Kentucky Wesleyan College Interim President Dr. Gene Tice has announced the appointment of Rebecca McQueen-Ruark, M.A. as vice president of student affairs. She assumes the position after serving as the College’s dean of students since 2016.
“Rebecca has played an important role in the continued growth of the student engagement and campus life experience at Kentucky Wesleyan,” said Dr. Tice. “The importance of the student experience cannot be overstated and Rebecca’s leadership and vision for the programming, health and security of our campus is vital to the continued momentum of the College.”
Dr. Paula Dehn arrived at Wesleyan as the new vice president of academic affairs and dean of the college on July 1, 2008, with gratitude for her own undergraduate experience and passion for the mission of Kentucky Wesleyan. “I was a first-generation college student, and through scholarships provided by DePauw, I had the opportunity for a superior education in a nurturing environment. My undergraduate years had a tremendous impact on my life, opening doors and the world for me. I am still reaping the benefits of that education, and I am still very grateful for the generosity of donors to DePauw who made that possible.”
She began to invest in Kentucky Wesleyan as soon as she arrived and has given regularly since 2008. “I wanted to do my part to make a good college great. I had personally experienced the value of a small, faith-based liberal arts college, so from the beginning, I wanted to support Wesleyan financially. Wesleyan impressed me from the moment I arrived, and I felt an obligation to help the institution.”
Terri Petzold arrived at the College on August 1, 2018, with two immediate goals: to establish the first-ever office for counseling services for students on campus and to decrease the stigma behind mental health issues. Prior to her employment, the College outsourced counseling.
According to Petzold, 20% of adults will experience mental health needs at some time in their lives, and this prevalence is true of student populations on college campuses as well. “The College wanted to provide a counselor who is accessible and available to students right here on campus,” Terri explained. “Convenience is important. My role is to help students navigate through a major time of transition in their lives.”
New Student Orientation is an academic and social experience to assist incoming students with their transition into Kentucky Wesleyan College. Because of the importance of material presented at New Student Orientation, it is a required activity for all new, incoming students.
Family: Husband, Nick, and 6-month-old son, Joseph Thomason Kosewski
Career: “I was an associate financial representative with Northwestern Mutual in Paducah, Ky., for 10 years and was promoted to associate director of ASSET (the local team) with Northwestern Mutual Dallas while we lived there. We recently moved back to Paducah, and I’m enjoying time at home with our little one as we get settled in Kentucky.”
Why did you choose Wesleyan? “I am a 1997 graduate of Hancock County High School. I was never in a classroom with more than 30 people, so when I started looking at colleges, I wasn’t ready to be in a place where I didn’t even know the names of my classmates. I wanted a solid science program that offered the opportunity to get into multiple graduate options. KWC had three fantastic biology faculty; Dr. Oetinger, Dr. Kingsolver and Professor Davenport. It was clear when speaking with graduate programs that they had stellar reputations.”
What are special memories of your years at Wesleyan? “It was such a fun time in my life. At the time of my attendance, my husband and future sister-in-law and one of my best friends also attended. You could see us all at the Mr. KWC competition annually. I was a Kappa Delta and my sorority involvement was also high. Probably my favorite memory is chemistry lab and nearly setting the ceiling on fire in the old building in an experiment gone awry.”
Ohio County High School Major: Chemistry Accepted to University of Kentucky College of Medicine, Lexington
Kiah Gledhill described his four years at Kentucky Wesleyan as “a super big blessing.”
He chose Wesleyan because he was focused on becoming a physician, and he knew the College’s stellar reputation for preparing students for medical school. He was named a Brown Scholar and had the opportunity to play baseball, too.
“Wesleyan was a good fit for me,” reflected Kiah. “Every year has been great in many ways. I’m leaving with gratitude and great memories, and I’m ready for medical school.”
Assistant professor of Mathematics and Mathematics Program Coordinator
Education: “I earned my B.S. in mathematics with a minor in physics from the University of Southern Indiana. I did my graduate work at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where I earned an M.S. in applied mathematics as well as a Ph.D. in applied mathematics with a minor in physics. My dissertation was on several models used to study quantum oscillator systems. My research interests are in spectral theory and mathematical physics. However, I have also become interested in studying mathematics education. This is an exciting time in mathematics education, and there is a big push to move away from the traditional lecture model into a more active and student-focused classroom model.”
Why did you become a teacher? “I have been interested in teaching since middle school. Originally, I was a mathematics secondary education major at USI, but I fell in love with mathematics and wanted to pursue graduate studies. Teaching at the college level allowed me to both teach and continue my studies.”
Dr. Gene Tice is focused and intentional. When he sets goals, he sets big ones, and the Appalachian Trail was on his list. It extends for 2,200 miles of wilderness through 14 states from Springer Mountain in Georgia along the ridgeline of the Appalachian Mountains to Mount Katahdin in Maine.
He got in shape for the arduous journey and set out from Georgia with a friend and a backpack stuffed with 40 pounds of supplies and equipment. A fall in North Carolina resulted in broken ribs and a detour back to Kentucky to recover.
Two months into the detour, his phone rang. “I was asked to serve as the interim president of Kentucky Wesleyan, and I couldn’t say ‘no,’” he remembered. “The College is a beautiful place, and I’ve spent a lot of time with President Darrell in recent years. I’ve been very impressed with his accomplishments and with the sense of excitement he has generated about Wesleyan. It will be an honor to be a part of the College in the months ahead.”
Kentucky Wesleyan College has been named one of BestColleges.com’s Best Online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design programs for 2019, ranked seventh in the nation. BestColleges ranks college programs based on a combination of factors including academic quality, affordability and online competency. The Kentucky Wesleyan program includes foundational and advanced graphic arts courses including drawing, typography, branding design, web design, print publication and animation. Students gain practical experience through two internships.
“This ranking reflects that our program is competitive and fosters professional quality work through one-on-one attention from experienced faculty who have worked in the field,” said Heather Logsdon, M.F.A., associate art professor and director of graphics, art and art education. “Our broad curriculum is competitive in teaching the skills needed for a fast-paced market with hands-on projects that support creative and critical thinking.”