Student Activities Board hosts two exhibits at Mendenhall Gallery

The East Carolina University Student Activities Board will host two art exhibits in August and September at Mendenhall Student Center’s second floor gallery.

On display through Aug. 28 is “Cupcake Jungle,” a collaboration between ceramicist Kyle Rees and metalsmith/jewelry designers Joshua Craig and Laritza Garcia. The exhibition includes a collection of brightly-colored homemade bowls in porcelain and metal.

Real cupcakes will be served during the exhibit’s closing reception, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Aug. 26 in the Mendenhall gallery.

Following the close of “Cupcake Jungle,” an exhibition focused on travel and discovery will be presented in the gallery. The exhibit, “Get out. Go Somewhere,” opens with a reception from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sept. 9.

The exhibit’s creator was Dan Willet, an ECU graduate student in the School of Art and Design’s photography program. Willet worked with nationally acclaimed artist Sam Yates to juror the exhibit. Yates will provide student critiques and present a lecture on his work at 6 p.m., Sept. 8 in Mendenall.

“Get out. Go Somewhere” will run through Sept. 30.

For more information, contact Tracy Demar at (252) 328-2902 or e- mail

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ECU study examines sleep and fatigue in chronically ill mothers

Carmel White

Mark White


Health care providers should be particularly attentive to supporting high quality sleep for chronically ill mothers of young children, according to a new study by East Carolina University researchers.

Professors Carmel White and Mark White in ECU’s Department of Child Development and Family Relations, examined the sleep patterns of chronically ill mothers with young children to determine how they manage sleep and fatigue. The researchers questioned 103 mothers with multiple sclerosis, 68 with rheumatoid arthritis and 91 with normal health about their sleep, fatigue, pain and levels of depression. All participants had at least once child between the age of 12 months and 45 months.

The researchers surveyed the mothers about their problems falling asleep; trouble sleeping after being awakened; sleep interruptions from their young children; average hours of sleep; and fatigue during the day.

“Understanding how sleep relates to depression and fatigue in mothers with MS or RA is important for mothers, families and health care providers,” said Dr. Carmel White.

She said families and health care providers should be sensitive to the importance of high quality sleep, doing what they can to support the mothers.

“Health care professionals should be especially sensitive to both pain and depression in mothers with MS or RA to ensure that these two common problems are not interfering with mothers’ sleep,” she said.

Mothers with chronic illnesses reported more daytime drowsiness, with reduced sleep quality and quantity especially noted in mothers experiencing a flareup of RA symptoms. Chronically ill mothers reported mother problems going to sleep and staying asleep, but were less likely to experience nighttime sleep interruptions caused by their children. The researchers speculated that other family members might be caring for the young children during the night, knowing that the mother has difficulty falling back to sleep.

Mothers with MS had the highest correlation of sleep problems correlated to fatigue, suggesting that health care providers who work with MS patients should include sleep assessments.

The researchers said that women with chronic illnesses often experience a great deal of fatigue, and parenting young children can add to the exhaustion.

Their research, “Sleep Problems and Fatigue in Chronically Ill Women,” appeared in the July issue of Behaviorial Sleep Medicine. Full text of the article may be viewed at


For additional information, contact Carmel White at 252-737-2075 or or Mark Shite at 252-737-2076 or

The Department of Child Development and Family Relations is located within the ECU College of Human Ecology.


Nursing students invited to free event


The North Carolina Association of Nursing Students will host a free event for nursing students Aug. 27 from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. in Rooms 1100 and 1102 in the East Carolina University College of Nursing, Health Sciences Building. Registration begins at 10:45 a.m.

The event, “Council of School Leaders,” will introduce students to the state’s professional nursing student organization, provide opportunities to get involved and offer workshops on being a leader and resume preparation and review.

Dr. Walter Houston, director of the Student Development and Counseling Center in the ECU College of Nursing, will speak on how being a leader creates success in nursing school and how to take advantage of leadership opportunities.

For more information, email event chair Jonathan Shaw at or call 704-920-9127.


Summers named distinguished professor

East Carolina University biology professor Dr. Kyle Summers was named the 2011 Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor during the college’s annual faculty convocation, Aug. 22.

The distinguished professorship recognizes a commitment to knowledge and academic life, demonstrated by outstanding teaching and advising, research and creative productivity, and professional service.

Kyle Summers

Summers said he was grateful to receive the honor, which was “especially grafitying…given the many excellent candidates available.”

Summers serves as member of the editorial board of the journal “Ideas in Ecology and Evolution,” and as co-editor of “Foundations of Human Social Evolution,” an edited volume of the classic works of R.D. Alexander. He has received nearly 20 grants totaling more than $740,000, co-authored more than 70 journal articles and 50 scientific papers and presented more than 40 seminars in his field. His professional memberships included the Animal Behavior Society, American Society of Naturalists, International Society of Behavioral Ecology, Society for the Study of Evolution, Research and Analysis Network for Neotropical Amphibians, National Center for Science Education and the Sigma Xi Society.

Summers’ research on poison frogs has garnered international attention, included highlights in National Geographic magazine, BBC Wildlife and Scientific American.

He is a graduate of the University of Michigan, where he received his doctoral degree in biology in 1990. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of California at Santa Cruz. After postdoctoral research appointments at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Queen’s University, Cambridge University and the University of California at Davis, Summers joined the faculty of ECU in 1996 as an assistant professor of biology.

For additional information, contact Summers at 252-328-6304 or



ECU scientists awarded $314,000 NSF grant

A new research project at East Carolina University should lead to improved climate forecasting for North Carolina.

ECU geography professors Dr. Tom Rickenbach and Dr. Rosana Nieto-Ferreira will examine how changes in the atmosphere control the manner in which rain and snow falls in the state and how those changes affect the state’s current and future climate. The study is made possible by a three-year $314,000 National Sciences Foundation grant funded by the NSF Directorate for Geosciences’ Atmospheric and Geospace Sciences Division.

In their grant proposal, the researchers noted that precipitation is a primary source of water for North Carolina’s rivers, soils and groundwater reservoirs. They said that studying the manner in which the precipitation arrives will help scientists understand how increasing population, climate change and land use patterns are affecting the state’s climate.

“Scientists and engineers are constantly improving our ability to measure how much rain and snow reach the surface. What we don’t understand as well is the manner in which that water is typically delivered to us,” said Rickenbach.

“That missing piece of the puzzle is crucial to knowing whether precipitation reaching the ground will help or hinder us as we lead our lives. Knowing how a given amount of precipitation reached us – as gentle widespread daily showers, intense isolated but brief thunderstorms, or heavy snowfall – determines how we can best harness it for our needs and whether we must protect ourselves from its impacts.”

Nieto-Ferreira said that scientists do not fully understand how the state’s fresh water resource responds to changes in the environment; more research is needed. She said, “We may then better understand how these variations in precipitation impact our lives, such as agriculture, urban runoff, coastal development and flooding.”

The scientists will conduct their research in three steps. First, every precipitation system that occurred across North Carolina over a three-year period will be identified and characterized using newly available high-resolution precipitation and three-dimensional radar reflectivity data sets. Next, the mode of delivery of the precipitation will be placed in the context of the prevailing wind and weather patterns of the atmosphere, based on archived maps and analysis. Finally, the climatology will be applied, with the goal of improving the interpretation of state-of-the-art model simulations of future regional climates.

The University of North Carolina Renaissance Computing Institute and the National Climate Data Center will partner with Rickenbach and Nieto-Ferreira to construct and analyze radar-based datasets tailored to the project.

For additional information about this NSF grant, contact Rickenbach at 252-328-1039 or, or Nieto-Ferreira at 252-328-0751 or



Conradt book examines politics in Europe

David P. Conradt

A new book co-authored by David P. Conradt (Political Science), “Politics in Europe, Fifth Edition” was published by Congressional Quarterly Press in Washington, D.C. According to Dietmar Herz, chair for comparative government at the University of Erfurt in Germany, the new edition “provides a brilliant and highly readable analysis of Europe’s major powers.”



Hospitality management professor James A. Chandler mourned

James Chandler

Students, faculty, alumni, and friends of the ECU Department of Hospitality Management and the College of Human Ecology mourn the death of professor James A. Chandler, who passed away on Aug. 17.

Chandler joined the hospitality management faculty in 1998. During his tenure at ECU, he primarily taught principles of classical cuisine, wine and beverage management, and facilities management. His major areas of research included tourism development patterns and preferences, visitor profiles at tourism destinations, restaurant sanitation and safety and sustainable land use and agriculture.

Chandler valued hand-on experience for his students. His facilities management students often teamed up with interior design classes to work with local hoteliers and restaurateurs to develop workable plans for energy conservation and minimizing waste products. His cuisine students would often be seen managing food and beverage venues for events such as ECU receptions, wine festivals, and charity fundraisers.

He also took great pride in accompanying outstanding hospitality management students annually to the opening of the National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant and Hotel-Motel Show and Exposition in Chicago, where the students would be honored at a special gala dinner and have an opportunity to experience the city.

A retired hotelier and wine aficionado, Chandler was instrumental in preparing hundreds of students to enter the workforce as managers of restaurants and hotels, food and beverage concerns, and tourism destinations. He was considered a patriarch by many of his students, and many hospitality management alumni corresponded regularly with him. He often spoke of his former students and described their successes in detail, naming 10 to 20 alumni and their business ventures off the top of his head.

In recent years, he developed a keen interest in assisting the greater community of eastern North Carolina with planning the re-development of farmland on the coastal plain for sustainable agricultural production. He worked with a team of specialists at ECU to develop a long-term program to support and advance sustainable alternative farming throughout the region.

Chandler, a native of Ohio, received an undergraduate degree from Western Carolina University and a master’s and doctorate from the University of Tennessee.

Dr. Robert O’Halloran, chair of the Department of Hospitality Management said, “Jim was a dedicated teacher and a champion for his students. He worked with them throughout their careers here at ECU and then followed them and their careers in the workplace. He will truly be missed by many.”

Chandler is survived by his wife, Dr. Joyce H. Chandler and three daughters:  Aubrey L. Cash of Greenville, N.C.; Jennifer C. Herrera and husband Shannon of Waynesville, N.C.;  Laine Eubank and fiancée, Khahn Dang, of Savannah, Ga.; and grandchildren Gabrielle Cash and Joselynn Dang. He was 61 years old.

A memorial service is planned for 11 a.m. Aug. 20 at the chapel at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Greenville. His family will receive friends from 9:30 a.m. until the memorial service.

Memorial contributions may be made to the East Carolina University Department of Hospitality Management, Attn: Dr. Robert O’Halloran, 152 Rivers Bldg., Greenville, NC 27858.



Elections, publications noted by Joyner Library faculty, staff


Joyner Library faculty and staff have reported recent publications and elections to professional organizations.

Eleanor Cook

Jan Lewis

Angela Whitehurst


Jan Lewis, associate director of Academic Library Services, was elected to a two-year term as officer at large of the measurement, assessment and evaluation section of the Library Leadership and Management Association.  She was also appointed to the library leadership and  management editorial board and to the Association of College & Research Libraries’ research planning and review and research coordinating committees.

Angela Whitehurst, interim head of service for Reference Services was was elected the secretary/archivist of the distance learning section of the American College and Research Libraries Association for the 2011-2012 term.

Eleanor Cook, assistant director for Technical Services, was elected secretary of the North Carolina Library Association nominating committee. She will take office following the 2011 Biennial Conference in Hickory.

Bryna Coonin

Dale Sauter


An article by Bryna Coonin, “Open Access Publishing in Business Research: The Authors’ Perspective,” appeared in the Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship, Vol. 16(3).

An article by Dale Sauter, “So Near to Heaven and Surrounded by Hell: The Character and 1942-1943 Military Career of World War II Pilot Frank A. Armstrong, Jr.,” appeared in the North Carolina Historical Review 88. 2 (2011).