Welcome New Faculty and Staff

Kent State University at Geauga and the Regional Academic Center would like to acknowledge faculty and staff that joined the team during the 2017-18 academic year.

NAME: Melissa Owen, MSN, RN
TITLE: BSN Coordinator/Lecturer 
JOB DESCRIPTION: Coordinate the BSN Nursing program at the Geauga campus, schedule nursing classes, work with community health partners to establish clinical sites, mentor students, teach undergraduate nursing courses and in the RN-BSN program. 
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: Cleveland Clinic Imaging Institute-Interventional Radiology Nurse
LIKES MOST ABOUT KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: The diversity of the students and faculty on campus and in the community. 
LIKES MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB: The ability to take what I have learned in my 20 years of nursing practice and foster the growth, development, professionalism, and thinking of our future leaders and caregivers in the field of nursing. 
ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER: Reputation as an institute of higher learning in the Ohio. The fact that over 40 percent of nurses in Ohio graduate from Kent State. 
EDUCATION: BSN Youngstown State University-1998, MSN Nursing Education Kent State-2015
HOBBIES: I enjoy walking, biking, gardening, knitting, baking, and anything to do with water, especially the ocean and the snow! I have 2 children who are active in hockey and softball, so anytime I can get out to cheer them on is a great day! 
NAME: Alex Kitsis
TITLE: Lecturer
JOB DESCRIPTION: Teach Management and Information Systems courses 
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: Worked at a number of private and public companies in the U.S. and abroad, founded Vivacity, Inc., taught business and management courses at CSU and UA 
LIKES MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB:  An opportunity to empower students, inspire intellectual growth, cultivate curiosity, and ignite action
LIKES MOST ABOUT KENT STATE UNIVERSITY and ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER: Due to the unique geographic locations, Regional Campuses have a great potential for growth by tapping into resources of local communities
EDUCATION: BS in Engineering, MBA, DBA (upcoming) 
HOBBIES: Being a National Chess Master (rated among the top 1% of US chess players), naturally, I enjoy intellectual challenge offered by the game – solving problems, finding solutions, and contesting opposing ideas. 
NAME:  Justin Cornelius
TITLE:  Financial Aid Coordinator
JOB DESCRIPTION:  To coordinate student financial aid programs; to ensure departmental compliance with Federal, State, and University Regulations
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY:  Director of Finance with Trumbull Business College
LIKES MOST ABOUT KENT STATE UNIVERSITY:  The historical buildings that are present throughout the Campus.  A campus that cares for the environment and doing what it can to reduce its carbon footprint.  Also, it is not difficult to see the Golden Flash Pride and the ability to be a part of the University culture.
LIKES MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB:  Getting to work closely with students and parents, knowing that you are making a difference.  Being there to see the students achieve their goals and interacting with the parents as they watch their children become successful is what makes this more than a career.
ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER:  The best potential employers are those daring to be on the cutting edge.  Those employers trying to be a cut above everyone else.  Kent State is all about the 21st century in technology and how to implement it into today’s classroom.  Online classes, satellite campuses, with a sprawling Main Campus filled with a plethora of degrees makes going to school where you want for what you want, attainable.
RESIDES IN/HOMETOWN:  Lives in McDonald Ohio with wife Jessica and 2 children; Natalie and Andrew 
EDUCATION:  Bachelor of Arts in History and Social Science
HOBBIES:  Coaching High School Football, Carpentry, and of course Videogames.
NAME: Molly Smith, '99
TITLE: Associate Director, Advancement for Regional Campuses
JOB DESCRIPTION: I am here to partner those in our community that would like to make a meaningful difference in the lives our students and campus with the opportunities to do so in a meaningful way.
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: Prior to Kent State University, I worked for 14 years with The American Cancer Society - Relay For Life programs. 
LIKES MOST ABOUT KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: The opportunity to come "home" and work with great colleagues that are all here for the students.
LIKES MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB: So far, I have enjoyed meeting many of the community leaders. 
ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER: The large regional campus system allows us to all be connected with the home town appeal. 
RESIDES IN/HOMETOWN: Willowick/Mentor on the Lake
EDUCATION: I graduated from Notre Dame - Cathedral Latin School in 1995 and went on to attend Kent State University to pursue a degree in Broadcast Communications. I attended history courses at the Geauga Campus with Molly Sergi, to complete my minor in History.
HOBBIES: I enjoy spending time with my husband Chris and our two boys, Carter (10) and Peter (4) and our crazy dogs Guinness and Stella. In my spare time I enjoy etching glassware with Celtic and Cleveland designs.
NAME: Sarah Marie Nestor
TITLE: Assistant Professor of English
JOB DESCRIPTION: I teach first-year writing courses, College Writing I and College Writing II.
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: University of Saint Francis (Indiana)
LIKES MOST ABOUT KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: I really enjoy the students I've met and have had in my classes thus far and I also appreciate how welcoming everyone has been. I also really appreciate all of the resources available at Kent, such as Quality Matters training, Teaching and Learning services, and library resources.
LIKES MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB: I love teaching and I've really enjoyed working with the students and learning about them
ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER: I was attracted to Kent State because of the opportunities and resources it offers its employees. 
RESIDES IN/HOMETOWN: I am originally from Indianapolis, IN and I am in the process of looking to purchase a home in Northeast Ohio.
EDUCATION: B.A. in English Writing, Saint Mary's College, Norte Dame, IN, M.A. in English, University of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN, Ph.D. in English, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI
HOBBIES: gardening, reading, visiting with friends, but mainly I spend my time with my three young children.
NAME: Molly Bogner
TITLE: Counseling Specialist at Geauga Regional Academic Center
JOB DESCRIPTION: Mental Health Therapist for students attending classes at the Regional Academic Center.
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY: Private Mental Health Practice and residential treatment centers
ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER: In past counseling positions I have always enjoyed working with college students!
EDUCATION: Bachelor’s in Psychology & Social Work at Ohio University, Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at John Carroll University
HOBBIES: Watching reality TV, hiking, playing with my cat, reading, going out to eat
INTERESTING FACT: Hired pet detective and scent dogs when my cat when missing last summer!
NAME: Valerie Rutherford
TITLE: Counseling Specialist
JOB DESCRIPTION: I will be available to provide counseling services to the students at the Geauga Campus. I will also be available to consult with faculty and staff should they have concerns about a student.  
EMPLOYMENT PRIOR TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY:  I have worked in the mental health field since 1999. I have had the privilege of working at a variety of agencies throughout several states during my husband’s military career. In my last position, I was a supervisor for an outpatient community behavioral health center in Missouri. 
LIKES MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB: I am dedicated to helping others improve their wellbeing. This position will allow me to continue in that journey. I look forward to being able to provide counseling services at Kent State Geauga since these services have not been available at this location in the past. 
ATTRACTION TO KENT STATE UNIVERSITY AS AN EMPLOYER: I am excited to be a part of Kent State Geauga because it is a part of the community that I reside in and raise my children in. I believe we are very fortunate to have a regional campus here in Burton.
RESIDES IN/HOMETOWN: I was raised in Cleveland, OH. Now that my husband has retired from the military we have made Burton, OH our permanent home. 
EDUCATION: Master of Social Work (MSW)
HOBBIES: I have 12 year old boy/girl twins as well as a new French Bulldog puppy who keep me very busy at home. I love the outdoors and staying active.
POSTED: Friday, February 16, 2018 - 12:05pm
UPDATED: Friday, February 16, 2018 - 12:42pm