Noteworthy

Faculty, Staff & Student Accomplishments

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Brenda G. Kucirka
School of Nursing

Nursing Professor Receives Excellence in Nursing Award from Main Line Today

Brenda Kucirka, associate professor of nursing, was named a top nurse in the region by Main Line Today. Kucirka was named in the publication's 2022 Excellence in Nursing Awards, an annual recognition that asks nurses in the main line and western suburbs to cast votes for their peers in a variety of specialties. A 2013 graduate of Widener's doctoral nursing science program, Kucirka was honored for her excellence in nursing education. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/nursing-professor-receives-excellence-nursing-award-main-line-today

Catherine Safran Profile Image
College of Arts & Sciences

Biology Professor Published in Genetics Journal

Catherine Safran, assistant teaching professor of biology, and her collaborators have had their article, "Osteocytic Pericellilar Matrix (PCM): Accelerated Degradation under In Vivo Loading and Unloading Conditions Using a Novel Imaging Approach," published in Genes, a peer-reviewed journal covering genetics and genomics. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/biology-professor-published-genetics-journal

Center for Human Sexuality Studies

Human Sexuality Professor Named as IARR Fellow

Pamela Lannutti, professor and director of the Center for Human Sexuality Studies, has been named an International Association for Relationship Research (IARR) Fellow. 

Fellow status is awarded to IARR members who have made sustained, outstanding contributions to the field of scientific research into relationships in the areas of research, teaching, service, and application. Candidates must have completed at least ten years of postdoctoral contribution to be considered. 

Read more: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/human-sexuality-professor-named-iarr-fellow 

Wolfgram Library
Wolfgram Memorial Library

Faculty Awarded PA Global Library Licensed Materials Grant

Assistant Librarian Adam Mizelle, Widener University's campus-representative for Affordable Learning PA, was awarded a PA Global Library Licensed Materials grant in collaboration with Jenifer Norton, Sabitha Pillai-Friedman, and Donald Dyson for their adoption of library licensed materials for use in their classes. 

Affordable Learning PA is a community of practice among academic libraries and higher education partners in the Pennsylvania region to advance textbook affordability. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/faculty-awarded-pa-global-library-licensed-materials-grant

Wolfgram Library
Wolfgram Memorial Library

Library Faculty Receive Award from Nursing Honor Society

Jill Borin, librarian and head of the archives and distinctive collections, and Kristina Dorsett, affiliate librarian, were chosen to receive the Friend of the School of Nursing Award given through Widener's Eta Beta chapter of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing. The Friend of Nursing Award is conferred by local chapters and recognizes an individual or organization that is not eligible for regular membership but has impacted the chapter, the local nursing or health care community, and/or the health of people in a significant way.  

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/library-faculty-receive-award-nursing-honor-society

Michelle Storrod
College of Arts & Sciences

Criminal Justice Professor Publishes Findings on Impact of Phone Removal Among Girls in the Juvenile Justice System

Michelle Lyttle Storrod, assistant professor of criminal justice, published a paper in the International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy demonstrating that removing access to phones for young females in the juvenile justice system can cause a rupture of girls’ digital ecology. The research, generated from an ethnographic study, showed that phones act as a positive and protective force supporting girls through feelings of safety, helping them cope with challenging events at home and on the street. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/criminal-justice-professor-publishes-findings-impact-phone-removal-among-girls-juvenile-justice

Robert Wellmon
College of Health & Human Services

Physical Therapy Professor Publishes on Influence of Clinical Instructor Experience on Assessing DPT Student Clinical Performance

Robert Wellmon, distinguished university professor in the Institute for Physical Therapy Education, is a co-author on this mix-methods study published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Education. The purposes of this study were to examine whether novice and experienced clinical instructors' assessment practice differ and explore the reasons for these differences. Findings showed a low number of statistically significant differences between novice and experienced clinical instructors awarding Clinical Performance Instrument ratings which suggests that there were few true quantitative disparities between the assessors.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/physical-therapy-professor-publishes-influence-clinical-instructor-experience-assessing-dpt-student

Robin L. Dole
College of Health & Human Services

Robin Dole Co-Authors Paper on Competency-Based Education in Physical Therapy

Robin Dole, dean of the College of Health & Human Services, is a co-author on this paper published in Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Journal discussing competency-based education (CBE). In this perspective article, Dole and the co-authors demonstrate support for utilizing the CBE philosophy and highlight four themes: the need for a shared language, an overview of CBE and the impetus for the change, how to shift toward CBE in physical therapy, and why the profession should adopt a mindset requiring purposeful practice across one’s career in order to safely and most efficiently practice in a given area.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/robin-dole-co-authors-paper-competency-based-education-physical-therapy

Annalisa Castaldo
College of Arts & Sciences

English Professor Publishes Text on Study of Fictional Versions of Shakespeare

Annalisa Castaldo, associate professor of English and director of Gender Women and Sexuality Studies, published the book "Fictional Shakespeares and Portraits of Genius." The text offers a study of fictional versions of Shakespeare which demonstrates that Shakespeare is used to explore and understand different conceptions of genius. This study is the first to investigate how cultural interpretations of "genius" influence, and are reflected in, fictional portraits of Shakespeare. It explores the wide range of portraits (including children's books, romance novels, graphic novels, and film) that bring Shakespeare to life, and suggests that different portrayals present different conceptions of genius. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/english-professor-publishes-text-study-fictional-versions-shakespeare

Paul Baker
College of Arts & Sciences

Physics Professor Co-Publishes Article Detailing Evidence Hinting at Gravitational Waves

Paul Baker, assistant professor of physics, joined an international team of astronomers in publishing results of a comprehensive search for a background of low-frequency gravitational waves. Gravitational waves, ripples in the fabric of spacetime itself, permeate all spacetime and could originate from mergers of the most massive black holes in the universe or from events occurring soon after the formation of the universe in the Big Bang.

The work of the International Pulsar Timing Array (IPTA) collaboration is described in an article accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. The IPTA is a consortium of several astrophysics collaborations from around the world: the European Pulsar Timing Array, the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav), which Baker is a member of, the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array in Australia, and the Indian Pulsar Timing Array Project, its newest member.

“These results make a very promising step in our continued efforts to detect low-frequency gravitational waves,” said Baker, who is co-chair of the IPTA’s gravitational wave analysis working group.

Baker led an extensive comparison between the IPTA data set and other recent data sets from the large regional scientific collaborations as part of this work. 

“The combined IPTA data set, which uses older data, is just as sensitive as the newest data from its individual members. This demonstrates what can be gained scientifically by working together,” said Baker, who joined the IPTA in 2016. 

Read the full findings here.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/physics-professor-co-publishes-article-detailing-evidence-hinting-gravitational-waves

Christine A. Pariseault
School of Nursing

Nursing Professor Publishes Findings on Nurses' Experiences Caring for Patients during COVID

Christine Pariseault, assistant professor of nursing, is first author on this article entitled, “Original Research: Nurses' Experiences of Caring for Patients and Families During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Communication Challenges” which published in the American Journal of Nursing. This article explains the experiences of nurses caring for patients and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic. Policies in many hospitals have changed to fit the social requirements of social distancing and social isolation. This article further investigates the perspectives of nurses actively working with the new challenges they face.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/nursing-professor-publishes-findings-nursing-caring-patients-during-covid

Center for Human Sexuality Studies

Human Sexuality Professor Studies Impact of COVID-19 on Personal Relationships

Pamela Lannutti, professor and director of the Center for Human Sexuality Studies, is first author on a the article “Relationships in the time of COVID-19: Examining the effects of the global pandemic on personal relationships” which published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. This article, which includes 29 research articles with authors and samples from 28 countries across all continents except Anatricia, looks at the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on personal relationships including romantic relationships, family relationships, friendships, and relationships with strangers.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/human-sexuality-professor-studies-impact-covid-19-personal-relationships

Tracie Gilbert
Center for Human Sexuality Studies

Human Sexuality Faculty Member Publishes First Book

Assistant Professor Tracie Q. Gilbert has published her first book, Black & Sexy: A Framework of Racialized Sexuality through Taylor & Francis Publishing, a subsidiary of Routledge. The book is an in-depth look at the role race plays in the sexual ideation and imagination of African-American people. 

It is based on dissertation research from which Gilbert created a theoretical model of sexual engagement, entitled Black Sexual Epistemology. The book begins with an overview of how race has impacted sexuality for African Americans over time. It ends with practical insight on how sexuality practitioners can more effectively address race and racial injustice in the work they do with students and clients. 
 
The book is available for purchase online.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/human-sexuality-faculty-member-publishes-first-book

Susan Schaming profile
College of Health & Human Services

Education Professor Presents on Power of Constructive Conversations with PK-12 Students

Susan P. Schaming, associate professor and director of graduate counselor education program, presented at the annual conference of the PA School Counselor Association on December 9 in Hershey, Pennsylvania.  Her presentation: Hope for the future begins today: Using constructive conversations in PK-12 schools offered techniques for school counselors to respond to the imperative of supporting PK—12 students’ awareness, reflection, response, and reaction to personal biases. Schaming purports that left unaddressed, the discrimination of marginalized individuals and groups will subsist in our schools and communities. Kim’s Constructive Conversations model was emphasized as a tool to help students to manage conflict, promote healing, and find their voice. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/education-professor-presents-power-constructive-conversations-pk-12-students

College of Health & Human Services

Physical Therapy Professor Uncovers Unethical Implications of International Service-Learning

Kripa Dholakia, an assistant professor in the Institute for Physical Therapy Education, co-authored a research report in the Journal of Physical Therapy Education on ethical dilemmas in International Service-Learning (ISL). Titled “Uncovering Ethical Dilemmas in International Service-Learning: A Grounded Theory,” the study used a constructive theory ground approach to understand the experiences, perceptions, and insights of faculty, students, and alumni who attended an ISL experience as well as to analyze the participants’ ethical nature. Ten students, six faculty members and five alumni from varying doctor of physical therapy programs across the country travelled to Central America to take part in an ISL program to identify potential ethical misconduct. The groups’ experience indicated that further research is needed to identify best practices for future ISL experiences to prevent future ethical dilemmas from arising.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/news/noteworthy/physical-therapy-professor-uncovers-unethical-implications-international-service-learning

J. Wesley Leckrone
College of Arts & Sciences

Arts & Sciences Faculty Member Named Distinguished University Professor

College of Arts & Sciences Professor J. Wesley Leckrone has been named a Distinguished University Professor. The honor recognizes faculty of distinction and demonstrates to the broader community that Widener is committed to recognizing excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service throughout a faculty member’s career. Distinguished professors serve for three years.

Leckrone is an impressive member of the faculty, and he is widely recognized for his teaching excellence. His extraordinary commitment to his teaching has not only earned him a national and global reputation but has led to him being a leader on campus. The energy and time that he devotes to course preparation and development illustrate his dedication to his students. Leckrone has published in highly prestigious, peer-reviewed journals, contributed articles and chapters in national and international edited volumes and edited and contributed to a two-volume set on Pennsylvania politics. In terms of service, Leckrone has contributed to multiple levels of faculty governance, as well as externally with organizations such as the Center for the Study of Federalism and the Pennsylvania Political Science Association. Leckrone’s continuous engagement with his research and his network ultimately provide a richer learning experience for Widener’s undergraduate and graduate students. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/node/22531/

Head and shoulders shot of Professor Kate Goodrich
College of Arts & Sciences

Faculty Institutional Leadership Award Given to College of Arts & Sciences Associate Professor

College of Arts & Sciences Associate Professor Katherine R. Goodrich has received the Faculty Institutional Leadership Award. It recognizes a record of leading initiatives that further the university’s vision, mission, and strategic objectives.

Goodrich’s leadership roles in academic affairs and related Faculty Council work have helped shape academic policies and communications between academic units at the university. She has spearheaded several major campus initiatives centered on improving our climate around diversity, equity, and inclusion, and these initiatives have all had positive outcomes on the central tenants of our “We’re All Widener” identity. Goodrich has worked to build a more cohesive, equitable, and inclusive campus culture at Widener. Her visionary and persistent diversity, equity, and inclusion leadership has been recognized across the university and led to her election as the first chair of the new Faculty Council Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. Goodrich has focused much of her service activities on academic affairs and has contributed at all levels of the university. She served as chair of the Faculty Council Academic Affairs Committee for two terms (four years) and is seen as a strong leader at Widener. 

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/node/22546

Head and shoulders shot of Dr. Nadine McHenry in front of stone wall
Center for Education

Fitz Dixon Innovation in Teaching Award Given to Community Engaged Teacher Education Program Coordinator

The Fitz Dixon Innovation in Teaching Award has been given to College of Health and Human Services Professor Nadine McHenry. It is awarded to an individual or group who has designed, implemented, and assessed innovative or experimental teaching and learning project. 

McHenry serves as coordinator of the Community Engaged Teacher Education (CETE) program, which has completely transformed teacher education in the Center for Education since its inception in 2016. CETE places teacher candidates in local classrooms and pairs them with community mentors in the city of Chester to develop culturally relevant teaching strategies and help teachers close the opportunity gap for students in diverse urban settings. McHenry is involved in all aspects of this multi-layered program, which benefits education students, undergraduate faculty, and the communities they serve. 

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J. Wesley Leckrone
College of Arts & Sciences

Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award Goes to College of Arts & Sciences Faculty Member

College of Arts & Sciences Distinguished University Professor J. Wesley Leckrone has received the Lindback Distinguished Teaching Award. This award is given to a faculty member who has demonstrated a history of teaching at the highest level. It is endowed by the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation, a Philadelphia-based foundation that provides grants to institutions of higher education for the promotion of excellence in teaching.

Leckrone is an integral member of the political science faculty who has the distinction of teaching a wide range of interdisciplinary courses and provides the highest quality instruction to both majors and nonmajors. Leckrone is a specialist in U.S. government, American political culture, and state and local politics. His commitment to teaching is reflected in the innovative ways he fuses his courses with high-impact practices and actively promotes civic engagement. Leckrone continually creates transformational learning experiences for his students by planning student trips such as going to Harrisburg for Student Advocacy Days, to Washington D.C. for visits to the Supreme Court and White House, and to New Hampshire for the 2020 presidential primary contests.

Share link: https://www.widener.edu/node/22556

Shirlee M. Drayton-Brooks
School of Nursing

Nursing Faculty Member Named Distinguished University Professor

Professor Shirlee M. Drayton-Brooks has been named a Distinguished University Professor. The honor recognizes faculty of distinction and demonstrates to the broader community that Widener is committed to recognizing excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service throughout a faculty member’s career. Distinguished professors serve for three years.

Drayton-Brooks is a nationally recognized leader in nursing education, especially in the preparation of Doctor of Nursing (DNP) Practice students. She initiated this program at Widener and continues to lead it. Drayton-Brooks is a role model for undergraduate and graduate nursing students and has facilitated the scholarly development of multiple students, advising translational research projects and chairing dissertations. Her national reputation is signified by her position as a Past President of the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties. She is also a Fellow of the National Association of Nurse Practitioners. She has made tremendous contributions to nursing education through her role on the National Advisory Council on Nursing Education and Practice and as director of both the DNP and Family Nurse Practitioner programs at Widener. Drayton-Brooks demonstrates a record of excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service. 

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