October 2010 cover SCAN"St. Catherine University St. Catherine University
October 2010
 
Inside this Issue | Archive | News | Alumnae Relations | EmailE-mail to a friend | Contact Us | University Home

Schools image

Transforming from college to university meant reimagining and restructuring who we are. Now, with the pieces and people in place, St. Kate's is ready to step boldly into the future.

BY ANDY STEINER | PHOTOS BY REBECCA ZENEFSKI '10

NOT LONG AGO, COLLEEN HEGRANES, St. Catherine University's senior vice president for academic affairs, had an epiphany.

"I was in a meeting, and I looked around and realized that all four deans were there," Hegranes says. "I turned to Dean Alan Silva and said with a big smile, 'There are five of us here.' I have to admit, I'm feeling euphoric about that."

Hegranes' jubilation comes at the end of a long process that began in 2006, when St. Catherine administrators began seriously discussing the idea of transforming what was then known as the College of St. Catherine into St. Catherine University, complete with a new focus on graduate-level programs and four distinct schools led by a quartet of deans.

Making these changes meant a wholesale reconfiguration of the institution. Faculty and administrators launched into a series of meetings and discussions, working to create a framework that would meet the needs of today's students while holding true to the institution's history of academic excellence in the liberal arts.

After months of planning, the pieces of the puzzle seemed like they were falling into place. In 2006, English Professor Alan Silva had been hired from Hamline University and named dean of Arts and Sciences. He was chosen to head one of the four new schools: Humanities, Arts and Sciences. Two other schools — Professional Studies and the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health — had leaders in place. And a search was underway for the one open position, dean of the School of Business and Leadership.

"Everything was idling on the runway, ready to take off," Silva recalls. Then, as best-laid plans tend to do, things went awry.

Dean of Professional Studies Susan Cochrane announced her retirement. Health Professions Dean Margaret K. McLaughlin took a job at a different institution. "Before you knew it, we were looking for three deans instead of one," Hegranes says ruefully. "It all just came raining down at once."

Administrators turned what could have been a crisis into opportunity. They appointed interim deans for the three schools and launched simultaneous searches for the open positions. Committees interviewed candidates from around the country until they decided on three stellar picks: MaryAnn Janosik (School of Professional Studies and Graduate College), Paula King (School of Business and Leadership), and Penelope Moyers (Henrietta Schmoll School of Health).

"It's been a wild ride," Hegranes says with a laugh, "but it's also been a lot of fun. We are very excited about the direction the University is heading with Alan and these new deans. Now we can begin implementing all of our grand plans."

Silva is delighted, both with his new colleagues and with the reconfiguration of the institution. "We made these structural changes because they were right for an institution of our history and stature," he says. "Our enrollments are strong, and our graduates are successful, so it's not like we were making this move out of fear or desperation."

Plus, after McLaughlin and Cochrane's departures, it was getting lonely being the "last dean standing."

"The three women who've come in have a lot of experience and talent," says Silva, who is slso assistant vice president of the College for Women. "We're getting new vision, fresh voices and new perspectives. It's truly exhilarating."

Inspired to Heal:

Penelope Moyers, Dean
Henrietta Schmoll School of Health

Since she was a child, Penny Moyers knew she wanted to be an occupational therapist.

"When I was young, my grandmother had TB," she recalls. "Back then, they sent people with the disease to sanitariums for a very long time. My grandma hadn't been separated from her family much before she got sick, and while she was gone we'd get these sad, sad letters from her. Then, all of a sudden, her letters got happier, more hopeful. We came to find out that she was starting to see an occupational therapist."

Her grandmother's clear transition inspired the young Moyers. "Any profession that could help make my grandmother that happy," she thought, "is the profession for me."

Helping people recover from or learn to live with disease, disability or illness continued to inspire Moyers, who left her hometown of Charles City, Iowa, to earn a degree in occupational therapy from the University of Missouri–Columbia. The fact that many occupational therapists use music and the arts in their work with patients was a bonus. "I'm drawn to the arts," she explains, "and I'm a firm believer in their power to help people heal and rehabilitate. It never ceases to amaze me."

Moyers has experienced the power of her profession, which will celebrate its centennial in 2017, for more than a quarter century. She has worked with patients in a variety of clinical settings, from state psychiatric programs to research universities, chemical dependency programs and plastic surgery practices.

"I've loved being an OT," Moyers says. "It's what I've always wanted to be, and I've felt honored to be in the profession."

In 1986, Moyers began teaching occupational therapy at the University of Indianapolis, a private school affiliated with the United Methodist church. She stayed there for 18 years, rising from assistant professor to dean of the School of Occupational Therapy. Moyers appreciated the University of Indianapolis' mission of educating healthcare professionals committed to the moral and ethical treatment of their patients. When she accepted a prime position as chair of the University of Alabama at Birmingham's much-larger Department of Occupational Therapy, she quickly saw the differences between the style of education at public and private universities.

"I was used to being part of a school where faith traditions play a role in how it develops its educational principles," Moyers says. "While I loved my work at Alabama, I saw that state schools are secular and obviously devoid of that relationship between scholarship and faith."

That connection between mission and profession drew Moyers to St. Catherine University. After meeting with faculty and administrators, she left Minnesota more excited about the job than ever.

"In my conversations I could tell there was a gratitude, a connectedness to mission here at St. Catherine," Moyers says. "There's a sense of purpose that's higher than just educating people. That belief permeates everything that's done here. I was excited at the prospect of being part of that mission."

Moyers also was excited by the opportunity to live near family. Her 92-year-old mother lives in Golden Valley, her twin sister is a nurse at North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale, and her brother works in the state Attorney General's office. "When I interviewed here, it felt like coming home," says Moyers, who is married with two grown sons and two grandsons.

Like nursing, occupational therapy is a female-dominated profession, so Moyers has years of experience working with — and leading and learning from — large groups of women. She recently finished a three-year term as president of the 40,000-member American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), a demanding volunteer job that required her to travel to a different state nearly every weekend.

Moyers appreciates the power of women working together, which she sees as a natural part of St. Kate's. "There is a real sense that women's potential and contributions are valued here," she says. Because the rest of society benefits when women are elevated, Moyers believes that male students enrolled in associate or graduate programs at the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health gain from working alongside confident female leaders.

Moyers comes to the School of Health at an exciting time of growth and transition. The school has a legacy grant, strong enrollments and a good regional reputation, but Moyers wants more. She plans to raise St. Kate's profile as one of the nation's leading healthcare educators, connecting the school and its graduates with national and international programs and careers.

"Our program directors are already running quality programs and attracting good students," Moyers says. "But I want to boost our external connections so that more people seek out our graduates for employment, that they invite St. Kate's to be part of national healthcare policy discussions. I want to put
St. Catherine University on the map. That's what I think a dean does."

To achieve those goals, Moyers will take her show on the road. "I need to be out there, networking, meeting legislators, mayors, hospital leaders, CEOs," she says. "I'm going to be shaking a lot of hands this year." Moyers already has connections in the state's healthcare industry from her work as president of AOTA.

She also is committed to "mentoring along" several new programs, including orthoptics and physician assistant. And she wants to keep her hand in her beloved profession.

"I plan to remain active as an OT, not practicing but guest lecturing in the department and remaining active in the professional association," she says. "I love it too much to let it go."

The Amazing Journey:

Paula King, Dean
School of Business and Leadership

An avid hiker and a workplace trailblazer, Paula King understands more than most the adage: Life is a journey, not a destination.

"My career — and actually my life — has been a series of varied experiences that all lead in the same direction," King says. "It's been an amazing adventure, and it's wonderful to see all the threads come together so beautifully here at St. Kate's."

In her corporate career, King has been among the first women to hold high-level leadership positions; in her volunteer life, she's championed the causes of women and girls; in her academic career, she's boldly guided institutions to greater visibility and achievement; and in her personal life, she's focused on environmental sustainability and protection of the earth and its dwindling resources.

"I've come full circle in my journey," King says. "By coming to St. Catherine University, I've connected my passion for learning, my passion for ideas that can change the world, my passion for women's issues and women's education, and my passion for sustainability." She pauses. "There's also my sense of adventure, and this job really gives me the opportunity to be fearless and resilient."

As dean of St. Catherine's School of Business and Leadership, King will be heading up many of the University's most popular programs, guiding the Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership and the Center for Sales Innovation to national preeminence. She'll also be leading new program development. "One of my loves is developing new curricula and new programs," she says. "That's a creative act, and I am a creative person at heart."

King, a former Bush Foundation Mid-Career Leadership Fellow, comes to St. Kate's from St. Cloud State University where she was associate dean of the G.R. Herberger College of Business. There, she led initiatives in curriculum design and was responsible for program outcome assessments to help maintain the College's accreditation. From 1985 to 1990, she was an associate professor of business at the College of St. Benedict/St. John's University, where she was later asked to develop a comprehensive plan for the school's management major.

Even though her experience in higher education is vast, King didn't begin her career in academe. When she graduated from the University of Minnesota with a BA in social work, she couldn't find a job in her field. So, in typical fashion, she innovated.

"I graduated from college into a recession," King recalls. "The best job I could get was in pharmaceutical sales. And it turned out to be a very good job." She was one of the first women in Minnesota to hold the position. "They hired me because of my ability to build relationships and my sales skills."

King believes she inherited the confidence she needed to succeed in a male-dominated industry from her mother and great aunt, women she calls her "greatest role models."

"In the late 1930s, my great aunt was one of the first women to get a master's degree in public health from the University of Michigan," King says. "And my mom is just this incredible woman of strength and courage. When she was 80, I nominated her for the Blue Cross Blue Shield Ageless Hero award. She won. Today, she's 90 and still living on her own."

The highlight of King's corporate career was the years she spent working for Edina-based Gabberts Furniture and Design Studio. She began as director of education in 1993, and by the time she left the company in 2001, she had risen to senior vice president of sales and store operations. "It was a great place to work," King says. "Women were supported in their careers, and creativity was central to everything that we did."

King has one daughter, Elizabeth, who is studying economics and environmental studies at Wellesley College. "Her goal is to change the way we do business and limit its effect on the environment," King says. "She's determined to change the working world, and I'm confident she'll do it."

Having the opportunity to work with young women who are committed to making change is invigorating for King. Not so long ago, her daughter's ideas would have felt outsized and unreachable. But thanks to an earlier generation of feminist business leaders, young female entrepreneurs may see their dreams come true.

"Women of my generation had to prove ourselves, work outrageous hours, to show that we could be better than our male colleagues," King says. "What I love about today's generation of young women is how they work to define their lives according to their values and talents. The programs in the School of Business and Leadership are designed to help our graduates achieve those goals. I hope that under my leadership we will enhance the curriculum and develop new programming that encourages a future of developing sustainable lives, sustainable organizations and a greener planet."

Since arriving at St. Catherine in August, King has been caught up in the start-of-the-academic-year whirlwind of meetings, speeches, events and convocations. Now that she's had a chance to feel the ground beneath her feet, she plans to begin nurturing her programs and encouraging healthy, sustainable growth.

"My vision is that we will grow the visibility of the School of Business and Leadership — and by extension grow the visibility of the University — with distinctive programs that are innovative and applied but also grounded in the liberal arts tradition of critical thinking and problem-solving," King says. "That's a lofty goal, but it's also achievable."

Knowing Paula King, getting there will be the fun part.

Bursting Forth:

MaryAnn Janosik, Dean
School of Professional Studies and Graduate College

Talk about a memorable first impression.

This fall, when MaryAnn Janosik, newly appointed dean of St. Catherine's School of Professional Studies and Graduate College, introduced herself to a near-bursting crowd of students, alumnae, faculty and staff at the University's annual Opening Convocation, she sang a song. And not just any song.

By way of explaining the complicated, sometimes ambivalent relationship between the liberal arts and professional studies, Janosik, dressed in a black academic robe, stood at the microphone and belted out Lady Gaga's chart-busting hit "Bad Romance."

"I used the song as an overarching metaphor that speaks to the traditional notion that professional studies and the liberal arts don't get along," Janosik explains. "But like the song, the relationship is more nuanced than it appears. The two support each other more often than people might think."

The song choice could have felt like a disaster, but Janosik's performance was dead-on. "She got everybody's attention," says freelance photographer Rebecca Zenefski '10, who was covering the event. "She sang full out. She was completely bold and very funny. Everybody loved it."

Watching Janosik's natural good humor and élan, it's hard to imagine that she was a timid child who felt sick at the thought of speaking in front of even the smallest group.

"I was a very shy little girl," Janosik recalls of her childhood in the rust-belt town of Lorain, Ohio. "When I was in the fourth grade, I remember having to give a book report. My hands were shaking so much that I held onto the chalk tray so no one would notice."

Later, when Janosik was in 11th grade, her teacher required all students to prepare a dramatic reading for Christmas. For some reason the still-shy Janosik decided to pull out all the stops. She memorized Dylan Thomas' A Child's Christmas in Wales and presented it in fine fashion, complete with recorded orchestration and individual voices for each character. "I had never done anything like that before," she recalls, still amazed at her transformation. "People were asking, 'Where did that come from?' I guess I finally felt comfortable enough to come out of my shell.

Janosik has never looked back. She completed her undergraduate studies in history at Oberlin College, then earned a master's from Cleveland State and a Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University. Her first academic job was as an assistant professor of history at Lake Erie College in Painesville, Ohio.

"I'm not a traditional historian," Janosik says. She demonstrates breadth in her scholarship, publishing on subjects ranging from women in popular music, Catholic education, the Salem Witch Trials and the films of Frank Sinatra.

Janosik came to St. Kate's from Saint Joseph College, a small Catholic institution in Rensselaer, Indiana, where she was provost and vice president for academic affairs. She's also held academic and administrative positions at Ohio University and Oakton Community College in Illinois.

From the summer of 2000 to early 2002, she took a break from the academic path, serving as director of education for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, Ohio. "It was a great opportunity for me to think about teaching history in a whole new way," Janosik says.

When she interviewed at St. Catherine, Janosik quickly discerned that the job would be a perfect match for her background, talents and interests. Her husband drove with her for her first visit to campus so he could see the Twin Cities. "When I came out of the interview, he said, 'You're beaming.' Something about the environment or the interview sat really well with me."

In previous jobs, she sometimes felt like a fish out of water, a strong female administrator in institutions that didn't always know what to make of unapologetically strong women.

"I feel at home here," Janosik says, smiling. "St. Kate's is very welcoming toward women in leadership roles, and we make no bones about it. I still don't think we've come that far in our society that we can take things like that for granted."

In her new position as dean of professional studies, Janosik will oversee three programs with practically based applications: education, social work and library science, which the American Library Association is reviewing for accreditation this fall. With the Graduate College, Janosik will be in charge of graduate-level programs offered from each of the University's four schools.

She feels well prepared for the challenge. A first-generation college student raised by doting working-class parents, Janosik understands the importance of an education that can help graduates find fulfilling work — but she also appreciates the essential, enriching influence of the liberal arts that "lives in the water" at St. Kate's.

"I was a history professor," she says. "So I do understand the necessary combination of the liberal arts and professional studies. You have to have both to go out into the professional world and be truly effective. You bring so much more to the equation, and I think employers realize that."

As "an academic who happens to be an administrator," Janosik plans to make time to continue her teaching and research. She'd like to teach a class called "Women, Gender and Rock 'n' Roll." She also hopes to introduce other areas of popular culture to the campus.

For now, Janosik wants to focus on her new responsibilities, helping to guide her corner of the University as it continues to expand and innovate.

And as for a repeat of her Convocation performance, who knows? "I've had nothing but positive responses," she laughs. "Someone even told me that my nickname now is Dean Gaga. I couldn't be happier."

Andy Steiner is managing editor of SCAN.

 

Schools icons

Meet the Deans

Inspired to Heal:
    Penelope Moyers »

The Amazing Journey:
    Paula King »

Bursting Forth:
    MaryAnn Janosik »

 

Dean Alan Silva Alan Silva, dean of the School of Arts and Humanities

"The three women who've come in have a lot of experience and talent. We're getting new vision, fresh voices and new perspectives. It's truly exhilarating."
— Dean Alan Silva

Dean Penny MoyersPenny Moyers, dean of the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health, has enjoyed a long, illustrious career in occupational therapy, both as an academic and as a practicing professional. In her three-year term as president of the 40,000-member American Occupational Therapy Association, she traveled the United States, raising awareness about advances in her profession through the use of therapy dogs and working with legislators in Washington, D.C.

Dean Paula KingOne of Paula King's strongest passions is hiking. The new dean of the School of Business and Leadership has walked some of the most famous trails in the world, including a trek in Nepal, where she met children in a small village, and the 72-mile High Sierra loop in Yosemite National Park in California, which she completed with her daughter and her then–70-year-old mother.

Dean MaryAnn JanosikMaryAnn Janosik, dean of the School of Professional Studies and Graduate College, revels in her nontraditional approach to academic success. Nearly a decade before she came to St. Kate's, she worked as director of education at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, where she met '80s rock idol Rick Springfield. She credits the love of her now–88-year-old mother with giving her the self-confidence to craft a life on her own terms.