Another school year has started at Wartburg College and the winds of change are blowing across campus.

The first female president, upgraded facilities and the class of 2026 all enter. In addition, Wartburg welcomes 10 new faculty members across different departments like education, music and science. Altogether, there are 81 full-time faculty on campus, according to the college website.

Several new professors looked forward to being at a school like Wartburg.

“People are genuinely passionate here about advancing the college’s mission and contributing to a welcoming atmosphere,” said Dr. Cole Davidson.

He will be teaching in the biology department as an assistant professor of biology. This semester he is teaching BI 101, 151 and 455.

“I have always wanted to teach at a primarily undergraduate institution with a thriving community of students where I could teach and mentor students in research projects,” Davidson said.

Davidson’s connection to Wartburg began before this year however. He applied to the college as a high school senior, before ultimately deciding to stay at home in Missouri for his studies. Now, after defending his dissertation at the University of Vermont in March, Davidson has chosen to come to Wartburg to begin his teaching career.

Another new professor on campus this year is Dr. Karolina Achirri. Achirri is an assistant professor of education and will be teaching IS 101, ED 212, ED 333 and ED 350. She comes to Wartburg after working as an assistant professor of ESL at Divine Work College in Epworth, Iowa, for two years. Before, she completed her doctorate in second language studies at Michigan State University and even got to teach in China.

“But I was drawn immediately to the impressions from students, faculty and staff I interacted with during my campus visit. Like I belonged here. Like I wouldn’t have to hide my tattoos, thus hide parts of who I am, if I came to Wartburg,” Achirri said.

Wartburg was the last school Achirri interviewed with in the spring, but the warmth and kindness she felt on campus helped draw her to take the job. Achirri’s office is located in OM 318 and she said she’s looking forward to meeting students.

Davidson and Achirri are just a few examples of the new faculty members at Wartburg this year. The others include: Andrew Szarejko, assistant professor of political science; Jennifer Dickey, visiting professor of education; Nicole Stephens, assistant professor of chemistry; Anthony Moton, assistant professor of journalism and communication; Kyle Fleming, visiting professor of music therapy; and Amanda Rector, assistant professor of Spanish.

President Rebecca Neiduski will be inaugurated Oct. 14. She follows President Darrel Colson, who retired at the end of the last academic year.


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