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STORM LAKE, IA (08/21/2017) (readMedia)-- Buena Vista University (BVU) has announced 14 new full-time faculty members for the 2017-18 academic year.

"Buena Vista University prides itself on its continuing commitment to quality student learning, and the new faculty cohort starting in fall 2017 reaffirms and enhances that commitment," said Dr. Jim Salvucci, vice president for academic affairs/dean of faculty. "We sometimes take for granted that BV faculty are top educators who are devoted to student success, and the start of new faculty gives us a chance to pause collectively and take stock of what we have built here. Our graduates are excellent because our faculty is excellent, and the new faculty cohort extends that tradition of excellence."

The new faculty members are:

• Pamina Abkowitz, assistant professor of special education – Council Bluffs; B.A Kent State University; M.S. Nazareth College; M.S.Ed., Ed.D. St. John Fisher College

• Steven Wesley Beckwith, assistant professor of psychology; B.A. Coe College; M.S., Ph.D. Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis

• Lisa Bengtson, instructor of exercise science; B.A., Augustana College; M.S., University of Northern Iowa

• Anton Bezuglov, associate professor of data science and analytics; B.S., M.S. Taganrog State University; Ph.D. University of South Carolina

• Robert Brodman, associate professor of biology; B.A.Rutgers University; M.S. University of Michigan; M.S. Eastern Michigan University; Ph.D. Kent State University

• Lanlan Chu, assistant professor of economics, B.B.A, Nanjing University; M.A. Nankai University; Ph.D. Texas Tech University

• Lucas DeWitt, assistant professor of education – graduate studies; B.A. Wartburg College; M.A. Iowa State University; Ed.D. Nova Southeastern University

• Mary Donato, assistant professor of communication studies; B.A., M.A., West Virginia University

• Leslie Haas, assistant professor of education; B.S., Texas State University; M.Ed., Ed.D. Texas A&M University

• Ashley Heiberger, assistant professor of English as a second language; B.A. St. Ambrose University; M.A. University of Tulsa; Ph.D. Northern Illinois University

• Stacy Johnson, instructor of accounting and business; B.A., University of Northern Iowa; M.B.A., Upper Iowa University

• Richard Riner, assistant professor of criminology/criminal justice; B.A. University of Arkansas; Ph.D. University of Texas, Dallas

• Daniela Romagnoli, assistant professor of business administration and management; B.S., M.B.A., M.I.A, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University

• Jill Tussey, assistant professor of literacy/early childhood development - Creston; B.A., M.Ed. Buena Vista University; Ed.D. Capella University

Photo details

Back L-R: Richard Riner, Steven Wesley Beckwith, Anton Bezuglov, Lucas DeWitt, Stacy Johnson.

Front L-R: Jill Tussey, Pamina Abkowitz, Mary Donato, Ashley Heiberger, Daniela Romagnoli, Lanlan Chu, Lisa Bengtson, Leslie Haas.

Not pictured: Robert Brodman

About Buena Vista University

Since 1891, Buena Vista University has prepared students for lifelong success and blends liberal arts with real-world applications. Our traditional campus on the shores of Storm Lake hosts students in a variety of majors and pre-professional programs, including elementary, secondary, and special education; business and accounting; and biological and chemical sciences. Our 16 degree-completion locations, online, and graduate programs expand student potential with a pace and academic rigor designed for working adults and a variety of class formats that make scheduling even more convenient. With an average scholarship of more than 50 percent off of tuition, BVU is an affordable option for all students. Visit