FAYETTE, Iowa (August 25, 2014) – Upper Iowa University is bringing on nine new full-time faculty members this academic year, which started August 25.
Faculty members will teach students on the traditional residential campus in Fayette as well as throughout the UIU network of educational centers, online and self-paced programs. Several faculty members will be teaching the redesigned curriculum at UIU, which expands online opportunities and adds emphasis areas and special certificate programs.
NiCole Dennler, Elkader, Iowa, earned her master's degree in education at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse, and her bachelor's degree in communications at Wartburg College. She comes to UIU from Central Community Hospital in La Crosse, where she was foundation coordinator/community education. She also has been a UIU adjunct. In her new role at UIU, she is instructor of communication.
Dr. Evan Eakins, Baton Rouge, La., earned his doctorate in mathematics at Louisiana State University and his bachelor's degree in mathematics and classical studies at Cornell College. He has been a graduate teaching assistant at both universities and was part of the Baker Elementary Outreach Project, which helped improve the mathematics curriculum by working with teachers to strengthen their skills. In spring 2014, he received the certificate of teaching excellence in mathematics from LSU. At UIU, Eakins is assistant professor of mathematics.
Dr. Matthew Foy, Mason City, Iowa, completed his doctorate in communication studies at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, after earning his master's degree at the University of Northern Iowa and his bachelor's degree at Waldorf College, Forest City, Iowa. He comes to UIU from North Iowa Area Community College, Mason City, where he has been a journalism instructor and advisor to the student newspaper. Previously he was an adjunct professor at Waldorf College, Joliet Community College and Kankakee Community College. At UIU, he will be an assistant professor of communication
Laura K. Huinker, MBA, Marion, Iowa, will be a lecturer in the marketing department in the UIU School of Business. She earned her MBA and bachelor's degree at Mount Mercy University, Cedar Rapids, where she served as graduate assistant to the advance and graduate programs. She also has been an instructor at New Horizons Learning Center, Cedar Rapids.
Tiffany J. Kragnes, JD, West Des Moines, Iowa graduated with honors from Drake Law School after completing her bachelor's degree at Iowa State University. A practicing attorney, she has specialized in the areas of criminal defense, juvenile and family law. She is a certified family law mediator. Kragnes served as assistant county attorney in the Warren County Attorney's Office and as first assistant county attorney in the Marion County Attorney's Office. She has been an adjunct instructor in the UIU criminal justice program since 2003 and now will be assistant professor of criminal justice.
Dr. John M. Marks, Jr., Kennesaw, Ga., will be assistant professor of criminal justice at UIU. He earned his doctorate in criminal justice from Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas, and earned both his master's degree in public administration and bachelor's degree in political science at Georgia College & State University, Milledgeville, Ga. Marks served as a correctional officer in Baldwin State Prison, Hardwick, Ga., and Crockett State School, Crockett, Texas. He began teaching as an adjunct professor at the University of Houston-Downtown, and has been a criminal justice instructor at Kennesaw State University and Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Most recently, he has been a part-time assistant professor of criminal justice at Kennesaw State.
Dr. Meghan W. Mettler, Oxford, Miss., is the new assistant professor of history at UIU. She completed her doctorate and her master's degree in history at the University of Iowa. She earned her bachelor's degree at Haverford College, Haverford, Pa. A well-published speaker and scholar, she comes to UIU with faculty experience at Towson University and the University of Mississippi.
Jay W. Raabe, Decorah, Iowa, is the new UIU instructor of graphic design. He has taught courses at Kirkwood Community College, University of Northern Iowa and Upper Iowa University. His professional experience also includes curriculum development for UIU and KCC. Raabe is a designer and artist who has done freelance work with Fortune 500 companies and has regular commissions for photo, web and publication design. Raabe is a graduate of Kirkwood Community College, completed his bachelor's degree at the University of Iowa and his master's at the University of Northern Iowa, as well as attending the University of Iowa Center for the Book.
Steven T. Syrmopoulos, Englewood, Colo., will be an associate professor of finance at UIU. He earned his master's degree in international business management at Thunderbird Graduate School of International Management, Glendale, Ariz., and his bachelor's degree at Winona State University, Winona, Minn. He comes to UIU from the College for Financial Planning in Centennial, Colo., where he was an associate professor and chair of the graduate degree program. Previously, he was president of the Southwest Institute of Financial Educate, Tempe, Ariz., and served on the faculty of Ottawa University, Western International University, and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, all in Phoenix, Ariz. Syrmopoulos' experience includes financial consulting for Ernst and Young, The Rouse Companies, A.G. Edwards & Sons, and The Prudential.
About Upper Iowa University Founded in 1857, Upper Iowa University is a private, not-for-profit university providing undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 6,200 students – nationally and internationally – at its Fayette campus and learning centers worldwide. Upper Iowa University is a recognized innovator in offering accredited, quality programs through flexible, multiple delivery systems, including online and self-paced degree program. With a focus on developing leaders and lifelong learners, UIU provides dual enrollment programs for high school students as well as continuing education and professional development opportunities for learners of any age. For more information, visit www.uiu.edu.
Monica Bayer Heaton
Associate Vice President for Communication and Marketing