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Campus Buzz From President Allison D. Garrett

Professor being interviewed on ESU's campus

On Today Show

Dr. Jim Persinger, professor of psychology, and Kaylee Lacey, freshman pre-nursing major, were interviewed in November for NBC’s Today Show about parents using the Life360 app to keep track of their adult children. The finished package aired Jan. 7.

Fun in the Snow

An invitation from President Allison Garrett brought students to the front of Plumb Hall on Feb. 12 to make snow angels in the lawn. After the angels were finished, students enjoyed snowball fun and built snow people across campus.

Arts & Sciences

Senior Bachelor of Fine Arts student Charlotte Blackwell had a solo exhibit of her ceramics work titled "Face It" in the Gilson Gallery from Jan. 24 to Feb. 7. Included in the show were over 40 "Monster Mugs" as well as other sculptures and vessels, and the reception on Jan. 28 was very well-attended.

Dr. Rochelle Rowley, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Crime and Delinquency Studies, has been elected to serve as Kansas State Director of the Midwest Sociological Society.

Works by ESU Clay Guild students members Charlotte Blackwell, Joseph Lane, Cody Navrat and Jesse Streiff are featured in an exhibit of ceramic artwork at the Emporia Presbyterian Manor during the month of February. Students, Ceramics Assistant Professor Stephanie Lanter, and volunteers from the Emporia Arts Center will facilitate a hands-on clay workshop for residents on Thurs., Feb. 27 from 11:15 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., followed by a public exhibit reception from 1 to 3 p.m.

Congratulations to Katlynn Stiers, a Crime and Delinquency Studies major, who received an internship at the Worlds of Fun security department during summer 2020.


Tiffany Wilson, alumni programs coordinator; Jose Feliciano, director of alumni relations; and Fionna Lee, alumni programs coordinator, attended the Council for Advancement and Support of Education District VI Conference in Kansas City, Missouri. While there they picked up the silver award for “department or unit branding program” and platinum for “best practices in alumni relations.”

The Teachers College

Tasia Markowitz, Assistant Director of the Kansas Masonic Literacy Center, co-hosted a children's author visit with Emporia Public Library, Read Lyon County, Lyon County History center and Ellen Plumb's City Bookstore on February 8. Author Alastrair Heim presented "The Dynamics of a Great Read Aloud" to early childhood professionals followed by a child- and family-centered event. Alastair's message to children was to stay creative throughout your childhood

Congratulations to Kathy Hageman (BSE 1982) who won two awards from the Kansas Press Association for articles she wrote for the Abilene Reflector-Chronicle.

Library & Information Management

Congratulations to Sam Jack (Emporia MLS 2016), public relations and special services supervisor at the Newton Public Library. Jack worked for the Times-Sentinel newspaper while earning his MLS degree.

Jessica Fredrickson (Colorado MLS 2017) was elected to the Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy Steering Committee and will be serving on the Advocacy and Training Subcommittee. Jessica is currently the Youth Services Librarian at the Douglas County (Colorado) Libraries.

Sarah Jones (Emporia MLS 2016) is the new director of the Carlsbad (New Mexico) Public Library. She took over the role Feb. 10 after the previous director retired.

Student Affairs

Congratulations to Daniel Fragel, assistant director of Recreation Services, who recently was selected to serve as the Director of the All-Tournament Committee for the 2020 Tri-State Basketball Tournament.

Grayson Graham, graduate assistant for Recreation Services, was elected to serve as the Student Representative for Region IV for the National Intramural and Recreational Sports Associations.


Emporia State had five provisional and two automatic qualifier along two school records and four other marks that are in the Hornets all-time top five on Feb. 15 at the Gorilla Classic in Pittsburg.

Emporia State's Tre'Zure Jobe earned her fourth overall MIAA Women's Basketball Player of the Week honor after averaging 19.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 5.0 steal in two wins by the Lady Hornets earlier in February. It is the most times a Lady Hornet has earned MIAA Player of the Week since Kelly Moten did it five times on the way to being named WBCA NCAA Division II National Player of the Year in 2017.

Koch Center

Dr. Crystal Dozier, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Wichita State University, delivered a Governance, Law & Economics lecture entitled “The Myth of Primitive Socialism” on February 10.

Students in the Adam Smith Club hosted a viewing and discussion of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” as part of their Liberty at the Movies series on February 11.


On February 6, Dr. Derek Yonai was the keynote speaker at the Aiken Business Leadership Symposium hosted by the School of Business at the University of South Carolina Aiken. He presented “The Need for Free Enterprise Education in Business” to a packed room of students and addressed questions related to the future of higher education and the future of business education.

Dr. Dennis Kear, Executive Director of the Kansas Masonic Literacy Center, presented on February 11 in Topeka to the Kansas Board of Education what KMLC is doing to support families with children under 5 years of age. This includes offering a free online course, The Growing Brain, to childcare providers across the state; supporting early literacy in Barber and Linn Counties using a Kansas Health Foundation grant and a matching grant from KMLC; holding a PLAY Conference June 6 on ESU’s campus; and supporting kindergarten readiness in the 11 school districts in Coffey, Lyon and Osage Counties with the W.S & E.C. Jones Trust’s Mobilizing Literacy grant.

Dr. Sunnin Keosybounheuang, chair of the committee on health education, presented the Higher Education Standards for Health Education to the Kansas Board of Education on February 11. It was the second reading of the standards and they as well as the PE Higher Education Standards were approved.


Michael Smith is the editor of a new book, “Much Sound and Fury or the New Jim Crow: The Twenty-First Century’s Restrictive New Voting Laws and Their Impact in the States.” The book includes chapters written by ESU’s Bekah Selby and Brian Hollenbeck. It has been accepted for publication by SUNY Press (State University of New York). The book should be out later this year or in 2021.

Dr. Sara Schwerdtfeger contributed a chapter in a book being published this month. “Mistakes We Have Made: Implications for Social Justice Educators,” will be available from Myers Education Press in March.


Dr. Adelaide Akers, mathematics professor took ESU students Elisabeth Evans (Mathematics Education), Paula Galvez (Mathematics & Physics) and Maggie White (Mathematics Education) to the 22nd Annual Nebraska Conference for Undergraduate Women in Mathematics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln January 31 through February 2. This conference is the country’s premiere conference for undergraduate women in mathematics. Its focus is to encourage and mentor undergraduate women to pursue graduate study in mathematics and seek mathematical careers.