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Clark College News and Events

April 28, 2009

For Immediate Release

For additional information: 

Barbara Kerr, Executive Director of
Communications and Marketing Telephone:  360-992-2921

E-mail:  bkerr@clark.edu


Clark College Tenured Faculty 2009
At a reception on April 27, Clark College honored 10 newly-tenured faculty members.  Front row (left to right):  Vice President of Instruction Dr. Rassoul Dastmozd, English professor Jill Darley-Vanis, Sociology professor Carlos Castro, Human Development professor Tani McBeth, Chemistry professor Susan K. Brookhart and Chemistry professor Karl Bailey.  Back row (left to right):  English professor Geneva Chao, Paralegal professor S. Layne Russell, Nursing professor M. Gail Fujimoto, Library professor Zachary Grant, Dental Hygiene professor Brenda Walstead and Clark College President Robert K. Knight.

Ten faculty members, who have been granted tenure
by the Clark College Board of Trustees,
were honored at a reception on April 27

VANCOUVER, Wash. — Ten Clark College faculty members have been granted tenure by the college’s Board of Trustees.  Karl Bailey (chemistry), Susan K. Brookhart (chemistry), Carlos Castro (sociology), Geneva Chao (English), Jill Darley-Vanis (English), M. Gail Fujimoto (nursing), Zachary M. Grant (library), Tani McBeth (human development), S. Layne Russell (paralegal) and Brenda Walstead (dental hygiene) were honored at a reception on Monday, April 27.  The reception was sponsored by the Clark College Board of Trustees and the college’s Office of Instruction.

Tenure is awarded to faculty members who have exhibited professional excellence and outstanding abilities in their disciplines.  The granting of tenure is based on the recommendations of tenure review committees to the vice president of instruction which are then forwarded to the president, who presents a final recommendation to the Board of Trustees.  Recommendations are based on self evaluations, tenure review committee evaluations, student evaluations, supervisory evaluations, and peer evaluations.  The final decision to award or withhold tenure rests with the Board of Trustees.  The trustees approved tenure for the 10 faculty members on March 16. 

“These outstanding faculty members reflect our commitment to excellence and to supporting student success,” said Clark College President Robert K. Knight.

Dr. Rassoul Dastmozd, Vice President of Instruction, noted, “Earning tenure status is a major career milestone and accomplishment.  These student-centered faculty members have been recognized and celebrated by their peers and our institution for their accomplishments and dedication to teaching and learning at Clark College.”


EDITOR’S NOTE: Biographies for the new tenured faculty members are included below.

Karl Bailey -- Chemistry

Karl Bailey earned a bachelor of science degree in biochemistry from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, Calif.  He served as a research chemist for JBL Scientific in San Luis Obispo in addition to graduate research in marine natural products at Florida Technical Institute in Melbourne, Fla.  He earned his Ph.D. at University of California at Davis in organic chemistry. Bailey, who resides in Vancouver, was a post-doctoral researcher at University of California at Berkeley, a visiting instructor at California Polytechnic State University and a tenure track faculty member at Everett Community College.    He is one of three investigators for a three-year National Science Foundation (NSF) Course Curriculum Laboratory Improvement (CCLI) grant awarded to Clark College to update lab pedagogy and incorporate nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) into the chemistry laboratory and lecture sequences for all chemistry courses.  Bailey describes learning as “a dynamic process. It should have few boundaries, encourages curiosity and pushes the limits of conventional wisdom; it needs to allow room for self-reflection.”   He adds, “There is little substitute for experience, thus an education is more than book learning. Our students should be prepared for the truth: that life is more about what happens when things do not go as planned.  We appreciate more by experiencing our failures and allowing that process to lead discovery.”

Susan K. Brookhart -- Chemistry

A resident of Portland, Brookhart earned bachelor of arts degrees in chemistry and French at Amherst College in Amherst, Mass.  She earned a master of science degree in chemistry at the California Institute of Technology.   Her leadership activities at Clark include serving as the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) representative on the college’s Retention Committee.  Brookhart also serves as departmental lead for Chemistry for Health Occupations.  Brookhart believes that “An excellent teacher inspires awe in her students -- awe not of their teacher, but of themselves and how much they can do.”

Carlos J. Castro -- Sociology

Carlos Castro graduated cum laude from the University of Oregon with bachelor of arts degrees in sociology and economics.  Continuing his studies at the University of Oregon, Castro earned a master’s degree in public affairs (MPA), master’s degree in community and regional planning (MCRP) and a PhD in sociology.  A resident of Portland, Castro is a member of Clark’s Cultural Pluralism Committee. Castro says his job “is to expose my students to other ways of thinking and to help them find their own.” He adds, “I believe that an educated person should be able to understand why people have different perspectives about the social issues that American society and the rest of the world face. In my classes, I ask of my students to analyze the social world using different sociological perspectives. At the end of the term, I require them to develop their own perspective and to explain its sources.”


Geneva Chao -- English

Geneva Chao studied poetics, fiction writing, minority American history and media representation, and literacy pedagogies at San Francisco State University and French translation and literature at Barnard College at New York’s Columbia University. She began her career teaching basic education at the City University of New York – Brooklyn Tech Campus and continued on to New York University and the Art Institutes of San Francisco.  A resident of Portland, Chao is active in Clark’s eLearning program, has developed and taught a multiethnic American Literature course, and has piloted a paperless classroom using the Wiki model.  She believes that “the role of a teacher is to empower students to seek and develop their own knowledge and skills,” and is a strong proponent of diversity of origin, demographic, and thought as enriching to learning communities.

Jill Darley-Vanis -- English

Jill Darley-Vanis earned bachelor of arts degrees in English and in French at Oregon State University.  As part of her French studies, she spent one year at the Université de Poitiers in Poitiers, France.  Darley-Vanis earned a master’s degree in English literature at Portland State University.  Her areas of concentration are in literary criticism and theory, eighteenth-century British literature, and nineteenth-century British literature.

At Clark College, Darley-Vanis has made several presentations on the use of rubrics to enhance student learning.  She served as a member of Clark College’s accreditation team and has volunteered as a tutor in the college’s writing center.  A resident of Vancouver, Darley-Vanis says, “I am fascinated by what we know about how people learn. I am interested in creating situations for discourse, be it written or oral, as this leads to learning both for my students and for myself; I also find that our students want to be challenged, and that the more I challenge them, the more they exceed my expectations. I am interested in creating authentic writing situations, and last, I’m intrigued by the potential of information literacy and the role that it plays in learning.”

M. Gail Fujimoto -- Nursing

M. Gail Fujimoto, RN, MSN is a graduate of Hawaii Pacific University, Hawaii Loa Campus in Kaneohe, Hawaii where she also earned her bachelor of science degree in nursing. Fujimoto went on to complete her master of science degree in nursing at the University of Phoenix, Honolulu Campus.  A resident of Vancouver, M. Gail Fujimoto has been a member of Sigma Theta Tau since 1992 and has served on the college’s NLN Standard IV committee as well as serving as an advisor to 23 nursing students.  For the past six years, she has been active with the March of Dimes “March for Babies” to prevent pre-term births.  In support of those efforts, the Clark College School of Nursing has won a Bronze award from the March of Dimes during each of the past two years.  M. Gail Fujimoto says, “Teaching was always the long-term focus of my career.  My teaching philosophy and style is to provide opportunities for students to develop their own autonomy. In doing this it is my responsibility to provide motivational information in various applications and media.”  She adds, “The purpose of the different media is to arouse curiosity that will challenge students to obtain information to help them understand why what they are learning matters.”

Zachary M. Grant -- Library

Zachary M. Grant earned his undergraduate degree in history at Oregon State University and a master’s degree in library science from Emporia State University in Emporia, Kan.  A resident of Vancouver, Grant is a member of the college’s eLearning committee and a member of the Association for Higher Education (AHE) Senate.  He believes that “It is important to show students how they can apply the research skills they learn in the library to their daily life. This helps reinforce our student's lifelong learning skills and ensures they can deal with our constantly changing world.”

Tani McBeth – Human Development

Tani McBeth’s education includes earning an associate of arts degree with an emphasis on psychology and Spanish from Peninsula College; a bachelor of arts degree in psychology from Trinity Western University (British Columbia, Canada) and a master of science degree in counseling psychology with a focus on systems from Seattle Pacific University.  A resident of Vancouver, McBeth has served on the college’s Retention Committee, Teaching & Learning Center Steering Committee, eLearning Committee, and Outcomes Assessment Committee.  She is a Quality Matters Peer Reviewer for quality online teaching and earned the ePlus certification course for teaching effectively online at Clark.  She also developed HDEV 123 Relationships and HDEV 155 Assertiveness online courses.  McBeth believes that “Each individual in the classroom has something valuable to contribute. I work toward developing a learning environment from the very first class. In order to achieve this I use a combination of teaching approaches including discussion, collaborative learning activities, and lecture. The goal in all of my classes is increased knowledge and application to everyday life.”

S. Layne Russell -- Paralegal

S. Layne Russell earned a bachelor of arts degree in English, graduating summa cum laude from the University of Memphis.  He earned his juris doctorate (J.D.) at the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va.  He is currently working toward his Ed.S. (education specialist) degree at Florida State University in Tallahassee.  A resident of Vancouver, Russell serves as faculty advisor for the student law club at Clark College.  He also serves as program director for the Paralegal and Legal Administrative Assistant Program.  A native of Vancouver, Russell says, “Every field of knowledge has its own unique vocabulary. In my classes, I establish a foundation bedded in the concepts and terms unique to the field of law.  In this method, I ask the student to open his mind to the wide range of knowledge in the interconnected fields of the social sciences and humanities in order to develop and reshape his or her ‘legal’ vision.”

Brenda Walstead – Dental Hygiene

Brenda Walstead began her educational career as a graduate of the Clark College Dental Hygiene Program.  She went on to earn a bachelor of science degree in business management and communications at Concordia University in Portland and earned a master’s degree in post-secondary and continuing education at Portland State University.  Walstead is the first-year lead instructor in the dental hygiene program at Clark College. Additionally, she directs the Eastern Washington University Degree Completion Program at the Clark College site and teaches in that program as well. This year, she has worked as the Outcomes Assessment Liaison for the Health Sciences unit at Clark College. She also serves on the Teaching and Learning Center's steering committee.  A resident of Vancouver, Walstead says her teaching philosophy “is based on what Wilbert McKeachie stated in 1986, ‘....if we want students to become more effective in meaningful learning and thinking, they need to spend more time in active, meaningful learning and thinking—not just sitting and passively receiving information.’”   Walstead adds, “I am fascinated in and passionate about how students learn, am a firm believer in active learning, and I have a deep desire to transfer this love of learning to my students.”

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