Alumni News

(Please send any recent news of yours or other Loras Biology grads to tom.davis @loras.edu!)

October 2011 update

Chad Morarend (1996)
I went to dental school at The University of Iowa. Met my wife Kim who was working there as a nurse. Graduated and moved to Dubuque where I was a general dentist for five years. After the Sept. 11 attacks I became a Lieutenant in the U.S. Naval Reserve. Kim and I had triplet boys: Matthew, Luke, and John. After five years of general dentistry I went back and did an orthodontics residency and a masters degree. While in residency we had our youngest son Peter. After the residency I joined Dubuque Orthodontics and have been there since. As for hobbies I have always loved woodworking and metal working. We bought a farm a few years ago and have a huge organic garden and orchard and have been doing beekeeping the last few years. The boys are all in scouts and I am a den leader/cubmaster. We have made it a family goal to explore all of our National Parks and have put several thousand miles on our van each summer doing so. At age 34 I took up downhill skiing and will probably someday regret that decision. We have made it a family priority to avoid too many "kid activities" and focus on things we do together as a family--I will let you know in about 10 years how that goes.

Theresa (Kelly) Coy (2001)
After graduating I got a job teaching at Marist High School on the south side of Chicago. This is my 10th year there! I teach Honors and Academic Bio and currently also teach Honors Environmental Science. This is also my ninth year coaching cross country. I earned my Masters in Curriculum and Instruction from Concordia University in 2008. I have traveled with students to the Bahamas twice and Florida once for educational trips. Kevin and I have been married for 8 years. Kevin is a Loras graduate as well and he currently works as a guidance counselor at Lincoln Way East and he is also the head girls track coach at Lincoln Way Central. We have two sons, Mikey and Marc. Mikey is 7 years old, and in 2nd grade. Marc is 5 and in kindergarten. They definitely keep us busy and make life interesting! In 2010 I had a "Girls Trip" to Ireland with my mom, 2 sisters, and sister-in-law. It was beautiful and the Guiness was good!

Cortney (Kettman) Kueter (05)
After graduating from Loras I went directly to PA school at Des Moines University. After graduating from DMU in 2007, I took my first job as a physician assistant at Dubuque Internal Medicine. I am currently still at Dubuque Internal Medicine, and have been there for four years. I absolutely LOVE it. I see many patients for health maintenance issues, but also see a wide variety of patients for acute illnesses, so my job is never boring (which I love, since I rarely sit still!). Three and a half years ago I married my high school and college sweetheart Travis Kueter (Loras 2004 graduate with a Biology Research major.) Travis worked for the Department of Natural Resources in Nebraska for two years after he graduated from Loras, and luckily, was able to get a job with the Iowa DNR in Bellevue in 2007. He currently is still working in Bellevue as a fisheries technician. We live in Bellevue, and keep busy with our two small children (Tate, 2 yrs old and Paige, 6 months). They are both very active (we have no idea where they get that from! :) and keep us smiling every single day. Travis enjoys anything that has to do with the outdoors...hunting, fishing, slow pitch softball, etc. I enjoy volunteering as the Marquette girls basketball coach in Bellevue (with my dad as the head coach and brother Casey (Loras '10) as the assistant). I also like to do sewing projects (no old lady jokes) in my "free time." As you can see, we have been very busy in the past few years but are definitely enjoying life!

Beth Rogers (01) BS in biochemistry, English literature minor
After Loras, I spent a year in Seattle, WA, as a Jesuit Volunteer, working as a case manager in an adult day health center and living with 7 other volunteers from around the country. A true growth experience! Then I attended the University of Nebraska College of Medicine from 2002-2007 during which I was exposed to global health, and took a full year away to focus on this area. That year brought me to the base camp of K2 in Pakistan as part of a geological and medical expedition, an incredible adventure, but the majority of time I was in Latin America. I spent the first few months improving Spanish and getting some hospital and clinic exposure in Nicaragua and Ecuador. I then lived for 6 months in a small rural community in El Salvador, helping in the clinic, doing some health education projects with local students, and soaking up the culture and perspectives. Truly inspired by the work being done there, I've since been involved with the organization with whom I volunteered, Doctors for Global Health. I have been a board member of this non-profit since 2007. Residency brought a move to Boston where I trained in internal medicine and pediatrics with the Harvard-Associated Brigham and Women's/Children's Hospital Boston program from 2007-2011. I'm now at UCSF working as a Primary Care Research Fellow, doing a bit of adult and child primary care at San Francisco General Hospital and learning how to do solid clinical research in order to see what alternative models of primary care might work to improve access to health care and improve patient outcomes within vulnerable populations. In between I try to get outside to hike as much as possible, read a good book, dream up travel destinations, share conversation with friends over dinner or wine, and spend time with my family including 7 amazing nieces and nephews.

Loras Even (08) is a M3 medical student at Des Moines University DO Program (Graduation 2012). He married to another Loras grad (Lisa Coulter, now Lisa Even). She went to Iowa State for a Master of Public Administration degree and now works for Iowa Health as a process improvement coordinator. They got married on 7/11/2009 and are expecting their first child, a son soon (end of October 2011). Hobbies: They like to travel, but haven't been able to travel much because of school. They may get to travel soon as they find out where Loras is going for residency at the end of February 2012.

Maria Garcia (09) passed her preliminary exam and is an official PhD. candidate at UW-Madison. She was also awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship, which funds her research for 3 years. Her research is titled "The Effects of a Collagen-Dense Tumor Microenvironment on Tumor-Associated Macrophage Recruitment and Protumorigenic Functions".

Jessica Greenley (Kutsch) graduated from Des Moines University with a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree in May 2011.

Margo Soppe (10) started Physician Assistant school at Des Moines University in June 2011. She was SO excited to get started!

Chris Coffey (06) was accepted into dental school at Indiana University and started there in August 2011.

Brenda Arens (06) received her DVM degree from Iowa State in May 2009. She worked in Dyersville for almost a year and now is working at a small animal clinic in Janesville WI.

Jenny Arens (05) is teaching physiology and immunology at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, SD as an Assistant Professor. She got her Ph.D. in Endocrinology/Reproductive Physiology from UW- Madison.

George Chlipala (98) received his Ph.D. in Pharmacognosy from the University of Illinois at Chicago. His dissertation was titled "Anti-cancer Compounds from Cultured and Field Collected Cyanobacteria". He has a post doc at the U. of Michigan where he is studying secondary metabolites from marine organisms. He has published two articles in the Journal of Natural Products.

Dave Arens (09) and Rachel Carroll (09) were married at Christ the King Chapel on the Loras Campus in May 2011. They had a wonderful reception at the Star Brewery and Stone Cliff wine center on the river in DBQ. Dave is in his 2nd year of Podiatry School at Scholl/Rosalind Franklin University in Chicago and enjoying every minute!

Dan Branson (09) is in his second year of dental school at Iowa and is enjoying his physiology course there. They even use the same text as Dr. D. did here!

Lisa Schneider (08) graduated from Washington University Goldfarb School of Nursing in May 2010 with her BSN and passed her Boards in July so she is an official RN! She has accepted a position at the NICU at Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center in St. Louis! It was her dream position!

Sarah Weichert (07) is in her 3rd year of veterinary school at Iowa State. She went on a wildlife immobilization safari on Africa for 3 weeks this summer 2011; She also participated in a research program as a Merck/Merial/NIH Summer Scholar. She did research on the pulmonary immune microenvironment of the horse to evaluate the susceptibility of neonate horses to pneumonia. From this research experience she has decided to pursue a concurrent DVM-PhD degree in Immunology.

Ashley Rivard (09) has completed her training as a Physician's Assistant this past June 2011 from St. John's University in Queens, NYC. She is currently a PA Orthopaedic Surgery Resident with Illinois Bone and Joint Institute at Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, IL. She will be coming to Homecoming this week to talk as a member of the Alumni Panel on Friday 9/23/11!

Brian Snyder recently defended his Ph.D. dissertation in Human Nutrition at Kansas State University. He has accepted an Assistant Professor position at Truman State University in the Dept of Health and Exercise Science. He will be teaching exercise physiology, and sports nutrition. They have a brand new science building there and a large lab space that he will be using for his work. His wife Carrie will also be finishing her Ph.D. at KSU in Human Nutrition with an emphasis in Human Nutrition. They have 2 kids, 6 and 3 yrs old. He does a lot of cycling to keep him busy!!

Teresa Duppong Stewart (2000) has been a PA for 6 years in Connecticut and recently moved to Cedar Rapids to a family practice clinic there. Teresa and her husband are breaking ground for a new house in the spring.

Dustin Derflinger (2003) - finished up his residency in emergency medicine in Toledo,OH after graduating from osteopathic medical school at Des Moines University. He has moved back to Johnston, IA where he is working in the Emergency Department at Mercy Hospital in Des Moines.

Doug Christensen (2005) - has finished his first year of chiropractic school at Palmer in Davenport, IA.

Angie Williams Gilligan (04) is a nuclear medicine technologist in Des Moines. She moves back and forth from Iowa Lutheran and Iowa Methodist Hospitals but also runs the PET/CT at John Stoddard Cancer Center. She married a Loras grad, Brodie Gilligan, and the have one son, Kaden who was born Aug. 27, 2008.

Nick Pauly (2000) was named Chief Resident at the Univeristy of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Anesthesiology in April, 2009.

Ryan Dempewolf (2000) was named Chief Resident at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Otolaryngology in May 2009.

Rachel Hutchins (2003) and Jayme Wilhelm (2002) are co-workers as optometrists in a vision clinic in Iowa City. Scary!

Chad Gunsolly (2003) received his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine in June 2008 from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Jennifer Frideres Gabel (2001) has started work as as a D.O. Physician at the Women's Health Services Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic in Ankeny Iowa in August 2008. She received her D.O. from Des Moines University.

James Quann (2002) finally graduated from the University of Iowa Medical School in May 2008. He is currently in a 5 yr residency in general surgery in Des Moines. He and his wife Andrea, who works for the Iowa City Press Citizen and the Des Moines Register, live in Windsor Heights in Des Moines.

Cortney Kettman Keuter (2006) and Melissa Casey (2005) are working together as PAs at Dubuque Internal Medicine.

Jenny Arens Gubbels (2003) is now an assistant professor in Biology at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, SD. teaching physiology and immunology. She received her Ph.D. in Reproductive Endocrinology at the U. of Wisconsin- Madison in May 2009.

June 29 2009 update

Des Moines University notified Dr. Davis recently that the following Loras graduates have earned their degrees in May 2009:
Jared Kohlenberg, Nick Sullivan, and Laurie Van Donselaar (Krusko) - Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine
Sarah Murray - Doctor of Physical Therapy
Joshua Moore - Doctor of Podiatric Medicine
Jessica Gerlach - Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies
Congratulations to all of them!

Jenny Martin Stoffel (04) - In December 2008 she successfully defended her dissertation at UW-Madison in Forestry. Currently she is an assistant professor of biology at Upper Iowa University and has finished her first term of classes. She will be teaching the some of the majors biology courses, some soils courses, the upper level plant courses, and potentially environmental science.

Lindsay Wright (04) - John and I matched to our first choice for residency in Richmond, Virginia!!! For those of you who may not know, I will be doing a residency in Emergency Medicine, and John will be doing Radiology, both at Virginia Commonwealth University. We fell in love with the area when we went for the interview, and some how lucked out and managed to match there!! We are soooo excited! Visitors are always welcome.... plus Virginia Beach is only a little over an hour away, so I hope to see you there!!!

Angie Ponguta (02)- She will defend her Ph.D. thesis in Molecular and Cellular Pathology on the first Friday in June at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. She has also received a scholarship to pursue an additional degree (a Masters in Public Health) at Yale University. Her goal is to become engaged in "working towards global health for developing nations."

Rachel Hutchins(04) - I'm currently in my last week of my last rotation for optometry school. I graduate from ICO next week, and then I guess it's real world time. I spent the fall out in Cheyenne, WY. Then I was near Orlando for the winter. Now I'm in Tomah, WI. It's been a fun year traveling, but it will also be nice to settle down someplace where I don't have to move every 3 mo! I've really enjoyed every place I've been, and I've met some great people. I'm actually coaching middle school track here in Tomah as well. I never thought I'd see the day that I'd be coaching. It's been a lot of fun. She is hoping to stay in eastern Iowa if possible if there is a job here for her.

January 2008 Update

Jen Prenger Onderak -still stay-at-home mom during the week and working acute care every weekend at Deaconess Hospital in Evansville, IN. She LOVES her job! The market has taken a huge turn since I graduated from PT school in 2001- we are very much in demand right now. And she has the best of it because no one is crazy enough to want to work on their weekends but her J! She would love to get specialized in geriatrics- maybe once she stops adding kids to the family! Maddie is 5, Jack is 3, Ellie is 2. and my husband’s name is Matthias, not Matt.

Elisabeth Gustafson-Wagner ('01) is graduating this month with her PhD in Biology from Iowa, and will be starting a post-doc position in January, also at Iowa, studying cancer cell metastasis. She has two primary publications coming out in journals this month, one in JBC (J Biol Chem. 2007 Dec 7;282(49):36024-36. Epub 2007 Oct 9.) and one in the Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. (2007 Nov;293(5):H2680-92. Epub 2007). She defended her thesis dissertation, "Investigating the Function of the Novel Xin Genes in the Mouse Heart" on October 31st. Although she is still teaching an Intro Biology course this semester, being finished with her research for the time being gives her a little extra time to spend with her 18 month old, Emma.

Vince Taeger ('97) received his MD from the U. of I. in 2001 and then completed his Family Practice residency at UIHC in 2004. He is currently working at Burlington Area Family Practice in West Burlington, Iowa. He and Kelli (Hibler) Taeger ('98) have 2 children.

Kelli (Hibler) Taeger ('98) received her M.S. from the University of Iowa in Integrative Physiology and her PhD from the U of I in Science Education. Her doctoral dissertation compared the effectiveness of virtual vs. actual dissection in college anatomy courses. She is currently teaching Anatomy and Physiology at Southeastern Community College in West Burlington, Iowa. She also owns a small boutique in Iowa City.

Quinn Morarend DDS (00) is in a periodontics residency program at Iowa. His wife is a dentist too and they have a boy Drew and daughter Lily.

Matt Miller (99) will graduate from Iowa in May with a DDS degree. He will go on for further training in oral surgery in the Navy. His wife is a dentist too.

Phil Arensdorf (99) is a paramedic/fireman in Dubuque and teaches at NICC. He was just married this summer 06.

Mike Mosciano (93) is head athletic trainer at Salem High School in Virginia Beach, VA.

Micki Gerdes Boelens D.P.M. (99) is practicing podiatric medicine at the Seymour Foot and Ankle Center in Southeast IA.

Peter Schlueter (99) earned his Ph.D. from the U. of Michigan Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology after successfully completing his dissertation titled " The in vivo functions of insulin-like growth factor signaling during zebrafish development."

Andrew Kluesner (02) is a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine and surgery resident at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He graduated from Des Moines University in May 2006.

Jayme Wilhelm (03) married Stephanie Kowalski on Dec. 30, 2005. Jayme will finish his optometry degree from Indiana University this May 2007.

Lisa Gerlach Bank (97) and husband Jason recently had a new son Jonathan Jason on Feb. 18, 2006.

Lynn Portz Cases (97) and husband Ricoardo recently had a daughter, Iris Helen, on Feb. 7, 2006.

Jennifer Prenger Onderak (98) and husband Matt recently had a daughter Elizabeth Catherine on Sept. 13, 2006.

Chris Strohmeyer DDS (97) and wife Kris recently had a son on Oct. 11, 2006.

Ryan Dempewolf MD (01) and wife Kelley Faulner (00) recently had a sone, Ethan Douglas, on Sept. 16, 2005.

Alumni News Summer 2006

Nicole Patterson (99) is chief optometrist in Low Vision and Geriatric Services at Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. She is enjoying her job immensely!

Mark Johnson (01) is a radiologist at University Hospitals at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Roslyn Juergens (97) is an M.D. oncology fellow at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, MD and is getting her Ph.D. "in her spare time". This author would LOVE to hear more details about this woman, hopefully first hand!

Tiffany Juergens (98) is a Chiropractor in Arlington Heights, IL Jennifer (Prenger) Onderak lives in Indiana and practices PT on the weekend. Her and her husband Matt have 3 children.

Jim Kennedy (98) married Carrie Smith ( ) In August. The reception was at the Grand River Center in Dubuque. Jim is still in the Banking business in the Dubuque area, believe it or not!

Kelly (Kopp) Daily (98) was just married in June 06 to Ryan Daily! She hopes she has one more year to finish her Ph.D. in the Dept. of Cell and Molecular Biology at Northwestern in Evanston, IL. She wrote a review for the J. of Cellular Biochemistry last year titled, Perinucleolar compartment and transformation (Kopp and Huang. J. Cell Biochem 2005 May 15;95(2):217-25). She has several first author publications nearing completion. She received an NRSA Fellowship to help her with her work too! She hopes to move to Miami, FL where her hubby will be a resident there next year.

Angie Pitts (04) graduated from the Nuclear Medicine Technologist program at Mercy College in Des Moines in August 06! She has accepted a Nuc Med position at Mercy Hospital in Cedar Rapids starting in Sept 06!

Ann Molitor Mead (04) graduated from the University of Iowa Physician Assistant in June 2006! She has accepted a Family Practice PA position in Mt Pleasant, Iowa! She is "excited, nervous and overwhelmed" at the moment!

Bertina Hooks (98) will graduate from the Creighton University School of Medicine with an M.D. and graduate research degree this May, 2006. She will be starting her residency in Ob/Gyn at Michigan State University. She will be pursuing a fellowship in gynecological oncology or perinatology after residency. She has been married to Chris Otieno, an attorney, for 2 1/2 years.

Jennifer Peters (High) (98), Ph.D. recently received a position at the Kansas City Medical Center where she will pursue her postdoctoral studies and teach physiology to medical students within the Center. She recently published an article titled Melatonin regulates circadian electroretinogram rhythms in a dose- and time dependent fashion in J. Pineal Res. 2005, 38:209-215. She was in the Department of Biology and Center for Biological Clocks Research at Texas A&M.

Nicole Westphal (99) was first author on a paper titled GnRH Regulates Corticotropin Releasing Hormone-Binding Protein (CRH-BP) Expression via Multiple Intracellular Signaling Pathways and a Multipartite GnRh Response Element in alphaT3-1 Cells in Molecular Endocrinology, 2005,
She was also second author on a paper titled Distribution and Acute Stressor Induced Activation of Corticotrophin-Releasing Hormone Neurones in the Central Nervous System of Xenopus laevis in J. of Neuroendocrinology, 2004, 16:880-893. She is in the Neuroscience Program at the University of Michigan.

Peter Schlueter (99) was second author on a paper titled Targeted Knockdown of Insulin-like Growth Factor Binding Protein-2 Disrupts Cardiovascular Development in Zebrafish Embryos in Molecular Endocrinology, 2005 19:1024-1034. Peter is in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at the University of Michigan.

By the way, Nicki and Peter are studying endocrinology together, so to speak, as husband and wife!

Sarah Weichert (05) is working as an intern in the “swamp” filled with birds and many other animals at the Brookfield Zoo in Chicago and applying for veterinary school. She is enjoying her work immensely!

Marca Wosoba (01) married her friend Allan in September 2005 and enjoyed her honeymoon in Ecuador! She and her hubby continue to live in London where she is working for McGraw-Hill.

Mary Fran Cullen (98) is teaching high school biology and coaching cross country and track at The Bishop’s School in La Jolla, CA north of San Diego. She sent pictures of herself atop Mt Whitney on a backpacking adventure trip!

Melissa Zeimet (04) married Luke Casey (02) in summer 05. Luke is a PA at Mercy in Dubuque. Melissa is in PA school at Iowa and taking care of their new baby, Nathan!

Jessica Duetmeyer (02) was married in April 04 and is using her past experience from the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium to work as a temporary full time aquarist at the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific in CA. She is learning how to culture micro algae, rotifers, artemia and mysid shrimp. Jessica and her husband, a pharmacist, recently bought a house in Long Beach near a community known as “Iowa by the Sea”!

Tanya Conrad (02) is teaching 9th grade environmental science and biology at Hempstead High School in Dubuque. In November 2005 she will be leading a high school group to Pigeon Key in Florida to study Marine Biology for 3 weeks! She is also taking classes at UNI to get her Masters in Science Education.

Amy Montgomery, D. O. ( ) is practicing medicine for Medical Associates at the Family Practice in Elkader, IA and Monona, IA.

Christa Spielbauer (04) finished a Masters in Public Health from Des Moines University in May 2005.

Jesse Potebaum (97) reported in a year ago and informed us that he had survived another hurricane in Orlando. He said that all the dolphins were fine and everyone is invited to visit when they can. He is the Head Dolphin Trainer at Discovery Cove at Seaworld Orlando.

Abbie Meyer (03) works for the Driftless Land Stewardship in Glen Haven, WI as a Restoration Technician Supervisor. She is working in all aspects of ecological restoration including design of management plans, burn plans, seed mixes, private property consultation, tree clearing, invasive species control and many other things. She said that she hasn’t spent a single day indoors for 2 months!

John Arient (98) is teaching high school biology and physiology in San Bernadino, CA and enjoying every minute of it.

Lindsay Wright (04) is in her second year of medical school at the University of Illinois. She said that she is very busy but enjoying it. Can you believe it - she is still friends with Helen Hughes!!

Jenny Martin (03) received a Masters in Forestry last spring and is now starting her work on her Ph.D. in Forestry at the U. of Wisconsin-Madison. She is teaching a graduate class in forestry and doing research on carbon cycling in the boreal forests of Canada and several forest sites in northern Wisconsin.

Nick Pauly (02) graduated from medical school at the U. of Iowa in May 06 and is currently doing a residency in Anesthesiology there. He was married this fall too.

Ann (Miller) Kruse (95) is a physical therapist in Dyersville. She is working on taking a few more courses to get her Doctorate in PT. She and her husband Brad, who is also a PT, have 2 boys.

Christian Schultheis, M.D. (93) is in the oncology practice at Medical Associates in Dubuque.

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