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Nicholas Handell, College of Arts and Sciences Scholar
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Deborah Crandall, College of Business and Technology Scholar
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Nicole Shafer, College of Education and Human Services Scholar
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Nicole Wiseman, College of Fine Arts and Communication Scholar
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Christopher Bollero, Illinois Centennial Honors College Scholar
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Jane Woerly, School of Extended Studies Scholar
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Fall 2006 College and Departmental Scholars, Speaker Named

December 1, 2006

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MACOMB, IL - - Seven students participating in Western Illinois UniversityÂ’s Fall 2006 Commencement Weekend Ceremonies Dec, 15-16 in Macomb have received the highest recognition from their college faculty for their overall academic excellence by being named Cecile A. Christison Sterrett College Scholars and the Academic Honors Convocation/Commencement Speaker.

The 3 p.m. Friday, Dec. 15 Academic Honors Convocation in Western Hall will honor College Scholars, Departmental Scholars, Illinois Centennial Honor College Honors Scholars and graduate candidates who have earned academic distinction throughout their Western Illinois undergraduate career. Students will receive a medallion for each honor, which they will wear at Commencement ceremonies on Saturday, Dec. 16. In addition, College Scholars received a $150 cash award from the WIU Foundation.

Academic Convocation and Commencement Speaker
Daniel Douglas
(Indian Head Park, IL/Cook County), who has a double major in Spanish and law enforcement and justice administration, is the Academic Honors Convocation Speaker, the Commencement Student Speaker and an Illinois Centennial Honors College Honors Scholar. He will graduate with highest academic honors (Summa Cum Laude).

Douglas’ message to his fellow graduates in his speech “Switching Gears” will be motivational, discussing present and future accomplishments, he said.

“I have had the opportunity to study in Spain, work with the U.S. Secret Service and meet a lot of lifelong friends,” Douglas said about his Western experiences.

During Summer 2006 he served as a volunteer student intern in the Chicago Secret Service office, observing agents providing protection for presidents and dignitaries, assisting in evidence processing at crime scenes and examining and processing suspected counterfeit currency. Douglas also was a member of WesternÂ’s Concert Safety Corps and a member of the Illinois State Police District 14 (Macomb) Alcohol Enforcement (ACE) project.

“The best way to describe my internship experience with the Secret Service is love at first sight,” Douglas said. “Everything about the job is appealing to me, and I think Western’s law enforcement reputation helped me obtain an internship with them.”

Included in his numerous academic honors is induction into Mortar Board, Golden Key International Honour Society, Alpha Phi Sigma National Honor Society for Criminal Justice, Lambda Alpoha Epsilon professional criminal justice association and the Alpha Mu Gamma Foreign Language Honors Society.

Douglas’ next step “is the big question,” he said. “I don’t have anything lined up yet, but I am opening up opportunities, so it comes down to it I can choose the situation that best fits me. I realize I am young and by no means am I in a hurry to jump right into a career. There is so much to see in the world.”

Some of his short-term options include graduate school in law enforcement and justice administration at Western, police work, private sector work, the military or traveling. His career goal is to work for the U.S. Secret Service.

Daniel, a 2003 graduate of Lyons Township High School (LaGrange), is the son of Brenda and John OÂ’Laughlin of Indian Head Park.

College of Arts and Sciences Scholar
Nicholas Handell (Aurora, IL/Kane County), a philosophy major with minors in sociology and psychology, is the College of Arts and Sciences Scholar, the Philosophy Departmental Scholar and an Illinois Centennial Honors College Honors Scholar. He will graduate with highest academic honors (Summa Cum Laude).

Handell served as the philosophy department’s student representative and liaison on the Grade Appeals Board (2004-2006) and was vice president of the College of Arts and Sciences Student Council (2005-2006). He was a First Year Experience Peer Mentor in Associate Professor Gordon Pettit’s Philosophy 105 “Philosophical Explorations” class, and was the student speaker at the Fall 2005 Scholars Recognition Ceremony.

He is a longtime member of the St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Newman Center Student Newman Council, which he has served as outreach and public relations chair, vice president and president. Handell has led multiple religious retreats for college, high school and middle school students and has taught Catholic religious education classes to local high school students. He is a member of Colleges Against Cancer, and for the past three years Handell has served on the Relay for Life executive board chairing the luminary committee. The Spring 2006 Relay for Life set a WIU record with more than $52,000 raised.

“We attend college in order to gain knowledge and wisdom in the hope of discovering who we are and where we will go,” Handell said. “Only at a university that supports diversity and education inside and outside the classroom can a person find these tools in which to grow. Western has done just that, and so, I will always be grateful.”

Handell is in the testing process to become a firefighter for the city of Aurora. He said he wants to be a firefighter and paramedic and eventually work his way up through the ranks.

“The excitement and adrenaline of the job certainly appeals to me. Yet my greatest desire is to give of myself for others,” said Handell, who also noted the firefighter’s shift of 24-hours on and 48-hours off.

“This is important to me because along with being a firefighter I hope to become a writer,” he said. “I intend to use those days off to write…short inspirational novels based upon the lives and wisdom of philosophers, theologians and my own mother, to add a bit of humor. I also intend to volunteer for my local church, and at some point I dream of being a motivational speaker as well as a campus minister among teenagers.”

HandellÂ’s future may also include graduate school in philosophy, theology or a related field, he added.

Nicholas, a 2003 graduate of Marmion Military Academy, is the son of Richard and Karen Handell of Aurora.

College of Business and Technology Scholar
Deborah Crandall
(Avon, IL/Fulton County), a marketing management major, is the College of Business and Technology Scholar, the Marketing Departmental Scholar and an Illinois Centennial Honors College Honors Scholar. She will graduate with highest academic honors (Summa Cum Laude).

Crandall is a member of Sigma Iota Epsilon, the honorary and professional management fraternity; and Beta Gamma Sigma, the honor society for AACSB International (The Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business). She has served on WesternÂ’s Student Judicial Board; has worked at the Donald S. Spencer Student Recreation Center for four years as a lifeguard, head lifeguard and office assistant; has served as a counselor for WesternÂ’s art, film and math summer enrichment camps for junior and senior high students; and continues to waitress at the Main Street Cafe in Avon and lifeguard at the Knox County YMCA.

She will go on to graduate school at the University of Illinois at Springfield.

“My goal is to become a professor of marketing and obtain a doctorate,” Crandall said. “Professors here at Western have helped me realize not only the extrinsic rewards, but also the intrinsic rewards of teaching.”

Deborah, a 2003 graduate of Avon High School, is the daughter of Denver and Linda Crandall of Avon.

College of Education and Human Services Scholar
Nicole Shafer
(Astoria, IL /Fulton County), a kinesiology major, is the College of Education and Human Services Scholar and the Kinesiology Departmental Scholar. She will graduate with high academic honors (Magna Cum Laude).

Shafer was a member of the Westerwinds basketball program that earned four consecutive Mid-Continent Conference season championships; however, her time on the court was limited because she suffered three anterior cruciate ligament injuries, each of which required reconstructive surgery and rehabilitation.

“Despite my injuries, I was able to see basketball through a different lens and learn a great deal about coaching,” Shafer said. “Though I was not always physically able to perform certain tasks, I was able to watch and study others. I could relate so much of what my teammates were doing to various kinesiology classes I was in. Components of my education classes were also standing out to me at practices because I was learning a lot about time management, organization and teaching skills. I slowly began to see that my passion was not only in teaching, but also in coaching.”

Shafer represented womenÂ’s basketball on the UniversityÂ’s NCAA Division I athletics certification program steering committee; assisted with four youth camps hosted by womenÂ’s basketball; and participated with the team in numerous community volunteer activities including tutoring at Lincoln School and participating in Up Til Dawn for St. Jude ChildrenÂ’s Hospital, Relay for Life for breast cancer research and Bowl for KidsÂ’ Sake. Shafer is also an active member of WesternÂ’s Campus Students for Christ.

She is student teaching this fall in the Southeastern school district and helping coach the Camp Point Central/Southeastern High School girlÂ’s basketball team.

“After graduation, I plan to work as a substitute teacher while I finish my coaching duties,” Shafer said. “Once I find a teaching job, I plan to work for awhile a gain some experience before going on to graduate school.

“My career goals are actually quite simple: I want to be a successful physical education teacher and provide students with the knowledge and desire to be physically fit,” she added. “I want to use new and innovative ways to students excited about being active and give them the tools to continue being active into their adult life.”

Nicole, a 2002 graduate of Astoria High School, is the daughter of Hollis and Cindy Shafer of Astoria.

College of Fine Arts and Communication Scholar
Nicole Wiseman
(Athens, IL/Menard County), a broadcasting major and journalism minor, is the College of Fine Arts and Communication Scholar and the Broadcasting Departmental Scholar. She will graduate with high academic honors (Magna Cum Laude).

Wiseman transferred into Western in Spring 2005 after earning her Associate of Arts degree in journalism from Lincoln Land Community College (Springfield, IL). She immediately began working with Western’s student television station WWIR-TV, now WIU-TV, where she was a reporter, anchor, producer and director. She co-hosted the 30-minute public affairs TV show “Macomb Magazine,” and anchored the “People in the Arts” television segment featuring upcoming cultural and fine arts and entertainment.

Wiseman is a member of National Broadcasting Society Alpha Epsilon Rho Honor Society, which she serves as vice president; Phi Kappa Phi; and WesternÂ’s Students in the Illinois News Broadcasters Association.

She interned with ABCÂ’s Springfield affiliate WICS-TV beginning December 2005 and was hired to work as a news producer.

“The experience I gained at Western Illinois prepared me for my internship in broadcasting at WICS-TV, which was phenomenal,” Wiseman said. “After my internship, I was hired there as a news producer; so prior to completing my undergraduate degree I already have a job at a commercial television station. I believe this is largely due to the great hands-on experience WIU’s broadcasting department offers.”

Nicole, a graduate of Athens High School, is the daughter of Chris and Norman Wiseman of Athens.

Illinois Centennial Honors College Scholar
Christopher Bollero
(Springfield, IL/Sangamon County), a law enforcement and justice administration (LEJA) major with a minor in international studies-Middle East, is the Illinois Centennial Honors College Scholar as well as an Honors Scholar. He will graduate with high academic honors (Magna Cum Laude).

Bollero did his Honors internship over the summer with the Statewide Terrorism and Intelligence Center in Springfield, working with the Illinois State Police Tactical Response Team (SWAT), terrorism research specialists, military, FBI and U.S. Marshals. The experience and information he gained supported his onoing undergraduate research topic of “New Methods for Combating Terrorism.”

He represented the University the past two years at the annual Air Force Academy Assembly, a prestigious political science forum hosted by the United States Air Force (USAF) and jointly sponsored by Columbia UniversityÂ’s American Assembly.

“Attending the Air Force Academic Foreign Affairs Conference helped me realize my interest in international politics and conflict resolution,” said Bollero, who is pursuing a career in counterterrorism on a federal level. “Western has given me the knowledge and skills needed to become a competitive candidate in this field and for numerous opportunities at prestigious graduate school programs across the country.

“After I complete my graduate studies, I intend on applying with the FBI as a counterterrorism specialist and look to further advance in the organization if the opportunity arises,” he added. “I will also be looking at serving as an adviser to the president, and someday I intend on pursuing a political career as well.

“Western has shown me how direction, ambition and dedication provide confidence to pursue dreams and to be successful,” Bollero added.

He serves as president of the Student Honors Association and the LEJA Investigators Club; served as student manager of WesternÂ’s annual alumni phonathon; and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi, Golden Key, Blue Key, Mortar Board and Alpha Phi Sigma National Criminal Justice honor societies as well as the LEJA Concert Safety Corps. His volunteer activities include Big Brother Big Sister fundraising, participating in holiday events at local nursing homes, reading books to elementary school children and collecting books for area shelters.

Christopher, who earned an Associate of Arts degree in law enforcement administration from Lincoln Land Community College in 2004, is the son of Bruce and Christy Bollero of Springfield.

School of Extended Studies Scholar
Jane Woerly
(Macomb, IL/McDonough County) will earn WesternÂ’s Board of Trustees Bachelor of Arts (BOT/BA) degree and graduate with high academic honors (Summa Cum Laude) as the Fall 2006 School of Extended Studies Scholar.

A secretary IV in WesternÂ’s philosophy and religious studies department, Woerly began taking classes in the mid- to late-1990s. She will graduate Dec. 16 with her bachelorÂ’s degree and already has 11 hours toward the instructional design and technology masterÂ’s degree program. Her goal is to become a teacher.

Woerly, a single parent of two boys – Alan, 18, a 2006 Macomb High School graduate who will enter Western’s law enforcement and justice administration program in Spring 2007; and Adam, 17, a senior honors student at Macomb High – said: “It hasn’t been an easy road to work fulltime and keep up with the many activities and school functions of two children. It takes a lot of understanding people in your life to make it.

“I am there to offer help to not only nontraditional students, but any student who asks,” Woerly added. “Because of who I am and what I have done, this gives me the opportunity to tell others – ‘You can do it!’”

Woerly has been a member of the American Legion Auxiliary for many years; and in March 2006 she became one of the few women members of the Macomb Elks Lodge 1009, “paving the path for other women wanting to join,” she said.

She has been a Macomb High School Choir and Band Booster as well as a chaperone for various events; has served the Young American Bowling Alliance (YABA) as Youth Bowling Officer Vice President; has been a Cub Scout leader; and has chaired Market Day at Edison School. WoerlyÂ’s academic honors include induction into Golden Key International Honour Society, Phi Kappa Phi, Blue Key, Mortar Board and Alpha Sigma Lambda national honor society for nontraditional students.

Departmental and Honors Scholars
Departmental Scholars are the outstanding degree candidates in an academic major as determined by the faculty in the department. Honors Scholars are students in the WesternÂ’s Illinois Centennial Honors College who complete honors curricula in their major department or college and achieve a grade point average of at least 3.40 for both Honors and cumulative course work.

Departmental Scholars and Honors Scholars are, listed by county and city in Illinois:

Fowler (62338) – Cassie L. Pavlovic, Communication Sciences and Disorders Departmental Scholar

Charleston (61920) – Andrew Edward Hunter, Music (B.A.) Departmental Scholar

Alsip (60803) – Amanda M. Captain, Women’s Studies Departmental Scholar

Chicago (60640) – Mimoza Sylejmani, Chemistry Departmental Scholar

Elk Grove Village (60007) – Jennifer L. Contrino, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Contrino is an Elementary Education major.

Glendale Heights (60139) – Amber L. Chibucos, Journalism Departmental Scholar

Oak Brook (60522) – Andrew Pizzello, Sociology Departmental Scholar

Winfield (60190) – Alysa M. Rodgers, Music (Bachelor of Music) Departmental Scholar

Carthage (62321) – Jennifer L. Frakes, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Frakes is a Special Education – Learning Behavior Specialist major.

Nauvoo (62354) – Scott A. Pilkington, Information Management Departmental Scholar

Kewanee (61443) –
Jossie Lee Fickling, Art (B.A.) Departmental Scholar;
Brian Layman, Computer Science Departmental Scholar and an Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar;
Jennifer Elizabeth Spiegel, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Spiegel is an Elementary Education mjor.

Woodhull (61490) – Rhonda Lynn McKinley, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. McKinley is an Elementary Education major.

Watseka (60970) – Kara M. Macz, Economics (B.B.) Departmental Scholar and an Illinois Centennial Honors College Honors Scholar. Macz also is a Pre-Law Honors minor.

Batavia (60510) – Andrea Leigh Warne, Law Enforcement and Justice Administration Departmental Scholar and an Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar;
Chad Robert Thomas, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Thomas is a History major.

Geneva (60134) – Kevin Martin Scobey, Political Science Departmental Scholar

Grayslake (60030) – Ryan M. Thomas, Accountancy Departmental Scholar.

Ingleside (60041) – Elizabeth Ann Savage, History Departmental Scholar

Waukegan (60085) – Madeline Ivette Mercado, Management Departmental Scholar

Peru (61354) – Frank G. Valle, Finance Departmental Scholar

Dixon (61021) – Nathan R. Simonton, Construction Management Departmental Scholar

Lincoln (62656) – Jennifer Ruth Schahl, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Schahl is a Biology major with a zoology option and a minor in microbiology.

Henry (61537) – Drew Louis Bogner, Agriculture Departmental Scholar

Macomb (61455) – Evan Pegram Leake, Art (B.F.A.) Departmental Scholar;
Jessica Mason-McFadden, English Departmental Scholar; Tint Shwe, Instructional Design and Technology Departmental Scholar;
Yvonne E. Munoz, Psychology Departmental Scholar

Crystal Lake (60014) – Christopher Michael Case, Family and Consumer Sciences Departmental Scholar, fashion merchandising option

Pittsfield (62363) – Jeremy R. Shade, Manufacturing Engineering Technology Departmental Scholar

Illinois City (61259) – Rachael Kay Dusenberry, Special Education (B.S. Ed.) Departmental Scholar

Moline (61265) – Kathleen A. Rogers, Recreation, Park and Tourism Administration Departmental Scholar

Bolingbrook (60440) – Carolyn Eve Shimkus, Biology Departmental Scholar and Illinois Centennial Honors College Scholar

Joliet (60431) – Daniel Anthony Martinez, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Martinez has a double major in Law Enforcement and Justice Administration and Spanish and a minor in computer science.

Naperville (60564) – Kyle A. Reini, Economics (B.A..) Departmental Scholar. Reini also majored in political science.

Sterling (61081) – Jennifer L. Reese, Mathematics Departmental Scholar

Rockford (61109) – Stephanie N. Abbott, Communication Departmental Scholar

Winnebago (61088) – Praise M. Cowman, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Cowman is a Law Enforcement and Justice Administration major with a Spanish minor.


BETTENDORF (52722) – Molli K. Barker, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Barker has Spanish and Political Science majors with an option in International Business/Comparative Politics

DAVENPORT (52803) – Thomas J. McGuire, Elementary Education Departmental Scholar

KEOKUK (52632) – Travis G. Wheeler, Graphic Communication Departmental Scholar

Kahoka – Kristopher Daniel Brewer, Illinois Centennial College Honors Scholar. Brewer is a Management major and a Supply Chain Management minor.

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