KICA develops and enhances the competitive standing of its 20 member independent, nonprofit, regionally accredited, degree-granting colleges and universities. Our efforts include professional development and collaboration, governmental advocacy, and public engagement collectively aimed at supporting the ability of students to choose and afford an independent college education that fits their goals. KICA, founded in 1976, is a 501 (c) (4) not-for-profit Kansas corporation governed by a board of directors composed of the presidents of each of the member institutions and is managed by a staff of seven.
Jesyca Hope has her BA in communications and musical theater from James Madison University. Graduating in 1997 at the age of 17, she is the youngest graduate in the school's history. For the next decade, Hope had a media career that she loved, with positions in news, community promotions and on-air talent. She loved making real connections with the communities she worked in, helping others work to achieve change. Hope went on to win the Kansas Association of Broadcasters' Broadcaster of the Year award in 2006. Kansas State University accepted her into its communications studies Masters program, where Hope shared her address and oratory skills as an instructor of public speaking and graduated in 2008. In 2015, originated the role of Director of Member Programs, bringing her 20 years of outreach and organizing experience to the team. Since then she's been a two-time Women of Excellence honoree from the YWCA, and was Washburn University's 2019 Hometown Hero.
Jerry Huff JD, CISSP, is leading our Collaborative Chief Information Security Officer project. Jerry received his undergraduate degree at Fort Hays State University and his law degree at Washburn Law School. He received the Microsoft Certified System Engineer (MCSE) certification in 2000 and the Certified Information Security System Professional (CISSP) in 2018. Jerry taught Business Computer systems at Barton County Community College. For ten years he was with the Kansas Board of Regents Kan-Ed program as Executive Director and Director of Operations. During his time at the Kansas Board of Regents he was also an adjunct professor at Fort Hays State University for six years teaching Computer Law in the FHSU Virtual College. He also served as an Attorney/Privacy Officer at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas and had oversight of IT security at Stormont Vail Health Systems for the implementation of HIPPA privacy regulations. Jerry also served on the Bioethics Committee for six years at the Stormont Vail Hospital.
Dr. Bev Schottler is a Professor of Special Education and Department Head for the High-Incidence Special Education Program at Kansas Independent College Association (KICA). She began her career as an elementary school teacher and developed an interest in special education while working with students in the third-grade classroom. At the master's degree level, she received an endorsement in special education with an emphasis in learning disabilities and emotional disturbance from Fort Hays State University. After working in the areas of special education and at-risk, Bev completed a doctorate degree in Educational Administration and Leadership from Kansas State University. Bev brings more than 25 years of teaching experience to KICA, working in both regular and special public education classrooms, as well as higher education. Her classes place a strong emphasis on real world experience working with children in the field, while emphasizing the best practices for teaching students who have high-incidence disabilities.
Lynette Cross is an Assistant Professor. Lynette Cross is our Assistant Professor of Special Education and brings 14 years of higher education experience to KICA. She has served as an adjunct professor teaching special education courses at Bowling Green University, Lourdes University and Tiffin University in Ohio and most recently she served as the Education Department Chair at Tabor College, having led students who sought PK-12 degrees in education. Her B.S. in Elementary Education and Special Education was earned at Tabor college and her M.S. degree in PK-12 School Counseling was from WSU. Lynette is an ABD, Ed.D. Candidate in the Educational Leadership Program at Southwestern College. She has spent 28 years in various roles in education; K-12 General Education teacher, K-12 Special Education Teacher and High school counselor to support the needs of students of all ability levels, in a variety of settings. The KICA special education endorsement program places a strong emphasis on real-world experiences working with children in the field while emphasizing the best practices for teaching students who have high-incidence disabilities. Lynette will bring collaborative methodology to the program to make a positive impact on pre-service educators and in turn facilitate a positive influence in the lives of educators and students.