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New Faculty and Staff Appointments Announced

9/24/2008 —

Penn State Lehigh Valley has announced the following appointments to its faculty and staff:


John Botzum, instructor in mathematics – Botzum is completing his doctorate from George Washington University. He holds a master of science in mathematics and a bachelor of science in mathematics from the University of Akron. He has taught at Lehigh Carbon Community College, Northampton Community College, Marywood University, DeVry University, and Kutztown University.

Henry Check, instructor in business – Check has taught business, finance, and accounting courses at Kutztown University, Ursinus College, Cedar Crest College, and DeSales University. He received a B.S. in electrical engineering, M.B.A., and a master of science in economics from Lehigh University.

Dr. Ana Figueroa, assistant professor of Spanish – Dr. Figueroa received her Ph.D. in Latin American literature and M.A. in Hispanic literature from Rutgers University. Until recently, she taught Spanish at Princeton University.

Michelle Kaschak, instructor in English – Kaschak received a B.A. in English from Chestnut Hill College, Philadelphia; an M.A. in English from Shippensburg University; and completed a secondary education certification program from Kutztown University in 2002.

Michael Krajsa, instructor in business – Krajsa has taught MBA and undergraduate courses in entrepreneurship, management and marketing, international marketing, contemporary business, and consumer behavior at DeSales University. He was formerly director of innovation and entrepreneurship at Kutztown University Tekpark. He received his bachelor’s degree from Catholic University of America, Washington, DC, and his master’s degree from Penn State.

Richard Martin, instructor in information sciences and technology – Martin has an extensive background in computer systems and programming languages and applications. Most recently he taught part-time at Lincoln Technical Institute and Bethlehem Area Vo-Tech Schools. He graduated from Occidental College, Los Angeles, with a B.A. in philosophy; from Indiana University with a M.A. in philosophy, mathematical logic; and from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Teaneck, NJ, with a M.S. in computer science.

Dr. Kevin McFall, assistant professor of engineering – Dr. McFall previously taught at the Georgia Institute of Technology, Lorraine Campus in Metz, France. He holds a doctorate in mechanical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology; a master's degree in mechanical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology; and a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Dr. Kenneth Thigpen, director of academic affairs – Dr. Thigpen has a Ph.D. in English from Indiana University and was most recently provost and vice president for academic affairs at Briarcliff College. He was in the English department at Penn State at the beginning of his career and served as associate head of English for Penn State’s Commonwealth Education System from 1986-1993.


Tiffany Cresswell-Yeager, director of student affairs – Cresswell-Yeager was most recently associate director of student affairs at Penn State Schuylkill.  She is a Penn State graduate with a bachelor of arts in journalism, and a master of education in training and development. She is working on her doctorate in administration and leadership from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Michael Damweber, admissions counselor – Damweber previously worked as an admissions counselor for Delaware Valley College.  He earned a bachelor of science in business from Penn State University in 2005.

Louise Frantz, coordinator of the practical nursing program – Frantz has held various nursing positions at St. Luke’s Hospital, Pottsville Hospital, and Gnaden Huetten Hospital where she taught critical care courses. Since 2006, she has been an adjunct faculty member at Northampton Community College and Lehigh Carbon Community College. She received her nursing diploma in 1989 from Geisinger Medical Center; a B.S. degree from Penn State in 2002; and her M.S.N. in education (September 2008) from the University of Phoenix.

Allison Goodin, assistant director of university relations – Goodin comes to Penn State Lehigh Valley having previously served as college relations associate at Cedar Crest College.  Prior to that, she was an account executive in the marketing practice of Ruder, Finn, Inc., in New York City. She received a bachelor of arts in English from Wagner College in 2002.

Pamela Klass, area representative – Klass has joined the Continuing Education team at the Corporate Learning Center. Before coming to Penn State, she was project engineer for an engineering consulting firm dealing in energy conservation for commercial and industrial businesses. She received a bachelor of science in industrial engineering with a math minor from Penn State in 1991. Additionally, she holds a Level 2 Pennsylvania teaching certificate for secondary mathematics.

Kate Morgan, director of university relations – Morgan was previously at the Savannah College of Art & Design in Savannah, Georgia, where she coordinated e-learning courses. She holds a master's degree in interactive design and game development from Savannah College of Art and Design; a bachelor's degree in journalism and public relations from Mississippi University for Women; and a web professional certificate from Penn State University.

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