Category Archives: awards

Health and Human Performance inducts six to the Wall of Fame

Six people were inducted on April 20 to the East Carolina University College of Health and Human Performance Marvin and Joyce Johnson Wall of Fame.

The inductees were Linner Griffin and Robin McManus, who were both inducted posthumously, along with Jannis Shea, Thom Skalko, Jerry Tolley and Odell Welborn. Welborn died May 10.

Griffin, professor emeritus at ECU, served on the ECU faculty from 1990 until her retirement in 2013. She served in a variety of roles including associate professor of social work and associate dean for graduate studies, interim dean of the School of Social Work and Criminal Justice, and associate provost for academic program planning and development.

McManus was an instructor in the Department of Human Development and Family Science and lead teacher in the infant classroom of the child development laboratory, now known as the Nancy Darden Child Development Center. She helped secure the center’s accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and a five-star child care license.

Shea’s teaching career spanned 37 years including two stints as acting chair for the Department of Child Development and Family Relations and as assistant to the dean for Helen Grove. She taught the first introduction to marriage and family course offered in home economics and every child development and family science course before the family therapy program was established. She served on the committee that developed the ECU code of operations and designed and helped implement the first interdisciplinary minor in gerontology at ECU.

The following people were recently inducted to the College of Health and Human Performance Marvin and Joyce Johnson Wall of Fame: from left, Jerry McManus representing the late Robin McManus, Bobby Griffin representing the late Linner Griffin, Thom Skalko, Jannis Shea and Jerry Tolley. Inductee Odell Welborn is not pictured.

The following people were recently inducted to the College of Health and Human Performance Marvin and Joyce Johnson Wall of Fame: from left, Jerry McManus representing the late Robin McManus, Bobby Griffin representing the late Linner Griffin, Thom Skalko, Jannis Shea and Jerry Tolley. Inductee Odell Welborn is not pictured. (contributed photo)

Skalko served as a professor at ECU from 1996-2017 including as chair of the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies from 1996-2004. He directed the ECU Horizons Day Treatment program, providing intervention for youth with severe emotional and behavioral disorders. Skalko collaborated with educators in South Africa to establish the country’s first degree in recreational therapy.

Tolley has been an active member of the college’s Dean’s Advancement Council for decades and a longtime supporter of ECU athletics. A track and football athlete at ECU, Tolley coached football at Elon College, where he led the team to national titles in 1980 and 1981. He held academic and administrative positions at Elon University and served as associate vice president of Laboratory Corporation of America. He is a nationally known sports author and serves as the mayor of Elon.

Welborn, faculty emeritus at ECU, coached the Pirate wrestling, track and football teams between 1960 and 1992. He led the football team after Coach Clarence Stasavich had a heart attack in 1963. Welborn posted an undefeated record as interim head coach and continued as an assistant after Stasavich’s return, helping the Pirates win two consecutive bowl games. He was inducted in the ECU College of Education’s Educators Hall of Fame in 2010. He taught health, physical education, driver education and traffic safety for decades.

The inductees joined 30 outstanding men and women already recognized on the College of Health and Human Performance Wall of Fame, which is on the first floor of Rivers Building.

The wall was established with a $50,000 donation in 2015 in honor of Joyce Johnson in support of the Department of Human Development and Family Science.

Marvin and Joyce Johnson met in the early 1950s at ECU where Marvin majored in physical education and Joyce in home economics. Marvin Johnson was drafted into the Korean War and Joyce Johnson completed her degree. Following the war, they were married and raised their family in Atlanta.

Funds from the inductions help students in a variety of ways from membership fees for professional organizations and development to academic programming and events for outstanding seniors.

Angela Lamson, associate dean for research in the college and professor of human development and family science, served as master of ceremonies for the event.

 

-by Crystal Baity, ECU News Services

ECU’s Harriot College recognizes exceptional staff

The Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences Staff Council hosted its second annual Staff Awards and Recognition Ceremony May 11 in Harvey Hall. The event honors all dedicated THCAS staff members and recognizes the hard work they engage in on a day-to-day basis.

“Our college has the best staff at ECU,” said Dean William M. Downs. “We could not lead in all the categories in which we lead without them. I am really proud of this group.”

•Julie Marik, Chris Bonnerup and Chastidy Ridley were honored with Harriot College’s 2018 staff excellence awards and professional development grant at a special ceremony May 11.

Julie Marik, Chris Bonnerup and Chastidy Ridley were honored with Harriot College’s 2018 staff excellence awards and professional development grant at a special ceremony May 11.
(Photos by Rob Taylor)

During the ceremony, two staff members received Staff Excellence Awards, and one staff member received the Professional Development Grant. The awards acknowledge administrative or technical staff within the college who show exemplary professionalism and go above and beyond the requirements of their position, while the grant is awarded to a person who is actively pursuing career advancement within his or her field.

Julie Marik, research specialist in the Department of Biology, who serves as greenhouse manager and BIOL 1201 and 2251 lab coordinator, was awarded the Senior Staff Excellence Award. Chastidy Ridley, lead administrative support associate in the Department of Political Science, was awarded the Junior Staff Excellence Award. Chris Bonnerup, advanced research specialist in the Department of Physics and engineer for the ECU Accelerator Laboratory, was awarded the Professional Development Grant.

“I feel very fortunate to work with such a wonderful group of people every day, and I appreciate all they do for me,” said Marik, who is an alumna of ECU (’07) and has worked at the university for 10 years. “I work with a great group of fellow staff and amazing teachers and researchers who are doing very cool science.”

Ridley also is an ECU alumna (’14). She has served as the lead administrative associate in the Department of Political Science for nearly two years and worked with the staff in the Department of Biology from 2015-2016.

•Gift baskets from the THCAS Staff Council were given to the three award winners.

Gift baskets from the THCAS Staff Council were given to the three award winners.

“I am humbled that I have colleagues who think so highly of me. It is always great to have reassurance that you are doing your best, and I feel awards like this do just that,” said Ridley. “Working within the college, I have gained great relationships and friendships. I also enjoy that I now get to supervise student office assistants, as I was once one myself. I find it rewarding that this comes full circle.”

Prior to the ceremony, many colleagues provided words of praise in their nominations of the candidates.

“Julie brings to her challenging position a remarkable combination of professionalism, expertise, strong work ethic, creativity, positive attitude and a desire to help and serve,” wrote a supporter of Marik. “Julie truly exemplifies our Pirate motto, Servire.”

Another nominator wrote, “Julie’s dedication to undergraduate success is evident by her excellent mentorship of TAs and her willingness to take on pedagogical changes to the laboratory courses she oversees.”

A colleague of Ridley’s commented, “Chastidy Ridley is a prime example of the Pirates that we like to see coming from East Carolina University. She was a dedicated student and student worker, and now we are fortunate to have her as a staff member for THCAS. She works tirelessly to ensure that her chair, faculty and students are assisted.”

“Ms. Ridley comes to work each day with a positive attitude and works to help raise the spirits of others around her,” commented another colleague. “She makes it clear she cares about others and will go out of her way to help students and faculty in any way she can.”

Door prizes donated by campus and community organizations were raffled off to attendees of the event.

Door prizes donated by campus and community organizations were raffled off to attendees of the event.

Bonnerup, winner of the professional development grant, began his career with ECU in 2004 as a research instructor in radiation oncology at the Brody School of Medicine. He moved to Harriot College’s Department of Physics in 2013.

“I’m very thankful for the college to offer these funds, as specialized training and continuing education opportunities are not readily available in Greenville,” said Bonnerup.

Bonnerup will use his $1,200 grant to attend this year’s annual Symposium of Northeastern Accelerator Personnel in Madison, Wisconsin. The conference focuses on the interest of the people who use, build, maintain and repair particle accelerators for academic research and commercial purposes.

“This year’s meeting happens to be a great time to attend, in that the itinerary will include a VIP tour of National Electrostatics Corporation, the manufacturer of the ECU particle accelerator,” said Bonnerup. “The venue is also a great opportunity to meet with highly experienced users of these machines, discuss problems they have experienced and techniques to address and solve them. I hope to bring these skills and techniques back to ECU and use them to provide enhanced engineering and user support for the ECU accelerator lab.”

 

-by Lacey L. Gray, University Communications

Harriot College announces 2018 Dean’s Early Career Award recipients

East Carolina University’s Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences has announced that Dr. Elizabeth Ables, assistant professor of biology, and Dr. Jacob Hochard, assistant professor of economics, are recipients of the 2018 Dean’s Early Career Award. The announcement was made May 10 during a special reception hosted by Dean William M. Downs at the home of the THCAS Dean’s Advancement Council Chair Jim Mullen and his wife Pam.

The Dean’s Early Career Award, established in 2015 through the generosity of the Harriot College Advancement Council, recognizes and rewards exceptional performance by tenure-track assistant professors. It represents the college’s breadth of faculty excellence in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences and mathematics.

“The award’s primary focus is on the faculty member’s productivity in research and creative discovery, which must be judged to be of such high quality and impact that it exceeds expectations,” said Downs. “Outstanding performance in professional development must be complemented by demonstrated excellence in instructional effectiveness and service, and I am extremely pleased to say Drs. Ables and Hochard exceeded these qualifications.”

In addition to their recognition at the home of the Mullens, Ables and Hochard will be acknowledged at Harriot College’s fall convocation in August.

Dr. Elizabeth Ables, assistant professor of biology, and Dr. Jacob Hochard, assistant professor of economics, are recipients of the 2018 THCAS Dean’s Early Career Award. (Contributed Photos)

Dr. Elizabeth Ables, assistant professor of biology, and Dr. Jacob Hochard, assistant professor of economics, are recipients of the 2018 THCAS Dean’s Early Career Award. (Contributed Photos)

Dr. Elizabeth Ables

“I am humbled and surprised,” said Ables. “This award has gone to some folks that I really admire in the field, especially in our department. It’s nice to consider myself part of that rank.”

Born and raised in rural Virginia, Ables has a lot in common with a majority of the students at ECU.

“It means a lot to me personally to have been able to come to this part of the country,” Ables said. “One of the things I decided I wanted to do when I started this path was to provide experiences for students from rural areas, and I feel East Carolina University has given me the opportunity to do that.”

Ables received her doctoral degree from Vanderbilt University in 2007 and completed post-doctoral training at Johns Hopkins University in 2012, before coming to ECU in January 2013. She is a cell biologist and geneticist, and she teaches undergraduate and graduate-level courses in cell biology.

“I teach very differently to the undergraduates than I do to the graduate students,” Ables said. “I enjoy the undergraduates. They tend to be more enthusiastic when they learn something for the first time. But I like challenging the graduate students, in part, because they challenge me back. I think my most rewarding experience is teaching the graduate students who work in my lab.”

Ables studies the Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) stem cells seen here. They are located in the ovary and are the parent cells for every oocyte, or egg, produced by the female fly. (Contributed photo)

Ables studies the Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) stem cells seen here. They are located in the ovary and are the parent cells for every oocyte, or egg, produced by the female fly. (Contributed photo)

As a cell biologist and trained developmental biologist, Ables researches how cells that make up the human body are instructed by genomes to have a specialized function. She uses stem cells as a model because they have the potential to divide and make new daughter cells. This research underlies two fundamental biological questions pertaining to regenerative medicine, and how we make new cells from stem cells or other tissue sources; and cancer biology, which is a problem of unlimited cell division.

Currently, two doctoral students, three master’s students and up to four undergraduate students per semester conduct research in Ables’ lab using Drosophila melanogaster, the common fruit fly.

Fruit flies are being sorted by a student researcher in Ables’ lab. In the lab, Ables and her students study the basic biology of how cells use the information encoded in the genome to establish specialized functions. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

Fruit flies are being sorted by a student researcher in Ables’ lab. In the lab, Ables and her students study the basic biology of how cells use the information encoded in the genome to establish specialized functions. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

“It’s a great model system. I use it as a way to teach cell biology in my classroom,” said Ables. “It’s really hard to get attached to a fly, which I think is good for beginning experimentalists, and we have a lot of tools so the experiments we do are relatively simple.”

At ECU, Ables collaborates across campus with researchers in the reproductive biology interest group. She is involved with a variety of microscopy groups including the Laser Technology Applications Group, an east/west campus initiative that seeks to provide more dynamic research and information-sharing opportunities to industry and academic researchers. Also, Ables serves or has served on the biology departmental undergraduate curriculum committee, the biology graduate curriculum committee and on a number of faculty searches.

Dr. Jacob Hochard

When Hochard learned he would be one of the recipients of this year’s award, he said, “It’s definitely humbling. I know a lot of the past recipients, and they are great scholars. I am privileged to be in their company.”

“ECU has done a really good job of supporting early career researchers,” Hochard said. “I think they are progressive at institutionalizing interdisciplinary research, which is one of the reasons I am very happy here.”

Hochard received his doctoral degree from the University of Wyoming in 2015, before beginning his career at ECU that same year. At ECU, Hochard is an assistant professor of economics and an assistant research scientist at the Institute for Coastal Science and Policy. He teaches an introductory-level principals of microeconomics course, and he teaches doctoral students in the coastal resources management program.

“I love teaching the introductory level students,” said Hochard. “Most of them are first-generation college students, and I am too. So I think I can identify with them and get them excited about economics.”

Through one of his research projects, Hochard traveled to rural Karnataka, India, where he visited schools and interviewed farmers about their agricultural practices and challenges. (Contributed Photo)

Through one of his research projects, Hochard traveled to rural Karnataka, India, where he visited schools and interviewed farmers about their agricultural practices and challenges. (Contributed photo)

Hochard’s research focuses on ecosystem services from land, water and wildlife. He is examining the red wolf recovery program in eastern North Carolina, how land use changes in the developing world affect poverty rates and the human health impacts of hog farms on eastern North Carolina, specifically how ingesting contaminated water affects birth weights and gestation lengths.

His most pressing work is the focus on water quality in eastern North Carolina, which is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency. ECU co-collaborators include Dr. James Randall Etheridge, assistant professor of engineering, and Dr. Ariane Peralta, assistant professor of biology.

“We are hoping to inform communities on how they can protect themselves against potentially contaminated water sources, whether that’s expanding public services into rural areas that currently lack them, or investing in natural capital – forest cover, restoring buffers that will filter out contaminants – and how that might protect human health,” said Hochard. “The thing I find intriguing about the work we are doing in water quality and human health is it is one of those areas where you can have a local impact and still make a broad intellectual contribution that is recognized by our peers.”

Beyond his research at ECU, Hochard is a member of the Coastal Maritime Council. Earlier this year, he received the 2018 Coastal-Maritime Council Coastal Scholar Award during ECU’s Research and Creative Activity Week. He is a member of the Coastal Resource Management doctoral program admissions committee, a member of the Science and Technology Advisory Committee for the Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuarine Partnership, and he founded and organized ECU’s Early Career Contributions in Climate and Coastal Science seminar series.

 

-by Lacey L. Gray, University Communications

ECU medical faculty member honored with international educator award

Dr. Jill Sutton

Dr. Jill Sutton

An ECU Brody School of Medicine OB-GYN professor has been recognized by an international organization for her outstanding performance as an educator.

Dr. Jill Sutton was recently awarded the 2018 William N.P. Herbert, MD, Promising Educator Award by the Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics (APGO).

Herbert, a former APGO president, created this award in 2007 to recognize promising junior faculty who have demonstrated accomplishments in women’s health education.

“I am incredibly honored to have received this award,” said Sutton. “Teaching medical students how to care for women is work I absolutely love to do.”

Sutton earned her undergraduate degree in biology from Wake Forest University. She completed her medical degree and residency training at Brody before joining the faculty as a clinical assistant professor in 2010. Sutton has served as Brody’s clerkship director since 2014, overseeing the clinical education of students during their third and fourth years of medical school.

“Jill’s impact as an educator is locally noted by the awards she has received from her students,” said Dr. Elizabeth Baxley, senior associate dean for academic affairs. “She was recognized in May of 2017 by the third-year class with the Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching. She is routinely sought out by students for teaching, mentoring, sharing stories from her life in medicine, and even to help recruit future Brody students.”

Sutton was also a recipient of Brody’s Clinical Teaching Faculty of the Year award in 2015, the Excellence in Teaching Award from the Class of 2016, and the Dr. Katherine Bray-Strickland Young Alumni Award in 2016 for her dedication to medical student education.

“Dr. Sutton’s passion and energy for educating medical students and other learners about women’s health is infectious,” said Dr. Cal Hayslip, chairman of Brody’s OB-GYN department. “She always comes to work with a bubbly positive attitude, and any time you are around her, she makes you smile. This award is well deserved.”

“Despite her hectic schedule, Dr. Sutton agreed to serve as my Albert Schweitzer Fellowship academic mentor,” said Rebecca Jones, a second-year medical student. “She has provided invaluable insight, constant encouragement and unwavering support. When our project has faced obstacles, she has always offered patient and thoughtful assistance despite her numerous obligations. Her concern for the community and commitment to service is evident in the sacrifices she makes to assist others.”

“Dr. Sutton is one of the most inspiring educators I have encountered in my time at Brody,” said Reena Patel, another second-year medical student. “She has a unique passion for sharing her knowledge, while also effectively supporting, motivating and communicating with her students. I feel extremely fortunate to be able to call her a mentor and educator.”

APGO represents academic OB-GYNs throughout the United States and Canada. It provides contemporary teaching tools to physician-educators and learning mechanisms for faculty, students and residents, with the ultimate goal of providing optimum health care to women. Sutton graduated from APGO’s Academic Scholars and Leaders Program in 2017.

 

-Angela Todd, University Communications

ECU alumna named NC School Nurse Administrator of the Year

From her 30-year career as a school nurse and nurse administrator, Terri Joyner knows that healthy children learn better— and that school nurses are key to making that happen.

The ECU alumna was recently named the School Nurse Administrator of the Year by the School Nurse Association of North Carolina.

Joyner said she was “overwhelmed” by the recognition, and that the award is an acknowledgment of the hard work school nurses and nurse administrators do on a daily basis.

Liz Newlin, former president of the School Nurse Association of North Carolina (left), presents Terri Joyner (right) with the 2017 School Nurse Administrator of the Year Award.

Liz Newlin, former president of the School Nurse Association of North Carolina (left), presents Terri Joyner (right) with the 2017 School Nurse Administrator of the Year Award. (contributed photo)

“Most people think it’s all Band-Aids and boo-boos, but it’s not that at all,” Joyner said. “Kids face much bigger health needs than most people realize. School nurses can make a really big impact on overcoming those barriers.”

Joyner received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from ECU in 2005 and Master of Science in Nursing in 2013. After working as a school nurse for 10 years, she became the manager of the School Health Program at Vidant Medical Center, where she oversaw the 20 school nurses serving Pitt County’s 37 schools. She retired in January.

“Terri (was) responsible for 24,000 students—24,000 sets of parents—and 3,000 staff,” Catherine Dews Nelson, senior administrator for Community Health Programs at VMC said in a press release. “The scope alone is mind-boggling, especially when you consider anything can happen at any time, any day that might require a nurse’s attention. The entire community benefits greatly from the dedication and expertise Terri brings to the work.”

Because there is not a nurse at every school each day, nurses in Pitt County must ensure schools can handle health needs when they aren’t there. They also help families navigate health care systems and find health resources.

About 20 percent of children in Pitt County have chronic health conditions, Joyner said. Nurses work with those children to guarantee access to education regardless of health needs. Joyner managed the county’s school nurses, helped them locate resources and coordinated care between the school system, the hospital and the health department.

Her favorite part of the job was the staff, she said. “I worked with the best group of women nurses out there. They are so passionate about the kids in Pitt County and helping the kids be successful academically and with their health.”

Joyner also works part-time with ECU’s College of Nursing. She said she enjoyed ECU’s program as a student and chose it for her bachelor’s and master’s degrees knowing “it was the place where I would get what I needed to improve my own practice as a nurse.”

 

-by Erin Shaw, University Communications

Leo W. Jenkins Society inducts new members at annual planned giving event

Every year, generous donors make planned gifts to East Carolina University that support countless scholarships, professorships and research funds. This year was no different, with donors championing areas from geology to nursing to art and design.

Charlotte resident and ’74 social work graduate Wanda Montano made a gift to support health and human performance students who demonstrate leadership.

Psychology professor Dr. Susan McCammon made a bequest provision in her will to establish an endowment scholarship for future psychology students.

And retired dentist Dr. Thomas Long made a planned gift that will support an endowed scholarship in the School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Thomas Long was honored by Chancellor Cecil Staton and the university during the Leo W. Jenkins Society event for his planned gift to support an endowed scholarship at the ECU School of Dental Medicine. (Photos by Will Preslar)

Dr. Thomas Long was honored by Chancellor Cecil Staton and the university during the Leo W. Jenkins Society event for his planned gift to support an endowed scholarship at the ECU School of Dental Medicine. (Photos by Will Preslar)

Montano, McCammon and Long are part of an esteemed group of donors known as the Leo W. Jenkins Society. Named after the former ECU chancellor, the society honors philanthropic benefactors of the university who make planned gifts such as will bequests, retirement plan beneficiary designations, charitable remainder trusts, charitable gift annuities and life insurance policy designations.

On Dec. 8, the society inducted 20 new members, three of whom received medallions of recognition at a luncheon at the ECU Heart Institute in Greenville.

“ECU students deserve the same opportunities as those at elite universities. They deserve to learn the skills that will enable them to be citizens in a global economy,” Chancellor Cecil Staton told the crowd. “The things that hold our students back are resources.”

Planned gifts go a long way toward increasing those resources, he added as he thanked the donors for their planned gifts. “No university advancement activities would be possible without planned giving. What you are doing is vital,” he said.

There are more than 260 Leo Jenkins Society members. The university expects to receive more than $170 million from current known commitments of planned gifts over the next 25-30 years, according to Greg Abeyounis, associate vice chancellor for development.

McCammon, the psychology professor, said she was only able to attend college because of financial aid from scholarships. Now, she’s in a position to pass it on.

“I’d like to see that future students receive assistance like I was fortunate enough to receive,” she said.

Montano, a 1974 ECU graduate, attended the luncheon wearing purple from head to toe. She said the university changed her life. A first-generation college student, she learned at ECU how to think critically and take charge. Her gift will go to a scholarship to support leadership because leadership and engagement are important qualities for students to develop, she said.

“You don’t live on this earth to sit on the couch and watch TV. You go out and have an impact on it.”

Wanda Montano receives her Leo W. Jenkins medallion from Chancellor Cecil Staton during the Jenkins Society event on Dec. 8. Montano’s planned gift will support a scholarship for leadership excellence.

Wanda Montano receives her Leo W. Jenkins medallion from Chancellor Cecil Staton during the Jenkins Society event on Dec. 8. Montano’s planned gift will support a scholarship for leadership excellence.

Complete list of 2017 Leo W. Jenkins Society inductees and what their gifts will support:

Jeffrey Brame, Stan and Ann Riggs Endowment Fund

Dr. Susan McCammon, Dr. Susan McCammon Scholarship Endowment

Gordon Basnight, Kimberly Basnight Memorial Nursing Scholarship in the ECU Medical & Health Sciences Foundation Inc.

Dr. Scott Colclough, Robert F. Hodges Scholarship Endowment, Kevin Alfonso Banks Scholarship Endowment

David Gaskins, David Gaskins Recreation Sports Scholarship Endowment

Michael McCammon, Michael McCammon Scholarship Endowment

Nancy Monroe, The Monroe Veterans Support Endowment Fund, The Dr. & Mrs. Edwin and Nancy Monroe Endowed Fund, Monroe Art Endowment

Patricia Beaver, Geology Alumni Century Fund

Dr. Thomas Long, June Rose Endowed Scholarship Fund

Dr. Geneva White Britt, Harold & Lois White Scholarship Endowment

Dorothy Satterfield, John and Dorothy Satterfield Scholarship Endowment

Angela Sutton Furniss, College of Business

Wanda Montano, Wanda Montano Scholarship for Leadership Excellence

Six individuals made provisions in their estates to support ECU but wished to remain anonymous. Their gifts will support student scholarships and athletics.

Eight existing Leo Jenkins Society members also made additional gifts through their estates. These donors are Michael Aho, David Bond, Neil Bullock, Margaret Hendricks, Dr. R. McConnell, Mike Renn, Jenny Tolson and Dr. Robert West.

 

-by Erin Shaw, University Communications

Laupus Library recognizes 127 health sciences authors

Faculty and staff from across East Carolina University’s Division of Health Sciences gathered in an annual celebration of research and scholarship.

The William E. Laupus Health Sciences Library held its 12th Health Sciences Author Recognition Awards at the Hilton Greenville on Nov. 14, sponsored by the Friends of Laupus Library.

“It’s a privilege to host this event to honor the faculty and staff who’ve expanded and enriched the scholarly culture of our university and reputation of the division of health sciences,” said Beth Ketterman, director of Laupus Library. “It is truly inspiring to see this breadth of research.”

There were 127 authors honored this year, who published 440 qualified peer-reviewed publications including journal articles, book chapters and other creative works between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017. Twelve books were also published by 10 authors this year.

Dr. Nicholas Benson, Vice Dean for the Brody School of Medicine presents a Laupus medallion to book author, Roger Russell, Assistant Director of User Services for Laupus Library. (Photo by Layne Carpenter)

Dr. Nicholas Benson, Vice Dean for the Brody School of Medicine presents a Laupus medallion to book author, Roger Russell, Assistant Director of User Services for Laupus Library. (Photo by Layne Carpenter)

Dr. Robert Orlikoff, dean for the College of Allied Health Sciences, recognized a record-breaking number of authors and publications from the college since the beginning of the awards program.

“It is so important to recognize our faculty scholars,” said Orlikoff. “We spend a lot of time talking about the importance of maximizing student success but we don’t do enough to recognize that it’s the scholarship and dedication of our faculty that makes student success possible.”

Authors from Laupus Library, the Brody School of Medicine, the College of Nursing and the School of Dental Medicine were also recognized.

Dr. Joseph Lee, assistant professor for the Department of Health Education and Promotion in the College of Health and Human Performance, gave special remarks about the important role of the library’s systematic review services in the advancement of research. Lee has worked closely with Laupus librarians to successfully conduct and complete systematic reviews.

Lee’s work includes documenting health disparities for LGBT people, seeking to understand the origins of those disparities, and identifying and evaluating policy interventions to improve health equity. He also conducts studies of tobacco prevention and control with an eye towards public health policy and reduction of disparities.

“I think it’s perfect that Laupus Library hosts this recognition of scholarly achievements and I think that both in terms of making sure that we have access to the right information and to the skills and services I have access to as a user of the library,” he said.

“As the research enterprise grows at ECU, the library will expand its services to partner with our researchers in disseminating and publishing information,” said Ketterman. “We look forward to expanding the event in years to come to recognize our faculty and staff and their collective efforts to increase the knowledgebase of the health science.”

Registration for the 2017-18 author awards will begin in February. More information about the annual awards ceremony – including a complete listing of this year’s published authors – is available online at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-dhs/laupuslibrary/HSAR/.

 

-by Kelly R. Dilda, University Communication

ECU hosts 3-day symposium on central-eastern European politics

East Carolina University students and the local community recently had the opportunity to broaden their knowledge of foreign affairs and contribute to the international exchange of ideas and perceptions during a three-day symposium on central and eastern European politics.

The event, “Visegrad in the 21st Century,” sponsored by a grant from the International Visegrad Fund, was hosted Nov. 13-15 by the Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences Department of Political Science and the Office of Undergraduate Research.

Dr. Adam Eberhardt visited ECU through a grant awarded to professors in the THCAS Department of Political Science to increase student and public awareness about foreign affairs.<br /> (Contributed photos.)

Dr. Adam Eberhardt visited ECU through a grant awarded to professors in the THCAS Department of Political Science to increase student and public awareness about foreign affairs.
(Contributed photos.)

Two guest speakers from Poland and Czechia – two of the four central European states that make up the Visegrád group (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia), or Visegrád Four as they are also known – visited campus during the event.

The researchers presented on topics ranging from Polish-Russian relations and Russia’s foreign policy towards central-eastern Europe, to the Visegrád States in a broader context and the Czech people’s exile during the Cold War.

“Our overall goal was for ECU students to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges and transformations the east-central European states have experienced in the last 25 years of democratic transitions, European Union and NATO membership, as well as these states’ changing foreign relations with Russia,” said Dr. Magda Giurcanu, teaching assistant professor of political science, who helped organize the event.

On Monday, Dr. Adam Eberhardt, director of the Center for Eastern Studies, a Polish think tank that undertakes independent research on the political, economic and social situation in central and eastern Europe, predominantly discussed Russia’s economy and foreign policy as well as Polish-Russian relations.

Eberhardt argued that Russia perceives the western European countries to be weak. However, Russia challenges the security of neighboring countries by asking for concessions without offering anything in return.

He also said there is little to no modernization because of the “law of the ruler,” and after 17 years in power, President Putin has no desire to tackle the challenges to the Russian state.

Dr. Martin Nekola visited ECU.

Dr. Martin Nekola visited ECU.

“Russia is not the Soviet Union of the Cold War,” said Eberhardt.

A roundtable discussion was held Tuesday afternoon with Eberhardt; ECU political science faculty Drs. Armin Krishnan and Giurcanu; and Dr. Martin Nekola, an independent scholar from Prague, whose research focuses on non-democratic regimes, the era of Communism, Czech communities abroad and the east-European, anti-communist exiles to the United States during the Cold War.

On Wednesday, Nekola gave a presentation on his research pertaining to the Czech migration, which began Feb. 20, 1948 and lasted until 1989. Many researchers disagree on the total number of Czech citizens who fled Czechia, but Nekola said 250,000 seems to be a realistic number. Many of the citizens traveled to refugee camps in Germany, Austria, Italy and France.

“The atmosphere was tense,” said Nekola, referring to the fear and frustration felt immediately following WWII.

As time passed, the people also began emigrating to Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada and the United States. Nekola’s research has traced a number of Czechian descendants to cities in the U.S. that have strong Czech communities, including Chicago, Cleveland, Milwaukee, New York, St. Louis, and possibly Charlotte and New Salem, North Carolina.

Closing out the three-day symposium, students in the course presented research posters on topics that were covered throughout the semester. Attendees voted on the two best posters. First place and a $100 award went to Josiah Thornton, India Peele and Dwayne Lewis Jr. for “The Transition of Central Europe: The Fate of Visegrad,” and the second place award of $50 went to Natalie Best, Kaitlyn Rose and Josh Ziegler for “Slovakia and Hungary’s Case brought to the European Court of Justice: Legality of the Challenge.”

Drs. Nekola, Giurcanu, Eberhardt and Krishnan

Drs. Nekola, Giurcanu, Eberhardt and Krishnan.

One more guest lecturer associated with the International Visegrad Fund grant will be held at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 28, in Howell, room N107. The presentation will feature Dr. Bartosz Rydlinski of Poland.

 

-by Lacey L. Gray, University Communications

ECU administrator recognized by state and nation

Ellen Hilgoe, associate director of the N.C. Early Mathematics Placement Testing Program (N.C. EMPT) housed at East Carolina University, is receiving local and national attention for her work in preparing high school students for college-level mathematics courses.

“N.C. EMPT helps strengthen ECU’s mission to reach out and offer early intervention to not only the high school students in the eastern part of the state, but statewide and across state lines,” said Hilgoe.

•Ellen Hilgoe, pictured here with ECU Mathematics Chair Johannes Hattingh, is the 2017 recipient of the North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics Innovator Award. (contributed photos.)

Ellen Hilgoe, pictured here with ECU Mathematics Chair Johannes Hattingh, is the 2017 recipient of the North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics Innovator Award. (contributed photos.)

In October, Hilgoe received national recognition for the program, when she was selected to present a session on “N.C. Early Mathematics Placement Testing Program: A Looking Glass into College Math Readiness,” at the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Conference held in Orlando, Florida.

Organizers of the conference mentioned in opening sessions that they received hundreds of applications to present.

•Hilgoe presented information about the N.C. EMPT Program during the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Conference in Orlando, Florida, in October.

Hilgoe presented information about the N.C. EMPT Program during the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Conference in Orlando, Florida, in October.

“I was so fortunate to be chosen,” said Hilgoe. “Spreading the word about N.C. EMPT in my presentation to mathematics educators from more than 10 southern states, as well as others across our nation, was an opportunity to share N.C. EMPT’s accomplishments, highlight ECU’s name, emphasize North Carolina’s dedication to mathematically preparing its youth for their futures and to proudly assert that N.C. EMPT is the largest EMPT program in the nation.”

Since the conference, Hilgoe also has received local acknowledgement and honors.

On Nov. 2, she was presented with the 2017 North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics Innovator Award. Hilgoe received the award at the council’s 47th annual conference celebration in Greensboro.

During the event, the council stated, “North Carolina mathematics education is fortunate to call this innovator one of our own.”

“It was wonderful to be recognized at the state level by the N.C. Council of Teachers of Mathematics,” said Hilgoe. “With more than three-quarters of a million students served, we continue to strive to provide each participant with a reality check of readiness for college-level math and the motivation to maintain strong math skills.”

The N.C. EMPT Program recently completed its 20th year of service to all North Carolina public and non-public high schools. For more information visit http://www.ncempt.org.

 

-by Lacey L. Gray, University Communications

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