New Hires Bring New Talent and Student Support to Grace College

Grace College new faculty and staff members (L to R): Jermaine Chaney, Lorinda Kline, Connie Burkholder and Dr. Fred Wentorf.

Grace College has recently added four new faculty and staff members. They are involved in multiple facets of campus, from professor to presidential adviser, student advocate and department head. Together, their experiences and expertise will enrich the student experience at Grace College.

Jermaine Chaney joined Grace in November, 2017, to fill a new role: special adviser to the president for multicultural student affairs. Chaney is president and COO of Chaney Financial Group and has served for many years on the Indiana University Big 10 Advisory Committee – a committee created to monitor the graduation rates of minority student athletes.  Chaney is passionate about multicultural achievement both in the classroom and in life. At Grace, Chaney will act as an adviser and confidant to minority students and help guide the diversity and inclusion priorities on campus.  He considers it a privilege to speak into young people’s lives, saying, “People travel all over the world for an opportunity to do this, and I get to do it right here at Grace College.”

Connie Burkholder came on board at the Morgan Library Learning Center in December, 2017, as coordinator of student disability services. Before moving to Winona Lake in 2008, she was a special education teacher in Lancaster, Pa., and Lake County, Ill.  Most recently, Connie served as assistant children’s ministry coordinator at the Winona Lake Grace Brethren Church. In her new role at Grace, Burkholder’s focus is on academic support programs that assist students with individual disabilities, whether temporary, due to injury, or ongoing. This includes a variety of tools for individual students, from classroom accommodations to electronic textbooks with text-to-speech capabilities, and administering tests in the Learning Center to provide extra time or resources. Burkholder’s favorite part of the job so far is “getting to know several students, building relationships, and helping them discover how to become lifelong learners.”

Lorinda Kline was hired in January, 2018, as assistant professor of education in the Grace College School of Education.  Kline has worked in education for 31 years, most recently as an instructional coach for Elkhart Community Schools and Warsaw Community Schools.  She has extensive experience leading professional learning for schools, school districts, and educational service centers.  Dr. Laurinda Owen, dean of the Grace College School of Education, said, “Lorinda is highly respected in the education community for her knowledge of and skills in the art of teaching. Her passion for life-long learning and implementing a growth mindset in the classroom make her an ideal role model for our candidates.”

Dr. Fred Wentorf also came to Grace in January as chair of the new Department of Engineering and assistant professor of engineering. Wentorf has worked at Zimmer Biomet since 2007, most recently as principal engineer. He has a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering and holds three biomedical patents.  Wentorf has published over thirty articles in scientific journals and has authored six book chapters.  He also has a deep faith in Christ and sees the position at Grace as an opportunity to have an impact on the next generation of engineers “from a Christian perspective, with practical application.” Wentorf is working on partnerships with local schools and businesses to develop internship and co-operative experiences to provide students with the hands-on, relevant training they need to be successful in the workforce.

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