Issue 2
Fall 2019
Best Seller penned by ISU Psych B.S, M.S. and Ph.D. 

K en Sufka, who earned three degrees from ISU: B. S. (1986), M.S. (1988) and Ph.D. (1990), studied how students mastered course material. He then came up with strategies for incoming freshmen to attain better grades. Now a Professor of Psychology and Pharmacology at The University of Mississippi, Ken won all three awards the university bestowed for teaching, research and service. He joined the university in 1992.

Ken’s 80-page survival guide, The A Game: Nine Steps to Better Grades is a best-seller on college campuses around the country. First out in 2011, it is now in its second edition by Nautilus Publishing Company.

In his research, Dr. Sufka has been involved in the invention of a novel drug molecule that holds promise for reducing the likelihood of addiction when opioids are used for pain-management. The new drug is under review for patents, and is already in the drug development pipeline. 

In accepting the Carnegie-CASE Teacher of the Year award, Ken spoke of his time at ISU: “I think all of us can point to a teacher/mentor that inspired and nurtured us in immeasurable ways,” Sufka said. “Professor Ron Peters at Iowa State University was that person for me. His love and enthusiasm for teaching, alongside a masterful ability to convey the most complex and interesting material, made it clear that I wanted to become a brain scientist and university professor.” Ken has paid forward his enthusiasm for ISU by establishing a scholarship for Psychology undergrads at ISU. 
Checking the 2019 catalog: 300 level psych courses at ISU

Here is what today’s ISU psychology majors are taking their junior year.
In Memorium 
I f you were an ISU psych major or grad student from 1963 to 2003,  it's likely you knew Ron Peters. Psych 101 was his baby and he estimated that he taught 2400 students each of his 40+ years at ISU. "I like the introductory course because it's the most important course in any curriculum. It's so rare that I have the opportunity to have an impact on such a large number of students," he said in 1999.

After earning three degrees from the University of Iowa, Ron switched allegiances from the Hawks to Cyclones when ISU offered him a job. When he concluded his career, he said, "I think psychology is sort of unique in the 'kinds' of things we learn. Often in science, you learn about 'things' in the physical world, but in psychology, we learn about ourselves. And there really is nothing more interesting than you or me."

Ron died June 17, 2019 of complications from Parkinson’s Disease. He is survived by Jen, his wife of 50+ years, who also served the Department of Psychology for many years as a staff member.

  Ron Peters (1938-2019)
Courtney Seibert
A fter receiving my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from ISU in 2012 and Master’s degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology at Elmhurst College (now University), I wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to do within this field. I worked as a human resources generalist throughout my graduate program which gave me experience in a wide variety of functions. From there, I realized that I enjoyed the compensation field and landed a job as a compensation consultant in the Kansas City area. In this role, I work with all sizes of organizations across the country and industries to deliver compensation recommendations that best fit their needs, including total rewards strategy development, job description creation, base and variable pay design, and benefits program analysis. 
My degree in psychology helped me more than I realized in this profession, from conducting statistical analysis and data gathering for projects to creating compensation solutions that improve human motivation and trust. With so much emphasis today on equal and fair pay, compensation decisions are being scrutinized more than ever. The skills that I learned throughout college and my professional career not only help me to provide fair and equitable solutions but also to communicate them to organizations and employees in a way that makes them feel confident that they are being treated fairly.
Psychology in Everyday Life
Jonathan Kahl
Jonathan received his Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience from Iowa State University in 2012. He currently serves as a Senior Research Supervisor for the Mechanical Research and Perception Science Lab in 3M’s Corporate Research System Laboratory. Since joining 3M in 2012, he has served as one of 3M’s domain experts in vision science, conspicuity and haptic perception. He has also lead various medical device usability engineering efforts for clearance by the Federal Drug Administration. More recently, Jon has lead programs in active haptic technology development and pain research. In the course of his 7 years at 3M, Jonathan has 1 granted patent as well as 7 provisional patents under application review.
Glenn Casner
Glenn received his Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience from Iowa State University in 2006. Glenn currently serves as a Software Development Specialist in 3M’s Corporate Research System Laboratory. Since joining 3M in 2006, he has served as one of 3M’s experts in vision science, conspicuity research, 3D technology, and computer vision. Most recently Glenn has been utilizing his computer vision expertise on projects such as contactless fingerprint technology, computer vision system to detect high visibility garments, and models of the human visual system. In the course of his 13 years at 3M, Glenn has 16 granted patents as well as numerous others under application review.

Want to learn more about Brian's work?

Check out this link for a video of Brian explaining VAS - Visual Attention Software, 3M's first artificial intelligence product.
Brian Brooks
Brian was recently appointed Division Scientist in the Consumer Business Group at 3M. Brian joined 3M in 2004 as a Senior Research Specialist in the Software, Electronics and Mechanical Systems laboratory. Brian received dual PhDs in Neuroscience and Cognitive Psychology from Iowa State University, where his graduate work focused on the cognitive, computational, and neural mechanisms underlying human and machine vision. Before joining 3M, Brian worked at Lockheed Martin, where he contributed to the development of the next generation U.S. Navy Tomahawk Cruise Missile guidance and control system. 
Brian provided the vision and leadership underlying 3M’s first organically grown artificial intelligence product. He also invented solutions to problems in light management systems, LCD panel drive scheme algorithms, image processing, machine learning and statistical computing systems. Brian has been awarded 15 patents, has 34 more patents pending, and has 54 invention submissions that have driven commercialization success for 3M. 

From the Chair's Desk

Psychology Department
Almost 800 undergraduate majors keep our professional student development team, Kristin Towers, Ashley Phipps, and Whitney Baker, extremely busy. Faculty advise students on careers and graduate programs in psychology, and the student development staff do the intense work of guiding students through their academic decisions and helping them make the most of their adventure at ISU. Unfortunately, these hard-working professionals’ offices are currently in a windowless basement room that is poorly suited for meetings with parents and students. Thanks to funding from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, we’re moving them into larger offices, with room for a student intern and a reception space for students to work while they are waiting for the advisors. We look forward to serving future Psyclones in this new student services space.
We are also working to update our main offices and renovate a conference room to create a collaboration space” for faculty and graduate students. The new space will provide a place for graduate students and faculty to interact informally and discuss research or other projects. Faculty and grad students are currently spread out over four buildings, so our goal is to create a place where synergy can happen. We look forward to sharing the impact of these new spaces in future newsletters!
The PsyClone is published periodically throughout the academic year.
Pete Prunkl, Off-Campus Editor
Susan Cross, On-Campus Editor
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