Higher Education Leadership Graduates

Listed below are some of our graduates from the higher education concentration within the Doctor of Philosophy in education leadership program in the Department of Educational Leadership, Research and Technology at Western Michigan University.

  • Name: Ron McKean
    Title/Organization: Associate Dean/Ferris State University
    Dissertation Title: International education, engineering technology, competency base assessment in higher education, non-traditional education

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    Name: George Brown
    Title/Organization: Dean Belcher College of Fine and Performing Arts/Western Carolina University
    Dissertation Title: Artist as academic leader

  • Kimberly Beistle headshot

    Name: Kimberly Beistle
    Title/Organization: Professor/Ferris State University
    Dissertation Title: Continuous improvement in higher education, leadership development in undergraduates in pre-professional programs

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    Name: Paul Ballard
    Title/Organization: Associate Dean for student success and retention/program director of leadership studies/St. Norbert College
    Dissertation Title:   Measuring performance excellence: key performance indicators for institutions accepted into academic quality improvement program (AQIP) 

  • Azala Alghamdi
    Title/Organization: Assistant Professor of Higher Education Leadership, Assistant Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center, Vice Chair of Educational Administration and Planning Dept/Albaha University
    Dissertation Topic:The empowerment of academic women leaders at Saudi Universities and its relationship to their administrative creativity

  • Maria Anderson
    Title/Organization: CEO/Coursetune, Inc.
    Dissertation Topic: Knowledge, attitudes, and instructional practices of Michigan community college math instructors: the search for a KAP Gap in collegiate math

  • Jacob Arndt
    Title/Organization: Faculty/KVCCFA Grievance Officer/Kalamazoo Valley Community College
    Dissertation Topic: Comprending male and female levels of engagement in subsets of the national survey of student engagement; explicating the dynamics of gender role conflict as a mediating factor for males

  • Heidi Beidinger-Burnett
    Title/Organization: Assistant Professor/University of Notre Dame
    Dissertation Topic: Effective leadership behaviors: how one principal made sense of and integrated research-based behaviors into his daily practice

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    Name: Joe Bishop
    Title/Organization:  Executive director of campus life
    Research Interest:  Transitioning for students with autism spectrum disorder from high school to a liberal arts college

  • Rebecca Brinks
    Title/Organization: Education and Child Development Program Director/Grand Rapids Community College
    Dissertation Topic:Intensive professional development in early literacy instruction for preschool teachers

  • Brian Cole
    Title/Organization: Abilene Christian Univ (Dallas) Program Director and Associate Professor
    Dissertation Topic: The impact of institutional culture on student activism: a multi-case study in Christian higher education

  • Alisha Davis
    Title/Organization: Assistant Professor/Grand Valley State University 

    Dissertation Topic: Experiences of underrepresented minority students in health professions programs, and their journeys to the program

  • Betty Dennis
    Title/Organization: Faculty Specialist II/Western Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic: Retaining exploring students: a comparison study of decided and undecided college students

  • Vunsin Doubblestein
    Title/Organization: Associate Director for Mentoring for Success in the Division of Multicultural Affairs/Western Michigan University 
    Dissertation Topic: From descendants of refugees to first-generation college students: the untold story of southeast Asian american college students' lived experience

  • Ashley Green
    Title/Organization: Assistant Dean for Administration/Michigan State University
    Dissertation Topic: Experiences of African American female first generation college students

  • Kay Keck
    Title/Organization: Vice President, Student and Community Services/Kellogg Community College 
    Dissertation Topic: Community college retention: the role of late registration policies

  • Russell Leonard
    Title/Organization: Professor/Ferris State University 
    Dissertation Topic: Females in automotive careers: career decision-making influences and experiences during university preparation and beyond

  • Susan Mendoza
    Title/Organization: Founding Director, Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship/Grand Valley State University 
    Dissertation Topic: Redefining significance: experiences of humanities faculty engaged in undergraduate research

  • Pete Muir
    Title/Organization: Dean of Accreditation and Curriculum/Cornerstone University
    Dissertation Topic: From script to screen to syllabus: the path to curriculum design for undergraduate film production programs

  • Charmayne Mulligan
    Title/Organization: Department Chair/Davenport University
    Dissertation Topic: Perceptions of general education deans and department chairs of their colleges as learning organizations

  • Susie Nagel-Bennett
    Title/Organization: Associate Vice President/Dean of Students/ Western Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic: Job satisfaction of university chief student conduct administrators and their intent to stay or leave the position

  • Randy Ott
    Title/Organization: Director Center Academics Success Programs/WMU
    Dissertation Topic:  White male college students: an examination of identity development, masculinity, and institutional connections

  • Sarah Pernie
    Title/Organization: Professor/Kalamazoo Valley Community College
    Dissertation Topic: Content analysis of university alcohol policies: "party schools" compared to non-party schools

  • Sharon Peterson
    Title/Organization:Faculty Specialist II/Western Michigan University 
    Dissertation Topic: Assessing problem solving strategy differences within online and face-to-face courses and their relationship to pre-service teachers' competence and confidence for integrating technology into teaching

  • Kathleen Poindexter
    Title/Organization: Assistant Dean Undergraduate Programs/Michigan State University, College of Nursing

    Dissertation Topic: Essential novice nurse educator role competencies and qualifications to teach INA pre-licensure registered nurse education program

  • Cecil Queen
    Title/Organization: Professor/Ferris State University
    Dissertation Topic:Effectiveness of problem-based learning strategies within police training academies and correlates with licensing exam outcomes

  • Kathy Lee Rix
    Title/Organization: Owner and CEO/Upward Faith Ministries 
    Dissertation Topic: Differences by degrees: providing services to adult students based on degree level pursued

  • Kristi Robinia
    Title/Organization: Associate Dean/Director of Nursing/Northern Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic: Online teaching self-efficacy of nurse faculty teaching in public, accredited nursing programs in the state of Michigan

  • Gail Rouscher
    Title/Organization: Assistant Professor Aviation/Western Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic:The lived experiences of veteran and military students in the context of a "military friendly" institution:  a phenomenological case study

  • Constance Schwass
    Title/Organization: Professor/West Shore Community College
    Dissertation Topic: Assessing student learning outcomes in AQIP accredited community and technical colleges

  • Ewa Urban
    Title/Organization: Associate Director, Assessment/Western Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic:Value of U.S. higher education for international students in the context of higher education internationalization

  • Gary Versalle
    Title/Organization: Adjunct Faculty/Western Michigan University, SNHU
    Dissertation Topic:Understanding the experiences of students re-admitted after academic suspension as part of a university-initiated process: a qualitative study

  • Jason Werkema
    Title/Organization: Professor and Dean, Shool of Music, Worship and Technology/Grace Christian University
    Dissertation Topic: Making sense of roles and responsibilities: a socialization study of college and university music department chairs

  • Stephen Worst
    Title/Organization: Retired, Consultant 
    Dissertation Topic: Vygotsky's theory of the creative imagination: a study of the influences on preservice teachers' creative thinking capacities

  • Nicole Allbee
    Title/Organization: Director of Student Conduct/Western Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic: Factors contributing to the attrition of new student affairs professionals

  • Rita Gordon
    Title/Organization: Director-Administrative Services/University of Michigan-Dearborn
    Dissertation Topic:University auxiliary services: a review of factors impacting privatization decisions

  • DeAnna Burt
    Title/Organization: Vice President of Student and Academic Affairs/South Central College (Minnesota State)
    Dissertation Topic:African american students retention: a study of the effects of an intrusive advising intervention at a career college

  • Christine Greer
    Title/Organization:Assistant Vice President and Dean of Students/Northern Michigan University 
    Dissertation Topic: The family educational rights and privacy act and permission disclosure: what information are post-secondary institutions disclosing and why?

  • Kimberly Hayworth
    Title/Organization: Vice Chancellor for Student Access and Success/Montana State University-Billings
    Dissertation Topic:Black male graduates' reflections on their college experiences at a private faith-based predominantly white institution of higher education

  • Deb Thalner
    Title/Organization: Retired/Consultant/Ferris State University 
    Dissertation Topic: The practice of continuous improvement in higher education

  • Carl Wozniak
    Title/Organization: Associate Professor/Northern Michigan University 
    Dissertation Topic: Administrator perspective of post-secondary educational opportunities for Michigan high school students

  • Jon Shaffer
    Title/Organization: Director of University Housing/Southern Illinois University Carbondale
    Dissertation Topic: Role of residence hall staff in offering early warning academic intervention

  • LaShonda Anthony
    Title/Organization: Director, Academic Integrity/George Mason University
    Dissertation Topic: Committed Seventh-Day Adventist students at secular institutions of higher education

  • Jennifer McCaul
    Title/Organization: Executive Director, Center for Academic Success/University of West Florida
    Dissertation Topic:Closing the loop: a study of how to the national survey of student engagement (NSSE) is used for decision-making and planning in student affairs

  • Rebecca McNamara
    Title/Organization: Lecturer/Seattle University 
    Dissertation Topic: Traveling with a purpose: stories of contradiction and transformation in international service-learning

  • Ceceilia Parnther
    Title/Organization: Assistant Professor/St. John's University 
    Dissertation Topic: It's on us: a case study of academic integrity in a mid-western community college

  • Eric Mullen
    Title/Organization: Associate Dean of Enrollment Management/Grand Rapids Community College
    Dissertation Topic: The lived experience of new community college student affairs professionals

  • Name: Christine Robinson
    Title/Organization: Director of Advising and Admission, CEHD/Western Michigan University
    Dissertation Topic: Student success, students on probation, access, equity, inclusion, social justice, shame, identity

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    Name: Somaia Mustafa
    Title/Organization: PhD Student
    Dissertation Topic: Women leadership-the experience of female SSAOs in decision making