In Memoriam

Dr. Sudesh Kataria, retired faculty from the Brody School of Medicine, died Oct.16.

She was the wife of Dr. Yash Kataria, also a retired medical faculty member. The funeral was scheduled for 11 a.m. Oct. 22 at the Brown-Wynne Funeral Home, St. Mary’s St., Raleigh.

Donations can be made at to the Sudesh Kataria Memorial Trust Fund, which supports the North Carolina Indian American Physicians Charitable Medical Clinic for North Carolina.



ECU graduate student awarded for educational video

ECU graduate student Ken Hubbard won a first place award for his educational video posted above.


An East Carolina University graduate student won a first place award for his educational video, “Matchstick Rockets,” which demonstrates laws of physics through creation of miniature rockets using household matches.

Ken Hubbard won the Immersive Learning Awards competition, an international competition sponsored by the Association for Educational Communications and Technology.

Immersive learning refers to an environment in which students learn while completely absorbed in the educational material presented to them. The winning products in the competition meet learning objectives while incorporating technology and interactivity to engage students in the learning process.

The competition was open to graduate students, faculty, corporate trainers and K-12 teachers. Quality of submitted multimedia presentations as well as effectiveness in demonstrating learning outcomes were considered in determining the winner.

Hubbard is pursuing a master of arts in education in instructional technology at ECU. He completed the video as part of an assignment in a summer course, web teaching design and development.

For additional information, contact Dr. Abbie Brown, associate professor in ECU’s College of Education, at



ECU student selected for mathematics education award

The North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics selected East Carolina University student Ashley Harrell as the outstanding mathematics education student from the eastern region of the state.

She will receive the award at the organization’s State Mathematics Conference in October.

Harrell is majoring in mathematics and mathematics education, with plans to graduate in three years. She is a North Carolina Teaching Fellow, a member of the N.C. Council of Teachings of Mathematics Student Chapter at ECU, a residence hall advisor and a student tutor.

For more information, contact Dr. Ron Preston, associate professor and director of students in the ECU College of Education at



ECU professor honored for service to Hispanic community

East Carolina University education professor Dr. Diane Rodriguez was selected as one of four winners of the “Orgulla de Nuestra Comunidad” (Pride of our Community) awards presented in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. She will be recognized at a ceremony this month.

Rodriguez has worked as a high school and university teacher, a teacher educator, mentor to individuals with special needs and a mentor to Latinos. Her work with Hispanics led to an invitation to join the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. She participated in the National Education Summit and Call to Action in Washington, D.C. The initiative focused on preparing Latino students for college, careers and productive lives. This year, Rodriguez was honored at ECU with a Women of Distinction Award.

The Pride of Our Community campaign was sponsored by R.A. Jeffreys and Univision, a media company serving Hispanic America.

For more information, contact Ken Luterbach, assistant professor in College of Education at East Carolina University, at


ECU Chancellor Steve Ballard congratulations Diane Rodriguez on receiving the Women of Distinction Award in April 2011.



ECU professor develops methods to better teach lighting in interior design

An East Carolina University interior design professor has published an article that examines the unique and complex properties of light, its behavior and its interactions with other elements in interior design.


Charles Gustina said that most college-level interior design textbooks quickly jump into dialogue about lighting mechanics, omitting discussion of light as an element of design that interacts with objects and spaces in an interior. He addressed those issues in “Light Fantastic: Teaching Introductory Lighting to Interior Design Students,”published in the October issue of Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal.

Gustina responded to the information gap by offering four introductory-level exercises derived from research and experimentation in teaching lighting as an element of design – equal to line, plane, volume, mass, space, texture, color and time. Observations in the exercise focus on light’s behavior and interaction with other elements.

He has incorporated the exercises into a first-year interior design studio, providing discussion and observation related to lighting, including exploration of lighting schemes used by top design firms. Gustina said the approach helps students learn about how light behaves, which helps them understand how lighting is produced and directed in interior design. The exercises also build student skills in rendering light in their drawings of interior spaces, he said.

While the exercises are simple, Gustina said that faculty have noted a definite uptick in discussion of lighting and its effects since the exercises were included in the curriculum. “The next step is to confirm the faculty’s observations through data collection,” he said.

Research and development that led to the exercises were supported by a grant from the Nuckolls Fund for Lighting Education. The funds enabled video-conferences that allowed ECU students to consult with lighting experts in the U.S. and abroad.

In the video above, ECU students enjoy teleconferences with New York designers.

Gustina is an assistant professor of 
Interior Design in ECU’s Department of Interior Design and Merchandising, College of Human Ecology. For additional information about the article, contact Gustina at For more information on the interior design program at ECU, visit or call 252-328-6929.


Gustina’s article may be accessed online at


Health Fitness Walk set for Oct. 19

The East Carolina University Staff Senate will sponsor a Health Fitness Walk from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Oct. 19 at Lake Laupus, Health Sciences campus.

Chancellor Ballard will address the group when the event kicks off at 11:30 a.m. Giveaways and door prizes will be presented.

For more details, contact Mary Susan Williams, chair of the ECU Staff Senate, at