Tim Oblad recently defended his dissertation research project to receive his Ph.D. He has accepted a position as an Assistant Professor of Human Development in the Department of Human Sciences at Texas A&M-Kingsville. The school is located way down in South Texas. We wish Tim the best in this new endeavor!
Visitors to the main university website (www.ttu.edu) were greeted today by a profile of our new HDFS chairperson, Ann Mastergeorge. The profile article is available here.
Our department has long participated in the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance (GP-IDEA), a consortium of 13 universities (on the Human Sciences side). Students select a home university among the available schools, but can take online courses at any university in the group. Different GP-IDEA programs offer Bachelor’s degrees, Master’s degrees, and graduate certificates (see list of programs).
Dr. Jean Scott, who has spearheaded our department’s involvement with the Alliance, reports that, “Brittany Selph will be an August 2015 graduate — our first GP-IDEA master’s with concentration in Youth Development.” The following photo shows, from left to right, Dr. Scott, Brittany, and Dr. Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo, Texas Tech’s faculty representative in the Youth Development program.
Dr. Scott’s area is the Gerontology program.
We have three brief items, all within the theme of “HDFS and Media.”
- One story is about using the tools of child-development research to study media presentations for children. Dr. Malinda Colwell, who is part of a Texas Tech faculty consortium studying the impact of the public broadcasting cartoon show “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” on young children’s “cognitive, emotional, and psychological development,” presented earlier this week at the national PBS conference in Austin, Texas. Dr. Colwell’s former grad student, Kim Corson, Ph.D., who works at the University of Houston’s PBS station, was also on hand. Kim tweeted this photo of her (right) with Malinda.
- The second story is about having students use media in the college classroom. To help students in her undergraduate Gender Development course prepare for their final exam, Dr. Elizabeth Sharp had small groups of students create short videos that reviewed key concepts within a given course topic. Two YouTube videos, voted as the best by students in the two sections of Gender Development, are available here and here.
- Finally, another of our Ph.D. alumni, Lehigh University Professor of Practice Sothy Eng, has begun writing a column for the Huffington Post. Sothy writes about historical and contemporary issues in his native country of Cambodia. His author page, with links to his articles, is available here.
Since our last installment of HDFS awards, we garnered a few more:
- Dr. Sybil Hart was recognized at the April 28 TTU Faculty Honors Convocation as the College of Human Sciences nominee for the Barnie E. Rushing, Jr., Faculty Outstanding Research Award.
- HDFS students Shu Yuan, Ivette Noriega, and Andrea Parker took first, second, and third place, respectively, in the Human Sciences II category at the university’s 14th Annual Graduate Research Poster Competition. (The Human Sciences I category appeared to center on business/financial fields such as hospitality and financial planning, whereas Human Sciences II focused more on social sciences.)
Dr. Dana Weiser and students in her graduate Human Sexuality course developed materials and staffed a table by the Student Union on Wednesday, April 15, to promote safe and consensual sexual behavior. The event was held in conjunction with the national Faculty Against Rape organization’s Faculty Day of Action. A detailed report on the activity is available from the Daily Toreador at this link, whereas photos of the event and the materials are available here.
The department has received several additional awards recently, beyond the ones announced in March. The latest recipients include:
- Dr. Stephanie Shine and her colleagues in Texas Tech’s Early Head Start program, who received a large grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to team up with the Lil’ Precious Steps daycare center and serve additional children in East Lubbock. It’s one little precious step for our community, one giant leap for child-development programming!
- Dr. Jacki Fitzpatrick, who was honored as a “Raider Who Rocks” in the area of Academic Integrity.
- Dr. Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo, recognized for “Professing Excellence” by University Student Housing.
- Two students, Marisol Alonzo and Grace Mihalyov, who won awards at the annual TTU Undergraduate Research Conference. As shown in the program, Marisol worked with researchers in the College of Education’s Burkhart Center for Autism Education and Research on the study “Evaluating the Television Show Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood as a Video-Based Model to Teach Social Skills to Children with Autism,” whereas Grace’s project was entitled, “The Effects of Code-Switching on Preposition Stranding in Spanish-English Bilinguals.”
- One of our students has won the Helen DeVitt Jones Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award. Check here for the awardees’ names to be made public.
Several Texas Tech HDFS faculty members and graduate students participated in the biennial Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD) conference, held March 19-21. The host city should “ring a bell.”
Though some parts of the country were starting to warm up in late March, Philadelphia still had some snow. There was also better weather during the weekend, however.
Dr. Malinda Colwell (left) and Ph.D. student Holly Wright presented a poster on their research into nutrition and child development in Malawi, Africa. Background information on this unique project is available in one of our earlier postings.
Meanwhile, Ph.D. student Jennifer Harris presented a poster (co-authored with her advisor, Dr. Sybil Hart) on their study of older siblings’ “expectant” status awaiting the arrival of a new brother or sister.
Anuradha Sastry, another doctoral student who works with Dr. Hart (and with Dr. Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo), presented on an intervention with infants in India, based on Dr. Hart’s book Lullaby Massage.
Finally, another of our faculty members, Dr. Yoojin Chae, ventured south of Center City to the famous intersection that hosts two of Philly’s leading cheese-steak restaurants.
Thanks to the pictured individuals for allowing use of their conference photos!
HDFS faculty and students have been earning recognition on the Texas Tech campus in many areas:
- Ph.D. student Paulina Velez-Gomez was featured in Texas Tech Today‘s “Student Spotlight” on March 5 (article link). The article discusses Paulina’s plan to return to her home country of Colombia after finishing her degree and use the knowledge gained here at Texas Tech to help communities back home.
- Another of our Ph.D. students has earned a dissertation fellowship from the TTU Graduate School. Once the Grad School publicly reports the winners (which we expect to happen soon), we will disclose the HDFS student’s name.
- HDFS undergraduate Gilde Flores was also featured in Texas Tech Today (February 26). While the main article focuses on his musical career outside of school, there is a sidebar column to the right of the article in which he discusses his time in the HDFS program. Flores lists the following people as his favorite instructors: Mitzi Ziegner, Yvonne Caldera, Shera Jackson, Jeffrey Wherry, Ronda Eade, and Alan Korinek.
- Judy Fischer, whose retirement was covered here, has officially been granted Emeritus Professor status by the TTU Board of Regents.
- Also as part of the Regents’ agenda, they granted Dr. Michael O’Boyle a Faculty Development Leave for the Fall 2015 semester. During this time, he will “visit the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center (UNMHSC) for one semester, during which time we will analyze a myriad of behavioral and neuroimaging data on the neuroscience of creativity… Also, he will develop future collaborative studies between UNMHSC/MIND Research Network and the Texas Tech Neuroimaging Institute (TTNI).”
We hope everyone had a good holiday break and is excited to be back for the Spring 2015 semester. Here are a couple of news briefs:
- Professor Yvonne Caldera and former Texas Tech colleague Eric Lindsey (now at Penn State-Berks) are the editors of a new volume entitled Mexican American Children and Families: Multidisciplinary Perspectives (link).
- This HDFS Ph.D. student appeared as a contestant on Jeopardy! in an episode that aired during the break. If you asked,”Who is Jennifer Harris?”, you would be correct. In case you missed the episode, you can watch it here.