UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Dr. Terry Ackerman

Photo of Dr. Terry AckermanDr. Terry Ackerman (Education) presented the keynote address at the 4th Congress of Measurement and Evaluation in Education and Psychology in June at Hacettepe Üniversitesi in Ankara, Turkey. In addition, he has been elected to serve as president-elect of the Psychometric Society, to assume the presidency of the Society in 2016. Ackerman is professor and associate dean of research and assessment in the UNCG School of Education.

Dr. Qibin Zhang

Dr. Qibin Zhang (Translational Biomedical Research) received new funding from the National Institutes of Health for the project “Protein Markers to T1D Progression.” The UNCG Center for Translational Biomedical Research is located at the North Carolina Research Campus in Kannapolis.

Post was revised 8/21/2014.

Dr. Nicholas Oberlies

Photo of Dr. Nicholas OberliesDr. Nicholas Oberlies (Chemistry and Biochemistry) received funding from Washington State University for the project “Mechanisms underlying drug-diet interactions.”

Fred Chappell

Photo of Fred ChappellFred Chappell has a new book of poetry, “Familiars,” published by LSU Press. Many members of the MFA Writing program and English department were on hand last Thursday as he read from the book – with a cat theme – at Scuppernong Books. Chappell is professor emeritus of English – and a founder of the MFA Writing program. He joined UNCG in 1964 and retired from UNCG in 2004. North Carolina poet laureate from 1997 to 2002, he has received many awards, including the Best Foreign Book Prize from the Academie Francaise and the Bollingen Prize in Poetry from Yale University. He received the UNC system’s O. Max Gardner Award in 1986. See related stories here and here. Chappell will give a poetry reading this semester on campus. The event will be Oct. 16, 7 p.m., in the UNCG Faculty Center.

Dr. Karen Laparo

Photo of Dr. Karen LaparoDr. Karen Laparo (Human Development and Family Studies) received additional funding from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Division of Child Development for the “The Measurement Development Project.” It aims to develop a family of measures to evaluate early childhood program quality within a Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System (TQRIS). An iterative approach will be used to develop the new measure. Four pilots, each with a unique contribution to the development of the measure will be conducted over the four years of the project.

Dr. Laura K. Taylor

Photo of Dr. Laura K. TaylorDr. Laura K. Taylor (Peace & Conflict Studies) has received a subcontract to work on two related projects, “Children and Political Violence,” funded by the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, and “Growing up on an Interface: Findings and Implications for the Social Needs, Mental Health and Lifetime Opportunities for Belfast Youth,” funded by the government of Northern Ireland. This research advances knowledge about the mechanisms through which political violence affects children. Her social ecological approach considers the impact that family and community conditions have on child development in a setting of intergroup conflict.

Dr. Danielle Crosby

Photo of Dr. Danielle CrosbyDr. Danielle Crosby (Human Development and Family Studies) received a continuation of funding from the University of Texas at Austin for the project “Preschool, Home, and School Contexts as Determinants of the Impacts of Head Start.” Head Start is the preeminent federal program providing an enriched early childhood education for children from low income families. The proposed project considers how specific aspects of the Head Start experience and home and school environments following the Head Start intervention both mediate and moderate program impacts over time.

Dr. Joyendu Bhadury

Photo of Dr. Joyendu BhaduryDr. Joyendu Bhadury (Bryan School) received additional funding from the NCSU Institute for Transportation Research and Education (ITRE). The project’s overarching mission is to conduct a study that will present the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles and the North Carolina Department of Transportation with comprehensive information on the performance of License Plate Agencies in North Carolina.


UNCG librarians Lynda Kellam and Jenny Dale, as well as LIS faculty member Jim Carmichael, have authored chapters in a new publication from the American Library Association titled “The Librarian Stereotype: Deconstructing Presentations and Perceptions of Information Work,” edited by Nicole Pagowsky and Miriam Rigby. Kellam and Dale co-authored their chapter, “At the Corner of Personality and Competencies: Exploring Professional Personas for Librarians” with UNCG alumna Lauren Pressley, now at Virginia Tech.

Dr. Connie McKoy

Photo of Dr. Connie McKoyDr. Connie McKoy (Music) has been named chair-elect of the Society for Music Teacher Education, an affiliated organization within the National Association for Music Education. McKoy is an associate professor of music and director of undergraduate music education in the UNCG School of Music, Theatre and Dance.

Dr. Mitch Croatt

Photo of Dr. Mitch CroattDr. Mitch Croatt (Chemistry and Biochemistry) received new funding from the National Science Foundation for the project “CAREER: Generation of Cyanocarbenes from Alkynes and Azides.” The research objectives are to explore the formation of reactive intermediates from readily available starting materials and then study their subsequent reactions.

Dr. Paul Silvia

Photo of Dr. Paul SilviaDr. Paul Silvia (Psychology) received a competitive renewal in funding from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) for the project “Anhedonia and Cardiac Autonomic Effort Deficits in MDD in the Lab and Daily Life.” Anhedonia—diminished pleasure from normally rewarding activities—is a cardinal feature of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and other disorders involving the broader RDoC Positive Valence Systems domain. Recent research has emphasized how motivational factors, such as the processing and weighting of rewards and incentives, underlie depressive anhedonia. This project will introduce several significant innovations in methodology.

Dr. Thomas Matyók

Photo of Dr. Thomas MatyókDr. Thomas Matyók (Peace and Conflict Studies) is a co-editor of the newly released volume “Peace on Earth: The Role of Religion in Peace and Conflict Studies.” Click here to read more about this book. During Academic Year 2013-14, Matyok was a visiting research professor at the Peace Keeping and Stability Operations Institute, United States Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Qibin Zhang

Dr. Qibin Zhang (Translational Biomedical Research) received new funding from the National Institutes of Health for the project “An Ultrasensitive Mass Spectrometry Platform for Comprehensive Analysis of Lipids.”

Dr. Peter Wilson

Photo of Dr. Peter WilsonDr. Peter Wilson (Teacher Education and Higher Education) received additional funding from North Carolina State University for the project “Contextual Research – Empirical: Building a Conceptual Model of Learning-Trajectory Based Instruction.” This project will develop a web-based system and professional development for math teachers.

Dr. Diana Bowman

Photo of Dr. Diana BowmanDr. Diana Bowman (SERVE) received new funding from the Indiana FSSA Child Care and Development Fund for the project “Increasing School Readiness in the Face of Homelessness.” The Indiana Head Start State Collaboration Office (IHSSCO), a member of Building Brighter Futures, has established a program goal of improving school readiness to better serve young children experiencing homeless. To ensure the goals set by IHSSCO and Building Brighter Futures are met, UNCG’s SERVE Center proposes to develop and facilitate a summit as well as materials related to the topics of homelessness and school readiness to be used as a part of a training series targeted to constituents of IHSCCO and Building Brighter Futures. Initial planning for the training series will also be completed. The proposed activities and related materials all have two goals: to increase the quality of early childcare and education received by young children experiencing homelessness and to increase the ability of families to support their children’s development.

Dr. Raleigh Bailey

Photo of Dr. Raleigh BaileyDr. Raleigh Bailey (Center for New North Carolinians) received new funding from the North Carolina Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service for the “AmeriCorps ACCESS Project.” The purpose of this project is to help immigrants gain access to human services, build bridges with mainstream society, and assist immigrants with acculturation leading to self-sufficiency. Services to be provided include 1) Employment Readiness and Placement, Disaster Preparedness,Volunteer Recruitment and Management, and related services to immigrant and refugees resulting in greater self-sufficiency; 2) leadership development training to AmeriCorps staff ; and 3) community development training to community and faith-based partner organizations to help them achieve sustainability.

Dr. Dianne Welsh

Photo of Dr. Dianne WelshDr. Dianne Welsh (Bryan School) has been appointed to the Editorial Review Board for the Journal of Business Research. The journal was recently rated in the “Top Publication Metrics” by Google as number 7 in the “Top Publications in Strategic Management” and number 2 in the “Top Publications in Marketing.” Also, she has been named the Fulbright-Hall Distinguished Chair for Entrepreneurship for Central Europe and will be at the Vienna University of Economics and Business March-June, 2015. Welsh is Hayes Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship and director of the Entrepreneurship Cross-Disciplinary Program at UNCG.

Dr. Laura K. Taylor

Photo of Dr. Laura K. TaylorDr. Laura K. Taylor (Peace and Conflict Studies) received a 2014 APA Division 52 Student International Research Award for her dissertation, “Does violence beget violence? Factors moderating trajectories of youth aggression in a context of political violence.” She joined UNCG in Fall 2013 as an assistant professor in the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies. Her research applies a risk and resilience framework to examine the impact of political violence on children, families and communities in Colombia, Croatia and Northern Ireland. She is expanding this international research to work with immigrant and refugee youth in the United States.

Dr. Wendy McColskey

Dr. Wendy McColskey (SERVE) received new funding from the the South Carolina Department of Education for the project “South Carolina School Improvement Grant Evaluation.”

Dr. Susan Letvak

Photo of Dr. Susan LetvakDr. Susan Letvak (Adult Health / Nursing) received new funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration for the project “UNCG’s Veteran Access Program (VAP) To Prepare BSN Nurses.” The purpose of UNCG School of Nursing’s (SON) proposed Veteran Access Program for Nurses (UNCG-VAP) is to provide medically trained veterans in central North Carolina and South Central Virginia with access and specialized support in an innovative educational program to obtain a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing.

Dr. Joseph Lee Beverly

Photo of Dr. Joseph Lee BeverlyDr. Joseph Lee Beverly (Nutrition) received funding from the National Institutes of Health for the project “Hypoglycemia-induced changes in the VMH glucose metabolome and HAAF.”

Dr. Mitch Croatt

Photo of Dr. Mitch CroattDr. Mitch Croatt (Chemistry and Biochemistry) has received new funding from the North Carolina Biotechnology Center for the project “Synthesis and Biological Evaluation of Potent Neuroprotective Agents.”

Dr. Eileen Kohlenberg

Photo of Dr. Eileen KohlenbergDr. Eileen Kohlenberg (Adult Health / Nursing) received a renewal of funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration for the project “Nurse Anesthetist Program (NAT).”

Dr. Maya Elobeid

Photo of Dr. Maya ElobeidDr. Maya Elobeid (Center for New North Carolinians) will receive new funding from the United Way of Greater Greensboro for the project “Newcomers CLASS (Culture, Language and Adult Self Sufficiency).” For newly arrived refugees into Greensboro, language, transportation, isolation, lack of cultural brokers, and misunderstanding/lack of knowledge of American education and cultural activities present an on-going concern as refugees seek to orient to the United States. The project’s objectives are to help newly arrived immigrants manage their transition and begin the process of cultural integration by learning English, providing job readiness skills for adults, and acting as a cultural broker.

Dr. Emily Janke

Photo of Emily JankeThe Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the New England Resource Center for Higher Education have announced Dr. Emily Janke, director of UNCG’s Institute for Community & Economic Engagement and associate professor in Peace and Conflict Studies, will be a member of the National Advisory Panel for the 2015 Elective Community Engagement Classification process. Established in 2006, the National Advisory Panel plays an integral role in reviewing applications and offering assessments as to which institutions qualify to receive the Community Engagement Classification. In addition, the Panel provides guidance and insight around issues that help shape the content and administration of the Classification in future years. Members of the National Advisory Panel are recognized nationally and internationally as leading scholars in community engagement.

Dr. Jeffrey Sarbaum

Photo of Dr. Jeffrey SarbaumDr. Jeffrey Sarbaum (Economics) received funding from North Carolina A&T State University for the project “The Math You Need, When You Need It: Modular Student Resources to Promote Successful Integration of Quantitative Concepts in Introductory Economics Courses.” This project addresses previously identified math/quantitative skill barriers for student success in introductory economics courses by adapting the successful geosciences web-based student quantitative skills tutorial and assessment framework developed by Wenner, Baer, and Burn for economics. The project goal is to improve student learning in introductory economics courses by overcoming student inability to apply math concepts necessary for understanding core economic concepts. After initial testing at 12 varied institutions , 10 learning modules will be available through Starting Point: Teaching and Learning Economics, where 16 pedagogical modules already have significant use by economics instructors. Adoption at community colleges (an important focus of this project), where an estimated 40 percent of U.S. students taking introductory economics courses are taught, will be promoted through resources developed by Adapting Effective Outreach and Workshop Practices to Improve Community College Economics Instruction.

Dr. Thomas R. Kwapil

Photo of Thomas R. KwapilIn early February 2012, the University Libraries and the Office of Research & Economic Development created an Open Access Publishing Support Fund in order to support faculty, EPA employees, and graduate students who are becoming increasingly involved in open access publishing. A grant of $1,000 was recently awarded to Dr. Thomas R. Kwapil, associate dean for research, Department of Psychology, for the article “Worries about Being Judged versus Being Harmed: Disentangling the Association of Social Anxiety and Paranoia with Schizotypy.”

Information about the guidelines and the application process for this support fund, as well as a link to an online application form, can be found at: http://uncg.libguides.com/scholarlycomm.

Dr. Stephanie Daniel

Dr. Stephanie Daniel (Center for Youth, Family & Community Partnerships) received a continuation of funding from Duke University for the project “Cognitive and Affective Mechanisms of Risk for Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors.” Over the last 15 years, the researchers have had great success in following a sample of formerly psychiatrically hospitalized adolescents through adulthood to help us better understand the risk and course suicidal thoughts and behavior, the abstract states. “Using longitudinal data from this study, we have recently examined sensitization as a process that may contribute to recurrent suicidal behavior, the predictive validity of clinical characteristics of suicidal behavior, and differing developmental trajectories in suicide ideation and attempts from adolescence through adulthood. With this revised renewal application, we propose to study cognitive and affective mechanisms that we hypothesize are associated with suicidal thoughts and behavior. This study is consistent with the Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) initiative of NIH and a cognitive and affective neuroscience approach for assessing mechanisms associated with risk. This study also has clear translational implications for prediction of suicidal thoughts and behavior, and for intervention development for individuals with differing histories of suicidal thoughts and behavior.”

Dr. Susan Keane

Dr. Susan KeaneDr. Susan Keane (Psychology) received a continuation of funding from the US Department of Health and Human Services for the project “Reducing Barriers and Promoting Access to Culturally Competent Care for Underserved Populations: An Integrated, Interdisciplinary Model for Graduate Training.” The project seeks to address several of the unmet needs identified in a recent evaluation regarding the State of Mental Health in Guilford County, NC (Graves et al., 2010). Recommendations from this report are consistent with the goals and objectives at state, regional and national levels [(Healthy People 2020; Healthy North Carolinians 2020; National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health Care (CLAS)] and form the basis for the training objectives she proposes.

Dr. Lew Brown

Photo of Dr. Lew BrownDr. Lew Brown (Bryan School) received The Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the state’s highest civilian award. Brown retired at the end of the 2013-14 academic year, following a 28-year teaching career. A North Carolina native and four-time graduate of UNC Chapel Hill, he taught thousands of UNCG students at the undergraduate, graduate and professional levels over the course of his career. Brown has received numerous awards for teaching excellence, case research and professional work, including the Bryan School’s Outstanding Family Award and the UNCG Alumni Teaching Excellence Award. Prior to coming to UNCG, Brown served as assistant city manager of Durham, city manager of Southern Pines, and founded a consulting firm to assist governments in productivity improvements that grew into a 200-employee company. Full story at UNCG Now.

Dr. Stephanie Daniel

Dr. Stephanie Daniel (Center for Youth, Family and Community Partnerships) received new funding from Oklahoma State University for the project “Nonstandard Maternal Work Schedules & Child Health in Impoverished Families.” Nonstandard maternal work schedules or those that exist outside the Monday through Friday, 8-5 norm interfere with optimal child health and development during the first years of life. Parents in impoverished families, particularly mothers, are over-represented in jobs requiring a nonstandard schedule raising concerns that poor children, who are already at risk for poor health outcomes, face additional threats to health and well-being that undermine school readiness. Research to date has not examined the added risk that nonstandard maternal work schedules place on poor children’s health and well-being, the abstract notes. The goal of this project is to understand the threat of nonstandard maternal work schedules to poor children’s physical and emotional well-being as precursors to school readiness.


A profile of Dr. Nicholas A. Vacc, written by Dr. L. DiAnne Borders and Dr. Craig S. Cashwell (Counseling and Educational Development), is published in the July 2014 issue of the Journal of Counseling and Development. Vacc, who served as chair of the Department of Counseling and Educational Development from 1986-1996, died in June 2002. The profile includes interviews with current and previous CED faculty members, alumni, professional colleagues, and members of Dr. Vacc’s family, including Dr. Nancy N. Vacc, retired math education faculty member from the UNCG Department of Curriculum and Instruction. Due to Dr. Nicholas Vacc’s extensive involvement in professional leadership and service, the article not only chronicles his achievements but also many important developments in the profession (such as national certification and state licensure as well as national accreditation standards) in addition to his determined efforts to make the CED Department nationally-ranked and recognized.

Dr. Catherine Matthews

Photo of Dr. Catherine MatthewsDr. Catherine Matthews (Teacher Education and Higher Education) received funding from the National Science Foundation for the project “Full-Scale Development Project: Herpetology Education in Rural Places and Spaces (The HERP Project).” Herpetology Education in Rural Places and Spaces (The HERP Project), a full-scale development project, arose amidst concerns about the public’s diminishing relationship with nature, the STEM achievement gap between North Carolina’s economically wealthy and poor, and inadequate STEM resources for and untapped STEM potential in rural, diverse communities.

Dr. Maha Elobeid

Photo of Dr. Maha ElobeidDr. Maha Elobeid (Center for New North Carolinians) received new funding from the United Way of Greater Greensboro for the project “Thriving at Three.” A direct service intervention strategy will continue to work with 50 at-risk Hispanic children by giving them a chance to develop their full potential at the earliest possible age. This will be done by working with the at-risk children and their parents in their homes, ensuring early detection for mental health risks, assisting families in parenting strategies, and providing appropriate referrals in supporting their children.