Current Schmitt Leadership Fellows

Patrick BethelPatrick Bethel

Program: History

Hometown: Waterbury, Connecticut

Research Interests: Irish nationalism





Patrick's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Patrick: I was born and raised in Waterbury, Connecticut. My parents were both intensely interested in both history and their Irish heritage, which set the stage for my academic interests later in life. I earned my B.A. in History from Wagner College in Staten Island, New York in 2014. Wagner College’s emphasis on studying the humanities in creative ways and incorporating underexamined narratives became central to my growing academic interests. I earned my M.A. at Marquette in 2014 and began my pursuit of a Ph.D. immediately thereafter. When I am not digging through my sources, I enjoy exploring Milwaukee’s food and craft beer scene, rooting for the Mets and Jets (as well as the Bucks, Brewers, and Packers whenever the teams are not playing one another) and spending time with my fiancée Samantha and cat/research assistant Finley.

Scholarship: My research examines the development of Irish nationalisms in the period following the Great Famine of 1845-52. My research argues that such movements were heavily influenced by Ireland’s unique position within the British Empire, being both a constituent part of the United Kingdom and part of the colonized world. In my dissertation I argue that Irish nationalisms were shaped largely in reaction to British narratives of Irish inferiority, which justified the special governance of Ireland, and which positioned the Irish as undisciplined, prone to violence, and removed from the emerging category of whiteness.

Leadership: Throughout my career at Marquette, I have taken on a variety of leadership roles, both formal and informal. I have a history of service in positions of leadership, serving on the executive board of the History Graduate Student Organization for three years, most notably as president during the 2018-2019 academic year while also serving as Vice-President of the Graduate Student organization. Since that time, I have served in an informal position of leadership, as by convention past HGSO presidents do not put their name forward for additional Executive Board positions, but instead remain active in advisory roles, although due to the impact of COVID-19 I will be serving as HGSO president for the 2021-22 academic year to assist in the transition back to in-person interactions. Both during and after my time as a leader in the HGSO I have also worked as a mentor for incoming students, helping eleven history department MA’s get accepted to the Ph.D. programs of their choice, as well as assisting many other MA students in pursuing non-academic career paths following the completion of their degrees.

Keara Kangas

Keara Kangas

Program: Clinical Psychology

Hometown: Gwinn, Michigan

Research Interests: Synchronization, Emotion Regulation, Interpersonal Relationships, Traumatic Brain Injuries






Keara's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Keara: I was raised near a small town named Gwinn, Michigan. Finnish is one of the leading cultural roots here, including my own. One of the main cultural influences in Finnish is “Sisu.” Sisu is challenging to explain in English; however, it roughly translates to bravery, resilience, grit, and determination. These terms tangibly make up someone’s aura or soul. By embodying Sisu, I joined the Army National Guard and was sent to Afghanistan for a 13-month tour. After hearing about the traumas and head injuries Soldiers experienced during combat, this further developed my fascination for the brain and solidified my passion to help others by pursuing a degree in clinical neuropsychology. Once I returned, I invested my energy into finishing my bachelor’s and master’s degree at Northern Michigan University (NMU). All the opportunities here established my continued desire to pursue a Ph.D. at Marquette.

Scholarship: The development of my research interests began during my undergraduate training at NMU. Working with Dr. Joshua M. Carlson, I applied for the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program and was accepted. In my senior year, we received funding to work with collegiate athletes using neuroimaging to diagnosis post-concussion symptoms. For my master’s thesis at NMU, my project worked towards establishing a quicker more effective assessment of concussions for early diagnosis. After NMU, I sought out clinical training and broader research projects with similar backgrounds; this led me to Dr. Nakia S. Gordon at Marquette. Our lab’s research evolved my way of thinking; from exploring emotion regulation in the context of interracial interactions after exposure to police violence, perspective taking and implicit bias in relation to the Chicago Police Department and fellow community members, to interpersonal synchronization in friendship dyads. These opportunities support my ambition to pursue a career in an academic medical setting to mentor trainees and ensure all patients receive the best health care.

Leadership: I never thought of myself as a leader, but instead someone who wanted to develop and foster connections. My formal leadership abilities sharpened when I joined the Army National Guard. I also had numerous opportunities and roles throughout my academic career that contributed to my leadership-like qualities; I taught and mentored undergraduate students, provided services to members from various communities, and immersed myself into student organizations. All these leadership opportunities prepare me for my future career as a neuropsychologist and Army officer. These positions hold multiple responsibilities, and each involve leading and mentoring people. I want to keep advancing minds while also continuing to update my own. We can always grow as a leader. So, I look forward to advancing my leadership capabilities through the Arthur J. Schmitt Fellowship during the 2021-22 academic year.

Lee Kimbell Lee Kimbell

Program: Environmental and Water Resources Engineering

Hometown: Clinton, Kentucky

Research Interests: Antibiotic resistance and microbiology of drinking water distribution systems




Lee's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Lee: I grew up in a small town in rural Kentucky. I was raised on a farm and from an early age learned to appreciate the natural environment. I spent most of my time working on the farm, fishing, riding ATVs and motorcycles, and playing sports. I went to Hickman County High School and played sports including baseball, basketball, soccer, and golf. I continued to play baseball in college for Union University, Jackson State Community College, Lambuth University, and eventually the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. I received my BS degree from UW-Whitewater in biology with an emphasis in marine biology and freshwater ecology. During my studies at UW-Whitewater, I participated in the study abroad program at Deakin University in Warrnambool, Australia. I spent a year of my undergraduate career on the southern coast of Australia. This experience helped to grow my passion for the marine environment, environmental stewardship and conservation, and water related research.

Scholarship: After completing my BS degree in biology at UWW, I started working on my M.S. degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Marquette University (MU). My M.S. research consisted of using a biosolids-derived adsorbent for removing emerging contaminants (e.g., antimicrobial compounds, estrogens) from wastewater. After completing my M.S. degree, I decided to stay at Marquette University to pursue my Ph.D. in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering. My current research involves the analysis of microbial communities and DNA in drinking water distribution systems and biofilms. I have had the privilege of contributing to eight peer-reviewed research articles so far during my graduate career due to the amazing faculty and graduate students in the Environmental and Water Resources Engineering department at MU. I recently presented some of my Ph.D. research at the Association of Environmental Engineering & Science Professors (AEESP) 2019 Annual Education Conference at ASU in Phoenix, AZ (photo above).

Leadership: My leadership opportunities have included coaching baseball teams, mentorship, and community service. I have mentored over 5 undergraduate researchers in the lab during the course of my Ph.D. research, taught high school students about environmental engineering (MU Upward Bound Math & Science program), and participated in volunteer activities such as river restoration projects, river/beach cleanups, and Habitat for Humanity. I have previously volunteered to help construct an underground stormwater cistern with the Northwest Side Community Development Corporation in Milwaukee, WI. I am a member of the Water Environment Federation (WEF), American Water Works Association (AWWA), Central States Water Environment Association (CSWEA), and the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA).

Caroline Redick

Caroline Redick

Program: Theology

Hometown: Hampton Roads, Virginia

Research Interests: Social Transformation, Spirituality and Ethics, Pentecostal Spirituality



Caroline's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Caroline: “Every theology eventually incarnates itself in the world,” my mentor reflected as I sat across the desk from her at college. It was at this point that I began to think about the different ways that I could see my own faith incarnated—taking on flesh in practice, not just theory. On the one hand, I saw how the vibrant embodied worship that I grew up with yielded a sense of God’s presence in the world and motivation for working to heal creation. On the other hand, I noticed how a focus on the Spirit’s presence and power with us was turned into a currency of exchange for personal benefit. Often when my mom turned on the TV, for example, I watched as preachers prodded us to claim God’s blessing for personal health, wealth, and prosperity, without reflecting on how this impacted other people or the rest of creation. Later, my love and concern for creation led me into the wilderness to work as a trail guide. By leading high school and then college students on pilgrimages through the mountains, I witnessed them experience creation as gift, rather than only as resource, and form deep connections with the land and one another.

Scholarship: As of 2011, one in twelve people in the world identified as Pentecostal Christians, according to the Pew Research Center, a number that continues to grow each year. As a Pentecostal Christian, my work as a theologian has centered around excavating spiritual resources for theological articulation and meaningful social-transformative action. My dissertation focuses on the moral formation of the self by the Holy Spirit in prayer to understand spiritual empowerment as moving toward the renewal and healing of creation in contrast to unhealthy understandings of self-empowerment such as the prosperity gospel. I argue that this emphasis on prayer may offer a way to restrain the unhealthy desires for power that focus on the self’s benefit without considering the flourishing of others. The impact of this work is to provide an articulation that further facilitates this action, while also guarding against problematic articulations.

Leadership: I serve on church staff as the worship director for Restoration Church in Milwaukee by organizing and leading weekly liturgy as well as preaching and leading small groups, and leading music at retreats for young adults in the Roman Catholic tradition. At Marquette, I have served as the president of the Association of Graduate Students in Theology and developed skills which I used as an Interest Group Leader at an international conference The Society for Pentecostal Studies. Recently, I served as co-chair of the society’s hybridization committee which planned and facilitated the conference’s first virtual and in-person experience. As a teacher, one of my greatest joys has been co-leading study abroad courses on the Camino de Santiago in Spain. Another great joy has been teaching seminary students and dialoging about the theological and ethical meaning of their experience of God.

 Shannon SkaistisShannon Skaistis

Program: Counseling Psychology

Hometown: Yankton, South Dakota

Research Interests: Trans-affirmative psychotherapy, qualitative methods of inquiry, best practices in psychotherapy intake paperwork



Shannon's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Shannon: My route to becoming a counseling psychologist has been a circuitous one. Before entering graduate school, I worked as a wildland firefighter, an Americorps volunteer, a bank teller, and a HIV/AIDS hospice caregiver. In 2008, I earned an English degree, becoming the first in my family to graduate from college. Following graduation, I worked as a community case manager. I began powerlifting an outlet for the stress of graduate work. In powerlifting I found a means of well-being, but also a reminder that by putting in the reps each day I saw slight but measurable gains. When not lifting heavy things, I relish opportunities to see live music with my wife, exploring the neighborhood with our dogs Booda and Barb, reading several books at once but rarely finishing them, and watching classic episodes of “This Old House. “

Scholarship: I strive to conduct research that examines practice and that can improve the lives of others. My first study in graduate school was a content analysis about how clinician intake forms ask about sex and gender with the goal of identifying best practices in initial therapy paperwork. The outcomes from this study have been presented to local mental health agencies, as well as regional and national conferences. I am currently working on my dissertation: Exemplar Trans-Affirmative Therapists: A Consensual Qualitative Research Study. Though most therapists espouse being “affirmative” of transgender clients, this framework still lacks a consensus operational definition. This study will use Consensual Qualitative Research to glean from expert therapists what precisely are the attitudes and behaviors of trans-affirmative therapy. Over the course of my career, I intend to pursue research that addresses those on the margins, so that in therapy they may be affirmed and understood, and further, assured that therapy is a space for them.

Leadership: My philosophy of leadership is informed by the following quote by author and qualitative researcher, Brené Brown, who defines a leader as anyone who, “takes responsibility for finding the potential in people and processes, and who has the courage to develop that potential.” As the president of our graduate student organization during my master’s program, I interpreted my role to be ensuring that the voices and priorities of all graduate students were heard and considered. I helped identify the advocacy projects about which other graduate students were most passionate and then I worked to support them. An essential component of this process was taking the requisite time to know my peers in the master’s program, create relationships with them, and help to identify the potential in their ideas. My leadership was recognized by my program and in 2017 I was named Master’s Student of the Year. In my doctoral program, I’ve combined my research and leadership interests. My co-authors and I have presented to undergraduates, graduate students, and clinicians about affirmative practices with diverse clients. My goal is always to empower others to be leaders of affirmative practice in their community.

 Jordan StiedeJordan Stiede

Program: Clinical Psychology

Hometown: Pulaski, WI

Research interests: Understanding, improving, and disseminating behavioral interventions for children and adults with Tourette’s syndrome






Jordan's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Jordan: I grew up in a rural town near Green Bay, Wisconsin. I pursued my undergraduate degree at Ripon College, a small liberal arts school, where I majored in psychobiology and minored in Spanish. In the summer prior to entering the Marquette University Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program, I had my first experience with children affected by Tourette’s syndrome. That summer, I served as a counselor at an overnight camp for children with the disorder. I always intended to work with children, but this crucial experience made clear to me that my clinical and research focus would be to develop and evaluate interventions to help children with Tourette’s. In my free time, I enjoy going to my family’s cabin, playing basketball, and watching the Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Brewers, and Milwaukee Bucks.

Scholarship: My research interests focus on understanding, improving, and disseminating behavioral interventions for children and adults with Tourette’s syndrome. I conduct my research on tic disorders in Dr. Douglas Woods’ Behavior Therapy and Research lab. In addition to my research activities, I am the clinic coordinator of the Marquette University Tic Disorder Specialty Clinic, and I serve as a primary therapist for children and adults with tic disorders. It is my career goal to continue doing research and therapy with individuals with Tourette’s and other obsessive-compulsive related disorders, as I hope to help develop and disseminate effective behavioral interventions.

Leadership: I served for two years as the President of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT), Tic and Obsessive-Compulsive Related Disorders (OCRD) Special Interest Group (SIG), which consists of approximately 50 graduate students, professors, and clinicians across the United States with a research interest in these disorders. I am also on the board of directors of the Tourette Information Center and Support (TICS), a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of children with Tourette’s syndrome. Each summer, we organize a one-week overnight camp for approximately 150 children with Tourette’s. As a Schmitt Fellow, I will continue to develop my leadership skills as a researcher, educator, and clinician to improve the wellbeing of my clients and to empower and uplift those around me. It will also allow me to continue to improve my leadership skills as I work with Marquette colleagues and other board members in TICS.

Jannat TumpaJannat Tumpa

Program: Computer Science

Hometown: Mymensingh, Bangladesh

Research Interests: Mobile health and computing, Behavioral Science, Medical Imaging, Explainable AI




Jannat's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Jannat: I believe in Eliezer Yudkowsky quote: “You are personally responsible for becoming more ethical than the society you grew up in.” This drives me to be a better person every day. Ethics and empathy are two personal traits that I value most in other people and myself. I was born in Mymensingh, a small town in Bangladesh. I spent my high school years at a national military school named Mymensingh Girls Cadet College, which built me as a self-sufficient free soul and a prospective future leader. I did my bachelor’s in Computer Science and Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. I started my Ph.D. in Computer Science in 2017 and am currently working as a Graduate Research Assistant under the supervision of Dr. Sheikh Iqbal Ahamed at Ubicomp Lab, Marquette University. In my leisure time, I love to play board games, travel to new places, and hang out with friends and family.

Scholarship: My Research focus includes mHealth, Medical Imaging, Explainable AI, and Behavioral Sciences. For my dissertation, I am developing a community telemedicine framework with an Explainable Retinal Screening model and Self-Management Support to prevent vision loss from diabetes. I worked as Data Science Intern at Northwestern mutual during summer 2019 and at PayPal Inc. during summer 2021. During my graduate study, I have been privileged to receive multiple awards, such as, Marquette University Graduate School Dean's Research Enhancement Award for Summer 2020, Northwestern Mutual Data Science Fellowship in summer 2019, NSF-funded travel grants to attend the CRA-W Grad Cohort Workshop for Women 2019 as well as ACM CHASE conference 2019, SIGCHI travel grant to attend CSCW 2020. I was a “Student Scholar '' in Grace Hopper Celebration 2018 and attended GHC every year since then, which helped me extend my network, uplift my confidence, and strengthen my career goals. Besides, during my undergraduate study, I received awards in both the National and Inter-university Mathematics Olympiad.

Leadership: I am a firm believer in the “pay-it-forward” ideology. During my graduate study, I have been involved with several organizations like Girls’ Who Code, Association of Computing Machinery-Women (ACM-W) Student Chapter, Anita Borg Institute, etc. However, I consider the event of co-founding and serving the ACM-W student chapter at Marquette as an example of my most impactful leadership activity. I served as a volunteer instructor in “Girls Who Code at Marquette,” a club that teaches programming to 5th to 12th graders. I am also affiliated with the Poster committee of Anita Borg Institute and plan to create a broader impact through this affiliation utilizing my leadership abilities. As my next leadership event, I plan to arrange mentoring sessions through the ACM- W Student chapter at Marquette, especially for first-year students in computer science.

Shaila WadwhaniShaila Wadwhani

Program: Philosophy

Hometown: Kowloon, Hong Kong

Research Interests: Phenomenology, Diasporic Studies, Decolonial Politics




Shaila's Biography, Scholarship & Leadership

About Shaila: I was born in Kowloon, Hong Kong to a Sindhi family who left what became Pakistan in the wake of the Great Partition of India. As refugees in diaspora, my family was spread out across many countries and this global context featured in my world-view and knowledge. Growing up I was a curious and creative child who loved the edges of the Hong Kong metropolis – the lush forests and rolling mountains where the city edged into fishing villages, rice fields and mangrove forests. This love of the world beyond the ‘concrete jungle’ was significant in my early development and I was an eco-activist and artist from a young age. My grandmother, Lila was a great inspiration from youth. Her stories of natural remedies in addition to those of her imprisonment in the fight for Indian independence impacted my goals for post-secondary study. I initially studied pre-medical sciences with the goal of working with Doctors Without Borders but discovered in my senior year that I flourished in the expansive fields of question that philosophy fostered. I exhibited photography and found object works as an artist in San Francisco and completed my B.A. in philosophy from the University of San Francisco. I earned an M.A. in philosophy from State University of New York, Stony Brook, focusing on psychoanalysis, phenomenology, postcolonial and diasporic studies.

Scholarship: My current research interests reflect these early preoccupations, and I am writing my dissertation on the historical negotiation between the concepts of nature and culture, focusing on the shifts that occurred in European thought when modernity and the Enlightenment was shaping thought alongside colonial conquest. I am also interested in the ways that the imagination functions phenomenologically, particularly in liberation struggles, and am interested in exploring new psychological theories and frameworks that reflect diasporic consciousness.

Leadership: As a youth my family would volunteer and visit homes for the elderly and disabled. While in university I continued this work with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and was active in outreach and support for the homeless through Food Not Bombs. Inspired by the Black Panther Party, I worked with two radical women to initiate a community free breakfast program, where we served healthy and vegetarian food twice a week. I consider my role as educator to be one of stewardship as leadership. Being a steward of philosophy isn’t about being a steward of an exclusive canon, but rather is about being a steward of critical thinking and developing a love of knowledge as a way of being, to inspire future leaders. I also serve as a representative for Minorities and Philosophy. As a graduate student I was honored with a nomination of director of the Philosophy Graduate Student Association where I was able to support graduate student needs during the challenging semesters of the pandemic. I am also active in interfaith organizing, where my diverse religious and cultural exposure can assist in building bridges across communities.