Several Southeast Missouri State University students, under the direction of Peter Chanthanakone, assistant professor of graphics and multimedia, have produced Southeast’s first 3D animated short film, “Death to the Different.”
Most who know Dr. Mark Langenfeld, professor of health, human performance, and recreation and biology, know him as “that guy who rides his bike to campus everyday, rain or shine.”
Mark hopped into a different set of wheels this summer though, as he and his 16- year-old daughter, Julie, embarked on a journey that would take them across all 48 continental United State in 27 days in a 1968 Mercedes-Benz 250 SE. Of course, Mark did take his bicycle along as well.
Any student or colleague of St. Louis, Mo. native, Jeff Noonan, professor of music history and classical guitar, knows he is a true musicologist, and he knows what his subject matter. Jeff’s students will tell you he is “one of the most knowledgeable professors they have had and that it is amazing how he can correctly answer almost any question on the spot.”
Dr. Robert Fruehwald, professor of musical composition, music theory, and electronic music, has always had a passion for music, especially in composition because he says, “I am never satisfied with things as they are; I always want to change things in order to create something new.”
After earning a B.S. in Education in Speech and Theatre at (then) Southwest Missouri State University, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Theatre Arts at the University of Missouri-Columbia, Professor Robert (“Rob”) W. Dillon, Jr. came to Southeast in 1989.
Curiosity, combined with passion and a disciplined work ethic, is why Tyson Wunderlich has succeeded in his field. Of course, a strong background always helps. He said he has been passionate about music his whole life.
As the Crisp Bootheel Education Center (CBEC) of Southeast Missouri State University at Malden celebrates 20 years of existence this year, it is easy to see the positive impact it has had on the area. One area educator has been affiliated with the CBEC for most of those 20 years. This fact makes Larry Speight, full-time English instructor for Southeast, very proud.
When asked what he would like students to know about him, Dr. James Dufek, professor of Mass Communication, said, “I love my wife and I love my children.” He also gave this advice, “Never underestimate the value of hard work.” These two quotes say a lot about a hard-working and family-oriented man.
Father Bob Towner was riding in a dilapidated truck in the middle of nowhere, a mountainous region still lush with vegetation despite the large-scale deforestation taking place throughout the country. The truck had been left behind by American forces after World War II. A dozen other people were crowded in next to him, as well as another dozen sitting on top. They were moving away from their missionary zone, located in one of the poorest, most primitive parts of the Philippines.
Dr. Kenneth Stilson, professor of the Department of Theatre and Dance, continues to challenge the belief that “those who can’t do, teach.” His award-winning play, 'Fire Lily', was picked up by an independent film company with production beginning this summer. His professional and artistic success demonstrates his philosophy: “Only those who can do should teach.”
If you’re being charged by a bucking bronco, sometimes it’s a matter of diving in the right direction. For Amanda Sinclair, assistant professor of Health, Human Performance and Recreation and a certified athletic trainer at Southeast Missouri State University, being on guard is a big part of her volunteer work at the rodeo.
“My favorite aspect of the job is working with future art teachers,” Tom said. “It is great to experience their enthusiasm and excitement about becoming a teacher, as well as helping them to prepare for a very rewarding career.”
Junior DeLay, a political science instructor at the Sikeston Area Higher Education Center (SAHEC), brings real world experience to the classroom. DeLay is currently serving his 23rd year as the Mississippi County Clerk while teaching an introductory political science course at SAHEC.
By day, Donna Speck teaches students at the Sikeston Area Higher Education Center (SAHEC) about the Periodic Table of Elements, chemical bonding and balancing chemical equations. But when she’s not in the classroom, her students are a whole different breed.
What most students at St. Vincent de Paul School in Cape Girardeau don’t know is that “The Jell-O Man,” who serves Jell-O once a month at the school, is a construction engineer who teaches in the School of Polytechnic Studies at Southeast Missouri State University.
Dr. Leslee Pollina has taught psychology to Southeast students for fourteen years. But Pollina has an entirely different set of students besides those in her psychology classes. They don’t turn in papers, tests, or read books on Sigmond Freud and Carl Rogers. Instead, these students focus on sitting, staying, and rolling over. They have four legs, loud barks and wet noses.
If you ask Dr. Greg Boyd why he decided to go into teaching after working 20 years in the manufacturing industry, he will tell you “it was time to put my money where my mouth was and start helping to create manufacturing engineers instead of trying to hire them.”
The next time you pass an antique Packard automobile on the road, look closely, because the driver most likely is Dr. David Baird. Although Baird teaches in the Department of Industrial and Engineering Technology, he loves to restore antique vehicles.
If you hear singing coming from Dr. Bruce Hathaway’s organic chemistry class, don’t be alarmed. It is just his students performing in the “Organic Chemistry Songfest.” Having students compose and perform organic chemistry songs for extra credit is just one of the unique teaching methods Hathaway uses to help his students learn.
Most people can say they have never savored the flavor of durian, a large, spiny fruit found in Malaysia. The fruit is banned on airplanes and in public places because of its horrendous odor, but the flavor is wonderful to the taste buds. Dr. Jean Benton, director of International Programs for the College of Education, had her chance to savor the spiny fruit when she lived in Malaysia for two years as a curriculum consultant for the Ministry of Education.
Mary Virginia Moore Johnson is a woman with an extreme past, and an extremely bright future. A professor in the Department of Accounting, Finance and Business Law at Southeast, Johnson teaches law courses - and with good reason.
Dr. Judy Wiles managed and co-owned a regional advertising agency and promotional products firm, where for 10 years, she enjoyed working full time in the world of marketing communications. But the desire to be a part of a community of advanced learning brought Wiles to the next stage of her career—teaching marketing and advertising at the college level.
“I think that if you can’t find a way to have fun doing what you do, whether it’s studying, your major, your employment, you need to stop doing whatever that is and find something that will be fun for you. Nobody said you had to settle for something that bores you.”
Sherlock Holmes would have a run for his money if he encountered Dr. Lisa Speer, special collections librarian responsible for the University Archives, the Regional History Collections and Rare Books and Manuscripts at Southeast.
An alumnus of Southeast, Fred Jones decided the perfect job was right at home, as an associate professor in the Department of Communication. A film maker from Jackson, Mo., Jones got his start with a Bachelor of Arts in English degree at Southeast before studying film at the University of Utah.
Dr. Bonnie Stepenoff, professor of history at Southeast, strives to inspire a passionate quest for the truth and an appreciation for the physical remnants of history in her students. In addition to encouraging her students in such idyllic pursuits, she also inspires them to break into song.
If it weren’t for an essay answer on a medical school application, Dr. Allen Gathman might be walking the halls of a hospital instead of the Rhodes Hall of Science. After finishing a pre-med degree and taking the MCAT, Gathman had trouble writing about why he wanted to be a doctor. His love of biological research shined through. Instead of heading off to med school, Dr. Gathman decided graduate school would be a better route.
During the summer months, Professor of Art Sarah Riley and a group of students regularly journey abroad to paint. For a few years she led them to Paris. The past two years, she and Dr. Laura MacCaskey, have led the students to Venice, where they’ve set up with watercolors and painted people, buildings, water and boats — some abstract work, some architecture.
Art Professor Ron Clayton “practices what he teaches.” Not only does he teach at the University, he also is a professional artist who has had gallery shows in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Salt Lake City and Columbus, Ohio.
Everyone has heard the familiar adage “the pen is mightier than the sword.” Southeast communication professor Glen Williams lives by this mantra. Williams is fascinated by the impact of the spoken and written word on every aspect of our society.
If you want to travel or study abroad, you might want to meet Marketing professor Peter Gordon. Having traveled to over 50 countries and driven on six continents, the Australian native wants to reach 100 countries before he retires.
Imagine being blown down an embankment, along with your camera and tripod, by a steam locomotive speeding by at 65 mph as you try to capture just the right photo. Walt Lilly, a biology professor at Southeast, can do more than imagine it – he’s experienced it.
Dr. Christina Frazier's love of nature works well with her research on viruses such as West Nile that are transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. In fact, she only leaves the outdoors to enter the classroom to teach courses in virology, microbiology, epidemiology and related subjects in the Department of Biology at Southeast.
What do reptile and mammal collections, antique car restorations, landscape photography and jazz have in common? The answer is Dr. John Scheibe of the Department of Biology. Find out more in this faculty spotlight.