Sterling College Professors Successful On and Off Campus

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Despite full class loads and “loads” of other responsibilities, the faculty of Sterling College manage to publish articles, speak at conventions, display art, and be involved in their communities. While these endeavors take time and energy, they greatly enhance professors’ professional connections, academic growth, and, ultimately, their teaching.
Dr Beth Kilday, Chair of Sterling’s Computer Science, Mathematics and Physics Department, presented a 90-minute, hands-on workshop at the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics regional conference, held in Oklahoma City, earlier this fall. She spoke to high school teachers on “How to Examine Temperature, pH, Dissolved Oxygen, and Nitrate Levels in Water and Soil.” Dr. Kilday has also been selected to speak at the Annual National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Conference in Washington, D.C., in April of 2009, a conference expected to involve nearly 20,000 participants.

Dr. Craig Smith, Chair of the Department of Theology and Ministry, has had several recent accomplishments. He was nominated for the Society of Biblical Literature Regional Scholar Award for his paper, “The Development of Style (5th Century BC to 2nd Century AD) and the Consequences for Understanding the Style of the New Testament,” and was awarded finalist status. Smith also presented a paper entitled “Loving Our Enemies in a Multi-Ethnic and Multi-Religious Society” at the International Institute of Christian Studies. His article “Richard Baxter, a Pioneer in Youth Ministry,” a study of the 17th century Puritan clergyman’s emphasis on spiritual instruction to youth and their families, was recently published in Anvil (an Evangelical Anglican journal). This fall Smith was invited to preach at Ashland Presbyterian Church in Ashland, Kansas, and he signed a contract with Sheffield Phoenix Publishers to write a commentary on II Timothy.
Blair Martin, Assistant Professor of Music, not only keeps busy teaching several classes and directing five instrumental ensembles, he has been contracted as a musician for the Hutchinson Symphony Orchestra, which features some of the finest musical talents in the area. He will play tuba in the ’08-’09 season, which runs from September through April. Martin’s artistic talents also extend to script-writing, and one of his scripts, “Samuel Gumsandal—Jerusalem P.I.,” a drama designed to convey the resurrection of Jesus in a non-traditional manner, was recently selected for publication by Randall House to be included in a collection of Easter scripts. Professor Martin also writes with his wife, Mary Martin, and three of their dramas were included in a recently-released collection of Christmas scripts, also published by Randall House.
Dr. Arnold Froese, chair of Sterling’s Behavioral Science Department for 34 years, is in his sixth year as the Kansas state representative to the Southwestern Psychological Association’s Executive Committee. He has been asked by the Association’s president, Lauren Scharff, to develop and chair a symposium for the Association’s April convention, held in San Antonio, Texas. Froese has recruited national speakers to discuss “Teaching Psychology for Civic Responsibility in a Global Context.” Dr. Froese will be speaking on “Psychology for General Education in a Global Environment: Visions and Roadblocks.” He will argue that “curricula should present psychology content selected for its foundational impact on understanding self as a participant in global interactions” and will discuss “roadblocks to implementing this vision presented by tradition and ideology.”

David Harmon, Associate Professor of Art at Sterling, has had two seascape paintings accepted for an exhibition at the Millrun Gallery in Rhode Island. These paintings were done in a combination of acrylic, gouache, or watercolor on 300# watercolor paper. The two paintings will be on exhibit through November. From now through December Harmon also has an exhibit at Augusta State University, Augusta, Georgia, based on 16 drawings involving his interest in pictographs and world petroglyphs, also known as carved rock or Indian writing. The drawings were done using charcoal and pastel on paper.
Gentry Sutton, Director of Institutional Assessment and the Writing Center Director, recently spoke at the TSA (Technology Students Association) Fall Leadership Conference in Hays, Kansas. Sutton presented on the topic “Teamwork Is a Way of Life,” which is also the subject of Sutton’s book, Team Church: Big-League Teamwork to Strengthen the Local Church, published in 2006. TSA is a student organization for junior and senior high students.
Ken Troyer, Assistant Professor of Communications and coach of the Sterling College Debate and Forensics team, has spoken several times recently. He and Sterling debate/forensics student Jana Miller presented at the Kansas Speech Communication Association Annual Convention in Salina as part of the forum entitled Kansas Collegiate Forensics Showcase. At the same conference Troyer was invited to be part of a panel discussing the subject “What Works in a College Speech Class.” Troyer also presented at an educator in-service at USD #405 in Lyons, focusing on the ongoing changes in national expectations and guidelines regarding oral competency. On a regular basis Troyer speaks and facilitates at local Parents-as-Teacher meetings held through the Rice County Special Services Cooperative. Parents-as-Teachers is an international organization that began in Missouri in the 1970s to encourage parents to be active participants in their children’s lives and education.
Dr. Troy Peters, Sterling College’s Vice President of Academic Affairs, believes that students benefit when Sterling professors use their gifts outside the College. "To have quality education you need quality educators. We are proud of each of these professors and their accomplishments. They are modeling academic, professional and personal excellence to their students. They bring that excellence into the classroom each day, and they incorporate it in their relationships with students. We are most proud of that.”