Inquiry Magazine Northwestern School of Education and Social Policy

FALL 2011

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Learning Sciences Alums Receive NSF Fellowships

In one year, three doctoral alumni of the Learning Sciences program received National Science Foundation CAREER Awards. These prestigious awards support junior faculty who exemplify outstanding research and excellent education. Paulo Blikstein of Stanford University (PhD09), Ravit Golan Duncan (PhD06) of Rutgers University and Victor Lee (PhD08) of Utah State University received awards for their education research.

NU -TEACH Grad Ron Hale Wins Golden Apple Award

Ron Hale
Photo courtesy of Golden Apple Foundation

Ron Hale, a 2009 graduate of the NU-TEACH alternative certification program, won the Golden Apple Award for Teaching Excellence. He was one of 10 teachers to win the award out of 600 nominated in the Chicago area.

Hale, who was raised on Chicago’s South Side and now teaches there, teaches science to seventh and eighth graders at Chicago International Charter School–Avalon. “He has developed a classroom of mutual respect and student discovery. He is amazing to watch in the classroom,” says NU-TEACH coordinator Michelle Jenkins.

Carla Argueta

Carla Argueta (BS10) of Franklin Park, Ill., was selected for the Coro Fellows Program in Public Affairs, which trains future leaders.

Leah Chamberlain (MS10) of Evanston published “Dollars and Sense: How Colleges and Universities Promote Financial Literacy” in Student Aid Transcript, based on her Higher Education Administration and Policy master’s project.

Claire Olszewski

Claire Olszewski (BS10) of Chicago is working for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign on the Midwest finance team. Previously she worked in the White House on Michelle Obama’s advance team.

Maddie Orenstein (BS10) of St. Paul joined the Illinois Student Assistance Commission in its outreach program to assist first-generation, lowincome students with the college admission process.

Zhen Cheng

Zhen Cheng (BS11) of Brookfield, Ill., won the Asian American Psychological Association’s Undergraduate Award and presented her undergraduate research at the Association’s convention. She is beginning a doctoral program in psychology at the University of Oregon.

Julie Kornfeld (BS11) of West Bloomfield, Mich., won a Princeton in Africa Fellowship to work in Uganda with the Lutheran World Federation.

Megan Luczak

Megan Luczak (BS11) of Rockton, Ill., won a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship to study public policy at the University of Salamanca in Spain.

Baylen J.Linnekin

Baylen J. Linnekin (MA00) of Washington, D.C., founder and executive director of the nonprofit Keep Food Legal, presented his research on food safety at two academic conferences, was a featured speaker on raw milk at a Capitol Hill rally and commented on Fox Business Channel.

Richard Rykhus

Richard Rykhus (MA00) of Evanston, a graduate of the Learning Sciences program, was elected to a fouryear term on the District 65 school board serving K-8 schools in Evanston/Skokie.

Chala Holland (BS01) of Evanston was named the first assistant principal for instruction at Oak Park and River Forest High School. She was formerly a teacher, director of academic support and summer school principal at Evanston Township High School.

Anna Holster

Anna Holster (BS03) of Alexandria, Va., a PhD candidate in public policy and public administration at George Washington University, was inducted into the Edward Alexander Bouchet Graduate Honor Society at Yale University, a selective national honor society for PhD students.

Molly Gholson Carlson (MS04) of Madison, Wis., earned a PhD in higher education from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Melissa Quinby (MS04) of South Portland, Maine, became director of the Women’s Resource Center at Bowdoin College.

Joe Curnow (BS05) of Toronto, a graduate student at the University of Toronto in the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, was awarded an Ontario Graduate Scholarship.

Meg Cashion Lysy (MS05) of Silver Spring, Md., was promoted to associate director of admissions at Georgetown University.

Lori Schwanhausser (BS05) of Ridgefield, Conn., earned a doctorate in clinical psychology from La Salle University with a specialization in sport/performance psychology. She is completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Florida.

Shawn Basak

Shawn Basak (BS08) of Chicago was recently promoted from analyst to consultant at Mission Measurement, LLC, where he works with corporate clients on developing social responsibility strategies.


Sarah Weersing (BS92) of Chicago is a global mergers and acquisitions lead for Accenture LLP. Her daughter Charlotte was born on February 18.

Jim Tenbusch (PhD92), who has been superintendent of four Illinois schools, recently became superintendent of Clio School District in Michigan.

Stacia Crescenzi (MS95) of Austin, Texas, was named principal of the Liberal Arts and Science Academy in Austin, after serving as academy director at Lanier High School since 2008.

Kate Behring (BS96) of Lake Bluff, Ill., was named director of client services at bswift, a human resources software and services provider.

Betsi Burns (MS97) of Evanston was promoted to assistant dean of students at Northwestern University.

Pat Fitzgerald (BS97) of Northfield, Ill., was named the inaugural 1World Sports Coach of the Year.

Bryan Dwyer (MS99) of Tegucigalpa recently became director of programming and training for the Peace Corps in Honduras.


Dave Froehlich (BS75) of Inverness, Ill., a teacher, coach and athletic director at Rolling Meadows High School, was inducted into the Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association Hall of Fame.

Mary Elson Carlson

Mary Elson Carlson (MA76) of Lubbock, Texas, is a firstyear law student at Texas Tech University. She is an active veterinarian and a retired teacher who taught in Poudre School District in Fort Collins, Colo.

Thayer James Herte

Thayer James Herte (BS78) of Flossmoor, Ill., is senior vice president and national director of fiduciary education for the Northern Trust Company. She also is an adjunct faculty member at Loyola University Chicago School of Law and serves on the SESP advisory board.


William W. Joyce (MS60) of East Lansing, Mich., is a professor emeritus of teacher education at Michigan State University, where the Canadian Studies Center created a scholarship in his honor.

Nancy Wendt Sindelar (BS66) of Chicago wrote Assessment-Powered Teaching and was named an executive consultant on assessment for the American Association of School Administrators.