Published August 24, 2016


A roundup of news featuring members of the Monmouth College community
Book by Badang calls for education reform in Cameroon Cameroon’s educational system needs structural and conceptual reforms.
That’s the conclusion of a new book written by Monmouth College’s Germain Badang, who is an assistant professor of modern languages, literatures and cultures.

“Since Cameroon gained its independence (in 1960), its educational system has not been able to effectively contribute to the social and individual development of Cameroonians,” said Badang, who completed his undergraduate work at the University of Yaounde in Cameroon.

Titled Perspectives on Teachers’ Decision-Making in Post-Colonial Cameroon, the 269-page paperback, which grew out of his doctoral dissertation at Ohio State University, was published this year by Lambert Academic Publishing.   Monmouth College hosted national workshop on statistics attitudes Statistics are available on virtually any topic, and Monmouth College mathematics and computer science professor Marjorie Bond has been teaching about many of them since she joined the faculty in 1996.
Bond is particularly interested in statistics about attitudes toward statistics, and she hosted a July 29-31 workshop on campus for others of a like mind.

Titled “Research on Statistics Attitudes,” the ROSA workshop brought 10 statistical scholars to Monmouth – many of them college or university professors. They were joined by Bond, associate professor of political economy and commerce Wendi Bolon, post-baccalaureate fellow Madison Brakel ’16 and Jad Freyha, a senior computer science major from Syria. Six of the workshop attendees and Bond then headed to Chicago on July 31 for the start of the Joint Statistical Meetings, the largest gathering of statisticians held in North America.   Monmouth’s Camenisch gained admissions experience as college student Bailey Camenisch is the most recent addition to the Monmouth College admissions team. The 2016 Wartburg (Iowa) College graduate began her admission counselor duties in July, and she should have an easy time relating to prospective students.

“At Wartburg, I was a tour guide for two years,” she said. “At first, I just did it to get more involved on campus, but I really enjoy helping people. I talked to one of my advisers and learned more about her work in student affairs and how she got to where she was. I decided I wanted to take helping families with the admission process to the next level.”

Camenisch will work with prospective students from seven Illinois counties, including Peoria, LaSalle and Grundy. She said her message to them will be heavily influenced by her own college experience.

Monmouth strengthens support for international students with new position As Monmouth College’s international student body continues to expand, so does its support staff.

Erika Buckley has been named director of international student services. The new position was created to continue to meet the needs of Monmouth’s growing international student population, which now includes students from more than 30 countries.

“It’s definitely going to help us strengthen the work we are already doing with our international students,” said Buckley, who began her Monmouth career in 2014 as assistant director of intercultural life. She took over as the program’s director last fall.

“For a smaller school, we have a very decent amount of international students,” added Buckley, who recently attended the annual National Association of International Educators conference in Denver. “We want to make sure we continue to have the framework in place to support them.”

Campagna directs summer production of Damn Yankees Monmouth College Assistant Professor of Theatre Vanessa Campagna is spending part of her summer involved with baseball.

But rather than participating in the game, she directed the classic musical comedy Damn Yankees at Gladstone Theatre in the Park, which is in the Kansas City suburb of Gladstone, at Oak Grove Park. The musical was performed at 8:30 p.m. July 8-10.

This was Campagna’s third summer directing at Gladstone Theatre in the Park, but her experience with the company goes back two decades. She started there with a part in the children’s chorus for Meet Me in St. Louis. She worked her way up to the title role in Peter Pan and to playing Polly Baker in the Gershwin musical Crazy for You. Campagna will direct Meet Me in St. Louis April 6-9, 2017 at the College’s Wells Theater.

“We are the only completely free musical theatre company in the Kansas City area,” said Campagna, who began teaching at Monmouth in 2012. “Donations are accepted, but there is no charge. We typically have audiences of 2,000 to 3,000 people at each of our performances.”

Hewes Library welcomes Giffey, continues to upgrade access The newest face at the Monmouth College Hewes Library is Anne Giffey, who began her position as public services librarian on July 1.

Giffey, who received her master’s degree in library and information studies from the University of Wisconsin, said she is eager to work with the new faces who will soon follow her to campus. The fall semester begins Aug. 23.

“I’m looking forward to seeing a lot of the new freshman faces and making sure they get off to a successful start,” said Giffey, who previously served on the library staff at Knox College. “I’m excited to reinvent my position here at Monmouth. I’m really enjoying the team atmosphere.”

As public services librarian, Giffey is tasked in part with “making sure our library has access to the resources the faculty, staff and students need to be successful.”

May graduate Graf joins Monmouth College’s admissions team Julianna Graf wants others to have the kind of “great experience” she had as a Monmouth College student.

Graf, who graduated in May, has been hired as an admissions counselor at her alma mater. She will work with students and families from Illinois communities that include Bloomington-Normal, Springfield and Champaign. Her territory will also come close to her hometown of Mascoutah, Ill., just outside of St. Louis.

“I knew about Monmouth because my brother, Sam (’11), graduated from here, and my dad and grandpa also attended,” said Graf, who was a communication studies and public relations double major. “I liked the small, community feel, and I liked that I could make connections with my professors and not just be a number in a seat.”

Johnson eager to help Monmouth College’s multicultural students When she arrived as a freshman at Monmouth College, Regina Bannan Johnson ’01 believed she could be easily defined as only one type of student – an athlete.

That attitude changed as she was exposed to the richness of life at a liberal arts college. Now, Johnson will work with Monmouth students to help them discover and define their identities as the College’s new director of multicultural student services.

In many ways, Johnson is an exemplar of the personal growth that takes place within a liberal arts environment. She came to Monmouth from Washington, Ill., to run track, and she quickly immersed herself in that circle, with her first friends being teammates.

“But what brought me here didn’t end up defining me,” Johnson said. “You can get pigeonholed into a stereotype, and I was, at first.”

McLean excited about overseeing new leadership program When Jake McLean ’15 was a Monmouth College student, he took advantage of numerous leadership opportunities at the liberal arts college.

Now the Monmouth alumnus will oversee a new leadership program at the College.

McLean has been named the College’s assistant director of leadership development. One of his primary responsibilities is overseeing the Stockdale Fellows Program, a new leadership initiative named in honor of Vice Admiral James Stockdale ’46 and his wife, Sybil.

“Stockdale Fellows will be part of the premier leadership program on campus,” said McLean. “Twelve first-time freshmen were selected, and I will also work with two returning students (Maggie Brundige ’17 of Elburn, Ill., and Alec Dutko ’17 of Streator, Ill.) to facilitate programming.”

McLean said Brundige and Dutko will also help him with “the other main arm” of Monmouth’s leadership programming, Scots Aspire.

Buel to direct 2017 national forensics tournament Monmouth College’s Rebecca Buel has reached a summit in the forensics competition world, and she hopes it will pave the way for the Monmouth forensics team she directs to follow suit.

An instructor in the College’s communication studies department, Buel has been appointed to serve as tournament director for the National Forensics Association’s national tournament, which will be held next April in Eau Claire, Wis. She had served the previous two years as the event’s official tabulator.

“I am incredibly honored and excited about this opportunity and hope that it will yield increased visibility for Monmouth College and our team on the national forensics circuit,” said Buel, who joined Monmouth’s faculty two years ago and has directed local tournaments since 2010. “It’s a very large event, with 80 to 100 schools competing, and it will be a brand new challenge for me. I’m also excited about the service aspect and the opportunity to give back to a community that has given me so much.”
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