Monday, December 5, 2011

November Accomplishments

Pretty Cool Things Accomplished By EFLJers in November:

Dawn Terrick presented the paper “Coming in From the Boundaries: A Learning Community that Unites Elementary School Children with First-Generation College Students to Illustrate the Possibilities of Education” at the 16th Annual National Learning Communities Conference, hosted by Harper College, in Chicago, IL

Susan Hennessy attended the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages annual meeting in Denver. She presented the Missouri Foreign Language Collaboration Initiative.

Exhibitions/Publications/Peer Review
Susan Hennessy’s article "Academy of Future French Teachers: A Plan for Recruiting" appeared in the November issue of the American Association of Teachers of French (AATF) National Bulletin.

Student/Community Involvement/Successes
Approximately 30 freshmen honors students attended a presentation by Beth Schild, former Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal, West Africa. This event reflects the theme of Susan Hennessy’s HON 195 this semester: Being a World Citizen.

Jane Frick led a breakout session, "Building Relationships with Your State Department of Education" at the National Writing Project's annual meeting, held in Chicago, November 17-18. Frick also coordinated the delivery of Prairie Land Writing Project's "Making and Technical Writing" workshop, held at Missouri Western on November 12. The workshop was funded by a National Writing Project grant from the MacArthur Foundation and the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Kaye Adkins, MWSU English professor, was the workshop conference keynote speaker; thirty-five area teachers participated.

Jeanie Crain completed her third reaffirmation review for AQIP

The rest of us will try to amount to something soon.

Mary Stone Dockery Nominated for a Pushcart Prize

Mary Stone Dockery, and English alum and KU graduate student, has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Blood Lotus: An Online Literary Journal. The nomination is under the "Best of the Small Press Series."

The process for nomination is explained on the Pushcart Prize site: "Little magazine and small book press editors (print or online) may make up to six nominations from their year’s publications by our December 1, (postmark) deadline. The nominations may be any combination of poetry, short fiction, essays or literary whatnot."

Congratulations on the nomination, Mary! Do let us know if you get the whatnot award.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Ana Bausset-Page Becomes Grandmother

It continually surprises us in EFLJ, a department comprised exclusively of thirty-year-old faculty, when one of our own claims grandchildren. Ana Bausset-Page, brand new to our Spanish faculty, makes such a claim.

Little Evie, short for "Evelyn Perl Kirk," was born on November 23, 2011 (when Dana Andrews last turned 39). She was a home delivery. She weighed in at 6lbs, 8oz and measured 21 inches long. Ana's oldest son Ivan and his wife Christina are the proud parents. As you can see from the photo, Evie is actually a cute baby, unlike most of them who simply look like Winston Churchill with gas.

Evie has a two-year-old brother named Max. Nobody has asked Max, undoubtedly a "Wild Thing," what he thinks of all this. We are certain to find out.

Contratulations, Nana Ana!

Alumnus Tracy Jones Teaches Abroad

Tracy Jones, a 1998 graduate with a BA in English/Writing, has taken his talents overseas.

Tracy completed an MA in TESOL at London Metropolitan Unversity in 2009 and continued to teach ESL students in London until the following year. He returned to South Korea in 2010 to work for a former employer, and was later recruited to help launch a new English language center in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

In 2011, Tracy accepted a position as an English Lecturer at Raffles International College HCMC, a Singapore-based group of design/business colleges and universities with 37 campuses throughout Asia and Oceania.

Tracy can be reached at

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Alum Raises Money for Abused Children

EFLJ alumna LeAnn Neal Reilly announces her plan to donate income from book sales to Heath Evans Foundation as response to Penn State Case

Prompted by recent news reports of child rape at Pennsylvania State University, LeAnn
announced that she plans to donate a portion of her income from her second novel, Saint Sebastian‘s Head, to the Heath Evans Foundation (HEF). HEF, a charity founded by veteran NFL player Heath Evans, provides counseling and therapy to victims of childhood sexual abuse. Saint Sebastian‘s Head, which The Midwest Book Review calls "thoughtful and riveting," features an adult narrator dealing with the lasting effects of childhood sexual abuse among other serious issues.

LeAnn believes that Saint Sebastian's Head is particularly appropriate for her efforts to raise money for real-life victims of sexual abuse. Narrated by Weeble, a young woman nicknamed for her ability to keep her balance in challenging situations, the novel unflinchingly explores the lasting damage from childhood sexual abuse and Weeble‘s subsequent struggle to overcome its effects.

"Having worked so many years as a civil rights attorney, I think I 'get‘ damaged people," said Janie Hickok Siess, who recently reviewed Saint Sebastian‘s Head on her book review site Colloquium. "I‘ve represented a number of folks who survived traumatic events—for example, in the workplace, from sexual harassment, or from retaliation—and suffered from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Although PTSD isn‘t named in Saint Sebastian‘s Head, it‘s really at the core of Weeble‘s issues, I believe. Her behavior as a victim of sexual abuse rang true."

Cases like that at Penn State along with a strong desire to portray healing for victims motivated Neal Reilly to write Saint Sebastian‘s Head. The novel, narrated in two timelines, is partly set
in St. Joseph and partly inspired by the murders of Eric Christgen and Michelle Steele, which Neal Reilly recalls from her childhood. "Real life isn‘t as neatly tied up as a novel, but I want to make a difference for children who‘ve been sexually abused, if it‘s possible," Neal Reilly said. "Raising money for an organization that tries to bring healing and hope to those who have been hurt is a start."

Neal Reilly is also the author of The Mermaid‘s Pendant. She lives just outside Boston with her family. Saint Sebastian‘s Head, released on November 1, is available as a trade paperback edition and an ebook edition through online retailers and can be ordered through bookstores nationwide. Check out her website:




Friday, November 11, 2011

El Dia de los Muertos

On November 1st the Spanish Club celebrated “El Día de los Muertos” (Day of the Dead). The large attendance, way over room capacity, made for a great celebration. The event was conducted by Eric McCrerey, The Spanish Club president.

Club advisors Dr. Castilla Ortiz and Dr. Bausset-Page used the event to teach students about this cultural event, especially the differentiation between El Día de los Muertos and Halloween

Students had a chance to color some skulls and share pan de los muertos (bread of the Dead). The walls were decorated with typical festival art found in many areas of Mexico throughout Latin America.

Dr. Bausset-Page had activities involving jargon and images about this special day in which the living and the dead celebrate life from an eternal perspective. As is typical, an altar was built to honor a dead person, in this case the 10th anniversary since the departure of the father of Dr. Castilla.

Spanish Immersion Day

On November 5th The Foreign Language Faculty hosted a Spanish Immersion Day for high school teachers from surrounding schools. The day was filled with language practice and revision, cooking together Spanish dishes, oral games, a film discussion.

This is the first such encounter organized by our EFLJ foreign languages faculty in an effort to maintain and increase language skills among those teaching in regional high schools. Foreign language teachers, especially those without colleagues in their high schools, do not have many opportunities to maintain their language proficiency level.

Dr. Eduardo Castilla-Ortiz reports that the enthusiasm was high among the participants, all happy to have the chance to stay “en español” all day long with himself and Dr. Bausset-Page, both of whom are native Spanish-speakers. All day Saturday was spent sharing time, instruction, fun, and assessing the real needs of our foreign language teacher colleagues.

Participants were awarded certificates acknowledging this professional growth activity.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

October Student and Faculty Activities

Here is what faculty and students were up to in the month of October:

Eduardo Castilla-Ortiz presented the paper "Gay and Grey: Subjectivity Challenged in Literary Narrative" at the 36th Annual European Studies Conference in Omaha, Nebraska.

Susie Hennessy presented the paper "Thou Shalt Be Fruitful" at the annual Nineteenth-Century French Studies Colloquium in Philadelphia.

Elizabeth Latosi-Sawin presented her paper "Models of Interdisciplinary Education" at the National College Honors Council conference in Phoenix, Arizona. She also participated in the meeting of the Teaching and Learning Committee of which she is a member and supervised undergraduate students in their exploration of Phoenix in one of the many City-as-Text excursions.

Kay Siebler presented the paper "What's So Femininst About Garters and Bustiers?: Is Neo-Burlesque Feminst Rhetoric of Patriarchy Recast?" at the national conference of Feminism(s) and Rhetoric(s) at Minnesota State University.

Ann Thorne presented two sessions at the 90thAnnual ACP/CMA National College Media Convention. The sessions were “Making it Fresh: Yearbook Story Ideas that Work,” and “Successful Yearbook Leadership.”

Kaye Adkins attended the international conference of the Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication, October 6-8 at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, where she participated in the Administrator's Roundtable. Dr. Adkins is Treasurer for the organization.

Susie Hennessy attended the meeting of the Foreign Language Association of Missouri in St. Louis, where she met with consortium partners regarding collaboration for French and German.

Ken Rosenauer attended the Fall National College Media Convention in Orlando, where he delivered a report to the CMA Board of Directors, on which he sits as immediate past president of the organization. He also presented a session on CMA's Adviser Advocacy Program, which he leads and which assists media advisers when actions are taken against them in the performance of their duties. Rosenauer has been a CMA member since 1980, served as its president 2007-09, and is a member of its Hall of Fame.

Mike Cadden published the article “The Verse Novel and the Question of Genre” in the fall issue of The ALAN Review, the journal of the Assembly on Literature for Adolescents of the National Council of Teachers of English.

Bob Bergland, along with coauthors Cliff Brockman from Wartburg College and MWSU convergent media student and Griffon News Editor David Hon, presented a research paper at the National College Media Convention, "Pacemaker Winners' Circle: A study of Multimedia, Interactivity, Distribution and Content Management Systems at Top Newspaper Websites." The paper received the Ken Nordin Award for the top research paper presented at the conference.

Prairie Lands Writing Project sponsored its tenth annual “When Writing Teachers Write” Forum on Wednesday, October 19, at Missouri Western State University as a prequel celebration of the National Day on Writing, which followed on Thursday, October 20. Area teachers and Missouri Western English faculty, members Rosetta Ballew-Jennings, Joseph Marmaud, and Tom Pankieiwicz read their original poetry and prose.

Prairie Lands Writing Project and the Department of English, Foreign Languages, and Journalism sponsored "Going for the Gold" pizza and writing workshops here at Missouri Western on three consecutive Thursdays, beginning October 27--for teachers and their students planning to enter the 2012 Scholastic Writing Awards Contest . English faculty members Bill Church, Michael Charlton, and Rosetta Ballew-Jennings conducted fiction writing, personal essay writing, and poetry writing workshops, respectively, at the sessions, which concluded with the students revising and critiquing the pieces they brought to the workshops.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Griffon Yearbook Wins Awards . . . Again!

The Griffon Yearbook took Second Place Best of Show at the National College Media Convention in Orlando, Florida. The yearbook was entered in the under-300 pages yearbook division.

The editor-in-chief of the 2011 yearbook was Raphael'le Drew. Photo editors were Kelsey Saythany photo editor (fall semester), and Robin Gann (spring) semester. Erica Stevens was design editor (fall semester) and Hanna Greenwell was design editor (spring semester). Jourdan Huffman was copy editor. Assistant editors included Sarah Hatten, Lindsey Roberts, Courtney Slater and Heather Heater.

Congratulations to Dr. Ann Thorne, Yearbook Adviser, and the 2011 staff on representing the Yearbook, EFLJ, Missouri Western, and themselves so well!

Creative Writing Workshop and More to Come

Dr. Bill Church, Western creative writing professor, led a "Going for the Gold" pizza and fiction writing workshop at Missouri Western on October 27 for teachers and their students, grades seven - 12, planning to enter the national Scholastic Writing Awards Contest.

Following Church's presentation, students shared their fiction contest pieces in critique groups (shown here). The "Going for the Gold" workshop was the first of three, sponsored by the EFLJ department and Prairie Lands Writing Project; coming this week: personal essay workshop conducted by Western English professor Michael Charlton; coming in two weeks; poetry writing workshop conducted by Western adjunct English professor Rosetta Ballew-Jennings; on November 12, Dr. Kaye Adkins conducts a professional writing workshop.

For more information on those upcoming events, please see the Prairie Lands Writing Project events page.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Faculty Once Again Defeat Media

The Faculty “Heroes” (for what other name would suffice, Dear Reader?) once again defeated the Team of Media Outlets and Various Students (team name: “Huns”) in last night’s Eight Annual Griffon Basketball Tip-Off Party.

The Heroes, eight hale and valorous faculty and staff (Bergland, Bergman, Cadden, Ellis, Johnson, Lawley, Rhoad, and Unzicker), were comprised of no less than 24.3% EFLJ faculty. Bob “The Point Factory” Bergland (person with ball in picture) fought off both student elbows and his mid-forties to score forty-five of the thirty-six points that it took to beat the dreaded Huns. “I did what I could, and what I could was pretty darned impressive, If I say so myself,” Bob offered. While Mike “Moral Support” Cadden (short person without the ball in above picture) scored no “points,” his constant helpful comments such as “Atta boy, Bob” and “Way to take that rock to the hole, Bob!” and “Yea, Bob!” were considered by some to be the difference in a close game.

Down 22-10 in the early going, the Heroes decided that on defense they would stand between the Huns and the basket at which they appeared to be shooting. This strategy, drawn up in animated fashion on a white board at court’s edge, proved vital in the contest’s outcome. The Faculty prevailed 36-31.

The final minute saw the Heroes employing a “four-corners” strategy in which they held the ball in order to keep the other team from scoring. The consensus of the Heroes following the game was that this was much less tiring than actual basketball and would be employed immediately next year with the plan of winning 2-0.

Congratulations, Faculty. The students needed another reason to love you so.

EFLJ team "Dangling Prepositions" wins Trivia Contest

The medieval "trivium" consisted of the lower division of the seven liberal arts: grammar, rhetoric, and logic. How fitting, then, that a crack team from EFLJ, "The Dangling Prepositions," took last night's "Off the Wall Trivia Night" charity event sponsored by The Center for Community Arts at Missouri Western.

"Danglin'" teammate C.J. Jenéy reports that they "smoked the field" of a dozen teams and "arose from the ashes as this year's charity trivia contest champions." The team correctly answered 55 of 60 questions. Had they know anything at all about ancient Arabic or the length of the Great Wall of China, they'd have been perfect. What are they teaching kids in school these days?

C. J. used her extensive knowledge of medival bass fishing and horses to answer some tough questions. She was joined in the fray by the expertise of Stacia Bensyl (specializing in Japanese craft trivia, wood crafting, and the history of plumbing), Craig Goad (cross-word puzzles and Irish dance), Kaye Adkins (plants and birds and all that nature stuff), Ian Adkins (whatever kids know these days), Dana Andrews (movies and the rules of quidditch), and Michael Charlton (yo-yo trick nomenclature, science fiction, and Oklahoma facts) rose to new heights of triviality, identifying obscure facts from film, music, science, and history.
The $100 prize for first place was donated to the sponsoring group, The Center for Community Arts at Missouri Western, because that's just the sort of class act we know "The Dangling Prepositions" to be. That group from The United Way would have bought beer.

The Trophy will be on display as soon as it arrives from the engravers. C.J. says, "Enjoy basking in our radiant triviality!"

"What mighty contests rise from trivial things"
― Alexander Pope, "The Rape of the Lock"

Winning a trivia contest is no small matter. Congratulations, "Danglin' Preps"! It is you whom we are proud of.

Friday, October 21, 2011

When Writing Teachers Write

On Wednesday, October 19, regional language arts teachers gathered for their tenth annual reading of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry sponsored by Prairie Lands Writing Project.

*John Minnick, North Kansas City Staley High School language arts department chair and language arts teacher

Rosetta Ballew-Jennings, Missouri Western English teacher

Katey Girard, Osborn Middle and High School communication arts teacher

Stephanie Hartley, Missouri Western State University graduate teaching assistant

Brandon Haskey, St. Joseph Central High School communication arts/creative writing teacher

Joe Marmaud, Missouri Western English teacher

Lisa Miller, Savannah Middle School communication arts teacher

Amanda Moyers, St. Joseph Central High School communication arts teacher

Tom Pankiewicz, Missouri Western English teacher

Melissa Robinson, Cameron Middle School communication arts teacher

Janet Smith, Crest Ridge Middle and High School library media specialist

Kyla Ward, St. Joseph Central High School communication arts teacher

*Forum Moderator

Jane Frick presented Alumni Distinguished Faculty Award

Last night, October 20, coincidentally the National Day onWriting, Jane Frick was awarded the Alunmi Association's Distinguished Professor Award at the annual alumni awards dinner. The award is given to one faculty member a year and "honors a faculty member who has had a lasting influence on students." Jane was introduced by her former student, Dr. Melody Smith (BSE, 1987), superintendent of St. Joseph public schools.

Taking full advantage of her eight minutes at the podium, Jane recounted her early years at Western and what it was like to be a female professor in the seventies. It was a great reminder of how far university culture has come, and how people like Jane helped that happen. Jane was accompanied by husband Lyman and her sons David and Chris (pictured below).
Congratulations, Jane!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Missouri Poet Laureate to Conduct Writing Workshop

MWSU faculty Dr. David Benz and Dr. Jane Frick will host our Missouri Poet Laureate, David Clewell, for a Creative Writing Workshop on Monday, October 17 from 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM in Blum 222/223.

David Clewell is also director of creative writing and Professor of English at Webster University in St. Louis.

All Missouri Western students, faculty, and alumni are encouraged to attend and enjoy this creative time and opportunity with our Poet Laureate.

Refreshments will be served.

An Update on Lindale Banks

Lindale Banks, a 1995 graduate with a BA in English (Writing), has been busy as a teacher, writer, and model since her graduation.

Lindale worked for the University of Kansas for five years following graduation. After that she moved to Madrid, Spain and became an ESL instructor. Her job was to teach Business English to Fortune 500 comany executives.

She served as a guest lecturer at Universidad de Comoultense in Madrid teaching students about the Harlem Renaissance era. "My students enjoyed it," Lindale reports, "because they were not familiar with Zora Neal Hurston, James Baldwin, Countee Cullen, and so many more. It amazed me to travel to Paris and see there was club called the Cotton Club in the Moulin Rouge district. Getting an English degree opened so many doors for me. Definitely the right choice. I thank God for people like Drs. Frick, Fulton, Shell, and McCay. They were lifesavers!!"

Lindale has worked with such best-selling authors as Rebecca Walker and Lisa Nichols and has been a fashion model for Lane Bryant, Sears, August Max, and more. She is back in the U.S. and is currently working as an ESL instructor at Metropolitan Community Colleges where she teaches grammar and American Life Skills to former refugees and other non-native English speakers. "My job is everything from teacher to counselor to social worker."

Lindale can be reached at

Friday, September 30, 2011

China's National Day

In recognition of our Fulbright Scholar, Tiantian, we want to alert you all to the fact that October 1 is China's "National Day." The holiday lasts from the first to the seventh of the month. To know more, please visit the following websites:

See the U.S. Department of State's recognition of the day:

Thursday, September 22, 2011

English Major Mercedes Lucero Publishes Poetry

Mercedes Lucero, an English major with a minor in creative writing, has some publications about which to brag.

She will have two poems ("Saving Our Ship" and "How Much Younger") appear in an upcoming issue of Calliope, the official publication of the Writers' Special Interest Group of American Mensa, Ltd.

Mercedes will also have her poem "Impact" appear in Burner Magazine, and independent journal published in Toronto.

Congratulations, Mercedes!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Banned Books Week 2011

Come and hear people read from books that have been challenged or banned in U.S. public schools and libraries. We gather for the 15th Annual Reading of Banned and Challenged Books in honor of American Library Association's annual Banned Books Week.

We'll be gathering in Spratt 214 (The Enright Room) on Tuesday, September 27 from 7-8 PM to hear readers, including Dr. Vartabedian and KQ-2's Bridget Blevins, share material that has been the targets of censors.

If you need more reason than the fact that the U.S. Constitution is pretty cool, there will be free snacks and drinks. Bring a date--he or she will think you're edgy and hip. I know we will.

Sponsored by the departments of EFLJ and Education, the MWSU Library, and Prairie Lands Writing Project.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Celebration of Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival

On September 12, a celebration was held in honor of the Chinese mid-autumn festival. The program was arranged by Tiantian Zou, our Fulbright scholar from Xidian University. Her Chinese 100 class presented to a crowd of interested students, faculty, and St. Joseph residents.

The program featured an introduction to the festival as well as introductions and readings from important Chinese poets. Tiantian remarked that the students "did brilliant jobs on the pronunciation, intonation, and even gestures."

At the end of the recitation program there was served food and drink traditional to the festival: mooncakes with lotus seed paste, red bean paste, date paste, or pineable paste filling. The mooncake is a symbol of family reunion. Also served were apples (a symbol of peace and health), grapes (a symbol of harvest and happiness), Juhua Cha (a flower tea grown in Anhui in the east of China), Longjing (green tea grown in Hangzhou in the east of China), Tieguanyin (a green/black teah grown in Fujian in southeast China), Pu'er (black tea grown in southwest China), a confection called "Big White Rabbit," and Xienbei (a traditional snack).

Music typical of that played during the celebration was played as those gathered enjoyed food and conversation.

The program included the efforts of Jessica Foster (DJ), Jeff Stevens (technical support), Patrick Graham (master of ceremonies), Mesia Goolsby (greeter), LI Caihong, LU Qing, FAN Biao, and readers Trenton Cook, Davide Bennet, Nicholas Jones, Jane Frick, Ricky Maddox, Jessica Leffle, Amber Godfrey, Mesia Goolsby, Ruth Katchen, Cindy Heider, Shala Moore, Courtnay Inman, Angela Horn, Eduardo Castilla, Fred Weems, Wesley Moore, Lauren Thompson, Jeff Stevens, Patrick Graham, Sarah Gordon, Ceasera Robinson, Spencer Fraizer, Krystal Potter, Jessica Foster, Sharon Moore, and Tiantian Zou.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Foreign Film Series Schedule

Please plan on coming to one or all of these films sponsored by the foreign language faculty. All films will be shown at 6:30 PM in 102 Hearnes Hall (Little Theater, basement floor).

Tuesday, September 20: Mujeres al borde de una crisis de nervios (Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown); in Spanish with English subtitles. Presented by Dr. Jason Youngkeit

Tuesday, October 4: La Historia Oficial (The Official Story); in Spanish with English subtitles. Presented by Tiantian Zou.

Monday, October 10: Die Ehe der Maria Braun (The Marriage of Maria Braun); in German with English subtitles.

Tuesday, October 18: Chinese film with English subtitles (TBA) presented by Tiantian Zou.

Monday, October 24: French film with English subtitles (TBA) presented by Claudine Evans.

Tuesday, November 1: Spanish film in English subtitles (TBA) presented by Dr. Jason Youngkeit.

Thursday, November 10: Incendies (Scorched); in French with English subtitles. Presented by Dr. Susie Hennessy and sponsored by the French Alliance.

Tuesday, November 15: Chinese film with English subtitles (TBA) presented by Tiantian Zou.

Admission is free, so bring a date . . . or two!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Saundra Dibella gains Court Interpreter Certification

Saundra Dibella, part-time instructor of Spanish, has been certified as a Spanish/English Court Interpreter for the state of Missouri. The certification is issued by the Office of State Courts of Missouri and the Access to Justice Program.

Saundra took her Orientation Course in the summer of 2005, which is taught by professionals from across the country. Saundra had to familiarize herself with legal terms and court procedures and pass several examinations--two written and three oral.

The process took a while, as Saundra was teaching full-time with the School District of St. Joseph as well as part-time in EFLJ. Preparation took time, and often exam dates (offered only at certain times) were impossible to attend. Perseverance paid off, however, and Saundra is now in a position to serve the Spanish-speaking population of Northwest Missouri before our courts and to assist attorneys and their clients.

Congratulations, Saundra!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Graduate Certificate Program Boasts Twenty Graduates

EFLJ and Prairie Lands Writing Project are happy to announce that the twentieth graduate certificate in the teaching of writing has been awarded.

The first certificate was awarded in 2007 to Debra Sue Schwebach. In the subsequent four years, the program has served former MWSU students, teachers in the St. Joseph School Disctrict, and part-time instructors of English for EFLJ. Some have gone on to do further graduate work in the department's Masters of Applied Arts in Written Communication.

Congratulations to the 2011 graduates: Mary Duffy, Joe Marmaud, Kyla Ward, and Theresa Christal.

Sue Beers (Gronemeyer) Improving Iowa Schools

Sue Z. Beers, nee Gronemeyer, a 1976 BS-English Education graduate, has published her sixth book with ASCD (Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development). Sue's publications focus on teaching literacy across the content areas, designing and implementing professional development skills, and teaching skills for a the new century.

Sue is Executive Director of Mid-Iowa School Improvement Consortium, a collection of approximately 160 school districts in Iowa that works to improve student achievement. Sue also does presentations to educational groups across the country and internationally on literacy and teaching 21st Century skills.

In addition to her degree from MWSU, Sue has a Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction from Iowa State University and her secondary principal endorsement from Drake University.

Sue can be reached at

Friday, September 9, 2011

EFLJ Host to Fulbright Scholar from China

Tiantian Zou has joined us for the academic year to offer classes in Chinese. This fall she is teaching three sections of CHI 100: Beginning Chinese I, which have a healthy enrollment. She will offer both 100 and the second course in the spring semester.

Tiantian has her BA and MA in Foreign Linguistics and Applied Linguistics from Sichuan University, which is located in Sichuan Province, the "hometown of pandas and land of abundance," as she says. She taught English for five years in Xidian University.
Home is the city of Xi'an, a city with a history dating 5,000 years (see picture). There she has a husband who awaits her return. They've been married for almost three years.

Tiantian loves mountain climbing (well, we have river bluffs for her), traveling, photography, and driving. She's been to more than 20 provinces in China as well as other nations in the region. "Dakar is my dream," she says. Tiantian says that she was interpreter for the World's Strongest Man Competition in 2005 and 2006, which was held in Chengdu and Sanya, respectively.

Unprompted and without the offer of a drive to Rocky Mountain National Park for some mountain climbing, Tiantian tells us, "I love this school. Students are curious about learning Chinese, and I enjoy teaching my native language and culture to them while I learn English from them. All the teachers and people around me are so nice, offering to help whenever possible. I feel lucky!"

So do we, Tiantian. Welcome to St. Joseph.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Welcome to Dr. Ana Bausset-Page

Dr. Ana Bausset-Page, assistant professor of Spanish, comes to us from Salt Lake Community College in Utah where she taught Spanish and Humanities. She has also taught at the University of Utah (where she earned her Ph.D.) and Westminster College.

Dr. Bausset-Page was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She is married and has five children, two of whom graduated from Utah Valley University. The three youngest currently attend UVU.

"I am very excited to be here at Missouri Western, and I plan on getting involved in many activities here in St. Joseph. I enjoy acting and have done videos to promote education and communication among parents and teenagers. I love traveling. I just returned from Costa Rica before school started." Dr. Bausset-Page did not mention any pet peeves, embarrassing incidents from her past, or the possession of any sort of super powers. The staff of the EFLJ blog thought to make something up but thought better of it at the last minute.

Welcome, Dr. Bausset-Page!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Sue Ferguson Publishes Debut Collection

Sue Ferguson (B.A., English, 1985) has published her first collection of short stories with Nine Month Publishing.

Gaze: A Collection of Stories features sixteen stories that explore relationships with friends, family, and strangers. Several stories have been published previously in various literary journals, including New Letters, Mochila Review, Downgo Sun, and Chrysalis Reader.

You can read more about the collection, including critical reviews, and order your copy here.

Congratulations, Sue!

Monday, August 29, 2011

LeAnn Reilly publishes second novel

EFLJ alumna LeAnn Neal Reilly is publishing her second novel. Saint Sebastian's Head, a book of magical realism, is partially set in St. Joseph, MO.

Weeble has a secret so painful she’s hiding it even from herself. At ten, she meets Lauren Case, a book-loving daydreamer who offers Weeble refuge from the everyday degradations of life in her poor Midwestern family. Weeble fiercely protects Lauren, just as she protects her sister Annie. But there are forces at work she can’t withstand. When Richard Lee Grady arrives in town, he rips lives apart, including Weeble’s. Four years after college, Weeble has a new life, new friends, and the potential for love—if she can only admit what happened one hot July day in 1982.

ST. SEBASTIAN’S HEAD is a dark and riveting journey into the human heart, where fairy tales and incest, angels and demons, magical thinking and guilt, haunt one incredibly resilient woman.

For more information, view the trailer on LeAnn's website. The book is available online.

Congratulations, LeAnn!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Faculty Accomplishments this Summer

Mike Cadden made presentations on Ursula K. Le Guin’s novel The Dispossessed at Joplin, Jefferson City, and Columbia public libraries as part of the ReadMORE program sponsored by the Missouri Humanities Council.

Jeanie Crain has been reappointed for another year to the AQIP Reaffirmation Panel. She will continue on the Advisory Council and on the Admissions Panel and will also continue to serve as a Peer Reviewer for Action Projects

Jane Frick was a certified scorer at the National Writing Project's (NWP) evaluation conference held in Chicago. She also participated in the National Writing Project's State and Regional Network's leadership team meeting, held in Cleveland, Ohio.

Susie Hennessy was named a Future Leaders fellow for the American Association of Teachers of French. The fellowship workshop took place at the association's annual meeting, held in Montreal in July. Hennessy also presented a summary of her teacher recruiting program at the conference. Her presentation was entitled: "The Academy of Future French Teachers: a Plan for Recruiting."

Elizabeth Latosi-Sawin delivered a paper at the 9th International Conference of the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment called "From Grief to Hope and Action: A Pedagogical Approach to Cross-Disciplinary Environmental Literature." She also participated in a seminar on Ecomedia for which she wrote and also presented a paper entitled "Blown, Burnt, and Swept Away by Nonfictional Realities."

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Mary Stone Dockery publications

Mary Stone Dockery's poem "Pices Elegy" has been published in the on-line literary journal Blood Lotus. Read our fabulous EFLJ alumna's work here.

Mary has also published a non-fiction piece in Blue Print Review. She wrote the initial draft in Dr. Sawin's course on creative non-fiction.

Congratulations, Mary!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Thompson Rides Off into Sunset

Instructor Meg "Hopalong" Thompson will be leaving us in EFLJ for the opportunity to teach overseas. Meg and husband Todd will be teaching English in Seoul, South Korea this fall.

A gathering was held to see Meg and Todd off. This gathering apparently included pony rides and cowboy hats.

Good luck to Meg and Todd! We hope to get a few dispatches from Our Woman in Seoul this fall. Stay tuned.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hennessy Knighted

Susan Hennessy, Foreign Language Coordinator for EFLJ, has been named "Chevalier de l'Ordre des Palmes Académique" (Knight of the Order of Academic Palms).

Originally created by Napoleon, it is one of the world’s oldest civil awards, and is given to recognize major international contributions to French national education, and to those who have made major contributions to the expansion of French culture in the rest of the world. Nomination decisions are made by the French Minister of Education.

Congratulations to Sir Susie!