Fall 2022 Course Offerings:
COLL 101 000B College Success
PSYC 121 000A Introduction to Psychology
PSYC 305 000A Social Psychology
PSYC 345 049Y Psychology of Personality
PSYC 495 049A Seminar in Psychology
Tuesdays 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Wednesday 12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Thursday 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. & 3:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Friday by appointment
Kelli (Bendickson) Gardner is a native of Forest City Iowa. After graduating from
Forest City High School in 1996, she attended Iowa State University, where she completed
her undergraduate and graduate studies. She joined Waldorf College in 2005 to establish
their then-new bachelor’s program in psychology, and came to Peru State College in
During her time at Iowa State University, Dr. Gardner conducted research in two main
areas. First, she studied social support, which involves what people say and do in
an effort to help others who are experiencing stressful situations. Later, she examined
relationship satisfaction in long distance romantic relationships from multiple theoretical
perspectives. Dr. Gardner continues to conduct research but especially enjoys mentoring
undergraduate students as they design and conduct their own research projects. Several
of these collaborations have resulted in student presentations at regional conferences
including the Midwestern Psychological Association, NPS/PERK Undergraduate Research
Conference, and the Great Plains Undergraduate Psychology Conference.
Despite enjoying research, Dr. Gardner considers herself a teacher first. She has
taught a wide variety of classes in psychology and won awards at both Iowa State University
and Waldorf College for excellence in teaching.
At Peru State College, Dr. Gardner served as the director of the Honors Program from
2012-2016 and also advised PRIDE, Peru State’s club for the LGBTQIA+ community, from
2016-2021. In 2017, she led the psychology program’s successful effort to establish
their first-ever chapter of Psi Chi, the International Honor Society of Psychology.
Dr. Gardner lives in Bellevue, NE with her family.
Introduction to Psychology
Psychology of Personality
Long distance romantic relationships
The connection between human beings and the natural world
Scholarship of teaching and learning