Wilkes University

September

Wilkes University Welcomes New Faculty for 2017-2018 Academic Year

Wilkes University welcomed 25 new faculty members at the start of the 2017-2018 academic year. New faculty included new tenure-track faculty, as well as visiting professors and faculty of practice. The new faculty and their areas of specialization are:

Azza Almeky, M.D., has joined the biology department as a visiting assistant professor. She earned a bachelor’s degree in medicine and surgery in Alexandria, Egypt, and a master’s degree in health care engineering from Lehigh University. She is the chief executive officer of the Medical Center of Northeastern, Pennsylvania and has conducted research to improve quality of service in the emergency room at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Plains Twp.

Nelson Anaya-Archila joined the department of environmental engineering and earth sciences as visiting assistant professor of environmental engineering. Before coming to Wilkes, he was a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Rhode Island. He earned a doctorate in civil and environmental engineering at the University of Rhode Island, Kingston Campus and a master’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus. He earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Universidad Industrial de Santander in Colombia.

Anshu Arora joined the Jay S. Sidhu School of Business and Leadership as an associate professor of marketing. Before coming to Wilkes, Arora was the chair of the business department in the College of Business Administration at Savannah State University, where she also was an associate professor of marketing. Arora also was the founding director of 'Global Logistics and International Business Education and Research Center of Excellence,’ Savannah State University. She earned a doctorate in marketing from the Indian Institute of Technology, a master of business administration degree in marketing from FORE School of Management, Delhi, India, and a bachelor’s degree in electronics and telecommunications engineering from Jamia Millia Islamia Central Government University, Delhi, India.  

Carole Baddour has joined the mechanical engineering department as an assistant professor. She has been a visiting professor at Wilkes since 2016, teaching chemistry classes and developing a new class in polymer chemistry. From 2012 to 2015, she was a chemistry professor at Collégial International Sainte-Anne in Montreal, Canada. Baddour earned a doctorate in chemical engineering at McGill University, Montreal, Canada, and earned master’s and bachelor’s degrees in chemical and biochemical engineering from the University of Western Ontario, in London, Ontario, Canada.

Joshua M. Blechle has joined the chemistry department as an assistant professor. Before joining Wilkes, Blechle was an assistant professor of chemistry at St. John’s University in Jamaica, N.Y. He holds a doctorate in analytical and physical chemistry from Colorado State University and a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Truman State University.

Robert Bruno joined the communication studies department as an assistant professor of communication studies. Prior to joining Wilkes, he was an assistant professor of communications at City University of New York/LaGuardia Community College. He worked in the public relations field for a decade in Washington, D.C., and the Silicon Valley prior to his career in academia for companies and organizations that included the American Federation of Teachers, Sun Microsystems, public relations firms and an online university. He earned a doctorate in communication from the Brian Lamb School of Communication, Purdue University, a master’s degree in journalism and mass communication from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, Ohio University, and a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.

Thanh Bui joined the Jay S. Sidhu School of Business and Leadership as an assistant professor of accounting. Before joining Wilkes, he was an assistant professor at University of Mount Union in Ohio. Bui, who is a certified public accountant, earned a doctorate in accounting at Argosy University in Sarasota, Fla., and earned master’s and bachelor’s degrees in finance and banking from National Economics University in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Ellen M. Dennis has joined the Passan School of Nursing as faculty of practice. She has worked as a clinical supervisor for the Wilkes nursing program since 2005, supervising nursing students in their home health clinical rotation and in the clinical nursing simulation center. Prior to joining Wilkes, she was a nurse with Celtic Care Hospice. Dennis earned a master’s degree in nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, where she majored in adult health and illness with a specialty in oncology. She also holds a master’s degree in education from Wilkes University and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Pittsburgh.

Wei Du has joined the engineering and physics department as an assistant professor of electrical engineering. Prior to joining Wilkes, he was a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and Pine Bluff. He also was a research fellow in the department of electrical engineering at Washington State University, Vancouver. Du earned a doctorate in electrical engineering at the Institute of Semiconductors, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and a bachelor’s degree in physics from Peking University, China. 

Caroline Fortunato has joined the biology department as an assistant professor. Before coming to Wilkes, she was an adjunct faculty member in biology at Bridgewater State University, Bridgewater, Mass. She also has been a postdoctoral scientist at the Josephine Bay Paul Center, Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass., since 2012. She earned a doctorate in marine-estuarine-environmental science specializing in biological oceanography from the University of Maryland. She earned a master’s degree in environmental studies and a bachelor’s degree in biology from American University.

Ty Frederickson has joined the doctor of education program in the Wilkes University School of Education as an assistant professor. Frederickson has taught in the Wilkes doctor of education program since 2016 and also has more than 15 years experience teaching in international baccalaureate high schools in Kansas, Thailand and Oman. He is the founder of The Bangladesh Initiative, a service learning program with a village school in Bangladesh. Frederickson earned his doctorate in education at Wilkes University, a master’s degree in English literature from Wichita State University and a bachelor’s degree in English from Emporia State University.

Anuradha C. Ghai has joined the Jay S. Sidhu School of Business and Leadership as faculty of practice in accounting. Previously, Ghai was a lecturer at Lafayette College. A certified public accountant and certified fraud examiner, Ghai earned a master’s degree in accounting with an emphasis on taxation from the University of West Florida. She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and psychology from Duke University.

Ryan A. Henry has joined the chemistry department as an assistant professor. Previously, Henry was postdoctoral associate at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. He was the recipient of a National Institutes of Health Training Grant for the Postdoctoral Research Program in Cancer Research. He earned a doctorate and a master’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and a bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University in biophysics.

Angela Jones has joined the Passan School of Nursing as faculty of practice. Prior to joining Wilkes, she was a nurse in the intensive care unit at Lehigh Valley Hospital – Hazleton and also worked as a clinical supervisor for nursing students at Wilkes. Jones earned a master’s degree in nursing education and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Chamberlain College of Nursing. She earned a nursing diploma from the Geisinger Medical Center School of Nursing.

Bobak Karimi joined the environmental engineering and earth sciences department as an assistant professor of geology. He holds a doctorate in geology from the University of Pittsburgh and earned a bachelor’s degree in geology from the University of Pittsburgh, Johnstown. Prior to joining Wilkes, he was a visiting assistant professor at Colorado College.

Xin Luo joined the math and computer science department as an assistant professor of math. Before joining Wilkes, he was a math instructor at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, where he received his doctorate in mathematics. He earned a master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa. He also earned master’s and bachelor’s degrees in applied mathematics from Jinan University in China.

Livia Macedo McCutcheon joined the Nesbitt School of Pharmacy as an assistant professor of pharmacy practice. She previously was assistant professor of pharmacy practice at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Pharmacy. She earned the doctor of pharmacy degree at Nova Southeastern University and completed AASHP Accredited Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. She earned a master’s degree in instructional design from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

Kimberly Toussaint Miller joined the Nesbitt School of Pharmacy as an assistant professor of pharmacy practice. Before joining Wilkes, she was a clinical assistant professor of pharmacy at Temple University School of Pharmacy, where she had earlier earned her doctor of pharmacy degree. She completed her pharmacy practice residency at the University of Maryland Medical Center and another residency at Temple University Hospital, focusing on infectious diseases.

Xiaoming Mu joined the mechanical engineering department as an assistant professor. He is a doctoral candidate and earned his master’s degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering mechanics at Dalian University of Technology in Dalian, China.

Jack Myers joined the department of integrative media, art and design as a visiting assistant professor of integrative media, art and design. He earned the master of fine arts degree in graphic and interactive design from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University and a bachelor’s degree in industrial design from the University of the Arts.

Jodi A. Olenginski joined the Passan School of Nursing as faculty of practice. Prior to joining Wilkes she was clinical coordinator and a full-time faculty member in the School of Practical Nursing and Health Careers, Wilkes-Barre Area Career and Technical Center. She earned a master’s degree in nursing education from Mansfield University and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Scranton. 

Teresa Fairchild-Pitcher has joined the Passan School of Nursing as an assistant professor. Fairchild-Pitcher is a board-certified psychiatric nurse practitioner with 25 years of experience, most recently working at Northern Tier Counseling, an outpatient facility in Towanda, Pa. She has taught in Wilkes University’s nurse practitioner graduate program in psychiatric nursing since 2014. Currently a student in Wilkes’ doctor of nursing practice program, she holds a master’s degree in nursing from Drexel University. Fairchild-Pitcher earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing from St. Joseph’s College and a diploma in nursing from Arnot-Ogden School of Nursing.                  

Alisha Pitchford has joined the chemistry department as faculty of practice. Previously Pitchford was an adjunct faculty member at Marywood University and Johnson College. She earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in biotechnology from Marywood University.

Nicole Ryerson has joined the psychology department as an assistant professor. She earned a doctorate and a master’s degree from the University of Alabama in experimental psychology. Ryerson also holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Penn State University. 

Kedir Assefa Tessema has joined the Jay S. Sidhu School of Business and Leadership as an assistant professor of leadership. Previously, Tessema was a visiting assistant professor at Shenandoah University. Tessema earned a doctorate in leadership studies from the University of San Diego, a master’s degree in education from Umea University in Sweden and a master’s degree in teaching English as a foreign language from Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia. Tessema also holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Kotebe College of Teacher Education in Ethiopia.

New faculty at Wilkes University.

The faculty is from bottom to top, left to right, first row:  Ellen Dennis, faculty of practice, nursing; Kimberly Miller, assistant professor, pharmacy practice; Nicole Ryerson, assistant professor, psychology; Livia McCutcheon, assistant professor, pharmacy practice; Anuradha Ghai, faculty of practice, accounting. Second row: Ryan Henry, assistant professor, chemistry; Jack Myers, visiting assistant professor, integrative media, art and design; Kedir Tessema, assistant professor, leadership; Anshu Arora, associate professor, marketing; Thanh Bui, assistant professor, accounting; Carole Baddour, assistant professor, mechanical engineering; Third row: Joshua Blechle, assistant professor, chemistry; Teresa Fairchild-Pitcher, assistant professor, nursing; Bobak Karimi, assistant professor, geology; Alisha Pitchford, faculty of practice, chemistry; Wei Du, assistant professor, electrical engineering; Caroline Fortunato, assistant professor, biology. Fourth row: Xin Luo, assistant professor, math; Xiaoming Mu, assistant professor, mechanical engineering; Robert Bruno, assistant professor, communication studies; Azza Almeky, visiting assistant professor, biology; Jodi Olenginski, faculty of practice, nursing.

Not pictured are Ty Frederickson, assistant professor, doctor of education; Angela Jones, faculty of practice, nursing; and Nelson Anaya-Achila, visiting assistant professor, environmental engineering.


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