Published August 15, 2019

Focused on the Student Experience

New faculty bring diverse backgrounds to the classroom.
  • Some of Monmouth College’s new faculty members on the steps of Wallace Hall. Front row, from left: Shweta Srivastava and Jeffrey Montes; middle row, from left: Claire McGraw, Yevgeniy Ptukhin and Carolyn Liesen; back row, from left: Jonah Waseberg, John Iselin and Ryan Colclasure.

MONMOUTH, Ill. – Monmouth College will have 11 new faculty members when the 2019-20 school year begins Aug. 21 as the College continues to expand and strengthen its academic programs.

“Our new faculty bring diverse experiences to the classroom, but they all share a singular focus on the student experience,” said Monmouth Dean of the Faculty Mark Willhardt. “We’re delighted that they’ve chosen to join our community and to contribute to it in the many ways we know they will.”

After attending orientation activities for a couple of days, the new faculty were introduced to the rest of the campus community Thursday morning as part of the Fall Faculty Conference.

Three of the new faculty members are part of the College’s STEM initiative, which has established new majors in data science, engineering and neuroscience.

The first new hire for engineering is John Iselin, who will serve as an associate professor. He earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of Dayton and a doctorate in mechanical engineering with a minor in mathematics from Iowa State University. Iselin comes to Monmouth with both professional and teaching experience in mechanical engineering, serving as a professor of the discipline at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville and, most recently, as a senior technical adviser at Modine Manufacturing Co. in Racine, Wis.

Yevgeniy Ptukhin has joined the department of mathematics, statistics and computer science and will serve as an assistant professor of statistics for the new data science program. He earned a bachelor’s degree and specialist certification from Kharkiv State Polytechnical University in Ukraine before completing graduate studies in the United States. He holds two degrees from Southern Illinois University – a master’s degree in mathematics and a doctorate in quantitative methods – as well as a master’s degree in general business from Texas Tech University.

To boost the start of the neuroscience major, the psychology department has hired Carolyn Liesen for a tenure-track position. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Saint Louis University. At the University of Wisconsin, Liesen studied in the School of Human Ecology, earning master’s and doctoral degrees in human development and family studies. Liesen lectured in psychology at Wisconsin before coming to Monmouth.

Two new faculty members – Francisco Angeles and Todd Quick – didn’t require an introduction on Thursday, as they were visiting assistant professors who have been named to tenure-track positions.

A member of the modern languages, literatures and cultures department since 2017, Angeles earned a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Latin American literature from Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos and a master’s degree and doctorate in Hispanic studies from the University of Pennsylvania.

Quick earned a bachelor’s degree in theatre performance from State University of New York at Geneseo and a master of fine arts degree in acting from Purdue University. He joined Monmouth’s faculty last year.

Ryan Colclasure and Jonah Waseberg have joined the psychology department as visiting assistant professors. Colclasure studied biology and psychology at Knox College and earned a master’s degree in experimental psychology from Western Illinois University. He was most recently an associate faculty member at WIU’s Quad Cities campus.

Waseberg earned a master of divinity degree from the Theological Seminary of Cairo, a doctorate in ministry from McCormick Theological Seminary, a master’s degree in theology from the Lutheran School of Theology and a doctorate in psychology from the Chicago Theological Seminary. He will serve as the department’s clinical counseling psychologist.

Three other departments have added a single faculty member.

Jialin (Camille) Li will serve as an assistant professor of sociology. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in sociology from East China Normal University and a doctorate in sociology from the University of Illinois-Chicago. Prior to coming to Monmouth, Li was an instructor at the College of New Jersey.

An assistant professor of kinesiology, Jeffrey Montes comes to Monmouth from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, where he was the exercise lab coordinator. He studied kinesiology and exercise physiology at UNLV, receiving his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees there.

Claire McGraw is a visiting lecturer of classics. She completed her undergraduate work at Missouri State University, studying antiquities and Latin. McGraw holds a master’s degree in classical studies and a doctorate in ancient Mediterranean studies from the University of Missouri, where she served most recently as an instructor.

Also new to the faculty is Shweta Srivastava, who will serve as director of the College’s Communication Across the Curriculum program. Srivastava began her higher education studies in India, earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Lucknow and a master’s degree in mass communication and journalism from Alagappa University. She holds master’s and doctoral degrees in speech communication from North Dakota State University, where she was a graduate teaching assistant.

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