• Cavalier Conference on Writing and Literature News

The JCCC Third Annual Conference on Writing and Literature will take place on April 21, 2017.  So save that date! This year the featured speaker will be Professor Tom Averill of Washburn University.  The theme for the conference is “Showcasing” and will involve JCCC’s new Collaboration Center on the first floor of the OCB.

The organizing committee of Maureen, Marilyn, Matthew, Greg Dixon, Nathan, Ted, and Keith are planning the conference and will send out a call for presentations soon.

 • The Common Read Launch
The Common Read launch for the Fall 2017 selection Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson was held Wednesday, April 5, in the Collaboration Lab. Attending this event was Tricia Bushnell, Director of the Midwest Innocence Project, who spoke briefly about her work with Bryan Stevenson and her commitment to the cause of social justice.

Tricia Bushnell at Common Read Launch

Numerous faculty members discussed the book and its themes. For next year, we are planning speakers and events that will focus on themes of social justice, wrongful convictions and social activism.







• Various Deadlines of Interest:

Proposal Deadline — April 14, 2017
Conference dates: August 3-4, 2017
Organization: SIDLIT — Summer Institute on Distance Learning and Instructional Technology
Location: Here!!
Theme: Discover, Connect & Engage!

Proposal Deadline May 1 , 2017
Location: St. Paul, MN
Organization: TYCA-Midwest (Two-Year College Association of English Teachers)
Conference dates: October 5-7, 2017
Theme: Cultivating Curiosity (registration fee waived for adjuncts who have proposal accepted)

Proposal Deadline — May 9, 2017
Conference dates: March 14-17, 2018
Organization: CCCC — Conference on College Composition and Communication
Location: Kansas City, MO
Theme: Languaging, Laboring, and Transforming (information about volunteer opportunities forthcoming)

Proposal Deadline — August 1, 2017
Conference dates: June 4-6, 2018
Organization:  International Writing across the Curriculum conference
Location:  Auburn, AL
Theme: Making Connections

NCTE is no longer accepting proposals, but it’s worth mentioning it will be in St. Louis, MO – Nov 16-19, 2017  http://www.ncte.org/annual

•Awards Season: The Lieberman
English Adjunct Professors Leanna Brunner and Amy Pace and EAP Professor Victoria Gunbatar all received Lieberman Awards for Excellence in Teaching for 2016-2017.  Congratulations to our winners!

Mark Your Calendars: Creative Writing Reading Returns 

The Creative Writing Reading Series returns this Spring 2017 and will feature Mind’s Eye student writers (we hope). All faculty, students and staff are welcome to read from their work for up to 5:00 minutes at this open mic series. It is scheduled for Thursday, April 27, from 11-11:50 in the CoLab.

Reminder: April Is National Poetry Month


The Art of Banksy in Bethlehem


•Dr. Mickey McCloud Spoke at the Great Books Series

Dr. L. Michael McCloud, JCCC Vice President of Academic Affairs, presented on Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, a masterpiece of medieval romance, as a part of the JCCC Great Books Series.  Dr. McCloud spoke Wednesday, March 29, in the CoLab, OCB 100.

Gretchen Thum Reports on PR Panel Discussion  

Gretchen invited a group of PR professionals to come present to our students, talking about their careers, what a path to a PR job looks like, and how to connect their academic goals to their professional ones.  There were about 100 JCCC PR, Advertising, and Marketing students in attendance.  After the panel presentation, a  group of Gretchen’s students stayed for lunch and conversation with the presenters for more career and academic advice.


Gretchen Thum’s Students Win Scholarships

Faculty and students from the JCCC Journalism Department attended the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) conference on February 16. This annual conference is composed of local public relations and advertising professionals, and Strategic Communications faculty and students. Students and faculty from the University of Missouri, the University of Kansas, Avila University  and Truman State also attended, along with JCCC.  IABC awarded eight student scholarships to the conference, and JCCC students received four of them.

Pictured above are Assistant Professor of Journalism Gretchen Thum, along with her four Strategic Communications students. Eric Morgenstern, president of the local PR firm Morningstar Communications, is on the far left. Eric was JCCC’s 2015 Journalism Department Headline Award recipient.

• Booktalk Discussion of Hero of the Empire

Join Booktalk Friday, April 28, at 2:15 p.m. in the CoLab, OCB 100. The April selection is Black Hole Blues by Janna Levin. Booktalk is open to anyone interested in the discussion of this book.

Adjunct Professor Farrell Jenab Presented at the Noon at the Nerman

Adjunct Professor Farrell Jenab presented Friday, March 3, at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art. She discussed the watercolors “Kaw – Bend at Valencia,” and “Kaw – Bend Near Willard” by Lisa Grossman.


Matthew Schmeer’s Poetry Published

His poem “The Merchant Marine’s Lover” was selected for an Editor’s Choice award for issue 5 of Panoply. The poem was published online in early January (https://panoplyzine.com/the-merchant-marines-lover-matthew-schmeer/

His poem “Disturbing the Peace” was accepted for issue 13 of Really System (http://reallysystem.org/), an independent online journal.

His poem “Yes” was accepted for the 11th issue of Marathon Literary Review, published by Arcadia University (http://marathonlitreview.com/), due out in February 2017.

His role playing game encounter “Hag’s Addle”, co-written with Gavin Norman, is scheduled for publication in Wormskin #5, a small press/indie press role playing game magazine.

• The English Department Wins 4 Distinguished Service Awards

The English Department recipients of the JCCC 2016-2017 Distinguished Service Awards are Profs. Maureen Fitzpatrick, Marilyn Senter, Monica Hogan and David Davis.

Ted Rollins Wins Sabbatical

Professor Ted Rollins received a sabbatical for Fall 2017. He will be working on a project researching and developing a portfolio system for JCCC students.

Sam Bell in the News 

Associate Professor Sam Bell is under contract with Cognella Publishing to write a Composition II textbook which will be set to go to national in spring 2018.

Steve Werkmeister Story Nominated for Pushcart Prize

Professor Steve Werkmeister’s short story “Going Home” has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Sun Star Review.

Professor Steve Werkmeister has published a collection of poems that can be found on Amazon.com: The Unauthorized Autobiography:: Composed of Fragments, Distortions, Mythologies & LiesAlso see Steve’s blog:  https://stevesofgrass.wordpress.com/

Mark Browning Writes a Play

On Sunday, December 11, the Heart of America Christmas Pageant closed in Raytown after eight performances and roughly 15,000 attendees. This year’s script, This Changes Everything, was created and written by Professor Mark Browning.

Danny Alexander Continues Being Successful at all Sorts of Stuff 

Professor Danny Alexander was featured in an interview in the Kansas City Star.  The interview was about his recent book on Mary J. Blige.


Professor Alexander is also co-advising the new Black Student Union.

Nathan Jones Gets More Educated

Professor Nathan Jones officially received his second doctorate, in Composition and TESOL, from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The title of his dissertation, which is published by Proquest, is Discovering Perceptions of the Essence of College-Level Writing: Transcendental Phenomenological Inquiry in a Midwestern Community College.

Professor Jones will also be the new faculty sponsor for SKD English Honors Society. http://www.english2.org/


Keith Geekie Works with Pakistan Teacher

Professor Keith Geekie has completed her one-semester mentor role with a visiting Pakistan scholar.  She will continue working with Mr. Ishfaque Abbasi, from the Sukkur IBA English Department, on the design of Composition I courses online.

 • Greg Luthi Sponsors the Creative Writing Club 

The Creative Writing Club brings students together to share their writing. The club will host workshops and activities to develop writing skills, learn new styles of writing and provide peer critiques. Advisor: Greg Luthi, 913-469-8500, ext. 3936

• The New MLA: Info 

Please see Maureen’s MLA Page: http://blogs.jccc.edu/mfitzpat/mla-in-service-2016/

MLA 2016 Brochure from Norton: MLA 2016 Booklet

• Thomas Reynolds Poetry Published 

Spartan Press and Prospero’s Books announced the release of their 21st book in the POP POETRY series: “Small Town Rodeos” by Thomas Reynolds


• Follow English on Twitter

The English Twitter account is hosted by Prof. Steve Werkmeister.  Follow him on Twitter at English_Dept@JCCCEnglish



• Booktalk News

Friday, April 28 — Black Hole Blues by Janna Levin