Students at Marian University of Wisconsin’s Forensic Science Program learn the elements of crime scene and death investigations like what one might see on Dateline NBC, 20/20 and 48 Hours – blood spatter patterns, decomposition, DNA Analysis. Just this week, Diana Johnson, the Program Director and Assistant Professor for Forensic Science at Marian University of Wisconsin was recognized by the Alliant Energy Foundation with a James Underkofler Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award. Mark Albert, Senior Key Account Manager at Alliant Energy presented the award at a special Recognition Dinner for Faculty and Staff at Marian University Tuesday night.

Johnson, who, earlier in her career worked in a lab for the New Jersey State Police forensic serology section, has been at Marian for over seven years preparing students for careers in crime scene investigation and other areas of forensic science.  Marian University also has a “Crime Scene House,” staged for testing students’ investigative skills. The Underkofler Award, funded by an Alliant endowment, recognizes and rewards extraordinary undergraduate teachers within Alliant Energy’s service area.

Other Marian University Faculty recognized at the dinner include:

  • Academic Advising Excellence Award: Kelli Schrauth, Academic Advisor
  • Social Justice Award: Jonathan Hetzel, Financial Success Coordinator, TRIO Student Support Services
  • Staff of the Year Award: Sue Fuerbringer, Director, Excel and Undeclared Programs
  • Adjunct Faculty of the Year: Undergraduate Program: Thomas Kuenzi, Assistant Professor of Accounting
  • Adjunct Faculty of the Year: Adult and Online Studies: Merle Alix, Director of Writing and Reading Services
  • Graduate Teacher of the Year: Mary Polchert, Associate Professor, Nursing and Gina Possin, Assistant Professor, Industrial Organizational Psychology

In addition, the following Marian University faculty and staff were recognized for landmark anniversaries:

35 Years
Dr. Michelle Majewski
Kerry Strupp
Carey Gardin

30 Years
Gigi Burnett
Dr. Carl Kalwaitis

20 Years
Christine Martin
Dr. John Morris
Sarah Thibodeau
Thomas Wallestad
Janet Wermes

15 Years
Susan Fuerbringer
Dr. James Gray
Dr. Alan Johnson
Andrew Kukec
Garry Moïse
Jennifer Schultz
Dr. Jodi Wagner-Angell

10 Years
Maranda Abitz
Jordan Baitinger
Severa Krueger
Dr. David Leichter
Melissa Luedtke
Carol Schlaefer

5 Years
Amanda Baker
Tanya Biessman
Michael Castor
Drake Diener
Keegan Miller
Anairahe Rosenow
Sarah Kelnhofer
Christopher Scott

Retiring this Year:
Penelope Beine
Sister Edie Crews
Carey Gardin
Craig Peltonen
Pam Warren