Ballard to chair Child Development and Family Relations

Dr. Sharon M. Ballard has been appointed the new chair of East Carolina University’s Department of Child Development and Family Relations following a national search.

Dr. Sharon Ballard

Dr. Sharon Ballard

Ballard joined the faculty of the department in 2000 and served as interim chair for one year.  Ballard has taught for The University of Tennessee – Knoxville and Western Carolina University. She also taught family and consumer sciences in the public schools for six years.

Ballard’s research interests include family life education, sexuality education, parenting education, service-learning and community engaged scholarship.  The majority of her publications are related to family life education and sexuality education.

“I am thrilled to serve as chair of such a vibrant department,” said Ballard.  “CDFR has amazing faculty, staff and students and our nationally recognized programs prepare students for rewarding careers in which they make a positive difference for children, families, and communities. It is gratifying to lead a department that has such a positive impact, not only in Eastern North Carolina, but nationally and internationally.” she said.

Ballard is the past chair of the Certified Family Life Educator Advisory Committee with the National Council on Family Relations and she was the 2012 recipient of the Certified Family Life Education Service award.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in home economics education from the University of Maine.  She received both a master’s degree and doctorate in child and family studies from The University of Tennessee – Knoxville. Ballard is a Certified Family Life Educator, Certified in Family and Consumer Sciences, a trained provider of the Triple P Parenting Program and a licensed K-12 family and consumer sciences teacher.

The Department of Child Development and Family Relations is housed within the College of Human Ecology. For more information on the College of Human Ecology, its students and programs, visit www.ecu.edu/che.

 

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Positive parenting program a success for ECU

ECU professor Kerry Littlewood lists high-risk situations for parents during a five-week positive parenting program held at ECU. (Contributed photo)

ECU professor Kerry Littlewood lists high-risk situations for child behavior problems during a five-week positive parenting program held at ECU. (Contributed photo)

By Nicole Wood
ECU College of Human Ecology

East Carolina University’s College of Human Ecology in partnership with the Pitt County Health Department and the university’s Department of Human Resources held a free, five-week Positive Parenting Program (Triple P) for faculty and staff.

Triple P was designed to treat and prevent common behavioral issues that parents may encounter when raising children and teenagers. ECU professors Eboni Baugh, Sharon Ballard, Kerry Littlewood and Lisa Tyndall focused the program on empowering parents to become more confident and efficient in their childrearing techniques.

Kerri Augustino, Triple P participant and lab specialist with ECU’s Department of Internal Medicine, said that this type of course should be an integral part of family planning. “When people are preparing for children to come into the world they attend classes on what to expect during the birthing process, they often take a tour of the hospital, or learn CPR, but what they should be taught how to be a good parent,” said Augustino.

ECU faculty leading the Triple P program provided information handouts specific to participants' needs.

ECU faculty leading the Triple P program provided information handouts specific to participants’ needs.

One of the Triple P program’s hallmarks is flexibility that allows for each provider to facilitate the program in a way that best meets participants’ needs. ECU’s sessions included provider-led activities, small-group discussions and individualized take-home tip sheets. The providers have also planned ongoing follow-up and information delivery via Blackboard.

Scheduled to accommodate attendance during employee lunch breaks, the program was more popular than expected with seating capacity reached within 48 hours. Due to the high demand, the program will be offered again in October and perhaps on an ongoing basis once a semester if funding can be obtained.

Littlewood, Triple P provider and ECU social work professor, said that grant funding from the Centers for Disease Control paid for initial training, accreditation and implementation of the program.  “There is still a question of how the course will be funded once the grant money runs out,” she said.

Dr. Matt Dwyer, director of ECU’s Center for Counseling and Student Development, said he was thrilled to be a Triple P participant and hopes that the program will continue. “Triple P allowed me to set my own goals and work on them with the support of the instructors and my classmates. Overall, I walked away very pleased, happy that I took the time out to engage in the program, and believe that I am a better parent as a result of my involvement in Triple P,” said Dwyer.

ECU faculty members are also serving as a Triple P evaluation team for the Pitt County Health Department. The team will evaluate different types of implementations, barriers to implementation, and delivery methods; measure program outcomes; and map delivery areas to identify gaps in coverage across the county. Their evaluation will then be used to improve implementation of the Triple P program throughout the county. Additionally, the group’s local evaluation will contribute to a larger cross-site evaluation of Triple P across multiple states.

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ECU professor receives national educator award

An East Carolina University professor in the College of Human Ecology received a national award at the American Hotel and Lodging Association Summer Summit in Houston June 19.

Deale

Deale

Cynthia Deale was presented the 2013 Lamp of Knowledge Award for Outstanding Educator in the United States from the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute.

Deale is an associate professor in ECU’s School of Hospitality Leadership and an affiliate faculty member of ECU’s Center for Sustainable Tourism. Her research interests include teaching and learning in hospitality and tourism, hospitality tourism management practices, service and sustainable hospitality.

Deale is a past president of the Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education and a long-time supporter of the educational institute’s certified hospitality educator program. She is one of the first professors to incorporate guest service gold and the certified guest service professional into her introduction to hospitality curriculum. She was also a significant contributor to the development of the STAR certification in hotel industry analytics, which was introduced to college and university hospitality programs this year.

For additional information about the American Hotel and Lodging  Educational Institute, visit https://www.ahlei.org/.

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Interior Design and Merchandising students receive national scholarships

By Sara Hocutt
College of Human Ecology

Two East Carolina University students in the College of Human Ecology were selected for nationally-competitive 2013-14 scholarships based on academic performance, industry engagement and faculty recommendations.

Truehill

Truehill

Interior design student Angela Truehill was one of six recipients in the nation to receive the Celia Moh Scholarship, which pays full tuition, room, board and fees.  Entrepreneur Laurence Moh, founder of University Furniture and Fine Furniture Design, created the Celia Moh scholarship program in 2001 to honor his wife.

Merchandising student Shelby Richards received the National Retail Foundation’s Ray M. Greenly Scholarship, which includes a $5,000 payment towards her school expenses. Richards will also represent ECU at the Shop.org Annual Summit in Chicago in September.

Truehill, a rising senior, said she was overjoyed with the news about the scholarship and excited about finishing her degree to become an interior designer. “Receiving this scholarship . . . will allow me to devote more of my attention to studying interior design, instead of working to pay for college,” she said.

Richards

Richards

Richards noted that the scholarship will open new opportunities for her in the fashion merchandising industry. “My plans are to go to a big city and work with a large retail corporation as a buyer. Attending the Shop.org summit will put me in contact with merchandising professionals from around the country. What an awesome opportunity to get my name out there,” she said.

For more information on the Department of Interior Design and Merchandising, its students and programs, visit www.ecu.edu/che/idmr.

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ECU FoodMASTER Camp instills a love for food, science, and math

By Nicole Wood
College of Human Ecology

Twenty-eight middle grade students from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Pitt County will receive hands-on math and science experience through ECU’s FoodMASTER Summer Science Camp in June (6/24-28) and July (7/8-12).

The students will cook and garden under the direction of hospitality leadership and

Dr. Melani Duffrin

Dr. Melani Duffrin

nutrition science faculty and students. Students will spend the week learning the science and math concepts involved in cooking, gardening, and nutrition.  By the end of the week they have will have reviewed concepts in the fields of biology, chemistry, horticulture, nutrition science and math all while having fun in the kitchen and garden.

FoodMASTER Summer Science Camp partners with Boys and Girls Club; A Time for Science, the nature and science learning center in southern Pitt County; and Save a Sea Turtle Foundation to offer the camp. Prior to FoodMASTER Camp, the children spend a week at A Time for Science learning about water quality and conservation.

Melani Duffrin, FoodMASTER principal investigator and ECU professor of nutrition science, and Virginia Carraway-Stage, FoodMASTER director and assistant professor of nutrition science, are leading the initiative to create and test a FoodMASTER curriculum for middle graders in North Carolina. The summer science camp is part of that project.

FoodMASTER Summer Science Camp Director Jacqueline De Chabert-Rios is an assistant professor of hospitality leadership.  David Rivera, Jr., associate professor of hospitality leadership, also helps with camp efforts.

FoodMASTER has received over $2.7 million in funding from the National Institutes for Health’s (NIH) Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) to develop, implement, and disseminate food-based curriculums and materials to K-12 teachers in North Carolina and beyond. The FoodMASTER curriculum incorporates food activities into Common Core Standards for math and science.

FoodMASTER was created in 1999 by Duffrin along with Sharon Phillips, an Ohio elementary school teacher, to bring science, math, and nutrition concepts to life through activities using common household items such as measuring cups and spoons, cereals, flour, fruits, vegetables, and milk.

Learn more at www.FoodMASTER.org.

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