Faculty Scholarship Honored in October: Photogallery

View photogalleryAt an open house on October 5, the Faculty Development Committee recognized this year’s Summer Research Grant award recipients and the work accomplished during faculty sabbaticals.

Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music, and Dr. Patti Powell, professor of education and a Fulbright Scholar, shared their experiences of their recent sabbaticals.

Several faculty members received grants in order to further develop their knowledge and expertise in their disciplines through various means of research and scholarship. Each professor briefly presented a summary of their work and experiences.


One project during the sabbatical of Dr. Mark Peters, professor of music, involved travel to Germany on a William H. Scheide Research Grant from the American Bach Society to research the Magnificat cantatas of Johann Sebastian Bach and his contemporaries. Peters focused his research on the settings of the Magnificat text in German. The final goal of this research is a monograph titled “The German Magnificat from Martin Luther to J.S. Bach.”

 As a Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Patti Powell, professor of education, assisted with the development of the new deaf education program at Sam Sharpe Teachers’ College in Montego Bay, Jamaica from January through May 2011. In addition, she introduced service learning into the education department curriculum and researched how service learning enriches the experience of teacher. Powell documented her journey through her blog:  http://pattipowell.wordpress.com/

Summer Research Grant projects

John Bakker, professor of art—Art as a social situation: The role of the viewer in meaning construction

Bakker produced the sixth in a series of large-scale paintings that have explored the role of the viewer in interacting and constructing the meaning of works of art.

Dr. David Brodnax, associate professor of history—Archival Research on the 60th United States Colored Infantry

Brodnax examined the pension files and widow’s pension files of the 60th United States Colored Infantry, an African American army regiment formed in Iowa during the American Civil War. This regiment plays a central role in his book manuscript, Breathing the Freedom’s Air: The African American Struggle for Equal Citizenship in Iowa, 1830-1900 which has an anticipated completion date of 2012.

Dr. Clay Carlson, assistant professor of biology—Investigation of the specificity non-specific DNA binding

Carlson, in collaboration with colleagues, is compiling data into a manuscript for publication that sheds light on the process of non-specific DNA binding.

Dr. Dick Cole ’79, professor of psychology—Case Studies for Introduction to Psychology: A Companion Workbook for Introduction to Psychology Courses

Cole is creating a workbook that will offer various case studies that correspond with chapters and topics often found in Introduction to Psychology textbooks.  The workbook will give suggestions on how to use these case studies to help make the material in these chapters more relevant for students. 

Dr. Karen Dieleman, assistant professor of English—Elizabeth Barrett and the Greek Christian Poets

Dieleman completed the revisions to her book manuscript that followed from the press readers’ reports earlier in the year. The manuscript (Religious Imaginaries: The Liturgical and Poetic Practices of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Christina Rossetti and Adelaide Procter)was submitted to Ohio University Press for future publication. .

Dr. Aron Reppmann ’92, associate professor of philosophy—A translation of Johan Stellingwerff’s Geschiedenis van de Reformatorische Wijsbegeerte

In the spring 2011 semester, Reppmann used his draft translation of the book (A History of Reformational Philosophy) as one of the major texts in his course Philosophy 310: Reformational Philosophy.  His summer work involved reviewing and revising the text to prepare it for submission to Paideia Press.

Dr. Don Sinnema, professor of theology—Synod of Dort Manuscripts

Sinnema’s project consisted of two closely related parts:To take leadership in organizing a decade-long project to publish a critical edition of all extant manuscripts of the Synod of Dort (1618-19) in a multi-volume series; and to continue working on an ongoing collaborative project to prepare a critical edition of the early drafts of the Canons of Dort and related documents.

Dr. Yudha Thianto, professor of theology—Educating the Young: Catechism and Reading Materials as Tools to Transplant Calvinism in the Dutch East Indies in the Early Seventeenth Century

Thianto traveled to the Netherlands to study how basic teachings of Calvinism were taught to young people in the East Indies in the early seventeenth century. He is also writing a book on the subject of the transplantation of Calvinism in the East Indies.

Dr. Michael Vander Weele ’73, professor of English—Homer, Hesiod, and Rhetorical Aesthetics in the Ancient Mediterranean World

Study of this ancient literature, an offshoot of Vander Weele’s work at the Seminar on Hesiod & the Homeric Songs co-sponsored by the Council of Independent Colleges and the Center for Hellenic Studies last year, will show a closer connection than is usually considered between ancient rhetoric and ancient poetry. 

Dr. Deborah Windes, assistant professor of business—Online Education as a Disruption in Higher Education

“In the research I am doing on why online initiatives succeed or fail under different conditions, I am looking at both institutional factors that influence the success of online initiatives, as well as faculty perceptions of online education,” said Dr. Deborah L. Windes, assistant professor of business. “This is helpful as Trinity explores blended, or hybrid, courses, as well as how technology can assist faculty in the classroom.” 

Students, staff, and fellow faculty members can view the library display, designed by Sarah Hoeksema ’10, library administrative assistant, which includes portraits of each professor and synopses of their art, research, and findings.