The Crow’s Nest — November 3, 2021

Kristin GilletteKristin Gillette Appointed to Lead Pirates Athletics

Park University appointed Kristin Gillette to be its next director of athletics for the Parkville (Mo.) Campus following a nationwide search. Gillette officially began her role at Park on Oct. 28 after previously serving as associate director of athletics/compliance at MidAmerica Nazarene University in Olathe, Kan. She takes over the Pirates athletics programs following the retirement of Claude English in August after a 25½-year stint.

While at MNU, Gillette coordinated long-range plans for athletics, including NAIA compliance, financial aid, staffing, strength and conditioning, academic services and recruiting. She also managed game operations for football, men’s and women’s soccer and basketball, women’s volleyball and competitive cheer, and provided administrative oversight of Heart of America Athletic Conference and National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics opening round championships hosted at MNU. In addition, she served as liaison to the Association of Student-Athletes Leadership Council.

Prior to joining MNU, Gillette spent nine years at the NAIA in Kansas City, Mo., serving as the director of Champions of Character for six years and three years managing national championships. While at the NAIA, she created the Champions of Character Live 5 program, an online student-athlete NAIA core values (integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship and servant leadership) training. In addition, she worked with councils and committees focused on the health and well-being of student-athletes, while also working directly with student-athletes in various national programs. Gillette also served as liaison to the NAIA’s Leadership, Diversity and Inclusion Committee from 2009-17 and the New Member Site Visit Committee from 2015-17. Read more about Gillette at

Stanislav IoudenitchStanislav Ioudenitch Inducted into Steinway Teacher Hall of Fame

Stanislav Ioudenitch, associate professor of music/piano and artistic director of Park University’s International Center for Music, was inducted into the 2021 class of the Steinway & Sons Teacher Hall of Fame on Sept. 29 during a ceremony at the Steinway factory in New York City. The Steinway & Sons Teacher Hall of Fame is a prestigious designation recognizing the work of North America’s most committed and passionate piano educators.

Ioudenitch, who found the International Center for Music in 2003, is widely regarded for his strong individuality and musical conviction. His artistry won him the gold medal at the 11th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2001. Under his guidance, students of Ioudenitch have earned numerous awards worldwide, including Kenny Broberg, a graduate student in the ICM who was the silver medalist at the 15th Van Cliburn event in 2017, bronze medalist of the XVI International Tchaikovsky Competition and gold medalist of the 2021 American Pianists Association’s American Pianists Awards, as well as Behzod Abduraimov, ICM artist-in-residence, who won the 2009 London International Piano Competition. Read more at

Park University Joins Department of Defense Military Spouse Employment Partnership

Park University has joined the Department of Defense Military Spouse Employment Partnership. The University participated in a virtual induction ceremony on Oct. 26 which featured First Lady Dr. Jill Biden. The MSEP connects military spouses with hundreds of partner employers, now totaling more than 540, who commit to recruit, hire, promote and retain military spouses. Since its inception in 2011, MSEP employers have hired more than 200,000 military spouses. The MSEP initiative is part of DOD’s broader Spouse Education and Career Opportunities program. The DOD established the SECO program to provide education and career guidance to military spouses worldwide, offering free, comprehensive resources and tools related to career exploration, education, training and licensing, employment readiness and career connections. This program also offers free career coaching services six days a week.

University Recognizes Employee Longevity

On Oct. 29, Park University honored full-time staff and faculty who reached milestone service anniversaries between Aug. 2, 2020, and Nov. 1, 2021. Eighty-nine employees were recognized, combining for 895 years of service to Park. Nine employees received special recognition with 25-plus years of service, including Charlie Smith, associate professor of mathematics, who celebrated 35 years of service on Aug. 21. View the entire list of those honored at

Bayan Salam and DiCarlo Jackson Jr.Parkville Campus Announces 2021 Homecoming Royalty

As part of Park University’s recent Parkville (Mo.) Campus Homecoming Weekend 2021 festivities, eight Park students were announced as homecoming royalty during halftime of the men’s soccer match against Mount Mercy University on Oct. 2, as voted on by the student body. DiCarlo Jackson Jr., senior biology major, and Bayan Salam, senior criminal justice administration/law enforcement and psychology major, were selected as king and queen, respectively. Visit for those students selected to the homecoming court.

Charles YoungGreat War Institute to Hold Inaugural Event Highlighting Namesake of Buffalo Soldiers National Monument

Park University’s Great War Institute, a division of the University’s George S. Robb Centre for the Study of the Great War, will host its inaugural Great War Institute Lecture Series event with a discussion on “The Legacy of Col. Charles Young.” The talk will be held on Friday, Nov. 5, starting at 7 p.m. at The National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Mo. Admission to the event is free and open to the public, but reservations are requested at

Brian ShellumPresenting the discussion will be Brian Shellum, an author and historian who writes about African American and military history. His lecture will focus on Col. Charles Young (1864-1922), a soldier, diplomat and civil rights leader who overcame stifling inequality to become a leading figure in the years after the Civil War when the U.S. emerged as a world power. His work ethic, academic leadership and devotion to duty provided a strong base for his achievements in the face of racism and oppression. His long and distinguished career as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army made him a popular figure of his time and a role model for generations of new leaders. Read more at

International Center for Music to Hold Two Concerts in November

The Park University International Center for Music Orchestra will present its second concert of the 2021-22 season on Friday, Nov. 5, under the direction of guest conductor David Stewart Wiley. The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. inside Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel on the University’s flagship Parkville (Mo.) Campus. Admission is free to the concert; however, reservations are requested by e-mailing Gus Fernandez Agreda, ICM coordinator, at

David Stewart WileyWiley has been the music director and conductor of the Roanoke (Va.) Symphony Orchestra since 1996. The concert will feature the works of Johann Sebastian Bach Edward Elgar, Dimitry Shostakovich, George Walker and a composition by Wiley. ICM violin graduate students David Horak, who earned his bachelor’s degree from Park earlier this year, and Orin Laursen, will be featured soloists during the Bach composition. Read more about Wiley and the concert at

In addition, students of Stanislav Ioudenitch, associate professor of music/piano and artistic director of the ICM, will present a concert devoted to piano lovers on Friday, Nov. 19, at the 1900 Building in Mission Woods, Kan. Students scheduled to perform includes Kenny Broberg, graduate student and 2021 winner of the American Pianists Awards, as well as Sergey Belyavsky, Kyoshiro Hirama, Kuok-Wai Lio, Sihaq Qin, Ilya Shmukler and Anastasia Vorotnaya. Tickets for this concert are $30 for adults and $10 for students with a valid ID. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

Annual International Festival Set for Nov. 19

In celebration of International Education Week, Park University’s Office of International Student Services will host its annual International Festival on Friday, Nov. 19. The event will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. in the University’s Park Avenue area within the Academic Underground on the Parkville Campus. Admission to the festival is free and open to the public. The International Festival will include information booths, performances, cultural activities and fashion shows featuring countries around the globe, with Park international students representing their native countries and sharing the unique and diverse characteristics of their homeland. Countries currently scheduled to be represented include Brazil, China, Germany, Ghana, Iran, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Malawi, Mexico, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Vietnam and Uzbekistan.

In addition to the festival, an international buffet will be served from 5 to 6 p.m. featuring foods from each continent. The price for the buffet is $10 per person for the public; Park students on a meal plan can eat free with their Park ID. For more information about the event, contact Julia Baer, associate director for international education, at / (816) 584-6857.

Park University Clery Reports Now Available

Every year, Park University publishes its annual security and fire safety report in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Safety Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Report). This document provides crime statistics, details the University’s regulations and procedures for emergency response and lists on- and off-campus resources for safety assistance. All colleges and universities participating in federal financial aid programs are required to share this data with the public.

Park University’s Clery Report for the 2020 calendar year is posted at and includes reports for all University campuses nationwide. The report is also available in printed form upon request to the Office of Campus Safety at / (816) 584-6444. Questions about the report should be referred to Jeffrey Hurley, director of campus safety,

Faculty, Staff, Student News

Gabrielle Williams, a senior accounting major, was awarded a Pentagon Federal Credit Union Pilot Training Scholarship by the Air Force Association on Oct. 5. The scholarship is for AFA members to pursue pilot training toward a private pilot’s license. The award is for a maximum of $10,000 and applicable to aircraft rental and instructor fees at a training facility of Williams’ choice. Williams is a deputy commander with the 148th Fighter Wing, a unit of the Minnesota Air National Guard located at Duluth Air National Guard Base.

Elizabeth Rose, adjunct instructor for communication arts, virtually co-presented a paper session on “Political Cancel Culture: A Cluster Criticism of Perceived Media Bias,” for the Broadcast Education Association conference on Oct. 7. The research presented pointed to how media continues to generate the issue as it highlights bias regarding politics in articles from left-leaning, neutral and right-leaning outlets.

Patty RybergPatty Ryberg, Ph.D., associate professor of biology and director of Park’s Honor’s Academy, was a panelist for a “Dinosaurs of Antarctica” screening and presentation at Fernbank, a nonprofit natural history museum in Atlanta on Oct. 9.

Dr. Silvia ByerSilvia Byer, Ph.D., professor of English and modern languages, was invited to participate in “Sorores: The Other Sister,” a research study on female writing and non-cloistered religious women in South Europe. It is a transnational, multiyear research project funded for the period 2022-26 by the École Française de Rome that will allow to reconstruct and contextualize case studies of groups of women practicing a religious life in the liminal space between the Church and the secular world. The project is focused on non-cloistered religious women between the 12th and 18th centuries from Austria, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. By defining and contextualizing the experiences of these women, the research project will establish a necessary corrective to the standard historiographical picture, helping to clarify the place of religious women in the Church and society.

Sophie Roper, senior business administration/logistics and entrepreneurship major, authored an article on “Ethicality of Data Mining and Predictive Analytics” that was published in the Summer 2021 edition of the Undergraduate Research Journal. She was mentored by Adrian James, Ph.D., associate dean in the College of Management and associate professor of management.

Dr. Henry RoehrichNicholas MiceliNicholas Miceli, Ph.D., associate professor of management/human resources, and Hank Roehrich, Ph.D., associate professor of management/marketing (along with Roehrich’s wife, Julie Grabanski, Ph.D.), co-presented a refereed paper, “A Study of an Undergraduate Marketing Degree Program: Opportunities for Collaborative, Inviting and Inclusive Higher Education Practices,” for the virtual Marketing Management Association Fall Educators Conference on Oct. 14. Roehrich, a member of the MMA Board of Directors, also served as chair on the panel session “Managing Group Projects or Presentations.”

Alla AdamsAlla Adams, Ph.D., assistant professor of healthcare administration and director of the Master of Healthcare Administration program, co-presented a session on “Effective Use of Teamwork and Connecting Students Across the Globe” for the Association of American Colleges and Universities Virtual Conference on Oct. 7. The presentation shared an innovative teaching approach that incorporates using teams throughout the curriculum.

Debra ShefferDebra Sheffer, Ph.D., professor of history and associate dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, authored a review of the book Ambitious Honor: George Armstrong Custer’s Life of Service and Lust for Fame that appeared in the October edition of the Journal of Military History.

Erik BergrudErik Bergrud, chief strategic communications officer, will return as the color commentator for television and internet broadcasts of home matches for the Kansas City Comets of the Major Arena Soccer League. For those in the Kansas City area, at least five home games will be broadcast on KMCI-TV (38 The Spot), and a majority of the home games will simulcast on WHB-AM (Sports Radio 810) or ESPN Kansas City (1510-AM).

Greg PlumbGreg Plumb, J.D., professor of criminal justice administration, presented a session on the Platte County (Mo.) Treatment Court as part of a community town hall forum in Parkville, Mo., on Oct. 26.

Clarine JacobsClarine Jacobs, D.B.A., Ph.D., lecturer of management/human resources, authored an article on “Lessons from Leaders of Today for Leaders of Tomorrow” for the October edition of the International Journal of Research in Commerce and Management Studies. The article provides insights that an help students success with their leadership challenges and dreams.

Park in the News

ECCO Select, led by Jeanette Prenger, ’09, president and founder, and immediate past chair of Park University’s Board of Trustees, was ranked No. 47 on the Kansas City Business Journal’s list of family-owned businesses, ranked by 2020 revenue, in the Oct. 1 edition.

Vlatko Andonovski, ’08, head coach of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team, was the focus of a column that appeared in The Kansas City Star on Oct. 6 related to his comments condemning the alleged misconduct by a National Women’s Soccer League coach and the NWSL’s lack of response.

Park University’s Robert W. Plaster Free Enterprise Center and School of Business on the Parkville (Mo.) Campus was highlighted on the Fox News program “Fox & Friends” on Oct. 8 as Parker Young, president of Straub Construction (the lead contractor on the Plaster Center), was interviewed to discuss how builders are facing an unprecedented supply shortage.

Amie Koci, director of Park University’s Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (Ohio) Campus, and Sr. Master Sgt. Jamie Pope, a senior management/human resources major, provided comments for a story that appeared on the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service website on Oct. 18. The story was related to the various education options available on base.

Shawn Moore, ’18, MSW ’20, was interviewed for a segment that aired on WDAF-TV in Kansas City on Oct. 21. Moore, founder and executive director of Caregivers on the Homefront, discussed supporting the mental health of veterans and their caregivers.

A story about an art display in the lobby of the Platte City, Mo., City Hall that features the work of Tiffanie Shriner, ’05, appeared in the Platte County (Mo.) Citizen on Oct. 21.

Matt Harris, Ph.D., assistant professor of political science, was interviewed for a story that aired on KCTV in Kansas City on Oct. 26 related to Kansas City’s potential bid to host the 2024 Republican National Convention.

A “Back to Campus” story that appeared in the October edition of Ingram’s, a Kansas City business magazine, included comments from Park University Interim President Shane Smeed (pages 16-17).

James Snyder, ’95, was featured on the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service website on Oct. 27. Snyder retired in October as a district fire chief with the 788th Civil Engineer Squadron at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

Gary Kerr, senior director of military and veteran affairs, was among the panelists for a Kansas City Business Journal Table of Experts on “Enlisting the Veteran Workforce” that appeared in the KCBJ on Oct. 29.

Park University’s Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel on the Parkville (Mo.) Campus was the backdrop for the filming of a Christmas television special in late October for the Kansas and Western Missouri Division of the Salvation Army. The 30-minute program will air the following dates in the Kansas City area:
          •  Thursday, Nov. 25, 9:30 p.m., KCWE-TV
          •  Friday, Nov. 26, 6:30 p.m., KCTV and KCMI-TV
          •  Saturday, Nov. 27, 11:30 a.m., KSMO-TV, and 6:30 p.m., KSHB-TV
          •  Sunday, Nov. 28, 11 a.m., KSHB-TV; 11:30 a.m., KSMO-TV, and 7 p.m., KMCI-TV
          •  Saturday, Dec. 4, 11:30 a.m., KSMO-TV, and time to be determined, WDAF-TV
          •  Sunday, Dec. 5, 11:30 a.m., KSMO-TV, and time to be determined, WDAF-TV
          •  Sunday, Dec. 12, 5 p.m., KMCI-TV announced its 2022 Best Colleges rankings in mid-October. Park University was ranked on the following lists:
          •  Most Diverse Colleges in America, No. 69; in Missouri, No. 1
          •  Safest College Campuses in America, No. 83; in Missouri, No. 3
          •  Best Colleges for Computer Science in America, No. 242; in Missouri, No. 5
          •  Best Colleges of Business in America, No. 256; in Missouri, No. 6
          •  Best Colleges for Psychology in America, No. 265, in Missouri, No. 7
          •  Best Colleges for Criminal Justice in America, No. 275; in Missouri, No. 8
          •  Best College Food in America, No. 312; in Missouri, No. 7
          •  Best College Locations in America, No. 616; in Missouri, No. 18
          •  Colleges with the Best Student Life in America, No. 631; in Missouri, No. 18
          •  Best Value Colleges in America, No. 649; in Missouri, No. 11; in Kansas City area, No. 3
          •  Most Liberal Colleges in America, No. 827; in Missouri, No. 9

Upcoming Events

(All events are Central time)
          •  Through November 19 — Art Exhibit: “Born of Fire” (Italian Art Glass) by Allesandro and Roberto Moretti, a Collection from Tom Johnson, Campanella Gallery (Norrington Center)
          •  November 5 — Great War Institute Lecture Series Event, “The Legacy of Col. Charles Young,” 7 p.m., National World War I Museum and Memorial, Kansas City, Mo.
          •  November 5 — International Center for Music Concert: ICM Orchestra, 7:30 p.m., Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel
          •  November 11 — Veterans Day Holiday (all University offices closed; Parkville and Gilbert daytime classes cancelled; Fall II classes held as scheduled)
          •  November 12 — Board of Trustees Meeting, Parkville Campus / Virtual
          •  November 13 — Columbus (Ohio) Campus / Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (Ohio) Campus Commencement, 9 a.m., Ohio History Connection, Columbus
          •  November 19 — International Festival, 5-8 p.m., Park Avenue/Academic Underground, Parkville Campus
          •  November 25-26 — Thanksgiving Holiday (all University offices closed; Parkville and Gilbert daytime classes cancelled; Fall II classes held as scheduled)
          •  December 1-31 — Student Art Exhibit: Chairs by Interior Design Students, Campanella Gallery (Norrington Center)
          •  December 11 — Kansas City Area December Commencement, 10 a.m., Community of Christ Auditorium, Independence, Mo.
          •  December 12 — Fall Semester / Fall II Term Ends
          •  December 23-24 — Christmas Holiday Observed (all University offices closed)
          •  December 31 — New Year’s Day Holiday Observed (all University offices closed)

To view a comprehensive schedule for all events, including athletics and student life, visit



Park University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Park University is a private, non-profit, institution of higher learning since 1875.