Otterbein's great professors and researchers believe that learning is a life-long commitment. Their achievements are evidence of that value. We invite you to explore the ideas, the passion and the curiosity that motivate these remarkable individuals.
Kate Lehman – Center for Student Success
When Kate Lehman teaches the Freshman Year Experience course, "Journeys and Stories of Our Lives," her insights impact a class full of students. However, when she steps outside the classroom and assumes the role of assistant dean for student success, she impacts an entire campus of students.
Lehman was recently awarded the Outstanding First-Year Student Advocate Award by the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition at the University of South Carolina and Cengage Learning. She was recognized for her work with helping students achieve success when they are having trouble navigating through their college experiences.
To help guide students, Lehman developed the Center for Student Success at Otterbein. She has implemented and supported retention efforts across campus, provided individual advocacy to students and coordinated ongoing data analysis and research related to retention issues on campus. She also helped coordinate this year’s smooth conversion from quarters to semesters and serves as co-director of the First Year Experience Program. She was one of only 10 recipients nationwide to be recognized.
"That she accomplished all this with patience, humor and temerity is most impressive. She has created a space where confused or uncertain students can seek out advice, referrals and recommendations, no matter what their class year," said Provost Victoria McGillin.
"The work I do with students everyday is what makes my job fulfilling," said Lehman. "Seeing where the students go and what they do when they leave Otterbein is more meaningful than any award. So, for me, national recognition serves more to affirm that my day-to-day work matters to others, too."
Lou Rose – Department of History and Political Science
Professor Lou Rose not only teaches history, but he recently became a part of history when he took over as editor of the psychoanalytical journal, American Imago, in its centennial year. Founded by Sigmund Freud as Imago in Vienna in 1912, this journal was reborn as American Imago in the United States in 1939. It is uniquely multidisciplinary in its approach.
How did a history professor become editor of a psychoanalytical journal? Rose has conducted extensive research into the history of psychoanalysis as a way of studying culture, particularly in Vienna in the first half of the 20th century. He has written two books on the subject: The Survival of Images: Art Historians, Psychoanalysts, and the Ancients (2001) and The Freudian Calling: Early Viennese Psychoanalysis and the Pursuit of Cultural Science (1998), which won the 1999 Austrian Cultural Institute Prize for Best Book in Austrian Studies. He has even had an article published in American Imago: "Interpreting Propaganda: Successors to Warburg and Freud in Wartime." In addition to his research, Rose is a trustee of the Sigmund Freud Archives in the Library of Congress.
According to its literature, the journal "joins psychoanalytic thinking with scholarly studies in politics, the visual arts, literary culture, law and society and more—encompassing both contemporary and historical contexts." Rose strongly supports the multidisciplinary approach of American Imago. So when choosing a staff to work with him, Rose reached out to colleagues Paul Eisenstein, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, and Karen Steigman, assistant professor of English. Both have longstanding research interests in psychoanalytic topics and bring unique disciplinary perspectives to the journal.
During its 100-year history, the journal has published contributions by the Nobel Prize-winning author Thomas Mann, the Pulitzer Prize-winning psychoanalyst Erik Erikson, and the creator of the Holocaust documentary Shoah, Claude Lanzmann. Eisenstein is the author of Traumatic Encounters: Holocaust Representation and the Hegelian Subject and Steigman recently published "The Literal American: Re-reading Graham Greene in an Age of Security" in the journal College Literature.
Rose also chose Emmy Hammond, a junior honors student majoring in history and political science, to serve as his assistant for copyediting, proofreading and fact checking. "It’s important that students have the opportunity to work with scholarly and professional journals," Rose said.
Rose’s vision for the journal is to further explore the multidisciplinary, academic mission of the journal. "I plan to include a wide range of authors and topics to show what is possible," he said.
Pete Sanderson – Department of Mathematical Sciences
Pete Sanderson teaches students in classrooms around the world, but they’ve never seen him, and they may not even know his name. Sanderson, professor of computer science and chair of the Department of Mathematical Sciences at Otterbein, has worked with a colleague over the years to develop a computer science education software, MARS (Mips Assembler and Runtime Simulator). The latest version of the software was recently launched.
According to Sanderson, MARS is used mainly in undergraduate computer science courses to help students learn to write and simulate the running of MIPS assembly language. MIPS is the language used in all computer processors to carry out instructions and is commonly embedded in devices such as printers and cell phones. At Otterbein, the software is used by students in two courses.
Sanderson partnered with Ken Vollmar at Missouri State University to develop the software. "The initial prototype was actually developed by a student team in 2003 under my direction and some of their code remains," Sanderson said.
Since its creation, Sanderson said he has received comments from professors and students in 22 countries on six continents, and has given eight peer-reviewed presentations at regional and national conferences dedicated to computer science education. MARS is a free, open-source product and requires no installation, just a simple download.
Kay Ball – Department of Nursing
Already an international expert on laser, surgical, health care and nursing issues, Associate Professor Kay Ball ’83 is now researching the effects of smoke produced during surgery on the health of perioperative (surgical) nurses.
"Nurses breathe in the surgical smoke and have two times the incidence of respiratory disease, including bronchitis and asthma," said Ball. "It’s a workplace safety issue that can be addressed with the presence of a properly functioning smoke evacuator."
Ball said smoke evacuators are either frequently absent from operating rooms, or they are not being used because of noise or complacency. She believes this is a violation of Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), which is enforced by the U.S. Department of Labor.
Ball is currently advocating for policy changes at a national level. Her research can be read online here.
Otterbein faculty are constantly striving to lead in the classroom and their respective field. The full 2010 Faculty Achievement Report is here.