Alum Spotlights | Lake Erie College
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Alumni, we welcome your engagement through participation in alumni events, support through philanthropic endeavors and your continued goodwill ambassadorship on behalf of Lake Erie College.  The office of Alumni and Public Relations is your gateway for continued connection to our alma mater.


Alumni Spotlight

Jennifer Bogart - Class of 2010

Jennifer Bogart is a 2010 masters of business administration graduate of Lake Erie College. Becoming the first person in her family to go to college, Jen received a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from Bowling Green State University in 1997. As part of her degree requirements, she completed an internship with the Mentor Police Department.

After graduation, she was hired as a pharmacy division investigator. For 14 months, she investigated prescription forgers, including those who went doctor-shopping. This led to her work for eight years as an undercover street drug investigator. Faced with dangerous situations, she persevered and was promoted to sergeant in 2007 and lieutenant (second in command) in 2008.

Deciding to pursue her application to a prominent federal law enforcement agency, she passed all levels of the required tests, including a personal behavioral interview, a comprehensive medical screening including a drug test and polygraph, physical fitness testing, and top security clearance. Jen received her official letter of acceptance and began training in February 2011.

Jen set out to earn her M.B.A. at Lake Erie College, which would help prepare her for all aspects of this application process. She believed she could do anything and that it was vital to think on the academic side, combined with professional preparation. Jen offers others who might be pursuing a master’s degree to calculate all the reasons why you shouldn’t do it and to not sell yourself short. She believes that a master’s degree is a commitment and one must be prepared for it because the feeling at the end is incredible.

Most recently a lieutenant in the Lake County (Ohio) Narcotics Agency, Jen received an appointment with the prominent federal law enforcement agency and is moving forward with her dream.

Kate Kunka - Class of 2007

Kate Kunka is a 2007 Lake Erie College summa cum laude graduate with a degree in Equine Facilities Management. Haling from Yorkville, Wisconsin,Kunka currently resides in East Lansing, Michigan and attends Michigan State University College of Law. During the coming summer, Kate aims to work at a Criminal Law Firm or Public Defender office, and plans to serve as a future lobbyist against the Death Penalty and handle local equine law cases.

During her time at Lake Erie College, Kate gained a wealth of experience in various capacities, including serving as a tutor, as a Student Ambassador, and as a research and teaching assistant for Dr. James Eisenberg, professor of psychology. Kate put her degree courses in Equine Science to use in drafting a report for an attorney litigating an equine torture case in Michigan, and will continue to serve her in her future career in equine law.

As a student that at one time experienced difficulty deciding upon a major, Kate encourages current and future Lake Erie College students to explore the wide range of options that the college avails to its undergraduates; a rich variety of classes afforded her many interesting and beneficial opportunities. In addition to the advantages of a well-rounded course load, Kate notes the importance and value of expanding one's resume through work experience, as well as projecting a professional appearance. Finally, and in keeping with the theme of exploring opportunities and becoming more well rounded, Kate appeals to current and future students to take advantage of the chances offered by Lake Erie College to travel and study abroad.

Sam Klco - Class of 2002, M.B.A. 2009

Sam Klco is a 2002 graduate of Lake Erie College with a degree in legal studies. He also received his masters of business administration from the College in 2009.
As an undergraduate student, Sam was a member of the Mock Trial team and president of the Student Commuter Association. Sam enjoyed the atmosphere of the College; small classes and professors who knew your name personally. After graduating, he worked for the Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District and the Lake County Farmland Conservation Taskforce for two years. Later, Sam joined Parker Hannifin Corporation as an accounting trainee in 2005. He was given responsibility for four Parker plants and overseeing the division-wide payroll for 900 associates. 
In 2007, Sam returned to Lake Erie College to pursue his graduate degree. Throughout his time at the College, Sam enjoyed the real life experience that the professors brought to their areas of expertise. One vital piece of advice he can offer to future students of Lake Erie is to gain real life experience in a field before pursuing a graduate degree; this way you are able to contribute more during classes and have a better understanding of how projects apply to future careers.
Just recently, Parker introduced a development program called GDP where 8-10 employees are sent overseas on one-year assignments. This year three employees were sent to China, one in Germany and one in South Africa. Sam applied and was selected to travel and live in Tonsberg, Norway. Sam, his wife Sarah and their children Justin and Samantha will be in Norway until June 2012.

Emily Miller - Class of 2000

Emily Miller began taking jumping lessons at the Lake Erie College Equestrian Center at the age of 12, later choosing to attend the college to study Biology. Graduating summa cum laude with a bachelor of science degree and awards in her field of study in 2000, Ms. Miller moved on to enter the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Newly graduated with her DVM degree in 2004, Dr. Miller began working for Cleveland Equine Clinic, based in Ravenna, OH. The state-of-the-art facilities of the Clinic currently provide Dr. Miller with the tools necessary for her to explore her interest in race and performance horses. Now happily married to Darren Otero, Dr. Miller looks forward to continuing to grow as an equine veterinarian, as well as seeing a return to riding and competing her Quarter Horses.

Dr. Miller's degree in Biology from Lake Erie College prepared her to meet the pre-veterinary requirements and in-depth studies awaiting her at the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine. In addition to the courses applied toward her degree in Biology, Dr. Miller participated in a variety of equine-related classes, including the subjects of nutrition, reproduction, and lameness. Tackling courses specific to her interest in horses provided Dr. Miller with the chance to develop skills that would later prove invaluable to her daily practice as an equine veterinarian.

Dr. Miller credits the leadership opportunities and personal interaction with strong mentors provided by the small-campus atmosphere of Lake Erie College as being a valuable contributor to her post-baccalaureate endeavors.

To ensure success and personal development in current and future Lake Erie College students, Dr. Miller encourages individuals to make the most of the advantages of the small campus, such as one-on-one interaction with professors, the opportunity to serve in leadership roles in extracurricular activities, and participation in student government; combine these experiences with those gained in the classroom to prepare for a future career.

Theresa Scout - Class of 1998

Theresa Scout, a 1998 Lake Erie College graduate, currently serves as a valuable asset at Maypine Farm in Willoughby Hills, OH (teaching students). Following her graduation, at which time she was awarded her bachelor of arts in Business Administration and Equestrian Teacher/Trainer, Ms. Scout worked under another highly distinguished LEC alumna, Nancy Smith, known for her professionalism and accomplishments in dressage. Ms. Scout rode horses with Nancy from Training Level up through Grand Prix and competed up to 4th Level. Relocating to California, Ms. Scout was employed by Camp bellot Farm to start, show, and present to prospective clients the fine young horses raised at this Hanoverian breeding facility.

In 2004, Ms. Scout began her service for Maypine Farm in Willoughby, OH, where she currently rides and teaches on a daily basis. She looks forward to continuing to develop the solid showing program at Maypine Farm, following in the footsteps of previous trainers and coaching her students to nationally ranked levels in their respective divisions.

Ms. Scout's achievements during her time at Lake Erie College include advancing to the Regional competition in the Novice Hunter division in IHSA, serving as president of the Team de Ville Club to organize and run the sizable event, in which she also competed in both the jumper and dressage portions. Ms. Scout is also the only student to have shown Absolut, Lake Erie College's spirited Swedish Warmblood stallion.

The most valuable experiences of Ms. Scout's Lake Erie College career were interactions with different types of people and the chance to network with professionals in the industry. The advice Ms. Scout would most like to offer to current and future Lake Erie College students is that a willingness to work hard and focus on the purpose of one's goals is the most important factor for success.

Migdalia Cruz - Class of 1980

Migdalia Cruz has made a strong impact on the theatrical world since she graduated from Lake Erie College magna cum laude with a bachelor of fine arts degree in playwriting in 1980. She went on to earn her master of fine arts degree in playwriting from Columbia University, School of the Arts, in 1984 and has been active as a playwright and lecturer ever since.

Throughout the past 20 years Migdalia has written more than 40 plays and co-authored two screenplays. Some of her plays include Another Part of the House, Featherless Angels, Cigarettes and Moby-Dick, Latins in La-La Land and Dreams of Home. Her screenplays are Blank Verse (co-written with Juan A. Ramirez) and Carmen's Mountain (co-written with Mike Angel Cuesta). Her works have been performed in venues throughout the United States as well as in Athens, London, Mexico City, Vancouver and Montreal and have been published in a number of anthologies.

Migdalia has been honored with numerous awards, grants, residencies and fellowships for her works, including more than 20 commissions from distinguished theater companies throughout the U.S. for her plays. She has been writer-in-residence for the Latino Chicago Theater and playwright-in-residence for the Steppenwolf Theater Company in Illinois and the INTAR Theatre in New York. Migdalia was a member playwright of New Dramatists, N.Y., and the New York Playwrights' Lab, and has been a playwriting instructor and lecturer for a number of colleges and universities.

Cruz resides in North Falmouth, Mass., with her husband, James Kent.

Dana Dennis - Class of 1976

Dana Dennis has served Lake Erie College in countless ways since he graduated magna cum laude in 1976 with a bachelor of science degree in accounting. A member of the College's board of directors since 1998, he is vice chair of the board, chair of the fund development committee and a member of the executive, enrollment management and board development committees. He has been a generous donor to many College programs, including the annual fund, Athletic & Wellness Center, scholarships, golf outings and more. In addition to his own gifts, he has been instrumental in bringing other donors and volunteers to the College in a variety of leadership capacities.

Professionally, Dana is vice president and corporate controller of Parker Hannifin Corporation, where he has worldwide responsibility for all accounting functions within the company, including planning, analysis and budgeting, internal and external reporting and financial systems development. He is also responsible for proper internal financial and operational controls and capital investment justifications and has been involved in numerous international acquisitions and divestitures.

Dana has served as vice president of the Northeast Ohio Chapter of the Financial Executives Institute and chairman of the board of Junior Achievement of Greater Cleveland and holds membership in other professional and nonprofit organizations.

Dana, his wife Sharon (also a Lake Erie College alumna from the class of 2003) and their two daughters live in Kirtland.

Suzanne Schoedinger Ellis - Class of 1959

As a lifelong educator, Sue Ellis has touched the lives of countless numbers of students of all ages. Sue was instrumental in the formation of Phillips-Osborne School and served for many years on its faculty, was coordinator of gifted programs for the Lake County Educational Service Center, directed Christian education in Painesville's First Church Congregational, and organized and directed local programs for preschoolers. Sue has also been an adjunct education faculty member at Lake Erie College, has hosted a variety of workshops on current topics in education, has served on the College's education advisory council, and was a valuable member of the Morley Music Preservation Committee. She is active in a number of civic and professional organizations (including the boards of Andrews Osborne Academy and United Church Homes) and has always been a strong advocate for the College through her generous gifts and volunteer activities. Sue was presented a Sesquicentennial Award during Alumni Weekend 2004.

Born in Columbus, Ohio, Sue graduated from Upper Arlington High School, received an Associate Degree from Bradford Junior College and two degrees from Lake Erie College - a bachelor of arts degree (magna cum laude) in 1959 and a master's of science in education M.S.Ed. in 1987. Ellis also studied at Capital University and University of Dijon, France.

Sue is married to Thomas Y. Ellis, has three sons, and three grandsons.
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