Category Archives: Faculty

Campus Recreation & Wellness summer camps

ECU’s Campus Recreation and Wellness (CRW) will begin Summer Camp registration for students, faculty, and staff on Tuesday, March 14th at 8:00 a.m. The CRW offers camps for children ages 5-13, with Rec Junior being ages 5-8 and Recreation Nation being ages 8-13.

Registration details and program information can be accessed by going to our website:

For more information please contact Jon Wall at 252-328-1565 or

ECU professors ‘rocket back to earth’ during NASA simulation

Three East Carolina University College of Education faculty members spent Jan. 18 at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, learning about simulations for astronaut training and vehicle design.

Daniel Dickerson, Patricia Slagter Van Tryon and Abbie Brown from the Department of Mathematics, Science and Instructional Technology Education toured several NASA project areas: the rapid prototype lab developing and testing controls for the Orion spacecraft; the space vehicle mockup facility that includes full-scale simulations of the International Space Station and Orion; the Human Exploration Research Analog that allows teams to experience spending days and weeks on an isolated space station; and the neutral buoyancy lab containing a massive pool with a replica of a portion of the space station that allows astronauts to practice walking in a weightless environment.

From left to right, ECU faculty members Patricia Slagter Van Tryon, Abbie Brown and Daniel Dickerson stand in front of the Orion vehicle mockup at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. (contributed photo)

From left to right, ECU faculty members Patricia Slagter Van Tryon, Abbie Brown and Daniel Dickerson stand in front of the Orion vehicle mockup at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. (contributed photo)

As part of the visit, Brown and Slagter van Tryon were “rocketed back to earth” through a simulation. Re-entering the earth’s atmosphere – from 200 mph eventually to 20 mph – was made real through intense sound effects and video displays, Brown said.

“We are grateful to the six NASA team leaders who were very generous with their time, providing us with a view of how our country’s astronauts learn to work in space and how space vehicles are designed and developed,” said Brown, professor and interim chair of the department. “It’s something few people get to see at such a detailed level and we are excited to take this information back to our science education and instructional technology students.”

ECU faculty are exploring opportunities for possible collaboration with NASA in the future.

The opportunity to visit NASA came about after Brown attended an Adobe MAX conference last fall and met the creative team developing simulations for NASA astronaut training.

There are approximately 160 graduate students enrolled online in the instructional technology program, which supports K-12 educators, corporate trainers and government and military instructors. For more information, visit



-by Crystal Baity 

ECU celebrates World Anthropology Day

The Department of Anthropology at East Carolina University is celebrating World Anthropology Day 2017 with an Anthropology in the Workplace event Feb. 16 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on the second floor of the Flanagan Building.

The third annual Anthropology After Dark open house will exhibit laboratories, artifact displays, an Egyptian tomb, Mexican dance masks and three ECU alumni who will discuss how they have incorporated their training in anthropology into their professional careers.

The Anthropology Student Organization (ANSO) will provide food and refreshments following the lecture hour, which starts at 7 p.m.

“This event is one of our more significant public outreach events. We invite the public into our classrooms and labs to help them understand the relevance of anthropology in the 21st century,” said Dr. Randy Daniel, chair of the Department of Anthropology.

To complement the discussion of food wealth and food insecurity, contributions of food, toiletries and paper products will be accepted for donation to the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina – Greenville Branch.

Parking will be available at the parking lot at the corner of 10th and Cotanche streets.

Anthropology Day is a day for anthropologists to share their excitement about their discipline with the public around them. Anthropologists will share their work around the world. Events and activities in Canada, Morocco, India, Egypt, Mexico, Tunisia and across the United States will build enthusiasm and awareness for current and future anthropologists.

“This is a great time for anthropology,” said Dr. Alisse Waterston, president of the American Anthropological Association. “Today’s anthropologists are making remarkable contributions to human understanding and tackling the world’s most pressing problems.”



-by Heidi Luchsinger, Department of Anthropology


The University’s College of Engineering and Technology and the College’s Center for Sustainability will hold its first Sustainability Symposium Feb. 20, 2017. The event’s goal is to discuss ways sustainability can be integrated into research and industry practices,

Dr. Tarek Abdel-Salam, event organizer and associate dean of research and graduate studies for the College of Engineering and Technology. (Contributed photo)

Dr. Tarek Abdel-Salam, event organizer and associate dean of research and graduate studies for the College of Engineering and Technology. (contributed photo)

especially those that will benefit eastern North Carolina. It will also promote approaches that adopt and implement inclusive views of the key dimensions of sustainability: environmental, economic and social.

The symposium will be held at the University’s Murphy Center from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.

“We want to present thought-provoking examples of sustainability ideas, analyses and practices that are available to our region’s farmers and agricultural organizations so they can maintain and grow their businesses and be good stewards of the environment, as

well,” said Dr. Tarek Abdel-Salam, event organizer and associate dean of research and graduate studies for the College of Engineering and Technology.

Pam Swingle of the Environmental Protection Agency will be the keynote speaker. She is the agency’s pollution prevention program manager for the Region 4 Office of Environmental Justice and Sustainability. She is responsible

Pam Swingle, Environmental Protection Agency’s pollution prevention program manager for the Region 4 Office of Environmental Justice and Sustainability. (contributed photo)

Pam Swingle, Environmental Protection Agency’s pollution prevention program manager for the Region 4 Office of Environmental Justice and Sustainability. (contributed photo)

for administering pollution prevention and sustainability programs and providing technical assistance within Region 4’s eight, southeastern states.

Symposium discussions will include:

  1. We know how to do this: Sustainability and Energy: Ged Moody, Appalachian State University, special assistant to the Chancellor for Sustainability
  2. What does food have to do with sustainability?: Rebecca Dunning, North Carolina State University, Department of Horticultural Science
  3. Strategies to protect water resources in agricultural watersheds: Mike Burchell, North Carolina State University, Biological and Agricultural Engineering
  4. The vulnerable food, energy, and water system in the Caribbean: Scott Curtis, East Carolina University, Geography
  5. Soil Conservation and Organic Farming: Kristi Hocutt, sales manager, Triple J Produce
  6. Organic Feasibility: Thomas Moore, food systems coordinator, Carolina Farm Stewards

The symposium will also include a student/faculty poster session, which will cover all areas of sustainability-related research including tourism, water, energy, agriculture and buildings.

This event is supported by the Pitt County Development Commission, College of Engineering and Technology, the Center for Innovation in Technology and Engineering Outreach (CITE), and Phi Kappa Phi.

Breakfast and lunch will be provided.

The registration fee is $35 per person.

To register for the event visit: or call (252) 328-9198



-by Michael Rudd, College of Engineering & Technology

Taiwan trip to explore study abroad connections

Whitney Morris, East Carolina University’s coordinator of faculty-led study abroad, has been awarded a Fulbright International Education Administrator’s Seminar grant to travel to Taiwan in March.

The purpose of the program is to build relationships in countries that may be underrepresented by American study abroad students, said Dr. Regis Gilman, executive director of the Office of Continuing Studies.

Whitney Morris will travel to Taiwan in March to build relationships for a possible future study abroad program. (Photo by Cliff Hollis) Whitney Morris will travel to Taiwan in March to build relationships for a possible future study abroad program. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

“By participating in the seminar, Ms. Morris will learn more about higher education in Taiwan and how ECU will be able to build relationships there to encourage faculty and student interest in non-traditional study abroad countries,” he said.

The grant provides a unique opportunity to learn firsthand about Taiwan’s higher education system while also gaining experience with its people and culture, Morris said.

Morris, who said she has never been to Asia, plans to look for areas of common interest and create a framework to begin faculty-led study abroad programs in Taiwan over the coming years. ECU currently offers faculty-led study abroad programs in a variety of countries in Europe, Asia, Central America, South America, the Caribbean, Africa, Australia and the Pacific Islands.

“Taiwan is a country that has many of the same developmental priorities as eastern North Carolina, such as being emerging market economies in coastal communities, with many students in higher education coming from rural locations,” Gilman said. “I am extremely excited about both Whitney’s initiative in applying for the grant and the outcomes from her experience in Taiwan.”

The J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board is overseen by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Funding for grants is made possible through appropriations by the U.S. Congress and contributions from partner countries and the private sector.



-by Jules Norwood

Peter Makuck to read at ECU

Longtime eastern North Carolina resident Peter Makuck will present a public reading from his poetry and fiction on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 7:30 p.m. in East Carolina University’s Bate building, room 1026.

(contributed photo)

(contributed photo)

Makuck, distinguished professor emeritus, taught English and creative writing at ECU from 1978 until his retirement in 2006. Founder of the internationally acclaimed literary journal Tar River Poetry, he is also the author of eight books of poetry and four collections of short stories, including one of each published in 2016.

Makuck grew up in New London, Connecticut and has a doctorate in American literature from Kent State University. He has been a Fulbright Exchange Professor at Cambery, France and a visiting writer at Brigham Young University and N.C. State University. He and his wife, Phyllis, live on Bogue Banks.

Five Makuck short stories have received honorable mentions in the Best American Short Stories collections, and a personal essay on guns was named a Best Essay of 2000. For poetry, he has received the Zoe Kincaid Brockman Award for best book of poems by a North Carolinian.

The reading is sponsored by ECU’s Department of English. Admission is free and open to the public.


-by Alex Albright, ECU English Department

ECU assistant professor honored by NCCEC

An East Carolina University College of Education faculty member has been honored by a state organization for her dedicated service to students majoring in special education.

(Contributed photo)

(Contributed photo)

Dr. Stacy Weiss, assistant professor in the ECU Department of Special Education, Foundations & Research, was recognized for three years of service as state student coordinator by the N.C. Council for Exceptional Children.

“Dr. Weiss’ efforts made a significant contribution to our organization that has helped us to better serve educators and students with exceptionalities in our state, and we are truly thankful for her service,” said council president Glennda McKeithan in an email announcing the commendation.

As state student coordinator, Weiss collaborated with faculty advisors of 10 student CEC chapters at colleges and universities across North Carolina. Weiss also is co-faculty advisor for the ECU chapter.

During Weiss’ tenure, she assisted several faculty advisors in starting new chapters at their respective colleges and universities. She also coordinated student volunteers for the council’s annual conferences and facilitated the call for proposals, selection process and poster presentations for undergraduate and graduate student research. She oversaw the fundraising, nomination and selection process for the annual Outstanding Undergraduate Student Scholarship. She also solicited and wrote news items on student activities and involvement for the NCCEC newsletter, and fielded questions from faculty advisors and students about participation in NCCEC events.

The local chapters give student teachers in special education and other related professional areas the opportunity to learn more about issues surrounding the education of individuals with disabilities. The chapters also help future educators develop leadership skills.

The NCCEC provides state and local support through its annual conference, regional training and electronic newsletter. The council offers awards to recognize outstanding K-12 students with disabilities, leaders in the field of special education and K-12 teachers. It also provides scholarships for students and mini-grants for current NCCEC members.



-by Crystal Baity

Women of Distinction nominations due Feb. 1

Nominations are due Wednesday, Feb. 1 for the 2017 Women of Distinction Awards given by the Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women.

The ECU Women of Distinction Awards are given every two years to recognize the outstanding contributions by women of East Carolina University. Nominees for the awards may include ECU faculty, staff, administrators, and alumni. Ten women will be selected for this prestigious award, one of whom will be chosen to receive the Linda Allred Profiles in Leadership Award.

The 2017 event will be held April 4.

The awards recognize women who have:

  • distinguished themselves in academic work, career, leadership, public service, or any combination thereof through commitment, determination, empowerment and generosity of spirit and time;
  • contributed to the personal growth and success of others, especially women, through education, research, or public or volunteer service, beyond their expected job responsibilities; and
  • created positive social change, increased equality and fairness for all, and built community.

Areas in which nominees demonstrate outstanding contributions may include, but are not limited to, academics/education; professions; research; health care/services; management/administration; politics; social services; volunteer, charity, community outreach organizations; and athletics.

Nomination packets consist of a nomination form and a recommendation letter. Nominators also have the option to include the nominee’s resume or CV along with additional letters of support.

Nomination materials, scanned into one PDF document, should be emailed to Karen Traynor at

For more information, visit


-by Jackie Drake, Eastern AHEC 

ECU geological sciences professor co-chairs panel overseeing sea drilling

An East Carolina University professor has volunteered his time and expertise with an international marine research collaborative dedicated to exploring the world’s oceans.

Dr. David Mallinson. (Contributed photo)

Dr. David Mallinson. (Contributed photo)

Dr. David Mallinson, professor of geological sciences in the Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences, has been a longtime member of the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) and recently completed a three-year term as co-chair of the program’s Science Evaluation Panel.

The 54-member science panel or SEP reviews drilling proposals from around the world. Mallinson co-chaired along with Dick Kroon from the University of Edinburgh and Ken Miller from Rutgers University.

“These proposals require a tremendous amount of work and review,” Mallinson said. “Large amounts of geophysical data need to be acquired and reviewed to demonstrate that the objectives of the proposal can be met.”

The SEP consists of top scientists from 25 participating nations who are assigned different proposals by the co-chairs. Approximately 20 proposals are considered at bi-annual meetings. Co-chairs review all documents, coordinate meetings and presentations, and make final decisions on the proposals.

“Proposal decisions are extremely important, in that each drilling expedition costs upwards of $12 to $14 million,” said Mallinson. “So there is a lot of pressure to get everything right.”

As co-chair, Mallinson also attended almost 20 meetings of other important panels and boards held in the United States, Europe and Japan.

DV JOIDES Resolution (US platform). (Contributed photo)

DV JOIDES Resolution (US platform). (Contributed photo)

“It was a huge time commitment. But it was great to represent ECU on an international stage,” said Mallinson.

Mallinson said he has enjoyed working with people from all over the world and visiting 13 different countries as a part of the SEP and IODP.

“It’s a great feeling to be involved with something that is so global in scale and represents the cutting-edge of Earth science,” said Mallinson, adding the opportunity to serve “provided a great platform for representing ECU to top scientists around the world, and helped to elevate the stature of the university.”

Prior to his term as co-chair of the SEP, Mallinson served a three-year term as vice-chair for the Site Characterization Panel. Mallinson also served as a member on the Proposal Evaluation Panel.

For more information on the IODP, visit and the SEP at


-by Lacey Gray

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