Winter Bridge faculty and staff notes

For consecutive months, LiveHelpNow recognized Upper Iowa University and its staff for being among the top company providing exceptional customer service. Using its customer service metric score, LiveHelpNow considered 10,000 companies during the monthly hallenge. LiveHelpNow is a help desk software platform for live chat and customer service.

Adjunct professor Greg Beatty wrote A New Once Upon a Time, which was accepted for publication by Little Blue Marble. Beatty also wrote an essay titled “Some People Have a Spirit Guide.”

Adjunct faculty member Stephanie Bush has written Molestation Inside the Church: The Forbidden Subject, which addresses the long-existing issue of molestations in all domains. Published by Christian Faith Publishing, the book is available at traditional brick-and-mortar bookstores or online at Amazon, Apple iTunes, and Barnes and Noble.

Criminal justice online instructor James Conroy has written the book Fraud Dog: Cases of a White Collar Cop.

Assistant professor of art Laura Gleissner and associate professor of psychology Dr. Melinda Heinz were awarded a $1,000 grant from the Cedar Falls Art and Culture Board Community Sponsorship Fund for their project titled “Documenting Purpose and Meaning: Photos and Narratives from Older Adults.”

Dr. Heinz will also chair a symposium at the 73rd annual meeting of the Gerontological Society titled “Opportunities and Challenges with Creative Community Partnerships.”

Adjunct instructor Dr. Larry Katz has written The Joy Pyramid: A Journey from Trauma to Triumph. The book, which is currently available for purchase on Amazon, features a practical, five-step approach to lasting happiness as the antidote to the anxiety and depression that plague so many of us today.

A team of preservice education students under the guidance of professor of education Dr. Gina Kuker was awarded a U.S. EPA grant to rehabilitate the Graf Butterfly Garden as a pollinator habitat and teaching garden. The grant was awarded in connection with the students’ participation in the spring 2020 Environmental Issues Instruction (eii) workshop “Water Connects Us All.” Eii is a grant-funded program under the direction of associate professor of education Dr. Barbara Ehlers. The project, already underway, is guided by Ally Fink, a biology major, as part of her senior capstone experience, advised by professor of geosciences Dr. Katherine McCarville. To learn more about Fink’s project, visit the featured Bridge Online story by clicking here.

Masters of Counseling program director Dr. Panagiotis Markopoulos was joined by lecturer of counseling Dr. Kimberly King and adjunct professor Dr. Bianca Puglia in presenting “Virtual School Counseling and Safety” during two online live workshops in November 2020 and January 2021.

Dr. Markopoulos was also invited by the United Way of Southern Cameron County in Texas to present a one-hour live webinar on November 30, 2020, titled “To Zoom, or Not to Zoom, that is the question: Combatting zoom fatigue.”

Professor of chemistry Dr. Erik Olson co-authored “4-Fluoro-5-Methylacridine. In Search of Long-Range Lone-Pair Mediated H-F and C-F Spin-Spin Coupling” with Gordon W. Gribble. The paper was recently accepted by Organic Preparations and Procedures International.

Adjunct faculty member Paul Rindahl was named the 2019-20 Golden Apple Teacher of the Year in central Louisiana. A television report about the award presentation can be viewed at

Assistant professor of criminal justice Isaiah Stansbery, D.B.A., and professor of mathematics and physics Dr. Nigel George were awarded Upper Iowa University’s inaugural Mangan Teaching awards. Established in 2019 by Roger ’62 and Alice (Delong) ’61 Mangan, the awards represent UIU’s commitment to excellence in teaching and are annually presented to one rising junior faculty member and one senior faculty member.

Associate professor of biology Dr. Jennifer Stoffel and professor of geosciences Dr. Katherine McCarville provided a pair of presentations at the virtual 75th Soil and Water Conservation Society (SWCS) International Annual Conference in July. A poster presentation was titled “Positioned for Success: Engaging Undergraduates Through Building a Sense of Pride,” while their oral presentation was titled “Cultivating Soil Professionals: A Holistic Approach to Undergraduate Soils Education.”

A Bush Fellowship fellow in 2001-2003, Dr. McCarville was also selected as one of 15 Quarterfinalist Mentors. After mentor training October 26-November 6, she mentored 10-15 prospective Bush fellows as they prepare for Stage Two of the 2021 Bush Fellowship application process. McCarville also earned certification from the FAA over the summer as a Remote Pilot under Part 107 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (commercial/educational deployment of small unmanned aircraft systems). McCarville initiated a study of microplastic waste in West Okoboji Lake (northwest Iowa) through a summer program sponsored by the IINSPIRE LSAMP Alliance. Finally, due to COVID-19, McCarville is also serving a second year as president of the Iowa Academy of Science.

Associate professor of biology Dr. Rebecca Schmidt co-authored a paper titled “IL-10-Producing NK Cells Exacerbate Sublethal Streptococcus pneumoniae Infection in the Lung” (doi: 10.1016/j.trsl.2020.07.001). The paper was published in summer 2020 in Translational Research.

Andres School of Education administrative assistant Carrie Taylor ’16, mayor of Volga, Iowa, assisted in writing a successful grant used to purchase $40,000 in essential groceries, given at no cost to qualifying residents (high-risk individuals, families with children) within the Volga zip code over a five-week period during the pandemic.

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