SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Briar Cliff University is pleased to announce the following new faculty members to the community: Dr. Assyad Al-Wreikat, Dr. Matt Dewald, Dr. David Hoferer, Nia Key, Dr. Gerald Kissel, Michael O’Byrne and Dr. Patricia Taylor.
Dr. Assyad Al-Wreikat is an assistant professor of accounting. He earned his Ph.D. in economics from Southern Illinois University, and also owns master’s degrees in mathematics and economics from Western Illinois University. Al-Wreikat comes to Briar Cliff from Southern Illinois, where he served as a teaching and research assistant. Prior to his career in higher education, Al-Wreikat was a supervisor in the internal auditing department at the Agricultural Marketing and Processing Company (AMPCO) in Amman, Jordan.
Dr. Matt Dewald is an assistant professor of physical therapy. He holds a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree and a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota. Dewald comes to Briar Cliff after serving as a physical therapist at Steadman Hawkins Clinic in Denver, Colo. Dewald’s practice background includes sports and orthopedic physical therapy, and he is a certified orthopedic specialist with the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialists (ABPTS).
Dr. David Hoferer is an associate professor of biology. He holds a Ph.D. in environment and resources from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a master’s degree in theology from Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago, Ill. He holds special expertise in conservation and stewardship ecology, environmental theology and ethics — and is a member of the Academy of Evangelical Scientists and Ethicists. Prior to Briar Cliff, Hoferer was an associate professor of environmental science at Judson University in Elgin, Ill.
Nia Key is an assistant professor of social work. She holds a Master of Social Work degree from Temple University (Philadelphia, Pa.), and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in human services, specializing in multidisciplinary human services, through Capella University’s School of Public Service Leadership. Key comes to Briar Cliff from Detroit, Mich., where she served and advocated for underserved populations within homeless services in the greater Detroit region.
Dr. Gerald Kissel is an assistant professor of business management. He holds an Ed.D. in sports administration from Temple (Pa.) University, as well as master’s degrees in the areas of sports and entertainment management and sports administration. He brings more than 50 years of experience in the sports management industry, with professional athletic organizations including the Detroit Tigers (MLB), Buffalo Bills (NFL), Indiana Pacers (NBA) and the former Buffalo Braves (NBA). Prior to Briar Cliff, Kissel taught courses in sports management at the University of Wisconsin at LaCrosse. He currently serves on the advisory board for the Association of Luxury Suite Directors (ALSD).
Michael O’Byrne is an assistant professor of mathematics and counselor with BCU’s student support services. He comes to BCU from Western Iowa Tech, where he was an adjunct instructor of mathematics. O’Byrne holds a Master of Science degree in applied mathematics from North Carolina Central University, and an associate’s degree in the field of agri-business.
Dr. Patricia Taylor is an assistant professor of English. She holds a Ph.D. in early modern literature and a Master of Arts degree in English from the University of Connecticut. Prior to BCU, Taylor was awarded the Marion L. Brittain Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Georgia Institute of Technology’s writing and communication program — where she also received a Pedagogical Excellence Award for her outstanding instruction. Taylor is currently working on a book project titled “Writing with the Word: Collaborative Authorship and the Imitation of Christ in Early Modern England.”