BVU Student Panel Selected for Dialogue with Wozniak

The student panelists will participate in an on-campus question-and-answer program with the Apple Co-founder. Wozniak helped shape the computing industry with his design of Apple I, Apple II, and his influence on the popular Macintosh.

Six Buena Vista University students have been selected to participate in an on-campus question-and-answer program with Apple Computer, Inc., Co-founder Steve Wozniak on Friday, Oct. 4, during his appearance on campus as the 23rd William W. Siebens American Heritage Lecturer laureate.

Student panelists selected via competitive process include: Sam Loerts, a junior psychology and political science major from Humboldt; Nate Strohmyer, a senior computer science major from Sioux Rapids; Tanner Frost, a junior digital media major from Boone; Laura Petersen, a senior business major from Inver Grove Heights, Minn.; Michael Martin, a senior computer science major from Storm Lake; and Olivia Wieseler, a junior digital media major from St. Helena, Neb.

A pair of alternates were also chosen for the student panel: Regan Sylvester, a freshman education major from Webb; and Emma Bloom, a junior history major from Middletown, Md.

Dr. Nathan Backman, associate professor of computer science, will serve as faculty moderator for the event. Faculty coaches who will play a role in helping students prepare their questions are: Prof. Gary Sterling, associate professor of computer science; Dr. Karin Strohmyer, associate professor of education; Dr. Jason Shepherd, professor of computer science; and Dr. Shawn Stone, professor of physics and computer science, and interim dean of the BVU School of Science.

Wozniak joins a list of preeminent American Heritage lecturers that has included former world leaders, heads of state, and others who have reached the highest levels of accomplishment and recognition in their fields. 

While on campus, Wozniak will participate in an afternoon question-and-answer program with the panel of BVU students, followed by a formal evening lecture to invited regional leaders in the fields of business, technology, and education.

Wozniak, or “The Woz” as he is better known, helped shape the computing industry with his design of Apple I, Apple II, and his influence on the popular Macintosh. In partnership with Steve Jobs, Wozniak founded Apple Computer Inc. with the Apple I personal computer in 1976. 

In previous years, BVU students have had the opportunity to pose questions to the American Heritage speakers, including Presidents Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush; Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher, Shimon Peres, Benazir Bhutto, and Tony Blair; Paul Volcker, former chairman of the Federal Reserve Board; and Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State. 

The William W. Siebens American Heritage Lecture Series was endowed by the late Dr. Harold Walter Siebens, an Iowa-born entrepreneur and philanthropist, and named in honor of his son. This series was established in 1989 to provide the BVU campus community, Iowa, and the Midwest with access to prominent world figures discussing current issues underlying American freedoms.

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