacher and student in this model,” she adds. Like Paul, she knows the Internet has diminished her role as the sole purveyor of knowledge on her subject. “That means my students can surf the Internet and discover information that used to be found only in arcane scientific journals.” Schultheis’ vision can easily become a reality. She has researched better classroom configurations that improve learning and discovered the SCALE UP environment, a kind of Flipped Classroom on steroids. SCALE UP is an acronym for “Student-Centered Active Learning Environment for Upside-down Pedagogies.” She describes a room with several round tables, each with a hole in the middle leading to outlets where students can connect laptops or tablets. Students sit in groups of nine around each table. There are projector screens in every corner of the room and white boards and large computer monitors on every wall. It’s clearly a “decentralized” space where students are expected to work together and where the professor is not the focal point. They can project their thoughts onto the projector screens from their laptops or tablets and draw on electronic white boards on other walls. In this classroom configuration, the professor walks around the room as a partner in learning, and thus active learning takes place because students are en36


gaged in the problem at hand. North Carolina State seems to have originated the concept for these types of classrooms, and their research shows how effective they can be. NC State researchers looked at data comparing 16,000 SCALE UP and traditional physics students and found that the SCALE UP students improved their ability to solve problems, increased their conceptual understanding of the material and drastically reduced their failure rates. “I learn best when I’m given problems to solve, not when someone gives me the answers at the front of a room,” Schultheis says. “The research has shown that the SCALE UP model can help students grasp complicated concepts and retain that information for the long-term. It’s much more effort for students and faculty to participate in a class using this model.” In short, this classroom model places more responsibility on the students, since they must read assignments and understand core concepts before they come to class, according to Schultheis. Students drive the discussion and interact with each other to solve problems together. The professor can then spend more time helping individual students. In many ways, then, the students develop a closer bond with their instructor, and deeper mentoring takes place. “This model won’t work for online courses,” she explains, because “it would be difficult to replicate this active learning environment and student-to-student and faculty interaction even in a virtual classroom. There’s no way you could interact with a Harvard professor teaching a MOOC in this way. The MOOC model is intended to deliver material to a large audience and is not conducive to extensive interaction and collaborative learning.” The bottom line? “We need to implement teaching practices based on research about how people learn,” she says. “We need to be innovative in the way we teach our students.” A Cross-Disciplinary Approach Sue Ryan, dean of the duPont-Ball Library and Digital Learning Resources, sees Stetson moving into a cross-disciplinary approach to teaching and learning. After all, finding connections across the disciplines is the key to deeper learning that leads to better solutions in the real world, she says. “We are teaching our students to become interdisciplinary scholars.” This is not how it was 25 years ago at Stetson. Students would check off that math course, check off that extracurricular activity and check off the job they secured. “It’s not like that now, and students who want that kind of education won’t find it here.” She points to Stetson’s holistic approach to

education that teaches students to be socially engaged global citizens. “A true liberal arts education is interdisciplinary by design,” she explains. “We have to find connections among the disciplines to be able to analyze and solve our society’s most pressing problems. We can’t just look at them from a narrow science perspective, for example, or narrow humanities perspective. This won’t work in today’s world that needs broadly educated problem-solvers.” The future of teaching? “Experiential” and “engaged” are two words Ryan uses. Ellen S. Podgor, the Trombley Professor of Law, also uses two words to describe the future of teaching: “practical” and “theoretical.” The Practical With the Theoretical Podgor sees the future of teaching as a blend

“How students best learn depends on the individual. Some need to see the information in a visual format, others need to read it, while still others need to experience it.” — Emily Richardson

of the practical with the theoretical. She points to her white-collar crime advocacy class, where she invited defense attorneys, who represented such notables as former presidential candidate John Edwards, baseball player Roger Clemens and Enron executives, to share their experiences with her students. These experienced lawyers taught for a day and built a mentoring relationship with Stetson law students. Near the end of the course, Podgor charged the students to try parts of a white-collar crime case, including role-playing the numerous subjects involved in the inquiry. For example, students become witnesses and have to know their parts so well that they can defend their viewpoints. Lawyers for the defense and for the prosecution are required to build and present their arguments before a judge who has a strong grasp of criminal law, as well as prepare

opening and closing statements. “Our students look at every conceivable side of an issue,” Podgor says. “It’s like an apprenticeship in the medieval and Renaissance sense. When they graduate from Stetson’s College of Law, our students know their way around a courtroom.” Podgor points out that this hasn’t always been the case in law schools. In her own law education, for example, she experienced little of the practical and learned what she knew from lawbooks and from classroom lectures. When she graduated from law school, she was unfamiliar with many of the nuances of an actual courtroom. As the one-time associate dean for distance learning at the Stetson College of Law, Podgor also knows how technology has changed teaching. In fact, she worked with her colleague Law Professor Rebecca Morgan to

put the LL.M. degree on elder law for working lawyers entirely online. But she doesn’t see a university without walls replacing a bricks-and-mortar education at Stetson. Neither does she believe that first-year law students pursuing a J.D. degree should take an online law course. As we sat outside during the interview, a large group of students chatted near us and debated gun laws. “Technology can never take the place of something happening like this,” Podgor contended as she nodded to the students nearby. “In fact, I don’t believe students would come together on their own to discuss ideas without this university setting.” Bill Noblitt is editor of STETSON Magazine. You can email him at STETSON



Sleepless in Blue Spring If you’ve ever spent a sleepless night swatting mosquitoes, you’ll understand the manatee’s plight. Longing for rest in the warm waters of Volusia County’s Blue Spring, Florida’s manatees are being harassed by armored catfish. The invasive species attach their sucker mouths to the manatees’ skin and graze for algae. “So instead of resting, manatees expend precious energy trying to dislodge the catfish,” says Melissa Gibbs, Ph.D., associate professor of biology and director of the Aquatic and Marine Biology Program. “Just as you or I would swat at a pesky mosquito, the manatee twitches and flips to throw off the harassing catfish.” Native to the Amazon basin, Loricariid catfish arrived in Florida in the 1950s. They gradually spread throughout the state. “Many people call them plecos and purchase them from aquarium stores to eat the algae out of fish tanks,” Gibbs says. “Trouble is they can grow to over two feet long. When the fish get too big for the tank, people want to get rid of them.” Reluctant to kill the catfish, aquarium owners released them into the environment, and the problem began. Already stressed by human activity, pollution and cold temperatures, the endangered Florida manatee doesn’t need any additional harassment. “It’s not too different from the python problem currently plaguing the Everglades,” Gibbs adds. Accompanied by students, park rangers and biologists, Gibbs has removed 6,300 invasive catfish from Blue Spring over the past 10 years. Once a month she slips into two wet suits (“one short and one long, because it’s cold”) and snorkels in the spring’s clear water to collect data for reproduction, age and growth studies. “We’re never going to totally get rid of them, but if we figure



out more of their biology, we might be able to control the catfish population a bit,” she explains, adding that one more year of data must be collected before publishing the results of her reproduction studies. “We are thrilled to work with her on this research,” says Blue Spring Park Biologist Megan Keserauskis. “We sometimes snorkel with her or follow in the canoe, collecting monthly samples. We also walk along the boardwalk, educating visitors about the invasive catfish research.” Gibbs admits her colleagues “come out of the woodwork when they hear we’re going on a catfish expedition. Usually I have one student every year who gets really good at it, and we can remove several hundred fish in one day.” She points to former student Justin Walker ’12 (Aquatic and Marine Biology), who was extremely proficient at removing invasive fish while participating in the senior research program. “Justin established a reputation and interned at the Fish and Wildlife Commission. Now he’s working for them,” she says. “My students definitely get a lot of hands-on experience collecting and presenting data.” — Renee Garrison

Save the Whales John Jett, Ph.D., visiting research professor and laboratory coordinator for the Stetson biology department, used to ride killer whales for a living. Seriously. Jett was a whale rider and trainer for SeaWorld during the mid-1990s. He later went on to earn his master’s degree in environmental science and his doctorate in health and human performance. He’s now in Blackfish, a documentary that received high praise at the Sundance Film Festival. The film is about the held-in-captivity majestic orcas. How Jett became fascinated with marine mammals happened in landlocked Kansas where he

Awake in Blue Spring is Biology Professor Melissa Gibbs, who works to rid an invasive species from the area.

Stetson biologist John Jett’s research focuses on orcas.

grew up. “My upbringing really influenced my love of the environment, the outdoors and of animals in general,” he says. “It instilled in me a general sense of curiosity. I basically lived in the woods at the end of our street.” After completing his undergraduate degree, he worked for an environmental testing laboratory. One morning he was testing water in an amusement park near a small tank that held two bottlenose dolphins. “I interacted with the dolphins while no one was looking,” he recalls. Jett decided then and there that he wanted to work with these fascinating creatures, so he began “sending applications all over the planet.” Eventually, he was asked to do a swim and physical fitness test at SeaWorld. “I was quickly moved to the killer whale area, where I began working and swimming with captive orcas, including Tilikum, the animal that has now killed three people,” he explains. But it’s his latest research on orcas that’s on his mind right now. In captivity, orcas attract swarms of mosquitoes that transmit a host of deadly diseases. “Orcas are mammals just like us, so it makes sense that they’d get the same diseases from mosquitoes that we do,” Jett says. Researchers Jett and physician Jeffrey Ventre, a friend who at one time was also a trainer with Jett at

SeaWorld, teamed up to investigate the orcas. They documented the death of two orcas at SeaWorld by mosquito-transmitted viral diseases, including the West Nile and St. Louis encephalitis viruses. “Orcas held in amusement parks are essentially immobile,” Jett says. “It’s not natural.” When the animals are immobile, they become easy targets for the mosquitoes. “The whales’ environmental and social requirements are simply too complex for them to be kept in captivity. “Captivity results in whales living substantially deprived lives compared to their wild counterparts,” Jett adds. His and Ventre’s research will soon appear in the Journal of Marine Animals and Their Ecology. Jett has also appeared on CNN, CBS’s 60 Minutes and the Discovery Channel. — Bill Noblitt

Animals & the Law Professor of Law Peter L. Fitzgerald, an international commercial law expert, is the author of the new book International Issues in Animal Law. A side note: He trains his golden retrievers to be therapy animals and spearheads a therapy dog program to help law students manage stress during exams. A few years ago, Fitzgerald

expanded his academic expertise in international commercial law to include his personal interest in animals. In 2010-11, he took a sabbatical to the U.K. to visit Cambridge in England and the University of Edinburgh in Scotland to research his new book. The book focuses on the clash between international trade or environmental regulation and animal law. During the 2010 fall term, Fitzgerald was a visiting fellow at Cambridge’s Lauterpacht Centre for International Law and also at Wolfson College, one of Cambridge University’s 31 residential colleges. During the spring 2011 term, he was a MacCormick Fellow at the University of Edinburgh School of Law, where he previously taught as a Fulbright distinguished lecturer. Fitzgerald lectured on the impact of international trade law on domestic animal welfare laws and regulations at the Lauterpacht Centre, as well as at Cambridge’s Centre for Animal Welfare and Anthrozoology and at the Scottish Agricultural College. This past fall, Fitzgerald returned to the U.K. to assist the Law Commission of England and Wales with its wildlife law reform project for Parliament. Cultural attitudes differ on how animals are treated. Fitzgerald observes how animals are viewed either as property or as sentient beings with rights. In the European Union, for example, animal welfare science is formally incorporated into the passage of new laws and policies to a greater extent than in the U.S., according to Fitzgerald. “The constitutional document for the European Union, the Lisbon Treaty, describes animals as ‘sentient beings’ in the same section that also recognizes nondiscrimination and equality obligations,” he says. “In contrast, the U.S. state and federal laws that pertain to animal treatment do not formally address whether animals are sentient.” — Brandi Palmer STETSON



Women Hatters Go to the Dance The Stetson women’s basketball team closed out its most successful season in school history, falling 66-49 to 11th-ranked UCLA in the first round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament at St. John Arena in Columbus, Ohio. In her final collegiate game, Victoria McGowan led the Hatters (24-9) with 14 points and a careerhigh 14 rebounds. McGowan moved into second all-time in school history in scoring, finishing her three-year career with 1,532 points scored. “Victoria’s got a lot of heart,” says Stetson women’s basketball head coach Lynn Bria. “She’s a bigtime player. She really carried us in the first half. She can rebound, and she can score. “It’s amazing that the littlest person comes up with the rebound,” Bria adds. “I still don’t get that, but she does.” The 14th-seeded Hatters knew coming into the game that they were going to have to knock down some outside shots to have a chance at upsetting the thirdseeded Bruins. Unfortunately, Stetson got off to a slow start, hitting just three of their first 14 field goal attempts, and trailed 26-7 at the 10-minute



mark. “I think the first 10 minutes killed us,” Bria says. “We had some shots, but we didn’t put them in. If you put some of those baskets in, the game is a lot closer. “Overall, in the second half, we played a lot better, a lot tougher,” Bria continues. “I am proud of our kids. I thought we fought. It wasn’t an effort problem, and it wasn’t an execution problem. We just didn’t make the shots.” Stetson matched UCLA pointfor-point and then some over the final 30 minutes, outscoring the Bruins 32-30. The Lady Hatters made a small push right before the half, cutting a 22-point deficit down to 16 at intermission. The Bruins continued to use their height advantage in the second half, pounding the ball inside and extending the lead to 24 with 11:52 to play. However, the Hatters continued to battle, cutting the deficit to 18 on a three-pointer by Jama Sharp at the 8:44 mark and then to 16 on an offensive rebound and putback by Sasha Sims with 5:37 to play. “It is hard to stop [UCLA],” Bria says. “Our whole goal was to pack in the paint. We were going to try and make them hit outside shots. “I thought our zone was very effective against them,” Bria adds. “They’re also extremely hard to score against because of their size and their mobility.” Sims finished with 13 points and seven rebounds, as the Hatters only trailed the rebounding battle 47-43. Stetson finished the season with the most wins (24) and conference wins (14) in school history, produced the longest winning streak in school history (11), won its fourth A-Sun title and played in its third NCAA Tournament.

Digging Balls Out of the Sand “We have a little beach where our women athletes train and play sand volleyball,” explains Tim Loesch, Stetson’s head volleyball coach. The atmosphere is more relaxed and laid-back, so, rather than being packed into a bleacher, you can bring your blankets and beach chairs to watch the sport. “We always get a good crowd,” Loesch adds. One thing’s for sure: It’s a serious sport, much more difficult to play in sand than on an indoor court, according to Meghan Bryant, assistant coach. “It’s a very athletic sport,” says Bryant. “It’s fun to watch and to play. As a player, you’re flying around the court digging balls out of the sand and hitting hard balls while diving to save that shot.” Tough or not, in their first year, the varsity sand volleyball players were winners. In the first tournament last year, the team came in second at the Atlantic Sun Conference tournament when two players, Mel Melville, then a sophomore, and Julie Bassett, a freshman, went on to play in the national tournament. “They had never played sand volleyball competitively either,” says Loesch. The sand volleyball Hatters have played some of the best teams in the country their first year, losing to Florida State (ranked third in the nation) while defeating the College of Charleston (ranked fourth). Not bad for a first-year effort. “It’s now an Olympic and two-on-two sport, and because of this, it’s getting a lot more attention and press coverage,” Bryant points out. Stetson students have a choice. They can go out for the university’s varsity sand volleyball team, or they can play on the club team. Nevertheless, you can bring that blanket and beach chair and watch the Hatters dive in the sand and beat their latest opponent. Let the games begin at — Bill Noblitt

Sand volleyball is all the rage on the Stetson campus.




Distinguished Alumni Awards The Distinguished Alumni Award is presented annually to up to four Stetson University alumni who, through outstanding achievement in their lives and professions, have brought distinction and special recognition to Stetson University.

of Separation with Will Smith and Donald Sutherland; Lorenzo’s Oil with Susan Sarandon and Nick Nolte; and Born on the Fourth of July with Tom Cruise. Brigham is executive producer of the recently released film Argo, which won the Academy Award for Best Picture, starring Ben Affleck. He also executive produced Christopher Nolan’s award-winning and thought-provoking dramas Inception and Shutter Island, both starring Leonardo DiCaprio. He is executive producer for Noah (due out in 2014), starring Emma Watson and Russell Crowe. —Mary Anne Rogers

leading technology analyst group, Gartner, where he was active in the development of Gartner’s original Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) model. Cheston is one of the most sought-after speakers and consistently makes presentations to customers at major technology shows more than 100 times a year. He works directly with corporate customers and develops new manageability solutions. In fact, he has around 70 patents or patents pending between his time at IBM and Lenovo. In addition, he was the original creator of what has become the industry standard for remotely waking a PC — WakeOn LAN. —Mary Anne Rogers

Chris K. Brigham ’77 Chris K. Brigham, ’77 (Marketing), of Roxbury, Conn., is an executive producer in the motionpicture industry. His career in the film industry began in 1983, when he worked as a location assistant for the movie Easy Money, starring Rodney Dangerfield. Brigham has held the positions of associate producer, co-producer and executive producer from 1995 to the present. His work as producer includes numerous box office hits, such as The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor with Brendan Fraser; The Good Shepherd with Angelina Jolie and Matt Damon; The Aviator with Leonardo DiCaprio; Analyze This and Analyze That with Robert De Niro and Billy Crystal; The Count of Monte Cristo with James Caviezel; The Legend of Bagger Vance with Will Smith and Matt Damon; Before and After with Meryl Streep and Liam Neeson; Extreme Measures with Hugh Grant; Kiss of Death with Samuel L. Jackson and Nicholas Cage; Interview With a Vampire with Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise; Six Degrees 42


publisher of Harper’s Magazine. He also served as vice president of consumer marketing for Charter Publishing, which at the time published Ladies’ Home Journal, Redbook, and Sport magazines. Rhoades joined Scholastic Inc. as vice president to launch Family Computing magazine in 1988. Rhoades then purchased his own publications aimed at small business entrepreneurs, Opportunity Magazine and Income Plu$. Books written by Rhoades include Magazines: A Complete Guide to the Industry (with Dr. David E. Sumner), Comic Books: How the Industry Works, and A Complete History of American Comic Books. He is the author of more than 500 bylined feature articles published in popular magazines, as well as hundreds of other essays on history, book reviews and film critiques. —Mary Anne Rogers

Young Alumni Award

Richard W. Cheston ’79 Richard “Rich” W. Cheston, ’79 (Chemistry and Business/ Management), of Pittsboro, N.C., is chief technical architect, distinguished engineer and master inventor at Lenovo. Cheston has been in the PC industry almost from the beginning (1982) and has held key areas of responsibility worldwide, first within IBM and now within Lenovo, such as product strategy, marketing and new product development. He spent 23 years at IBM and achieved the status of master inventor and in 2004 was appointed a distinguished engineer for sustained technical leadership. He is recognized worldwide for his insight from technology companies like Intel, customers like the Coca-Cola Co., to the

Shirrel Rhoades ’64 Shirrel Rhoades, ’64 (Art), of Key West, Fla., has enjoyed a successful career as a writer, publisher, entrepreneur, filmmaker and philanthropist. Prior to retiring in 2005, Rhoades was vice president for business development for the Reader’s Digest Association Inc. He was publisher of a number of Reader’s Digest books, including Medical Breakthroughs and The Healing Power of Vitamins, Minerals and Herbs. In 1996, Rhoades was appointed executive vice president of Marvel Entertainment and publisher of Marvel Comics. Earlier in his career, he was the associate

Amber DeChambeau Bragg, ’02 (Biology), of San Diego, Calif., is a radiology resident at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego. Bragg earned her doctor of osteopathic medicine degree with highest honors in 2007 from the Nova Southeastern College of Osteopathic Medicine and was commissioned a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy Medical Corps. Having completed an internship at the Naval Medical Center, Portsmouth, Va., in 2008, Bragg went on to complete primary flight training and transferred to the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute at NASP for training as a flight surgeon. She received her Naval Flight Surgeon Wings of Gold in April 2009. In March 2010, Bragg was accepted as a candidate for flight surgeon for the 2011/2012 Blue Angels flight demonstration team. In 2010, Bragg received both the Chief of Naval Air Training Flight Surgeon of the Year and the Train-

Law Public Service Award Presented

Amber DeChambeau Bragg ing Wing Four Flight Surgeon of the Year awards. Other decorations she has received include the National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and the Pistol Marksmanship Medal. A profile of the other winner of the Outstanding Young Alumni Award, Avantika Hari Agrawal ’02, is featured on page 49. —Mary Anne Rogers

John T. Berry, J.D. ’76, legal division director of The Florida Bar, was presented with this year’s William Reece Smith Jr. Public Service Award. Stetson established the prestigious public service award more than two decades ago. Berry is an expert in judicial education, ethics and professionalism. He established professional development programs for The Florida Bar and the State Bar of Arizona. He also served as liaison for the State Bar of Arizona to the ABA Ethics 2000 Commission and ABA Multijurisdictional Practice Commission. Stetson law students and faculty attending this year’s Inns of Court Banquet in February in St. Petersburg celebrated the life of William Reece Smith Jr., the lecture’s namesake and a legendary lawyer, who died on Jan. 11.

Smith, a longtime distinguished professorial lecturer and member of Stetson’s Hall of Fame, left behind a legacy of service to the legal profession. He founded Florida Legal Services and advocated for legal representation for the poor, served as president of the International, American and Florida Bar associations, and was a member of the Carlton Fields law firm since 1953. “A great attorney and an even greater human being, William Reece Smith Jr. embodied the values of Stetson University College of Law as much as any of our legendary leaders,” said Stetson Law Dean Christopher Pietruszkiewicz. Nationally recognized trial lawyer Bruce Ross, of Holland & Knight LLP, presented the William Reece Smith Jr. Distinguished Lecture at the Inns of Court Banquet. Ross is spearheading his law firm’s efforts to assist the Mickey Rooney Elder Abuse Project in providing free legal assistance to elder clients

John T. Berry who have been exploited. Ross is included among the Best Lawyers in America for Trusts and Estates and among the Top 100 Attorneys by Worth Magazine and Who’s Who in Law. —Brandi Palmer




Send Us Your Class Note Stetson University is proud of its alumni and their accomplishments. Therefore, we want to hear about your achievements. If you are a graduate of the Stetson University campuses in DeLand and Celebration, send your class note to the Office of Alumni Engagement at Stetson University, 421 North Woodland Blvd., DeLand, FL 32723 or email your news at If you are a graduate of the Stetson University College of Law, send your class note to John Knowles, executive director of the College of Law’s Office of Development and Alumni Relations, at 1401 61st Street South, Gulfport, FL 33707 or email him at johnknowles@law.stetson. edu. For the main campus, you can fill out the online form for class notes at forms/hatternet/deland/ alumni-news/. For College of Law graduates, you can fill out the online form at edu/forms/alumni-newsupdate.php.



1950s James W. Geiger ’59, Fort Lauderdale, published his new book Christianity and the Out- sider, now available on Kindle and ranked one of the top 100 “Best Sellers” on Amazon’s Kindle.


courts in Texas that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. He was chosen among 150 applicants. The Honorable W. Douglas Baird JD ’68, Oldsmar, retired from the bench in Pinellas County. The Honorable David A. Demers ’68, JD ’72, St. Petersburg, retired from the 6th Circuit bench in December.

Homer H. Humphries Jr. JD ’61 was honored by The Florida Bar in recognition of his 50 years of dedication to the practice of law.

▲ Joseph P. D’Alessandro LLB ’64, Fort Myers, has been appointed vice chairman by the Housing Authority of Fort Myers. The board serves as the governing officers of the HACFM. Joseph Landers Jr. ’64, JD ’70, Tallahassee, will serve on a newly formed Tallahassee ethics advisory panel. Karen Williams Pullen ’65, Pittsboro, N.C., had her mystery novel, Cold Feet, published in January. Get involved in the mystery where someone gets cold feet, a wedding ends and a homicide investigation begins! She also owns a bed and breakfast in Pittsboro, N.C. F. Witcher McCullough ’67, Austin, Texas, was recently appointed by the Austin City Council as judge for one of the few

▲ Gene R. Solomon ’68, Fort Myers, was presented with the 2012 John W. Sheppard Award. The award is presented annually to an outstanding individual who has given selfless dedication to humanity and has made significant contributions to the South West Florida Community Foundation.

1970s Alvin H. Dawson ’70, Iowa City, Iowa, had two articles published in 2012. One article can be found in The Magic Door, Friends of the Arthur Conan Doyle Collection, the Toronto Public Library. It is titled The Identification of Ainslie — A tale of literary sleuthing inspired by a letter found in the ACD collection. It was inspired by a SinS (A Study in Scandal) symposium on aspects of the career of Arthur Conan Doyle. A second article, Sometimes SinS Yield Dividends, which was commissioned by the editor of Michigana, was published in the quarterly of The Western Michi-

gan Genealogical Society. H. Stephen Shoemaker ’70, Charlotte, N.C., recently retired as pastor at Myers Park Baptist Church. Jack Brennan ’71, Ft. Pierce, has joined GrayRobinson, P.A. Rick Georges JD ’72, St. Petersburg, was featured in an ABA Journal article in November about the pet-friendly offices of some solo practitioners. Peter N. Meros JD ’72 has been appointed to the 2nd District Court of Appeal Judicial Nominating Commission by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. David O. Cushman ’73, New Wilmington, Pa., published the article “Mankiw vs. DeLong and Krugman on the CEA’s Real GDP Forecasts in Early 2009: What Might a Time Series Econometrician Have Said?” covering three economists’ reviews of the Council of Economic Advisors’ optimistic forecast of economic recovery from the recession. Beverly White Cushman ’73, New Wilmington, Pa., associate professor of religion and Christian education at Westminster College, recently oversaw the excavation of a basilica during a 10-day tour of Israel. She also spent a month in Nazareth, Israel, serving as registrar of artifacts for the new excavation of Shikhin, a village located near Galilee. The Honorable Henry Andringa JD ’74, Clearwater, retired from the 6th Circuit bench in December. Edwin D. Peck JD ’74, retired as town attorney for North Redington Beach. The Honorable Robert P. Cole JD ’75, Dade City, retired from the 6th Circuit bench in December. Scott E. Boore ’76, Novato, Calif., has been named the vice president in the Employee Benefits and Risk Services at the Poms and Associates Northern California office. He has more than 20 years of experience in the insurance industry, primarily working in the public sector and with nonprofits. J. Brent Walker JD ’76, Falls

Church, Va., of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty received the Baylor University Alumni Association’s Abner v. McCall Religious Liberty Award and was inducted into the association’s hall of fame. Barry J. Goodman JD ’77, Farmington Hills, Mich., cofounder and senior partner of the Southfield-based personal injury firm, Goodman Acker, P.C., was elected by the Michigan Democratic State Central Committee to a seat on the Democratic National Committee. Robert Hackney JD ’77, Jupiter, is the executive director of the Alternative Energy Association Inc., a Florida nonprofit corporation that promotes the energy industry. Stephen Page JD ’77, Stuart, was recognized in the 2013 Best Lawyers in America list in the categories of commercial, intellectual property, real estate, and trusts and estates litigation. Harley K. Look Jr. JD ’78, Greenwood Villages, has earned the Client Distinction Award from Martindale-Hubbell. Robert Riegel ’78, JD ’81, Jacksonville, of Fowler White Boggs was named Jacksonville’s Labor and Employment Lawyer of the Year.

▲ Judith DeRango Wicks ’78, Dunwoody, Ga., was inducted into The Order of the Phoenix by

The Georgia Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, the chapter’s highest honor. The formal induction was held at the chapter’s annual awards celebration at the Cobb Energy Centre in Atlanta. PRSA|GA is the second largest local chapter in the national society, consisting of 850 professionals throughout Georgia. Carl Nelson JD ’79 has been named Tampa’s Admiralty and Maritime Law Lawyer of the Year.

1980s Clyde E. Wolfe JD ’80, St. Augustine, has been selected as one of two recipients of the 2012 Learning Legacy Lifetime Achievement Award. These awards are presented annually to former St. Johns County public school students who have returned to the area and dedicated their time and talents to serving the community. Kelly Spillman Jablonski, ’81, JD ’91, Fort Myers, has been elected stockholder by the Henderson Franklin law firm. Henderson Franklin is one of the largest law firms between Tampa and Miami with 54 attorneys practicing in the areas of business, banking, real estate, family, environmental, immigration, commercial and civil litigation, eminent domain and employment law. William A. Lewis JD ’81, Panama City, has been appointed to the 14th Judicial Circuit Nominating Commission by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. Brian A. Bolves JD ’82 has been named shareholder at Manson Law Group in Tampa. Dana Carlson Gentry JD ’82, Sarasota, of Blalock Walters, P.A., in Bradenton earned the AV preeminent rating by MartindaleHubbell. Michael Graves JD ’82, Tavares, was elected public defender for Florida’s 5th Judicial Circuit that includes five counties. Richard M. Lam ’82, Plymouth Meeting, Pa., has been a member of the State Board of Certified Real Estate Appraisers since being appointed in 2009

by the governor of Pennsylvania. In January 2013, he was elected by the board to serve as the vice chairman in addition to owning and operating a real estate appraisal business that has been serving the Philadelphia region since 1989. The Honorable Catherine Peek McEwen JD ’82, Tampa, was appointed chair of the 13th Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee for a two-year term. Laura Marie Watson ’82, JD ’84, Ft. Lauderdale, was elected to the 17th Judicial Circuit Court in Broward County. Pamela Murray ’83, Belmont, Mass., received the Petra T. Shattuck Excellence in Teaching Award from Harvard University Extension School in May 2012. Her courses at Harvard include vocal technique work, dramatic storytelling, and in-depth study of how the accompaniment supports the song text. She is also a member of the voice faculty at Middlesex School in Concord, where she teaches one-on-one singing lessons to high school students. Lynn Welter Sherman JD ’83, St. Petersburg, is a frequent speaker and author on matters involving creditors’ rights, secured transactions and bankruptcy law. Nathan J. Boutwell ’84, Denton, Texas, graduated with a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of North Texas in December 2012. Thomas C. Fazio ’84, DeLand, working at Coast2Coast Lending, has been voted Best Mortgage Lender and Mortgage Service in West Volusia County for 2012. The Honorable Robert K. Groeb JD ’84, Gainesville, has been named an 8th Judicial Circuit Court judge. Robert W. Hoelscher ’84, Tampa, and Robert H. Risberg ’85, Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., were photographed in front of the Memorial at the headquarters of Regional Command East at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. Hoelscher serves as U.S. Central Command senior account manager, Defense Intelligence Agency.

Risberg serves as chief of staff, 1st Infantry Division. Richard McKay JD ’84, Atlanta, president and CEO of the Atlanta Falcons, spoke at North Georgia College & State University as part of its Cottrell Speaker Series in November about the economic and competitive structures of the National Football League. Morris Jenkins JD ’85, Cape Girardeau, Mo., former professor and chair of the University of Toledo’s Department of Criminal Justice and Social Work, has been named dean of the College of Health and Human Services at Southeast Missouri State University. Robert Landt JD ’86, Ocala, was elected to the bench for Marion County.

▲ Lance M. McKinney ’86, Fort Myers, certified elder law attorney with Osterhout & McKinney, P.A., has been appointed president of the Florida State Guardianship Association until July 2013. Founded in 1983 as a non-profit organization, FSGA is dedicated to promoting the protection, dignity and value of incapacitated persons through ethics, advocacy and the dissemination of information. STETSON



Thomas G. Portuallo JD ’86, South Daytona Beach, has been appointed judge to the 7th Circuit bench by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. In a press release, Scott describes Judge Portuallo as having “demonstrated an ability to effectively manage a heavy caseload and to utilize technology in the administration of justice.” Marilyn Polson JD ’87, St. Petersburg, has been elected to the board of Lighthouse Pinellas. Deborah Crumbley Brown JD ’87 has joined Thompson, Sizemore, Gonzalez & Hearing, P.A., in Tampa as counsel. William Sterling JD ’87, Palm Beach, released his first book, Terror Before Dawn: A Child at War, describing his mother’s childhood in Norway during World War II. R. Blaise Trettis JD ’87, Melbourne, was elected public defender for Brevard County. Michelle Baker JD ’88 was elected to the bench in Brevard County. The Honorable Gus Bilirakis JD ’89, Palm Harbor, was elected to his fourth term in the U.S. House of Representatives.

1990s Pam Bondi JD ’90, Tallahassee, spoke about economic issues and health care policy at the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa. Damian Mallard JD ’90, Sarasota, has earned an AV rating in Martindale-Hubbell. Geri Waksler JD ’90, Punta Gorda, joined the McCrory Law Firm in Englewood. Kirsten K. Ullman JD ’90, Tampa, presented “The Tried and True Plaintiff’s Case,” which featured mock opening statements and effective trial tactics, at DRI’s Nursing Home/ALF Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nev. Andrea Bradley JD ’90, West Palm Beach, was named president and CEO of the Palm Beach Healthcare Foundation. W. Raymond Holley ’91, JD ’97, Jacksonville, has been appointed judge to the Jacksonville 46


District Compensation Claims Court responsible for adjudicating disputes over workers’ compensation benefits. “It’s an exciting adventure, a chance for public service at its highest function,” expressed Ray. “I am enjoying it so much, from the standpoint of giving back to the community.” Laurie Riczko Ohall ’91, JD ’94, Valrico, managing attorney of the Law Offices of Laurie E. Ohall, P.A., has become board certified in elder law by The Florida Bar, effective June 2012. Certification is the highest level of recognition by The Florida Bar and displays an attorney’s competency and experience in his or her area of law. Brian D. Guralnick JD ’92, West Palm Beach, has been appointed by the president of the Palm Beach County Bar Association to the Professional Committee and the Law Related Education Committee. Linda D. Hartley JD ’92, Tampa, recently joined the board of trustees for the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay. Latour Lafferty JD ’92, Tampa, of Fowler White Boggs in Tampa won the Boy Scout Beaver Award for distinguished service to youth. Diana Myers JD ’92, St. Petersburg, is general counsel for the Women’s Tennis Association. More than 2,500 players representing 92 nations compete for more than $100 million annually at the association’s 54 events and four grand slam competitions. Cheryl Payne JD ’92, Naples, joined the office of Quarles & Brady LLP in Trusts and Estates Practice Group. Payne worked as a registered nurse before becoming a lawyer. Sheila Griffin JD ’93, St. Petersburg, the first African American woman to have a private law firm in downtown St. Petersburg, launched a new business, Monarch Business Builders, located at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg. Cindy Lovell ’94, Hartford, Conn., received the Ambassador Award at the 2012 Missouri Governor’s Conference on Tour-

ism. The Ambassador Award is presented to an individual who has supported the state’s tourism efforts by cooperating with Division of Tourism projects and promoting the state’s attractions. Cindy has left her dual positions as tenured associate professor of education at Quincy University and executive director of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal, Mo., to serve as the executive director at The Mark Twain House and Museum in Hartford, Conn., as of March 2013. Carol Mirando JD ’94, Atlantic Beach, was sworn in as president-elect of the local board at the annual State of the District luncheon for the Jacksonville Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. Alain Rivas JD ’94, Orlando, is helping expand the firm of Skubiak & Rivas, P.A., to Kissimmee. Lori Guevara JD ’97, Tulsa, Okla., has joined Graham Allen & Brown. Guevara will focus on tribal litigation, immigration, Social Security disability and bankruptcy. Jeffery Higgins JD ’97, DeLand, has returned to Stetson University as assistant athletic director for external operations. Cathy McKyton JD ’97, Tampa, was elected to the bench in Pinellas County. Michael S. Errera JD ’98, Chicago, Ill., was elected partner at Foran Glennon Palandech Ponzi & Rudloff PC in Chicago. He has also been awarded an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell indicating the highest ranking in legal ability and ethical standards and named an Illinois 2013 Rising Star. Chad D. Roberts JD ’98, Nassau, was recently named the leading corporate law expert in the Bahamas by Global Law Experts. Nicolette Corso Vilmos ’98, JD ’00, Orlando, a partner with Broad and Cassel, has been appointed to the board of directors for the Central Florida Bankruptcy Law Association, a nonprofit organization that supports the collegial and professional practice

of bankruptcy law in the Orlando division of the Middle District of Florida. Vilmos has been a member of CFBLA since 2005. James E. Meritt ’99, Gainesville, reverend doctor and senior pastor of Trinity Metropolitan Community Church in Gainesville, participated as a faculty member in the first ever Cross Atlantic Global Summit on Human Rights in Milan, Italy, in October 2012. His presentation focused on LGBT families, marriage equality and adoptions. Matthew Westerman JD ’99, Bradenton, has earned board certification in labor and employment law by The Florida Bar Board of Legal Specialization and Education. Westerman is the only board-certified labor and employment attorney based in Manatee County.

2000s Danielle Bonett JD ’00, Secaucus, N.J., was a 2012 NJBIZ General Counsel of the Year finalist in the Private Company: Corporate Compliance Professional category. Victoria L. Bloomer JD ’00, St. Petersburg, joined Gallagher & Associates Law Firm, P.A., in St. Petersburg. Kim Campbell MBA ’00, JD ’00, Clearwater, was elected as a judge for Florida’s 6th Judicial Circuit. The Honorable Catherine Lee Combee JD ’00, Barton, was elected judge for Florida’s 10th Judicial Circuit. Barbara Cowherd JD ’00, Apollo Beach, recently opened her firm, Cowherd Law, P.L., in Apollo Beach. Her practice includes probate and estate planning, as well as contract work for other law firms in the litigation arena, where she provides coverage services for hearings, research and writing. Jennifer Griffin JD ’00, Tampa, joined Quarles & Brady as a partner in its trusts and estates practice. Kevin M. Iurato JD ’00, Tampa, has joined the Iurato Law Firm, PL, as managing member.

He will focus his practice on business transactions, contracts and corporate law, marketing and advertising law, and employment matters. Jennifer Hughes Lynch ’00, Matthews, N.C., was promoted to inspections specialist II at the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. She currently holds this position in the office of the director within the organization. Robert Craig Mayfield MBA ’00, JD ’00, Tampa, is a shareholder in the litigation group at Hill Ward Henderson in Tampa. William Robinson JD ’00, Bradenton, has been appointed by Florida Gov. Rick Scott to the 12th Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission. Will is a real estate and land use attorney at Blalock Walters, P.A., based in Bradenton. Sacha Dyson JD ’01, Tampa, was promoted to partner at Thompson, Sizemore, Gonzalez and Hearing, P.A. Joel J. Ewusiak JD ’01, Safety Harbor, opened Ewusiak & Roberts Litigators and was named a 2012 Rising Star by SuperLawyers. com. Craig Burgess JD ’02, Fishkill, N.Y., has been named a partner at the firm of Feldman, Kleidman & Coffey. Robert “Bob” Gualtieri JD ’02, Largo, was elected to his first full term as Pinellas County sheriff. Jason Hamilton Mikes MBA, JD ’02, Naples, started a new law firm in Naples. The firm provides personalized service and counsel in matters of business and real estate law. Anita Williams-Holzhausen ’02, Karlsruhe, Germany, received her Ph.D. in May 2012, magna cum laude, in translation studies from the University of Heidelberg, Germany. An abridged version of her dissertation has been published by WVT Publishing under the title African American Musicals Translated into German: An Exploration of Their Transcultural Communicability and Artistic Veracity.

Alumnus Wesley Sun holds his latest graphic novel.

Chinatown: A Surreal Experience “A surreal haunted house story set on the lonely streets of an abandoned immigrant community, Chinatown blends strong elements of magical realism, trippy psychological horror and kung-fu films.” This is the way Wesley Sun ’04 describes his new graphic novel Chinatown. The plot thickens when a girl goes missing, and the community where she lives begins to fall apart. “Ghostly things happen,” Sun says, “and stranger and more bizarre incidents begin to take place.” Wesley worked on the graphic novel with his brother, Brad, who co-wrote and illustrated the book, and both integrated elements of their education and childhood experiences into the work. “We kicked it around as kids. My brother and I loved kung-fu movies as children,” Wesley recalls. “In essence, my brother and I began this project while growing up in Orlando. The magic and horror parts came a little later.” The son of Chinese immigrants from Malaysia, Wesley learned from personal experience the tightknit culture of an Asian community. These memories, along with his Stetson education, inform his and his brother’s new novel. While at Stetson, Wesley majored in both religion and philosophy. He was also editor-in-chief of The Reporter, the university’s student newspaper. “I went to Hong Kong for a semester, and it opened my eyes to the culture and the feel of the language and the streets.” Along with his study-abroad experience, he mixed

in elements from his religious studies classes and injected into the novel a bit of philosophy to create another world, another universe where monsters live. In short, his Stetson liberal arts education paid off in unimagined ways. The brothers crowd-funded the project through Kickstarter, an Internet site where creators can launch their ideas. They raised more than $25,000 from the marketing campaign and received seed money from people all over the world. The book is doing quite well and has garnered positive reviews from the Chicago media. For example, hails the novel as “a unique ghost story with a lot of heart and character. It’s an enchanting look at old and new. It mixes the everyday with the supernatural. And it has a distinctive vision.” This year, the Sun brothers plan to visit comic conventions throughout the country to promote the book. When he’s not writing and designing graphic novels with his brother, Wesley is the director of spiritual care at Jackson Park Hospital, a small community healthcare facility on Chicago’s South Side. “It’s a lot of work with long hours, but it’s also very fulfilling,” he says. And he knows kung fu. Their next book — Apocalypse Man — creates a zombie-like universe, and who doesn’t love zombies? This comic book is free to read online at their official website —Bill Noblitt STETSON


THE CLASSES ▲ J. Jacob Blake ’03, Columbus, Ohio, has joined Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP’s Litigation Practice Group in Columbus. He focuses his practice on business, corporate and commercial litigation. Blake assists publicly traded and privately held companies in a wide range of business disputes, including contract, business tort, commercial and insurance coverage claims. Theresa Domenico JD ’03, Tampa, joined the Tampa office of McCumber Daniels as an associate. Victoria Cruz-Garcia JD ’03, Tampa, joined the Cooley Law School full-time faculty to teach professional responsibility. She is a partner at Cruz-Garcia Law, P.A., where her primary areas of practice include family law and commercial litigation. Linda Palonen ’03, Baldwin Park, has been featured in the Baldwin Park Living magazine under the Healthy Living section. The article details her rewarding experience as a basketball coach for a boys’ Junior Magic league at the Orlando Downtown Recreation Complex gym. “I have an opportunity to make a difference in these boys’ lives,” she says, “and teach them the most important skills in life through sports.” Kimberly Eddins ’04, Delto48


na, pen name “Emma Eddins,” has launched her first fiction novel, FutureMaker, a fantasy/science fiction book that follows Avenir, a young noble lady, through her adventures of self-discovery and prophetic fulfillment. The novel can be found at com. Larissa Humiston ’04, Altamonte Springs, artistic director/ choreographer for the Emotions Dance Company, has been chosen to present work in New York City as part of the HATCH Series. The dance company has been selected to perform a piece from their latest production, Twist: The Love Edition titled “Wonderwall.” HATCH Presenting Series was created in the spring of 1997 in response to the need in the dance field for a cost-free space for emerging choreographers to investigate new work, present works in progress, and engage in dialogue with the audience free from financial pressure and the scrutiny of critical response. Christine E. Pejot JD ’04, Land O’ Lakes, was appointed human resources director for the Pasco County School District. Amanda Powers Sellers JD ’04, Largo, opened the law offices of Powers Sellers & Finkelstein. S. Nicole Smith MBA, JD ’04, Decatur, Ga., joined Fisher and Phillips, LLP. Brendan Burke JD ’05 is serving in Afghanistan as chief of Operational and International Law (OSJA-OPS) for the NATO Training Mission and Combined Security Transition Command. He commands the training of Afghan police as the U.S. transitions out of Afghanistan. Matthew A. Foreman ’05, JD ’08, Spring Hill, was elected to the School Board of Hernando County for District 2. Amy R. Rigdon ’05, JD ’08, Orlando, has been appointed to the Young Lawyers Division Board of Governors of The Florida Bar. J. Scott Slater JD ’04, Tampa, was listed in the 2012 Florida Rising Stars. Benjamin R. Stechschulte

JD ’05, Tampa, has opened his own law firm in Tampa. His practice focuses on state and federal criminal defense, DUI defense and personal injury.

▲ Kathleen Walsh ’05, Mountain View, Calif., has been named chair of the board of the Wikimedia Foundation for 201213. She has also taken a position as counsel with Creative Commons in Mountain View. Eric J. Weber MBA, JD ’05, New York, N.Y., has been elected partner at the law firm of Baker & McKenzie in New York. Marc Levine JD ’06, Orlando, was elected vice president and president-elect of the Stetson Lawyers Association Advisory Council for a one-year term. Erin Whittemore Lohmiller JD ’06, St. Petersburg, has joined Whittemore Law Group in St. Petersburg as an associate.

▲ Josiah P. Armes ’07, Or-

lando, received his master’s degree from Yale University. He is currently assistant director of music at First Presbyterian Church of Orlando. Susan Gregory JD ’07, Venice, opened an elder law practice named Legacy Lawyer. Ashley Hodson JD ’07, Naples, has joined the law firm of Grant Fridkin Pearson, P.A. She practices in the areas of tax planning, estate planning and estate administration. Andrew A. Roth ’07, Cincinnati, Ohio, was pictured in Details magazine for his work as sous-chef at Bien Cuit in Brooklyn, rated one of the top bakeries in America. Brian E. Smith JD ’07, Orlando, was named one of Florida Super Lawyer’s Rising Stars earlier this year.

▲ Jeffrey R. Cara ’08, Palm Beach Gardens, and Emily Sawyer ’10, West Palm Beach, volunteer with Feeding Children Everywhere, an Orlando charity created to mobilize people to assemble healthy meals for hungry children. The event, sponsored by the Church-of-Bethesda-bythe-Sea and Palm Beach Atlantic University, provided more than 150,000 packaged meals that will be distributed to needy students identified by the Palm Beach County School District. David S. Delrahim JD ’08, St. Petersburg, has joined the board of trustees of Menorah Manor.

Kimberly Hoffman ’08, Seattle, Wash., recently became a contributing writer for Curve Magazine after interning with the magazine and writing their November cover story. She is also serving as the media representative on a documentary that was just entered into Tribeca and is titled Gender Blender. John M. Miller III JD ’08, Ft. Myers, has been elected Lee County Bar Association president. Victoria Heather Newman JD ’08 has been selected as the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division District 11 representative. She has been selected to serve a two-year term that began August 2012. Jim M. Bell JD ’09 was listed among the 2012 Florida Rising Stars. Kelly Downer MBA, JD ’09, Washington, D.C., has joined the Bittinger Law Firm. John Paul “J.P.” Getting MBA ’09, JD ’09, St. Petersburg, joined Jennis & Bowen, PL, in Tampa as an associate.

2010s Yova A. Borovska JD ’10, Tampa, has been named an associate in the immigration practice group at Fowler White Boggs, Tampa. Kiryssa Kasprzyk ’10, Seminole, is pursuing her master’s degree at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs’ master’s program at Indiana University. Jacqueline “Jackie” Meeker JD ’10, Sarasota, is a member of the newly formed Koontz & Associates. Jamie M. Marcario JD ’10, St. Petersburg, has been named an associate at Bush Ross, P.A., in Tampa. Marcario joins the firm’s health care and casualty practice groups. Sarai Moore ’10, Brooklyn, N.Y., is currently a music teacher and freelance photographer and has taken on an internship at The Juilliard School in jazz studies. Elena Kohn JD ’11, Tampa, has joined the law firm of Shumaker Loop & Kendrick LLP in

Tampa as an associate. Kristina Larsen ’11, Champions Gate, earned her master’s from Florida South College in December 2012. She is working full time at Publix Super Markets in Lakeland as an accounts receivable analyst. Brennan Palisi ’11, New York, N.Y., worked as an intern to help put on the event that featured the Heisman Trophy winner announcement on ESPN. This past year the Heisman Trophy Trust donated close to $5 million to charities across the nation. Palisi is completing his master’s in sports business at New York University. Peter C. Bradshaw III JD ’12, Clearwater, has joined Dolman Law Group. Javier Centonzio JD ’12, Washington, D.C., is a law clerk for the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims in Washington, D.C. Christian Leger JD ’12, Tampa, joined the office of GrayRobinson, P.A., as an associate. David Okula ’12, Bradenton, completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill. During the eightweek program, David completed a variety of training exercises that included classroom study and practical instruction on naval customs, first aid, firefighting, water safety and survival, and shipboard and aircraft safety. Daniel Strader JD ’12, Sarasota, has joined the office of Shumaker Loop and Kendrick LLP as an associate in the employment and labor law department. Elizabeth A. Stringer BM ’07, MBA ’08, JD ’12, Tampa, joined the law firm of Thompson, Sizemore, Gonzalez and Hearing, P.A., as an associate.

Avantika Hari Agrawal behind the lens.

Alumna Shines Spotlight on Honor Killing Through her and her husband’s company, A Richer Lens Ltd., Avantika Hari Agrawal ’02 brought attention to the honor killing of women through her award-winning film Land Gold Women. Honor killing of women happens when family members believe their female relatives have shamed the family in some way. The practice takes place around the world. “Honor killing is a social malaise — an outdated, anachronistic practice that shouldn’t be tolerated in this day and age,” Agrawal declares. How did Agrawal come up with the idea for the film? “An article in a local newspaper in London caught my eye when I was a student at the London Film School,” she explains. “I also got to meet the victims of honor crimes. After hearing their stories, I felt I had to do something and, hence, decided to make a film. “It’s an Anglo-Indian collaboration about a problem that affects thousands of women across the world,” she adds. Agrawal has won numerous awards for the film, including The Accolade Humanitarian Award in 2011, presented to a filmmaker for dedicated service to social justice, humanitarian causes or environmental issues. She was awarded India’s National Film Award for Director of Best Film in English. She also won Best of Show at the Indie Film Festival and the Canada International Film Festival’s “Royal Reel Award for Excellence in Filmmaking.” These are not her only honors. Last year Stetson honored Agrawal with an Outstanding Young Alumni Award. In fact, Stetson President Wendy B. Libby flew to the United Arab Emirates to present the award to her. Her film focuses on family members caught between the traditions of their home country and their new culture in Britain. The film particularly centers on the relationship between a father and daughter. “The film has been told from the perpetrator’s perspective and becomes an invaluable, well-researched tool to understand the origins of the practice and the reasons for it to be continued today,” she stresses. Agrawal believes that if “we question why this happens and understand the psyche of a person who commits it, we become more empowered to stop the phenomenon.” She also sees a deeper problem. “As individuals or as a collective social unit, we have not strongly committed ourselves to ending crimes against women.” Agrawal got the filmmaking fever while a student at Stetson. She graduated with a double major in digital arts and economics. While a creative writing and filmmaking student at Stanford, she even managed her own multimedia-consulting firm. — Bill Noblitt STETSON




wife, Adrienne, a daughter, Reese Brooklyne, in May 2012. Nicole Tindell Ogonowski ’98, MA ’99, and husband Jason ’99, a son, Joshua Michael, in July 2012.

Erin Jones ’00 to Jason Hall on March 8, 2012.

▲ Melissa Knight ’01 to Philip Nodhturft on Jan. 12, 2013.

▲ Kaitlyn Schulz ’11 to Jonathan Ballenger ’09 on March 10, 2012. Julia M. Smith ’09 married Gregory A. Kummerlen in West Palm Beach.

Births Donna Surratt McIntosh ’77 and husband, Robert ’77, a granddaughter, Marjorie Boone, in December. Robert Johnson ’78, a grandson, Robert Benner, in November 2012. Dirk Willumsen ’86 and wife Tami, a son, Dirk Jase, in June 2012.

▲ Autumn Snyder Harrell ’99 and husband Justin, a daughter, Emery Millay, in April 2012. Krista Wells Ramirez ’02 and husband Jose, a daughter, Ana Teresa, in October 2012. Lisa R. Carrasco ’03, twin daughters, Ariana and Sabrina, November 2011. Nicole Hostetter Wiggins ’03, and husband, Jayme ’02, a son, Asher Cade, in October 2012. Danielle Gutierrez Joiner ’04 and husband Daniel ’04, a daughter, Sophia Elizabeth, in December 2012.

Chris ’05 and Katherine (Hurst) Miller ’06, a daughter, Elizabeth, in October 2012.

▲ Heather Collins Cobb ’07, MAcc ’08 and husband Derek, a son, Callahan Clark, in July 2012. Ann Willard Fiddler ’07 and husband Scott, a son, John Willard Fiddler, in December 2012. Rebeca Dellegrazie-Perren, MBA ’08 and husband, J.C., a daughter, Daniella, in October 2012. Abigail Mamalakis Luman ’08, MEd ’10, and husband, Derek ’07, a daughter, Alise Paige, in June 2012. Alisha Vislosky MEd ’12 and husband Jason MEd ’12, a daughter, Madelynn Jean, in August 2012.

Anniversaries Patricia Snowden Lane ’53, MA ’75 and Fred A. Lane ’52, MA ’75 celebrated their 60th anniversary in January 2013.

In Memoriam ’30s Ruth Osgood Shoemaker, MS ’35 Barbara Davis Webster ’37 Eleanor Warner Baldwin ’39 Robert M. Carswell ’39, LLB ’38 Roberta Morris Duval ’39

▲ Aaron Marshall ’04 to Kathryn Caddell on Sept. 1, 2012. Laura Hendrickson ’08 to Sam Rabin ’09 on Nov. 3, 2012. 50


▲ Laura McLeod Caruso ’97 and husband Michael, a son, Troy Anderson, in May 2012. Brian Huffman, MBA ’98, and

▲ Anastasia Hagen Eikenberry ’05 and husband, Robert ’06, a daughter, Charlotte Grace, in June 2012.

’40s Vaona Peterson Hartley ’42 Robert C. Allen ’43 Wanda Austin Mitchell ’43 Helene Fuller Moore ’44 Margaret Treadway Patrick ’45 Maude Rodes McDonald ’47

Ernestine Hurlbert Grimm ’48 John W. Boyd ’49 Harmon E. Crossley ’49, LLB ’51 W. Harold Parham ’49 Frederick B. Karl LLB ’49 Harmon E. Crossley LLB ’49

Sandra McCord Lamar ’64, MA ’71 Alan D. Rowland, MA ’66 Murray Arnold, MA ’67 Samuel R. Branan ’67 Kathryn Edwards Lee ’68

’50s William R. Beaton ’50 Betty Kimmel Lanigan ’50 Earl W. Marsh ’50, MA ’51 Wanda Yoder Moree ’50 Nelda Helton Newsome ’50 James D. Perdue ’50, MA ’56 Alvin R. Schneider ’50 George J. Bettle ’51 William Birnbaum ’51 John I. Bishop ’51 Thomas O. Edmondson ’51 Evelyn Brizzi Knapp ’51 Evelyn R. Pollitz ’51 Fredda C. Winnefeld ’51 Robert G. Bamond ’52 Barbara Phillips Nuss ’52 John H. Schooley ’53 Allen D. Frame ’54 Dallas E. Pulliam ’54 Marge Ricker ’54 Nancy C. Hovarter ’55, MA ’60 Mark C. Hollis ’56 David G. Morgan ’56 Frank L. Slaughter ’56 Louis White Hirth ’57 Richard K. Weatherly ’57 James Leo DeMoully ’57 Raquel Little ’58 Professor J. Tim Reilly ’58 Thomas W. Graham ’58 Carolyn Peters McLaren ’58 Ray H. Crawford ’59 John C. Lancaster ’59 Jonathan W. Osborn ’59 Alfred E. Underberg ’59 B. Kenneth Gatlin ’59

’70s Michael E. Bitner, MBA ’70 Barbara Kahn Brady ’70 Alice S. Moore, MEd ’70 Suzan M. Wilson ’70 Frances G. Lewis ’72 Christopher K. Likes ’72 Carol Coleman Fuquay ’73 David Charles Park ’73 Elna Hendrix Hollowell, MEd ’74 William Morse ’76 Nancy Jean Aliff ’76 Winton E. White ’77 Hon. William James Green ’77 Frances McKinney Bailey, MEd ’78 Erwin A. Schubert, SPCEN ’78 Norman W. Allen BS ’71, JD ’79 Mary Grisham Husband ’78, MEd ’83

’60s Ed S. Watson ’60 Ann Leathers Botner ’61 Brooks H. Carpenter ’61 James S. Rogers ’61 Jane Wills Renick ’62 Joseph P. Smith ’62 Mildred Leslie Ulrey ’62 Mary Eddings Smith ’63 Mary J. Thomas, MA ’63 Marybeth Locke Cowden ’64, SPCEN ’81 James F. Littman ’64 Francis H. Emerson ’64 Terry A. Furnell, LLB ’64

’80s Joan Laplante Pariseau, MEd ’81 Dorothy B. Wiedrich, MEd ’81 Michael T. Lops ’83 James C. Putnal ’85 Jack D. Hendren ’89 Katherine Jean Looney ’89 ’90s Dorothy B. Adams, MEd ’90 Patricia R. Fay ’91 George Z. Mills ’93 Mary Elizabeth Smith ’98 ’00s Cynthia N. Chambers ’03, JD ’08

A Life of Integrity When asked to describe his late father, Dean Hollis (’82 Psychology) immediately responds with a single word: Integrity. “He was the quintessential example of integrity,” Hollis says. “Faith was the strongest thing in his life, and he truly cared for people. Philanthropy was a given — you must help those less fortunate than you are. It wasn’t an option for my father: it was an obligation.” Mark C. Hollis, Stetson University trustee emeritus, died last December in Lakeland, Fla. A 1956 Stetson graduate, Hollis served on the Stetson University Board of Trustees for 30 years, beginning in 1979. He received the title of trustee emeritus in 2009. He also served on Stetson’s School of Business Administration Board of Advisors and the Alumni Association Board of Directors. As a member of the university’s volunteer leadership, he was passionate about innovation in educational practice, as well as the importance of health and wellness. In 2009, he endowed the Lynn and Mark Hollis Chair of Health and Wellness, a position currently held by Michele Skelton, Ph.D., associate professor of integrative health science. “I remember Mark wanted Lynn’s name to come first,” recalls Skelton. “Every time I teach I can feel his spirit in me. It is a privilege to hold the endowed chair by such an incredible man and his family.” Skelton points to words carved on the wall of the Hollis Center, a health and wellness facility funded by the family that has served as the center of the university’s large intramural sports program. “The words indicate different aspects of wellness — physical, occupational, environmental, social, spiritual, intellectual and mental,” Skelton says. “Mark really understood and lived the wellness mode. He understood what it meant to be healthy.” Hollis and his wife, Lynn, also established the innovative Hollis Leadership Development Program that prepares Stetson students to lead meaningful lives of service in their communities. In addition, he funded the Nina B. Hollis Institute for Educational Reform, a model for reform that supports education. Hollis was an inspirational leader who received Stetson’s most prestigious awards, including the Distinguished Alumni Award; the Doyle E. Carlton Award for outstanding community service and contributions to higher education; the Distinguished Service Award for outstanding service to the university; and an honorary doctorate degree. In addition, he was named a “Champion of Higher Independent Education in Florida” by the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida. Hollis was the former president, chief operating officer and member of the board of Publix Super Markets Inc., who also found time to serve on the boards of BellSouth Telecommunications, SunTrust Bank of Florida and the Sikes Corporation. Most recently, he served as president and CEO of Hollis & Sons Inc. In his later years, Hollis became a sculptor using media such as wood, alabaster and marble. His most recent work, “Shalom,” hangs in the H. Douglas Lee Chapel at Stetson University. —Renee Garrison STETSON



Learning is more than passively listening to lectures, memorizing facts and passing a test.

Cynthia C. Bennington, Ph.D., professor of biology, works side by side with two Stetson students.

Learning IS What It’s All About By Beth Paul, Ph.D.


ne of my favorite quips is, “What if doing the hokey-pokey really IS what it’s all about!?” In reflecting on our purpose in higher education, I have adapted this saying over the years to, “What if learning really IS what it’s all about!?” At Stetson, learning really is what it is all about, in large part because of the faculty role as teacher-scholar. As teachers, our primary mission is to help students learn and develop. We work side by side with students, in and out of the classroom, to not only learn today, but to develop the skill, passion and perspective that will fuel a lifetime of learning. As scholars, creative artists and professionals, we are lifelong learners. We are passionate about learning, questioning and innovating, so



that we can contribute to the advancement of knowledge, fields of study, and society. It is at the intersection of the roles of teacher and scholar — when students and faculty work together genuinely as learners — that the magic happens. This is why learning really IS what it is all about at Stetson. Learning is more than passively listening to lectures, memorizing facts and passing a test. Learning is a relationship. Learning happens when curious minds connect with one another, and when all learners — students and faculty alike — support each other in mustering up the courage to ask hard questions and try out new ideas. As Stetson teacher-scholars, we are working toward a higher aim than just helping our students learn the content knowledge they need to pass a test. Rather, we strive to learn together

with students, developing the character and habits of mind that are needed for their lifetime of learning, fulfillment and impact. Our passion for learning is infectious. It is exciting for students to hear and see their mentors wrestle with a thorny question or work through complex challenges. Even more powerful are the frequent opportunities Stetson students have to collaborate with faculty on scholarship, professional and creative activities, working together to make an original contribution to the profession or to society. As mentors, Stetson teacher-scholars model this passionate engagement and courage for our students. Learning is what it is all about. Beth Paul, Ph.D., is provost and vice president for Academic Affairs at Stetson.

PARTING SHOT Palm Court at dawn. STETSON


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Learning happens in all kinds of places on the Stetson campus. This study group, led by Lua Hancock, Ed.D., assistant provost for Student Success, takes advantage of the duPont-Ball Library. 54


Stetson Magazine  

Spring 2013