Meet the Mentors

David Cartwright

Growing up near Dayton, Ohio, David was the oldest of four in a single parent home. His love for math and science propelled him to gain gained both bachelors and master degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Dayton and is finishing his Ph.D. from West Virginia University in industrial engineering.  After working for General Motors throughout high school and college, he pursued his love for teaching.  The journey started at the University of Dayton, then Shawnee University, and finally to land home at Marshall University. Currently, he is working in the College of Science, in the Applied Math department, using his skills to educate the next Steve Jobs in the Computer Information Technologies department. He is a passionate educator, life-long learner, and a devoted husband, father, and friend.  Contact him via email:


Marty Laubach

Marty grew up from a working class family in inner city Indianapolis in the 1960s and did his undergraduate work at Indiana University in much more rural Bloomington, IN in the 1970s. His undergraduate degree is in physics with a minor in math, but his first career was in programming and then managing computer systems in both public and private sectors. Instead of getting a red sports car at his midlife crisis, he went back to school in the 1990s for a Ph.D. in sociology where his Master’s Thesis was on informal organization in the workplace, and his dissertation was on how people “do” spiritual experiences. He taught at the University of Connecticut before coming to Marshall in 2004 where his teaching and research interests focus on the social psychological processes of organizations, on religion, and on science, knowledge, and technology. Marty is especially interested in student research, and has taught the Sociology and Anthropology capstone where he mentors undergraduate students through a research project of their own interest. Following his eclectic interests, Marty teaches Tai Chi at one of the yoga studios, likes hiking in mountains, and drumming.  Contact him via email:


Stacy Scudder

After a life lived in interesting times in the spirit of the Chinese curse, Stacy decided to go back to college. For the last decade she’s been teaching about math and monsters, which is just as interesting but mostly curse-free. She has degrees in math, anthropology, the humanities, and is working on an MS in computer science because she can’t seem to decide what she wants to be when she grows up. She strives to pass the joy of learning on to her students and loves to see them succeed both in and out of class. When not on campus she can usually be found with one or more of her grandchildren, lovingly referred to as her monster brood. She’s excited to be part of the EDGE program and looks forward to meeting her new charges.   Contact her via e-mail:



Steven Leigh

Steve Leigh grew up on a farm near Oxford in England. He studied physics and exercise science at Loughborough University, and completed his doctorate at UNC Chapel Hill where he worked with USA Track and Field throwers. He joined the biomechanics program at Marshall University in 2016, and teaches applied anatomy and movement analysis. His academic research looks at enhancing throwing performance, reducing sports injuries, and improving reaching following a stroke. He enjoys hiking, camping, and kayaking, and plays soccer and rugby. He looks forward to mentoring EDGE students, and helping them become successful. Contact him via e-mail:



Robin Conley Riner

Robin Riner is originally from North Carolina (but was born in Boston) and has lived across the country in New York City, Los Angeles and Houston. She’s really happy to be teaching anthropology at Marshall and loves West Virginia as her new home. Her academic research focuses on language and the law, the death penalty, and military veterans’ experiences of combat. She is also a professional dancer and she teaches and performs modern, ballet, jazz, and hip hop in the community. Lastly, but probably most importantly, she’s ecstatic to be a new mom to her son, Timothy, who was born last May.  Contact her via email:



Henning Vauth

German pianist and WVMTA Teacher of the Year 2017 Henning Vauth serves as Associate Professor of Piano, Coordinator of Keyboard Studies, and Director of the Center for Wellness in the Arts at Marshall University. He is President-Elect of the West Virginia Music Teachers Association and a member of Pi Kappa Lambda (U.S. National Music Honor Society). A laureate at international competitions in Italy and Norway, Henning Vauth performs in North and South America, Europe, and Asia. His professional engagements in 2018 include the National Taipei University of the Arts in Taiwan, the World Piano Conference in Novi Sad, Serbia, the International Summer Academy of Music “Lüneburger Heide” in Germany, the Global Summer Institute of Music in Richmond, Virginia, and the Festival of the American Liszt Society in Greenville, South Carolina. Henning Vauth holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music (University of Rochester, USA), in addition to further degrees and certificates in piano performance and pedagogy from the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien (Hannover, Germany), and the Ecole Normale de Musique “Alfred Cortot” (Paris, France).  Contact him via email:


Mary Welch

Mary is interested in political ideology, particularly its impact on educational agendas. As a native West Virginian, she is interested in solving the state’s “brain drain” problem. In a profession that typically demands mobility, she considers her commitment to the Marshall community a form of native activism. Mary is a passionate advocate for person-centered education. She has taught English/Literature and First Year Seminar for more than ten years at Marshall and is currently pursuing a doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction. Her research interests focus on discipline specific pedagogy, educational reform agendas, and humanistic theory. She loves film as much as she loves books, and she is the proud mother of two nerdy daughters. Contact her via  email: