With students returning to campus this weekend for the 2015-2016 academic year, Eastern Mennonite University also welcomes 12 new faculty members. (Photo by Michael Sheeler)

Eastern Mennonite University welcomes twelve new faculty members for 2015-2016 academic year

Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) welcomes 12 new faculty to the ranks for the 2015-16 academic year. The new faculty, announced by Fred Kniss, provost; Michael King, vice president and seminary dean; Deirdre Smeltzer, vice president and undergraduate academic dean; and Jim Smucker, vice president and dean of graduate and professional studies are:

Abigail Berkey, PhD, visiting assistant professor of biology

Berkey earned a bachelor’s degree in pre-professional zoology from Ohio Wesleyan University and a master’s in integrative biology from University of Illinois. She completed her PhD in ecology, evolution and conservation biology from University of Illinois in 2015. Her interests lie in wildlife, ornithology and ecology. Berkey has previously served at University of Illinois as an adjunct instructor.

Marcille Frederick, director of Sadie Hartzler Library

Frederick has served as a librarian at several institutions, including Trinity Christian College, The King’s University College and Institute for Christian Studies. She earned a bachelor’s in history from Beloit College, a master’s in American history and a master’s of library science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She also earned a master of philosophy degree in historiography and philosophy of history at the Institute for Christian Studies in Ontario. As a librarian, she loves bringing people together to create community around ideas and sharing resources to nurture deep reflection and coming alongside as a teaching and mentor.

Samuel Wai Johnson, Jr., visiting instructor of economics

Johnson earned a bachelor’s in economics from University of Liberia and a master’s degree in economics from Ohio University. He anticipates completing a PhD this year at George Mason University School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution. He brings experience as a visiting scholar at EMU in the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding program and as a visiting adjunct at University of Liberia. Johnson’s expertise and interest are in economic dimensions of conflict and peacebuilding, economic development and post-conflict development finance.

Lisa King, instructor of nursing

King earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing at EMU and a master’s in nursing leadership and management also at EMU. She brings nursing experience in the hospital along with specific training and certification in advanced cardiac life support and end of life and pain management. She has served as an adjunct nursing instructor previously in the nursing program at EMU.

Audrey K. Myers, assistant professor of the practice of nursing

Myers bring nursing experience in the hospital setting, both as a nurse and as a pediatric nurse practitioner, to previous instructional positions in EMU’s RN-BS nursing completion program. She earned her bachelor’s degree in biology at EMU, and two degrees from University of Virginia: a bachelor’s in nursing and a master’s degree as a pediatric nurse practitioner.

Melody M. Pannell, assistant professor of social work

Pannell returns to EMU, where she was director of multicultural services from 2003-2008. She earned master’s of divinity and master’s of education in Christian education at Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology this year. Pannell brings experience as a counselor in the university, in-home, youth and clinical counseling. Her interests include church ministries and expertise in diversity and multicultural relations. She also holds two degrees in social work: a bachelor’s from EMU and a master’s from Fordham University.

Daniel Showalter, PhD, assistant professor of mathematics

Showalter brings international teaching and working experiences in a variety of rich cultural settings, including South Korea and Laos. He earned a bachelor’s in mathematics from Urbana University, and a master’s degree in mathematics and a PhD in mathematics education from Ohio University, where he has been an adjunct professor and visiting assistant professo. His interest and passion lie in mentoring students in their personal, spiritual and professional paths. He values working with students holistically, whether teaching online or in the classroom.

Timothy Seidel, instructor of community and international development

Seidel brings experience in international peacebuilding and interfaith engagement, after a 10-year career with Mennonite Central Committee. Currently a PhD candidate at American University School of International Service, Seidel looks forward to “engaging students in critical reflection around issues of politics, development, and peacebuilding.” He earned a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from Messiah College, a master’s degree in international peace and conflict resolution from American University School of International Service, and a master of the theological studies from Wesley Theological Seminary

Michael Spory, assistant professor of art

Spory earned a degree in art from EMU and completed a master’s in architecture in 2015. He brings experience as an architectural intern and worked in marketing at MennoMedia. Spory’s interests lie in freelance photography, architecture, graphic design and branding. He was selected as a Lilly graduate fellow from 2012-2015.

Johonna Turner, PhD, assistant professor of restorative justice and peacebuilding

Turner brings a wealth of teaching experience from K-12 schools in Washington D.C. to adjunct teaching of undergraduate and graduate students at University of Maryland. She has also taught at EMU’s Summer Peacebuilding Institute. As founder and director of the Vision to Peace Project, she has been instrumental in teaching young people leadership skills to prevent violence and promote justice in their communities. Turner earned a bachelor’s degrees in interdisciplinary studies and news-editorial journalism at University of Missouri, Columbia. She earned a PhD in American studies at University of Maryland, College Park. In addition, she earned a graduate certificate in women’s studies at University of Maryland, College Park and an urban youth ministry graduate certificate from Fuller Theological Seminary.

Anna Westfall, assistant professor of art

Westfall earned a BFA in ceramic/sculpture from James Madison University and an MFA in ceramic/sculpture at University of New Mexico. Westfall brings prior teaching experience at EMU, as well as Bridgewater College and Savannah State University. Her interests lie in ceramic and sculpture techniques, three and two-dimensional design, drawing, photography and small scale casting.

Laurie Miller Yoder, PhD, assistant professor of chemistry and chemical hygiene officer

Yoder earned an undergraduate degree in chemistry from EMU and a PhD in physical chemistry at the University of Michigan. Most recently, she was lay minister at Lombard Mennonite Church and a communications coordinator at Laurelville Mennonite Church Center. In addition, she was an independent consultant at Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York. Her work and interests are in kinetics (rates) of gas phase (atmospheric) chemistry as well as the rates of biochemical solution phase reactions.