Congratulations to our History graduates!


History majors Dustin McNulty and JoAnna Freeland at Commencement 2013.

History majors Dustin McNulty and JoAnna Freeland at Commencement 2013.

The History Department is proud to announce our Spring 2013 graduates:

Rawley Butler (History, Environmental Studies)
JoAnna Freeland (History, Political Science)
Keely Goshia (History, German)
Ken Jaeger (History)
Danny Kelley (History)
Dustin McNulty (History, Cum Laude)
Cameron Parker (History)
Betsy Ryan (History, Political Science)
Sam Schroeder (History, Criminal Justice)
Angela Stoelk (History, Marketing)
Emily Stover (History, Cum Laude)

Victoria Phillips (English, History minor) and Jenny Hock (Sociology, History minor) with Rebecca Livingstone, Assistant Professor of History

Victoria Phillips (English, History minor) and Jenny Hock (Sociology, History minor) with Rebecca Livingstone, Assistant Professor of History

Hanna Russmann: WHO-HD Television

What has she been up to?
Graduating Multimedia Journalism major, Hanna Russman, gained valuable experience interning with WHO-HD Television in Des Moines, Iowa over the spring semester.  As part of her internship, Hanna completed three news packages.  Creating these packages included writing and editing video, recording her voice over, and shooting a stand-up.  She also had a chance to practice in-studio stand-ups, work with producers, write scripts for anchors, and time shows.

What strengths did she utilize in her internship?
Interning at WHO-HD Televsion, Hanna had to be a self-starter.  She knew it was up to her to make the most of each day.  Because of this, Hanna developed a strong work ethic and was not afraid to ask questions.  She felt her willingness to ask questions showed her employer she was interested in learning about the industry.

How did she find out about her internship?
Hanna was connected to WHO-HD Television’s News Director, Rod Peterson, through Assistant Professor Lisa Carponelli-Lovell.  Hanna was able to capitalize on Simpson’s great faculty and their willingness to help students network.

What did her supervisor have to say about Simspon students?
Peterson shared, “Hanna is a great example of the caliber of students taking advantage of Simpson College’s internship opportunities.  Since Assistant Professor Lisa Carponelli-Lovell has joined the Simpson faculty, WHO-HD Television has benefited from Simpson’s multimedia-journalism-degree program.  We have hosted many gifted students like Hanna as interns.  Simpson students and graduates also have joined our team as producers and editors. Simpson College students are enriched by Lisa’s recent, professional experience and connections to journalists in local newsrooms.”

Why does she think it is important for students to intern?
Hanna believes, “it is important for Simpson students to intern because employers are always looking for real world experience.  An internship is the best way to get this experience before you graduate, and Simpson does a fantastic job helping students make internships work with their schedules.”

What advice does she have for future interns? 
Hanna shared, “One piece of advice I have for students beginning an internship is ask questions, lots of them.  You are doing this internship to learn, and you are not going to know everything just because you study the field you’re interning in.  This makes it okay for you to ask those seemingly stupid questions, but remember, the only real stupid questions are the ones you don’t ask.”

Mary Houangsavanh: U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants

What has she been up to?
Graduating accounting major, Mary Houangsavanh, spent spring semester interning for the Des Moines office of the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants.  As part of her internship, Mary was responsible for both accounting and financial management within the organization.  She developed and organized a tracking system for the financials, issued and recorded accounts payable invoices, and assisted with such human resources duties as new hire paperwork, orientation, and training.

How did she find out about her internship?
Mary was introduced to her internship through the Fall Futures Fair hosted by Simpson’s Career Services office.  Career Services hosts a wide array of events each year to help students explore career fields and connect with potential employers.

Why does she think it is important to intern?
Mary feels, “Interning provides hands-on experience in a real-world setting. It is a perfect chance to get your feet in the water and begin building your resume. It also gives you a chance to evaluate what you want to do in life and can open opportunities to develop a more-focused career path.”

What advice does she have for future interns?
Mary recommends, “Stay open-minded and be flexible. Regardless of how it turns out, it will be a great learning experience. If you like it, you’ll have an idea of what career path to take. If you don’t necessarily like it, you will still learn and take away universal skills that can be used elsewhere.”

How did her experience turn out?
About six weeks into her internship, the organization opened and offered her a part-time accounting position.  She accepted the offer and will continue to work with the company while she studies for the CPA exam.  Congratulations, Mary!


Students present their work for EMERGE

Students present their work for EMERGE Business Incubator

Thursday morning, the students who have, for the last four months, worked on entrepreneurial projects in the EMERGE at Simpson business incubator presented their work.


Their fellow students, faculty, and business Student presents his work for EMERGE Business Incubatoradvisers attended the presentations and participated in the discussion as students look forward to the future of these projects.  The students in this course will be graduating on Saturday and their presentations focused heavily on where the projects will go after they have moved on.  There will be students working on the projects during the May Term as well as interns working throughout the summer.


Students present their work for EMERGE Business Incubator

There were four groups presenting their work

on the start-up with which they have been working all semester.  The students’ work ranges from graphic design to market research, marketing outreach and other aspects of business development.  For more information about EMERGE and the businesses, see this webpage or contact Chris Draper.

Students present their work for EMERGE Business Incubator


Sammy Nelson: Nationwide Wellness Center

What has she been doing?
Sammy Nelson, a senior Exercise Science major, spent spring semester interning at Nationwide’s Wellness Center in Des Moines, Iowa.  As part of her internship, Sammy observed and instructed group fitness classes, particated in Zumba and a running group, created bulleting boards advertising wellness and health, and helped keep the facility clean.

How did she find out about the internship?
Sammy found out about her internship after meeting with a Career Services staff member.  Here at Career Servcies, we have access to lists of where students have done internships in the past and can help connect you to employers who have had positive experiences with our students.  Students interested in a similar experience might consider applying for internships with HealthFitness.  HealthFitness contracts their corporate fitness programs to employers like Nationwide.

What did her supervisor have to say about her work?
Jill Gulick, Program Manager for HealthFitness, commented, “Sammy is very personable with members. She has shadowed personal training and group fitness and has trained and taught on her own now. She wrote an exercise program for one of our members and walked him through the lesson. She jumps right in and tries anything. She is inspirational to members with her track background. She is creative and has developed a bulletin board theme for the weekdays with inspirational sayings. She is very positive and does what is asked in a timely manner.”

Why does Sammy think interning is important?
Sammy shared, “Internships open the door to other possibilities.  You are able to do the hands-on experience under the guidance of a professional.  These professionals can provide the feedback that is hard to receive in a classroom setting.  Also, you do not realize how much you do not know until you are out in the real world.  All the books in the world could try to teach you how to do something, but it is the people you work with that provide the best knowledge.  I have taken what I have learned from my classes, but I have also gained so much more insight from the great people that I have been working with!  There is no way I would be truly prepared for the real working world if it was not for my internship.  Plus, I have made such great connections with the people I work with and have been given the opportunity to continue to work with them.”

What advice does Sammy have for future interns?
Sammy encouraged, “My advice to students beginning their internship would be: don’t be intimidated.  Definitely listen, but do not be shy to voice your thoughts and opinions.  You never know when your insight can trigger a fantastic idea.  Being vocal, during the right time, can lead to even bigger possibilities beyond your internship.”

Molly Rhodes: Iowa Barnstormers

What has she been up to?
Molly Rhodes, senior Sports Administration major, has had the opportunity to intern with the Iowa Barnstormers since September 2012.  The Iowa Barnstormers are an arena football team based in Des Moines, Iowa.  As part of her internship, Molly assisted with game operations and both website and database upkeep.  Her goal was to get her foot in the door within the event management industry, and she feels she has accomplished that and more, having strengthened her skills in organization and preparation.

What does her supervisor have to say about her work?
Greg Boyd, Director of Marketing, commented, “Molly has a great attitude. She has good communication and computer skills and works well as a team player. She has gone above and beyond with every task and constantly produces quality work. We will miss her when she is gone.”

How did Molly find out about her internship?
Molly completed her internship search by looking at the websites of local sports teams.  She chose the Barnstormers because they were the team that most intrigued her.  After interviewing with the Barnstormers’ Marketing Director, Molly was relieved to hear they would be willing to work around her busy schedule.  She has enjoyed spending two semesters with the team.

Why does she feel it is important for students to intern?
Molly commented, “While I believe Simpson professors do an outstanding job in preparing students for their future careers, there are some things that cannot be learned in the classroom. This is why I think that interning is important. Students are given the opportunity to learn certain skills hands-on. Another positive outcome from interning is often times students receive job offers from the company they intern with.”

What advice does she have for future interns?
Molly recommended, “Choose an internship that interests you, don’t be shy, and ask questions – lots of them!”  If you are working in a group with other interns, take the lead and take the initiative to get tasks done.  Employers want to see leadership; you are taking a huge step into your future career – make it count!”


Tyler Crandell: Iowa Momentum Magazine

What has he been doing?
Tyler Crandell, a senior Integrated Marketing Communications major, spent spring semester as an intern-writer for Iowa Momentum Magazine.  As part of his internship, Tyler attended endurance-sporting events, called athletes for interviews, and wrote articles for both the magazine’s print and online versions.  He also created videos of the sporting events for the online portion.

How did he find out about his internship?
Tyler was connected to the opportunity with Iowa Momentum Magazine through Assistant Professor Lisa Carponelli-Lovell.  Students interested in interning with the magazine in the future should send a cover letter, resume, and work sample to editor Dave Mable –

What did his supervisor have to say about his work?
Dave Mable, editor for Iowa Momentum Magazine, commented, “Tyler has done an incredible job providing us with articles, pictures, video, etc.  He is reliable, punctual, visionary, and a real asset to our team.  When given a task, he just goes with it and needs very little direction in terms of carrying projects out.”

Why does Tyler think interning is important?
Tyler feels, “students can learn so much more during an internship than in classes. Doing work outside of school at a business gives you a different perspective of what it is really like to be in the work force. There are things that students just can’t learn in classes that they will during their internships.”

What advice does he have for future interns?
Tyler recommends, “Ask as many questions as you can and absorb all of the information you learn from the professionals that you are working with. Every little bit of information you can get out of your internship will help you in the future when you are looking for a job.”

crandell_tyler (2)

Jason Graham: Mercy East Physical Therapy Clinic

What has he been doing?
Jason Graham, a senior Biology major, spent spring semester interning at Mercy East Physical Therapy Clinic.  As part of his internship, he was engaged in patient care and treatment, conducted research for treatment methods, and provided differing forms of media for patient education.

What strengths did he use?
While interning, Jason demonstrated a genuine compassion and interest for the clinic’s patients.  He also showed up each day with sincere enthusiasm and a willingness to learn.  Finally, he handled each patient’s situation with care, often partnering with patients as they performed their exercises or manipulation.

What did his supervisor say about his work?
Bob Augustine, Physical Therapist, shared, “Jason will land on his feet in whatever he pursues.”

How did he find out about his internship?
Jason found out about the internship through Assistant Professor, Nicci Whalen.  Nicci introduced him to the partnership Simpson College has with Mercy Clinics.  Each semester, Simpson Career Services arranges interviews for both pre-med and pre-physical therapy internships.  For more information about these internships, please contact Bobbi Meyer –

Why does he think interning is important?
Jason believes, “interning gives students a view through the window of possibilities.  It allows us to get our feet wet without jumping in completely.
Each Simpson student should take advantage of these opportunities for
the experience and the possibility of finding your passion.”

Sylvia Koss: Clear Channel Communications

Photo by Alejandro Caballero

What has she been doing?
Sylvia Koss, a senior Integrated Marketing Communications major, is currently interning with Clear Channel Communications in Des Moines, Iowa.  As part of her internship, Sylvia has inserted imaging into the logs for Capital 106.3, helped with on-air content for 107.5 KISS FM, and assisted with both meet-and-greets and concerts.  As a fun means of networking, through this internship, Sylvia met Britt Nicole, went bowling with Wallpaper, saw Air Dubai in concert, and stood less than 10 feet from Carly Rae Jepsen.

What strengths did she gain within the position?
Through this internship, Sylvia has developed independent leadership and time management.  After her supervisor assigned her tasks, she knew it was up to her to prioritize her work to get everything done on time.

What does her supervisor have to say about her work?
Daphne Haselhun, Promotions Director for Clear Channel Communications, shared the following quote: “Sylvia has become more outgoing and her verbal communication has improved.  She continues to soak up as much knowledge as possible by coming in and working with different staff members throughout the day to learn as much as she can.”

How did she find out about this internship?
Sylvia found out about the Clear Channel internship purely by accident. She was listening to 107.5 KISS FM online when she saw the internship link. After looking at the link, she realized the internship offered learning opportunities she couldn’t pass up.

Why does she think internships are important?
According to Sylvia, “Internships are the reason you go to college. Meeting people and gaining education within the classroom are important as well, but you really can’t put a price on the real-world experiences and networking you gain from an internship. I came into my senior year confused about what I wanted to be when I grew up. I knew I wanted to be Kelly Clarkson’s tour manager, but I didn’t have a realistic goal because I didn’t know what I was interested in. Since working at Clear Channel, I have a clearer idea of the various careers I could pursue within the industry I love, which is music.”

Miranda Dean: Youth Homes of Mid-America

What has she been doing?
Miranda Dean, a junior Psychology major, has spent spring semester interning at Youth Homes of Mid-America in Johnson, IA.  The mission of this organization is to provide troubled youth and their families a path to independence.  As part of her internship, Miranda supervises the youth by conversing with them, playing games, sharing meals, and organizing off-campus activities such as exploring museums and bowling.

How did the internship help her define her career goals?
While participating in the internship, Miranda was able to narrow her focus for where she wants to go in the future.  Before beginning the experience, she had the broad goal of becoming a clinical child psychologist.  However, now she knows she wants to work in a clinical setting with adolescents who have suffered from trauma or abuse.

What did her supervisor have to say about her work?
Lou Chapman, Campus Supervisor for Youth Homes of Mid-America, commented, “Miranda impressed me with her strong personality. Although she is a very soft spoken person, she commands respect from the clients she has worked around.  Miranda has dealt with crisis situations with the utmost professionalism and is often proactive and overts potential crisis situations before they explode.”

How did she find out about this internship?
Miranda learned of her internship through her academic advisor, Professor Don Evans.  Don helped her to formulate a list of potential sites based on her interest.  Simpson College faculty and staff are great resources for brainstorming internship ideas.

What advice does she have for other student interns?
Miranda shared, “One piece of advice I have for students beginning an internship is to step outside of your comfort zone. Personally, I never would have imagined myself working in a youth home setting because I tend to be very reserved and quiet. However, it has turned out to be one of the best experiences I’ve had during college so far and I have grown tremendously from it.”