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Campus Buzz From President Allison D. Garrett

Carly Bowden

Milken Award

Carly Bowden, an Emporia State alumna who was inspired in high school to become a math teacher, won a $25,000 Milken Educator Award on January 9. Bowden (BSE 2015) teaches at Andover Central Middle School. She is shown above with Brad Nicks (BSE 2009), who was Bowden’s high school math teacher when he received a Milken Award.

Across the Pond

Research led by Assistant Professor Darren Rebar (Biological Sciences) was written about in an article for the Daily Mail in the United Kingdom. The research studied family interactions in common sexton beetles, concluding that “sibling rivalry is not just commonplace in human families, but in beetles, too.”

Arts & Sciences

Art faculty Derek Wilkinson’s, current exhibition, titled Aggregation, is open at the Emporia Art Center until January 31. Aggregation features a series of paintings depicting groups of people assembled in formal arrangements.

Michael Smith appeared on KTWU’s “I’ve Got Issues” with reporters Brad Cooper and Jonathan Shorman and host Bob Beatty, discussing the upcoming session of the Kansas Legislature.

Students Corey Mann and Ethan Bush (finalists) and Kara Mason (first alternate to the finals) were selected to compete in the Barbara Rondelli Kansas Statewide Classical Voice Competition with prizes up to $1,500. The final live competition will be held March 7 at Pittsburgh State University.

The 18th Annual Kansas-IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (K-INBRE) Symposium was held January 17 through 19 in Wichita. Ten faculty attended along with 18 students who presented 11 posters.

Political Science alumna, Jasmine Greene, has been selected as a 2020 American Society of Public Administrators Founders Fellow.

Congratulations to theatre alumna Jayne Houdyshell, who plays Hannah in the movie “Little Women,” which is currently in theaters.


Twenty-two Professional MBA students and two faculty members from Dhaka University in Bangladesh were hosted by the School of Business in January. They were enrolled in the Management Essentials for Executives training program taught by faculty across campus. While they were here, they toured several businesses in Emporia, Wichita,and Kansas City, including the Federal Reserve.

Emporia Entrepreneur Challenge is right around the corner. Come to the “Meet & Greet” January 28 from 6-8 pm at the Sauder Alumni Center. This is your opportunity to meet those with the skills you do not possess and form your team.

Chinese Students and Scholars Association held an orientation for new students on Jan. 11. Drs. Joyce Zhou and Qiyang Zhang (chemistry) are co-advisors. Topics discussed included the dos and don’ts throughout college academic life.

Congratulations to Kevin J. Wempe (BSB 2011), who was named shareholder in the Kansas City, Missouri, office of Gilmore & Bell, P.C., a leading public finance law firm.

The Teachers College

Five members of the faculty and staff at Emporia State University received awards on Jan. 8 for their work within The Teachers College. Dr. Basil Kessler received the Excellence in Instruction Award. Dr. Damara Paris was presented the Excellence in Scholarly Activity Award. Dr. Lendi Bland received the Excellence in Service Award. Dr. Clinton Longacre received the Darrell E. Wood Service Award. Dr. Gaelynn Wolf Bordonaro received the Ervay Family Award for Applied Scholarship.

Sixteen educators mentored through ESU’s Great Plains Center for National Teacher Certification attained first-time national board certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Teachers learned in December whether they had become National Board Certified Teachers. The Great Plains Center for National Teacher Certification has an estimated a 78% initial certification rate over the past 14 years.

Three alumni were named 2020 Kansas Horizon Award Winners: Heather Corley (MS 2015, IDT), FACS teacher in USD 365 Garnett; Elly Dice (BSE 2017, Social Sciences), who teaches in USD 251 North Lyon County; and Lillian Lingenfelter (BSE 2018, Social Sciences), who teaches in USD 398 Peabody-Burns. The Kansas Horizon Award program identifies and recognizes exemplary first-year K-12 teachers. They will be honored at a special ceremony in Topeka on February 14.

Congratulations to Dr. Jessica Dain (BSE 1995 English and Physical Education; MS 1998 Educational Administration), who was named superintendent of the Piper, Kansas, school district for the 2020-21 school year. She currently is assistant superintendent of support services and middle school education for the Olathe School District.

Five alumni of Emporia State are members of the 2020 Kansas Teacher of the Year Team. They are Kara Belew (MAT 2011, Art History); Amy Hillman (MS 2011, Master Teacher Elementary Concentration); Shawn Hornung (BS 1996, Sociology); Julie Loevenstein (BSE 1984, Elementary Education); and Lara McDonald (former student). The team will visit campus and present to education majors and members of the community on February 4.

Congratulations to Jon Parker (MS 2016 HPER), who was named head women’s tennis coach at Southwest Minnesota State University.

Library & Information Management

Graduation for the Denver cohort was on January 12. Congratulations to the latest SLIM graduates!

SLIM alumna Terrilyn Chun (OR MLS 2009) is the deputy director of Multnomah County Library in Oregon, and served as an advisor to the National Impact of Library Public Programs Assessment with the American Library Association’s Public Programs Office.

Abbie Lavin (BSE 2019) recently won an award from the Kansas Association of American Educators. Lavin is a new first grade teacher in USD 512 Shawnee Mission.

Congratulations to alumna Samantha White, who was named new children’s librarian at the Ukiah (California) Public Library.

Student Affairs

Thirteen Emporia State students attended the five-day leadership retreat “Leaders for the Common Good,” facilitated by the Center for Student Involvement. This retreat challenged participants to learn and apply adaptive leadership techniques to their lives.


Emporia State combined for seven event championships as the Hornet men and women track and field athletes swept the team titles at the Wichita State Shocker Prelude in Wichita on January 17. The Emporia State women had five of the championships while the men won two events.

Emporia State’s Tre’Zure Jobe earned her second straight and third overall MIAA Women’s Basketball Player of the Week honor after averaging 24.0 points in two wins by the Lady Hornets earlier this month.

Emporia State’s Brandon Rhone earned MIAA Men’s Track & Field Track Athlete of the Week honors. The junior from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, had a part of two event championships to help lead Emporia State to the team title at the Shocker Prelude.

Emporia State linebacker Jace McDown and defensive back Lawson Holbert both earned first-team All-Super-Region 3 honors from the Don Hansen Football Committee.


Dr. Steven Lovett, School of Business, presented a day-long professional development course, “Leadership - Compliance and Soft Skills,” for the executive and administrative staff of Newman Regional Health in Emporia on Dec. 19.


Social Sciences faculty, Dr. John Barnett’s, article, “Aquaculture Policies in the Thanh Hoa Province in Vietnam,” co-authored with Khanh Nguyen, appeared in the July 2019 issue of the Journal of Asian Politics and Society.

A paper by Kennedy Mwangi (business graduate student), Dr. Jun Yu, and Dr. Joyce Zhou was recently published in the Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness.

SLIM alumnus Terrilyn Chun (OR MLS 2009) wrote “Get With the Programming” for American Libraries Magazine.