Fall Break: Campus Offices Closed Friday, Oct. 19, 2018

In observance of Rockford University fall break, campus offices will be closed on Friday, October 19, 2018.

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Student Success and Retention

Rock Solid Regent JhasmynJhasmyn O’Connor is our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the month of October! Jhasmyn is a junior double majoring in biochemistry and human development with a concentration in child and adolescent development. She was nominated by Dr. Gidget Tay and Dr. Bill Doria. Jhasmyn is known as a well-prepared and enthusiastic student. Her professors believe she is a great role model for younger students to emulate: involved in the community (both on and off campus), engaged in class, and a well-rounded, kind human-being.

Jhasmyn is involved in many aspects of the Rockford University Community. Jhasmyn is president of the American Chemical Society Student Affiliate (a club that she helped found), a member of Alpha Helix, and a member the Math Club. She works at Student Administrative Services, is an IT lab assistant, and does organic synthetic chemistry research on campus. Her other responsibilities include being a Campus Liaison to assist first-year students as well as an Advancement Ambassador. Jhasmyn’s plans after graduation are to attend a Graduate/Medical school to obtain her MD and PhD in Biochemistry. She truly is a Rock Solid Regent. Congratulations Jhasmyn!

Congratulations to our final ROCK SOLID REGENT for this semester, Faris Al-Yami. Faris is a freshmen nursing major from Najran, Saudi Arabia. He was nominated by Dr. Mehmet Dik, Chair, Department of Mathematics, Computer Science and Physics. Dr. Dik shared that Faris has done a superior job in his Math courses. He is always prepared and a regular participant in class discussions. Faris is helpful to his classmates in many ways. He helps others with course work and he also assists domestic students with understanding his culture.

Faris has served as a Global Ambassador and international student orientation leader, welcoming new students to the RU campus. The Office of Global Affairs shared that he is “always willing to lend a helping hand.” Additionally, Faris is the Vice President of the Saudi Arabian Club, a member of the Multicultural Club and a member of the Saudi Arabian Soccer Club.

RU has been a great place for Faris to study. He is appreciative of the closeness of the campus community and how people get the opportunity to really know each other well. Faris desires to be a great nurse and eventually become a top healthcare provider. Congratulations to our ROCK SOLID Regent, Faris Al-Yami.

Joshua Davis from Chicago, Illinois is our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week. Joshua is a freshman computer science major and was nominated by Dr. Mehmet Dik. He is an active participant on the football team as well as the Minority Male Mentoring Program. Dr. Dik describes Joshua as a “role model student in and outside of the classroom.” He is a servant to others which is displayed in his actions as he gladly helps many students on campus. His work in Math 224-Statistics has been exemplary and he currently holds the title “Statistics King.” This title is given to the most successful male student in the class.

Joshua appreciates the very close-knit community at RU. During his first year he has discovered that there are so many free resources available to students. He also is thankful that the faculty and staff are willing to help you in any way possible. After graduation from RU Joshua would like to pursue a career in the IT security field. Congratulations, Joshua, on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

Congratulations to our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week, Alondra Torres from Rockford, IL. She is a freshman biochemistry major and was nominated by Dr. Mehmet Dik, Chair, Department of Mathematics, Computer Science and Physics. Dr. Dik shared that Alondra has done an amazing job academically and socially as a first year college student. Throughout the semester Alondra has been an “exemplary student”. Her work has consistently exceeded course expectations. Additionally, she is involved in many campus activities and organizations including, CAB, Spanish Club, Multicultural Club and the soccer team. She also finds time to work as a part-time certified Nursing Assistant.
For Alondra RU has been a great place to study. She is thankful that she is able to attend college close to home. Alondra shared that “family is very important to me and being able to be here when they need me is crucial”. Additionally, she is thankful that RU offers her majors, Biochemistry as well as French. Alondra also likes the small campus because it has allowed her to develop strong relationships with faculty, staff, and students from all over the world. After graduation she plans to attend medical school to become a pediatrician or a family practitioner. Congratulations Alondra on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

Abigail Brandon from Rockford, Illinois is our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week. She is a senior physical education major and was nominated by Associate Professor Tammy Schiek. Professor Schiek shared that Abigail is a dedicated and hardworking student who leads by example. She is respected by her professors and peers. She works diligently both in and out of the classroom. Abigail was recently spotted painting the Meltfest game board for her Senior Seminar class. This is just one example of her sense of responsibility, dedication, and leadership. She is not afraid to “step up to the plate”! She consistently exemplifies what it takes to be a successful student.
Abigail says that the “personal atmosphere” is why she enjoys studying at Rockford University. She feels that the professors try to get to know you as a student instead of a number. Faculty truly try to guide you through your experience and help in any way they can. Additionally, Abigail shares that the community on the RU campus is very friendly and welcoming. While walking from classes or entering the student center, “I am greeted or receive a smile”, which she knows is hard to find on other campuses. After graduation she plans to substitute teach and build relationships in the schools while she pursues additional endorsements on her teacher licensure. Eventually she would like to obtain a middle school physical education position in a Rockford Public School where she can spread her passion for living a healthy lifestyle. Congratulations Abigail Brandon, on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

Congratulations to our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week, Lauren Johnson from Belvidere, IL. She is a senior biochemistry major and was nominated by Dr. Kyle Stedman and Dr. Gidget Tay. Dr. Stedman shared that Lauren is a master of perception. In class and in the Writing Center, she reads a piece of writing and instantly gets what’s going on, with an ability to suggest complex areas for growth in just the way the writer needs to hear it. Additionally, her own writing is powerful and starkly gorgeous.
According to Dr. Tay, Lauren has an amazing thirst for knowledge. She doesn’t just want to know the facts but also why they occur the way they do. The questions she asks in class are insightful and thought provoking. Lauren works in the organic synthesis research lab where she continues to learn new lab techniques and grow as a chemist and scientist.
In addition to serving in the research lab and as a Writing Center Consultant, Lauren also plays the ukulele and enjoys rowing as well as poetry. For Lauren RU has been a great place to study. She enjoys the beautiful landscape our campus offers with lots of old trees that remind her that someday she will be old and wise. Additionally, Lauren proudly shares, “the Starr Science building is my home”. Everyone struggling with material can gather and the professors are available to guide the students through the struggle that is real: the dissolution of ignorance and birth of knowledge. After graduation she plans to move on to graduate school. Congratulations Lauren on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

Mercedes Sanchez from Elgin, Illinois is our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week. She is a junior psychology major and was nominated by Maria Diemer, Assistant Director for Global Affairs. Maria shares that Mercedes is an extremely hard worker who consistently performs her duties above and beyond what is expected. She is punctual, detail oriented and able to manage large events very well. For the past two years she has assisted the Office of Global Affairs (OGA) with welcoming and organizing twenty-five students from Mexico for one month of study. She set up a centralized communication system for all of the new international students and the OGA staff. She serves diligently as a Campus Liaison to our international students.
In addition to her work in OGA Mercedes also serves as a Spanish Tutor, Vice President of the Multicultural Club, Vice President of Spanish Club, Treasurer of Craft Club and an Orientation Leader. RU has been great place for Mercedes to study due to the diversity of students we have. She feels that everyone connects in a deeper level that allows her to grow personally and academically. Also, she appreciates the great family like atmosphere that is cultivated by access to great guidance and support from professors and staff. After graduation, Mercedes plans to attend graduate school with a continued focus in psychology. Congratulations Mercedes Sanchez, on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

Leslie RussellCongratulations to our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week, Leslie Russell from Rochelle, Ill. She is a senior special education major and was nominated by Associate Professor Lynn Stafford. Prior to attending RU Leslie earned her Associate’s Degree from Kishwaukee College. Professor Stafford shared that Leslie is passionate about working with students with disabilities. She enjoys her current work as a paraprofessional and is seeking to complete her initial teacher licensure in record time. She works with at the secondary level where she displays depth of knowledge in the field of special education. Professor Stafford also shared that Leslie “excels in her studies and will be a great asset to the profession.”

Leslie feels that Rockford University is a great place to study because it is close to home and work. Additionally, she is thankful that RU offers classes at night, weekends and online. This allows her to fit her academic goals into her busy schedule. After graduation she plans to work as a special education teacher in the Winnebago school district as well as begin work on her graduate degree. Congratulations Leslie on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

Nathan McKee
Nate McKee from Paw Paw, Illinois is our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week. Nate is a junior biology major and was nominated by Jeanne Grey and Liz Bergstrom from the Center for Learning Strategies (CLS). Nate was selected to serve as a biology peer tutor in CLS. Jeanne and Liz share that he is conscientious, punctual, prepared and sincerely enjoys helping other RU students. Most importantly, Nate ALWAYS has a smile on his face!
In addition to his academic focus on cellular and molecular biology, he also makes time for extracurricular activities. He participates in Alpha Helix, the Gathering Club and serves as the President of Magic. Nate enjoys being a student at a small university.  He shares that at RU teachers get to learn your name and you almost feel like you’re asking a friend about the homework and not a professor. After graduation from RU Nate has plans to continue his education in medical school and pursue a career as a forensic pathologist. Congratulations to our ROCK SOLID Regent, Nate McKee.
Stefany KenworthyStefaney Kenworthy from Veedersburg, Indiana is our ROCK SOLID REGENT for the week. She is a senior nursing major and was nominated by Lindsay Marosi-Kramer, Residence Hall Director. Stefaney currently serves as a Resident Assistant as well as a member of the RU softball team. Lindsay shared that Stefaney’s ability to create relationships with the students in Ekvall Hall has been key to the success of the community programs in the residence halls. Stefaney has taken the time to have creative programs and bulletin boards. She also serves as an office assistant in the Residence Life Office.  Stefaney is consistent in her efforts and has been an awesome role model to other staff members.
Stefaney shares that she was attracted to RU because of the nursing program and the small class sizes.  After graduation, she would like to work as a registered nurse at a hospital in the Rockford area. She is most interested in a position as a labor and delivery nurse. Eventually, she would like to continue her education and become a nurse midwife. Congratulations Stefaney on being a ROCK SOLID REGENT!

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