Lane Powell (1941-2016)

lane

Lane Powell, instructor, administrator, and champion of family-life education, has died of pancreatic cancer. With her bubbly personality and booming Southern-accented voice, she was an unforgettable figure.

Lane received her Ph.D. in 1984 at Texas Tech, with a dissertation entitled “Evaluation of a church-based sexuality program for adolescents.” This research was published a year later in the journal Family Relations, with committee-chair Steve Jorgensen as co-author  (Powell & Jorgensen, 1985). Lane then followed a sequence that would take her to Birmingham, Alabama, back to Lubbock, and then back to Birmingham.

In 2007, Lane received the Meritorious Service to Families Award from the National Council on Family Relations, the leading professional society in the family-studies discipline. The university’s article on Lane’s award captured much of her career:

Powell was honored for her work as department chair at Samford University in Birmingham, Ala., where she developed the Human Development and Family Studies academic program and oversaw the construction of the Children’s Research and Development Center there from 1985-1999. Powell was also cited for her authorship of the first undergraduate textbook in Family Life Education and for her work as a group facilitator couple along with her husband [Bob] in the Association for Couples in Marriage Enrichment for more than 25 years.

Now in her 10th year as a faculty member at Texas Tech, Powell continues to build on her work at Samford University. She has been an advisor to the Texas Tech Council on Family Relations, which has won awards as a student professional affiliate, for seven years and she is also the certification advisor for the Certified Family Life Educator Program and a career advising specialist.

During Lane’s second stint at Texas Tech (approximately 1999-2013), she taught courses in HDFS and served in an administrative role created specially for her by then-Department Chair Dean Busby, namely Assistant Department Chair to work with the HDFS Associate Chair.

As noted above, Lane and her husband Bob were active in marriage-enrichment education. Part of this involved leading workshops for couples. In addition, Lane and Bob were highly sought-after guests in HDFS courses. Dr. Sylvia Niehuis regularly invited Lane and Bob to speak in her course on Partnering: The Development of Intimate Relationships (HDFS 2322). Lane and Bob would discuss their own marriage, as well as offer insights on healthy marriages.

“The students loved them,” said Dr. Niehuis. “They adored them, and so did I.”

If one goes to the website of the local newspaper, the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, and types “Lane Powell” (with quotation marks) into the search field, one will find 41 archived articles detailing her extensive educational contributions and community involvement. Lane and Bob were also ardent fans of Lady Raiders basketball.

Ultimately, Lane and Bob moved back to Birmingham in retirement, which included international travel, time spent with their children and grandchildren, and continued attendance by Lane at the annual NCFR conference (most recently in 2015 in Vancouver).

Lane and Bob’s daughter Sharon Powell, a Ph.D. recipient from the University of Minnesota, continues to carry the torch for family education and outreach.

Categories: Faculty, Outreach, Teaching

Awards and Honors to HDFS Faculty and Students (Early Fall 2016)

The Fall 2016 semester is only a few weeks old, but several faculty and students have already received professional awards and honors of various kinds:

  • Dr. Malinda Colwell and Child Development Research Center (CDRC) director Stacy Johnson were profiled in the university publication Texas Tech Today, for their work with other colleagues in the College of Human Sciences on improving the education of children in Malawi, Africa. The HDFS Blog first reported in 2013 on the efforts of Dr. Colwell and graduate student Holly Wright in Malawi.
  • Dr. Sylvia Niehuis has been invited to serve on the editorial board of the Journal of Family Theory & Review. This journal is one of the flagship publications of the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR).
  • Rebecca Oldham has been selected as the College of Human Sciences’ Graduate Student of the Month for October 2016. A profile of Rebecca will appear on this archive of honorees on or around October 1.
  • Dr. Elizabeth Sharp will receive the NCFR’s 2016 Anselm Strauss Award for innovation in family qualitative research, at the organization’s annual meeting in November. Dr. Sharp is also the new associate department chair, replacing Dr. Alan Reifman, who served in the post for the past six years. The associate chair mainly oversees the HDFS undergraduate curriculum.
  • Dr. Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo is only days away from officially being inducted into the Texas Tech Teaching Academy (click here for brief profiles of incoming members). The Teaching Academy honors faculty on campus for their effectiveness, creativity, and commitment in the teaching domain.
  • Dr. Dana Weiser was quoted in Redbook magazine, in an article on the satisfaction of single women in their 30s.
Categories: Faculty, Graduate Students, Research, Staff, Teaching

Meet Monica Martin, Our Newest Faculty Member

The Texas Tech HDFS faculty is expanding by two members this year, Monica Martin and Zhe Wang. Monica has arrived and begun teaching for us in the Fall semester. Below, we introduce her via a brief Q&A. Zhe will not be joining us until January, so we’ll save her introduction until then.

Before arriving in Lubbock, Monica traveled to Europe over the summer, as shown in the following photo. “It is the town square of Delft, a city in the Netherlands. I went to a symposium in Amsterdam in June and spent a little bit of time exploring,” she said. The rest of the interview appears below the photo.

monica-martin

Tell us about yourself.

I was born in California, grew up in the Pacific Northwest and – until now — had always lived on the West Coast. Before coming to Texas Tech University, I worked as a research scientist on several National Institutes of Health funded studies at the Family Research Group in the Department of Human Ecology at the University of California, Davis.

What are your research interests?

My research examines the influence of economic disadvantage on the emotional and behavioral health of youth and families. I primarily study behavioral health involving problem behaviors that negatively influence health and well-being such as delinquency, antisocial behavior, and substance use and abuse. Much of my work examines the family processes through which economic hardship impacts families and individuals across time and multiple generations of family members.

What will you be teaching in the Fall?

HDFS 6363 (Advanced Topics in HD), a graduate seminar on poverty, risk and resilience.

What kinds of things are you looking forward to at Texas Tech?

I am looking forward to continuing my research program examining the ways in which economic disadvantage influences families and youth. I am also looking forward to collaborating with faculty and involving students in this and other research.

How are you adjusting to Lubbock thus far?

I am adjusting well. Summer in Lubbock is surprisingly similar to Sacramento, although I think the winters will take some getting used to. I have been enjoying the BBQ here and am looking forward to exploring Lubbock further.

What do you like to do outside of school?

I enjoy playing board games, reading mystery novels, spending time with my husband, and would like to travel more frequently.

Categories: Faculty, Welcome

Mid-Summer 2016 Updates

Paulina Velez-Gomez, who received her Ph.D. in the recent May graduation, was awarded second place in the social sciences in the TTU Graduate School’s Outstanding Dissertation competition. Dr. Nancy Bell, who is now retired after 42 years at the university, served as Paulina’s advisor.

The research of Dr. Malinda Colwell and her colleagues, evaluating the impact of the PBS children’s television show “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood,” has been featured in the university publication Texas Tech Today.

Jackie (Wiersma) Mosley, who received her Ph.D. with us in 2008, received tenure and promotion to Associate Professor at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, this past spring.

Dr. Elizabeth Sharp is the new Associate Department Chair in HDFS. The Associate Chair mainly oversees the undegraduate curriculum. She replaces Dr. Alan Reifman, who held the position for the previous six years and will go back to being a “regular” professor.

Categories: Faculty, Graduate Students, Graduate-Degree Alumni, Research

HDFS Faculty, Grad Students, and Undergrads Receive Honors (Spring 2016)

2016 TTU awards convoc

The Spring 2016 semester is now over, except for a few more days of final exams. It’s been a very rewarding semester, as numerous HDFS faculty members and students have received various forms of accolades and recognition. Here’s a list:

FACULTY

As shown in the above photos, Drs. Sybil Hart (left) and Jacki Fitzpatrick (right) received awards at the annual TTU Faculty Honors Convocation on April 21. Interim President John Opperman is shown presenting the awards. Dr. Hart received the Barnie E. Rushing, Jr., Faculty Distinguished Research Award (Social Science, Humanities, and Creative Arts division), whereas Dr. Fitzpatrick was the College of Human Sciences’ recipient of the President’s Excellence in Teaching Award.

The newly named “Nancy J. Bell Graduate Faculty Excellence in Mentoring Award” honors Dr. Bell, upon her retirement after 42 years at Texas Tech. The award will be given to a TTU faculty member every year.

Also recognized for her work with students was Dr. Sylvia Niehuis, winner of the  Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award from the Center for Active Learning and Undergraduate Engagement (CALUE).

Dr. Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo was featured in the Texas Tech Today online newsletter in regard to her sex-education curriculum (also featuring graduate student Nancy Trevino Schafer).

Dr. Yvonne Caldera was also recognized in Texas Tech Today for her book, Mexican American Children and Families. Dr. Caldera was co-editor of the book and contributed three chapters to it.

Dr. Michael O’Boyle and Dr. Trejos will be conducting fMRI brain scans of youth exposed to violence in Colombia, based on a research grant from that country. The two will be collaborating with Drs. Mauricio Barrera and Lilliana Calderon, who have been visiting at Texas Tech this semester.

Dr. Dana Weiser received the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) Innovative Teaching Award. Dr. Weiser’s award was based on projects in her graduate human-sexuality course, in which graduate students developed and distributed information on practicing safe and consensual sex. SPSSI’s list of winners of this award (to which the 2016 results should soon be added) is available here, whereas a Daily Toreador article on Dr. Weiser’s class activity is available here.

GRADUATE STUDENTS

Several students took home prizes at the annual Graduate Research Poster CompetitionRebecca Oldham, first-place, and Ivette Noriega, runner-up, in the Families & Relationships category; and Manju Chawla, runner-up in the Investigating Behavior & Control category.

Rebecca Oldham also received the  Helen Devitt Jones Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award.

Undergraduate students elected to Texas Tech’s chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest academic honor society, are asked to name influential professors/instructors in students’ academic and intellectual development. HDFS graduate instructor Desiree Walisky was among those recognized by student inductees.

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

At the Center for Active Learning and Undergraduate Engagement (CALUE) Undergraduate Research Conference, two students from Dr. Niehuis’s lab, Kristen Ginste and Orlando Parales, were recognized as Top Poster Presenters in the Social Sciences. Kristen also won Honorable Mention for Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher overall. Benjamin Finlayson, who worked with Dr. Elizabeth Sharp, received a Top Poster Presenter award in the Humanities.

Categories: Graduate-Degree Alumni, Research, Teaching, Undergraduate Students

Film Series and Colloquium Talks (Spring 2016)

A film series now in its third semester and a brand-new program of colloquium speakers highlight this semester’s cultural and research activities for the HDFS department and the larger community.

The Sexism in Cinema series, which “considers how sexism is embedded, endorsed, and/or challenged in the cinema,” features a monthly film screening followed by discussion. Admission is only $3 for each film. The series is sponsored by several TTU programs and among the co-organizers are HDFS faculty members Dr. Elizabeth Sharp and Dr. Dana Weiser. Click here for the Spring 2016 schedule and further details.

The colloquium marks the first time in recent decades (if not, ever) that HDFS has put together a slate of speakers entirely from outside our department. Speakers, with the titles and dates of their talks, are listed in the flyer below. The talks will be held in Human Sciences Room 102 from 3:30-5:00 on the listed dates.

colloq flyer

The colloquium series was organized by a committee consisting of Dr. Sharp, Dr. Jacki Fitzpatrick, and graduate student Miriam Lieway.

Categories: Faculty, Graduate Students, Outreach, Research

HDFS Faculty’s Recent Grant Receipt

Several Texas Tech HDFS faculty members (shown in bold below) have recently been awarded research grants to conduct their studies. These awards are from both internal (Texas Tech) and external (federal-government and private-foundation) sources.

  • Michael Escamilla (Principal Investigator), Michael O’Boyle (co-PI) & Hugo Sandoval. “Assessment of biomarkers for youth at risk for Bipolar Disorder (Type 1) using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI),” funded by the TTU Presidential Collaborative Research Grants Program.
  • Sylvia Niehuis (PI) & Ireland, M. (Co-PI). “A language-style-matching X person model of engagement/disengagement in spouses’ courtship interviews,” funded by the TTU Scholarship Catalyst Program.
  • Alan Reifman (PI) & Sylvia Niehuis (co-PI). “Analyzing fMRI data from studies of romantic relationships,” funded by the TTU Scholarship Catalyst Program.
  • Yoojin Chae (PI). “The roles of authenticity and attachment in children’s attention and memory,” funded by the Amini Foundation for the Study of Affects.
  • Elizabeth Trejos (PI), Ann Mastergeorge (co-PI) & Andrea Jackowski. “Incidence and effects of toxic stress on neurodevelopmental, cognitive and socioemotional outcomes in children and adolescents: A cross-national comparative collaboration,” funded by the Sao Paulo Researchers in International Collaboration (SPRINT, Brasil).
  • Melissa Barnett (PI), Ann Mastergeorge (co-PI) & Christine Cutshaw. “Child care factors that influence parental engagement: Understanding longitudinal pathways to children’s school readiness,” funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families.
Categories: Faculty, Research

Fall 2015 Semester in Review

Another semester is in the books. In addition to doing our usual academic work and holding job searches that we expect to bring two new faculty members to our department by next fall, HDFS graduate students and faculty took time out to help others and to have fun on a bowling night.

According to Dr. Stephanie Shine, HDFS Early Childhood program director, graduate students in the Texas Tech affiliate of the National Council on Family Relations (Tech CFR) “conducted a gift drive in the college for TTU Early Head Start and got beautiful gifts for 66 children.”

Students pictured above wrapping presents include Jennifer Harris, Yang Liu, Andrea Parker, Diane Wittie, and Shu Yuan, along with our office assistant Jennifer Holland. Thanks to Holly Babbitt, our new graduate administrative secretary, for the photos of the wrapping process!

The following photos (posted with parental permission) show children receiving their gifts.

***

Earlier in the semester, HDFS faculty and grad students hit the lanes at Main Event Entertainment.

bowling ann-mal-rebLeft to right, new chair Dr. Ann Mastergeorge, Dr. Malinda Colwell, and Rebecca Oldham illustrate the stages of roll delivery.

bowling sharp-shupe-kareem-manjuDr. Elizabeth “Strikethrower” Sharp (light-blue sweater) lets one go, whereas Kareem Al-Khalil (upper-right) gets ready to do the same. Also seen in these pictures are Rick Shupe (behind Elizabeth), Manju Chawla, and Stacy Johnson (lane closest to wall).

bowling ann & others

Left to right watching the action are Andrea Parker, Rebecca Oldham, Yang Liu, and Drs. Colwell and Mastergeorge.

bowling conversations

Clockwise from upper-left, Drs. Wonjung Oh and Elizabeth Trejos-Castillo; Yang Liu, Dr. Sharp, and Dr. Dana Weiser;  Dr. Alan Reifman; and Manju and Rebecca, with Shu in the background.

bowling big group photoFinally, left to right, we have Manju, Andrea, Ann, Holly Wright, Shu, Dan Fang, Rebecca, Wonjung, and Stacy.

Categories: Faculty, Graduate Students, Outreach

NCFR 2015 in Vancouver

vancouver skyline

Several Texas Tech HDFS faculty and graduate students ventured up to the Great Northwest — Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, specifically — for the annual conference of the National Conference on Family Relations (NCFR) in mid-November. The distant mountains were clouded over and it rained much of the time, but there was no figurative dampening of people’s spirit!

One of the highlights for the Texas Tech group was Dr. Elizabeth Sharp’s receipt of the  Alexis J. Walker  Award for Mid-Career Achievement in Feminist Family Studies, captured in this linked photo from the official NCFR website. Elizabeth is shown in the following montage with (clockwise from upper-left) Dr. Shannon Weaver (a graduate-school colleague of Elizabeth’s at Missouri); Andrea Roets Swenson (a former TTU graduate student); a visitor to our department’s table at the universities’ reception; and Dr. Anisa Zvonkovic (a former faculty colleague at Texas Tech).

esharp

Dean Linda Hoover of Texas Tech’s College of Human Sciences (right, shown with Dr. Jean Scott) traveled to Vancouver to host a reception in honor of Elizabeth’s award.

IMG_1938

The upper-left photograph in the next montage shows (left to right)  HDFS graduate students Rebecca Oldham, Ivette Noriega, and Jennifer Lindsey, and Dr. Dana Weiser. The lower-right photo shows Andrea, two Ph.D. recipients from our program, Jeremy Boden and Jennifer Rojas-McWhinney (both seated), and a visitor.

small groups

Our new HDFS department chairperson, Ann Mastergeorge (left) chats with, among others, Elizabeth’s graduate advisor, Larry Ganong (right), from Missouri.

IMG_1939

Finally, we have a group shot with Ivette, Rebecca, Dr. Sharp, Jennifer, Satabdi Samtani (grad student), and Dr. Weiser.

IMG_1947

On various people’s shirts and lapels, an orange button may be seen with the expression “E#.” In musical terminology, this would represent “E Sharp,” thus serving as a nickname for Elizabeth. In actuality, there is no such musical note as “E#,” but why let that detract from a great nickname?

Categories: Faculty, Graduate Students, Graduate-Degree Alumni, Research

Award to Dr. Sylvia Niehuis

Dr. Sylvia Niehuis was among only five recipients on the entire Texas Tech campus of the 2015 Mortar Board and Omicron Delta Kappa Faculty Recognition Award. According to the award notification, “This is a student nominated award based on the outstanding qualities of the faculty in and out of the classroom.” Dr. Niehuis received the award at a reception on November 12 in the McKenzie-Merket Alumni Center. In the following photo, Maria Maza (left) presents the award to Dr. Niehuis. (Maria and Jessica Corder oversaw the award-nomination process.)

sylvia award

Categories: Faculty, Teaching

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.