Liza Vammen Named New Assistant Director of Business Communication Lab
"The Business Communication Lab reaches a variety of students in the Walton College and across campus who want to not only succeed in their classes, but also become more capable, confident and career-ready communicators while at the university," said Ryan Sheets, the director of the lab.
"Liza, with her extensive experience as an educator and leader, is the perfect person to create programming and training to build this sort of confidence among students and stakeholders."
Vammen's career has revolved around written, oral and interpersonal communication in a variety of settings. Her background includes teaching composition I and II at the U of A; teaching reading intervention, English language arts and English as an additional language in Marion and Bentonville public schools; and teaching English as a foreign language in Osuna, Spain.
"Returning to the University of Arkansas as assistant director of the communication lab feels like the perfect full circle return after spending my collegiate years working as a tutor at the university's Quality Writing Center," Vammen said.
"I have seen firsthand how improving communication skills helps students and community members alike achieve their goals and am excited to be part of that goal achieving process with Walton College students and other stakeholders."
Vammen also brings community organizing and leadership experience to the assistant directorship, having led community-wide student success initiatives to improve school culture, student growth and parent involvement. Her leadership among Arkansas educators includes serving on the board for Arkansas Council for Teachers in English Language Arts, presenting "Enhancing Diverse Voices in Academic Discourses" at the Arkansas State Curriculum Conference, acquiring her national board certification and leading her English department to adopt new collaboration strategies to enhance student literacy growth. A regular volunteer at the Worker's Interfaith Network in Memphis, Tennessee, she has used her communication and translation skills to empower workers and families in her community.
As a public-school teacher in Bentonville, she started the Intercambio Culture Club to create a culture of multicultural curiosity and the Wildcat Podcast Club to get students engaged in a new communication medium.
"After meeting several tutors and listening to Walton Biz Talk, I am even more excited to work with innovative and creative business students who exude a refreshing energy of curiosity and passion," she said.
"Being an effective communicator has opened up so many doors in my career, and I look forward to helping our students and community members develop the sort of skills necessary to create new opportunities for themselves."
The Walton Business Communication Lab aids students on campus and members of the community to become better communicators. Its tutors work with graduate and undergraduate students to develop, improve and revise compositions related to writing and public speaking so that they can use professional communication skills intentionally and effectively. By collaborating with various U of A on-campus organizations and hosting workshops and lectures, the lab provides students with an interdisciplinary approach to business communication.
The lab also strives to make business communication resources and expertise accessible to underrepresented groups through campus and community outreach. It seeks to cultivate accessibility and inclusivity through its work to develop and support students as they become business communicators.
David Speer, senior director of communications
Sam M. Walton College of Business
Steinmetz cited a belief in the mission of higher education and said he was leaving campus well-positioned.
A collaboration between professors Claretha Hughes and Yuanlu Niu and doctoral student Shana Yarberry resulted in a special issue of Advances in Development Human Resources.
Elizabeth Bullard, Erin Farmer, William Kirkpatrick, Kathleen McClanahan, Meagan Olsen, Joshua Porter and Amanda Walls received NSF Graduate Research Fellowships.
W. Dan Hendrix, president and chief executive officer of the World Trade Center Arkansas and associate vice chancellor, has announced his retirement as of June 30.
Qualified Arkansans can leverage free job training to help in returning to or advancing in the workforce, thanks to a federal grant of more than $13.5 million.