The International Country Music Conference was recently held at Belmont University. The annual conference, under Co-Chairs Don Cusic and James Akenson, hosts country music scholars for three days of presentations and panel discussions.
During this year’s event, there were presenters from Japan, Norway, Germany, England, Canada and Australia. The Belmont Award, given for the Best Book on Country Music during calendar year 2015, was presented to Barry Mazor for his book, Ralph Peer and the Making of Popular Roots Music. The Chet Flippo Award, sponsored by Rolling Stone Magazine for excellence in country music journalism, was given to Jewly Hight.
Pictured, left to right, are James Akenson, Barry Mazor, Jewly Hight, Bevel Dunkerley (Senior Editor, Rolling Stone Country) and Don Cusic.
Assistant Professor of Economics Dr. Colin Cannonier was recently quoted in Harvard Business Review’s The Daily Stat, a daily electronic newsletter that provides quick facts and figures in an easily digestible format.
Cannonier provided information in HBR’s coverage of the U.S.’s Family Leave Act in The Daily Stat’s article “Family Leave Act in U.S. Increases Women’s Probability of Giving Birth.” Cannonier provided statistics on the frequency of births among women who are eligible under the Family and Medical Leave Act, versus those who aren’t.
For more information, click here.
Assistant Professor of Music Elisabeth Small recently presented a session, “Shifting Strategies,” at the American String Teachers Association (ASTA) 2015 National Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. The presentation focused on organizing the shifting process for string teachers and students to develop a comfort zone for fluid and reliable shifting. Small also explored ways to achieve confidence in shifting by examining and coordinating listening skills, left-hand logistics, bow planning and timing.
ASTA, founded more than 65 years ago, is a membership association for the national string community with approximately 8,000 members.
Assistant Professor in Belmont’s College of Business J. Haskell Murray recently presented at an impact investing conference sponsored by the University of Michigan and Morgan Lewis, a law firm. Immediately following that event, Murray presented at the Center for Nonprofit Management’s (CNM) Bridge to Excellence conference.
For more information on the impact investing conference click here.
Assistant Professor of Biology Dr. Chris Barton recently presented in the Scholarship of Teaching Learning section at the 76th Annual Meeting of the Association of Southeastern Biologists in Chattanooga. His presentation, “Using DNA Barcoding to Supplement Classical Taxonomic Methods in an Undergraduate Curriculum,” focused on the use of DNA barcoding, a molecular assay that uses DNA sequencing as a means to characterize plant and animal specimens that are otherwise difficult to identify. He also highlighted ways this technique can be incorporated into undergraduate science courses and research programs.
The Association of Southeastern Biologists (ASB)is the largest scientific professional organization in the southeastern U. S. with approximately 1400 members from 220 academic and 60 non-academic institutions. ASB’s mission is to promote biology through research and education and is supported each spring with an annual meeting where faculty and students (both graduates and undergraduates) present research in a friendly and collegial environment.
Alumna Trisha Yearwood, singer, entertainer, best-selling author and cooking show host, will soon be honored with a new exhibition at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Trisha Yearwood: The Song Remembers When. The exhibition will open July 3 and run through December 2015.
The exhibit will include stage clothes, awards, photos, cooking items and other memorabilia from Yearwood’s personal collection, chronicling her life and career. Starting with her hometown of Monticello, Georgia, the exhibit will include major milestone’s in Yearwood’s life including her move to Nashville, graduation from Belmont and start to her career as a tour guide at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and receptionist at a record company. The exhibit will end with her successful journey to becoming one of the best-selling female artists in country music history.
Yearwood’s many hit singles include “Walkaway Joe,” Wrong Side of Memphis” and “XXX’s and OOO’s (An American Girl),” among others.
Yearwood’s diverse career includes becoming a member of the Grand Ole Opry, authoring three New York Times best-selling cookbooks and hosting the Emmy-Award winning Food Network show, “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen.” Most recently, Yearwood has moved into a new marketing with the release of her new cookware line, Trisha’s Precious Metals, and her new line of furniture, The Trisha Yearwood Home Collection.
Dean and Professor of the Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences and Nursing Dr. Cathy Taylor was recently honored as one of Nashville Medical News’s 2015 Women to Watch. For the 10th year, Nashville Medical News has profiled a group of women in Middle Tennessee who are making a difference in the health care landscape of Nashville, Tennessee or beyond through their work as clinicians, public health officials, advocates, administrators, association executives or professionals.
Taylor has been working as the College of Health Sciences’s Dean since 2012, after serving as the assistant commissioner for the Tennessee Department of Health’s Bureau of Health Service Administration, an assistant professor at Vanderbilt University Nursing School of Nursing and the director of the Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance Disease Management Program.
Dr. Taylor said she is grateful for the mentors and role models that have encouraged her throughout the career, and she greatly enjoys the opportunity to serve in a similar role for her students. “What an honor to be counted as part of this group of extraordinary women. I am blessed to be able to do the work I love every day, surrounded by respected colleagues and exceptional students.”
For a full list of the 2015 Women to Watch honorees, click here.
On April 10, sixteen Belmont biology, biochemistry and molecular biology and neuroscience students attended the 27th Annual Butler University Undergraduate Research Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana. 954 people attended the conference and participated in more than 500 presentations. Participants represented 58 colleges and universities in 16 states and the District of Columbia. Belmont faculty members Mike Pinter (mathematics), Rachel Rigsby (chemistry/physics), Roger Jackson and Jennifer Thomas (biology) also attended, and Thomas served as a session chair.
Students gave the following oral presentations:
Belmont psychology major Justin Lang was recently accepted into the Washington Program of the Institute for Responsible Citizenship, a premiere organization for some of the nation’s top African American male college students.
The program runs through June and July and is a two-summer commitment. During the first summer, students focus on classes, internships, meetings with inspirational leader, and bonding with the other young men in their cohort. Professional development, character development, mentorship and graduate school preparation are priorities for the second summer, although students work full-time at internships.
Joining other undergraduates from universities such as Harvard, Yale, New York University and others, Justin will participate in a full-time internship over two consecutive summers. This summer he will be interning with the Children’s Defense Fund.
Belmont faculty members and students from the Department of Psychological Science attended the annual conference of the Middle Tennessee Psychological Association held at MTSU on Saturday, April 25. Faculty attendees included Drs. Linda Jones, Pete Giordano, Seraphine Shen-Miller, William Bailey and Lonnie Yandell. The conference provides an opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students to present their research to colleagues from other colleges and universities.
The following research papers were presented by Belmont students:
The following research posters were presented by Belmont students:
Curb College music business instructor Dwayne O’Brien was recently invited to perform his song, “We Remember,” as the featured soloist at a gala dinner as part of the Arsenal of Democracy: World War II Victory Capitol Flyover. The three-day event included one of the most diverse arrays of World War II aircraft ever assembled flying above the skies of Washington, D.C. in celebration of the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day.
The dinner, held at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, featured combat heroes sharing their personal stories of experiences in the European and Pacific theaters. O’Brien, a pilot himself, wrote “We Remember” as a a tribute to military aviation, and his video for the song has been viewed nearly 3 million times on YouTube. The video was played as O’Brien, co-founder of country band Little Texas, sang along to those gathered at the Arsenal of Democracy gala.
A 2014 thesis project by three students in Belmont University’s Occupational Therapy Doctoral Program was recently published in Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology. Co-authored by Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy Dr. Teresa Plummer, the project studied the impact of mobility assistive technology devices on participation for individuals with disabilities.
The research team included Jordan Carver, recent OTD graduate, Ashley Ganus and Jon Mark Ivey, 2004 OTD graduates. Ann Eubank, a Nashville area occupational therapist and social worker associated with Belmont’s School of Occupational Therapy, was an additional co-author.
Lori Rucker, a 2011 graduate of Belmont’s Master’s of Arts in Teaching program, was recently nominated and selected to attend the Elevating and Celebrating Effective Teaching and Teachers Conference (ECET² ) by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
ECET²’, a conference aiming to celebrate effective teachers and build a strong network of teacher leaders who will work together to elevate the practice and profession, will feature workshops focused on teacher leadership development and teaching practice. All attendees will be asked to share take-aways with teachers back home, in collaboration with colleagues from the conference.
Belmont University sophomore songwriting major Maddie Larkin signed a publishing contract with Sony/ATV Music Publishing after participating in the Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business’s “All Access” program.
President and CEO of Sony ATV Music Nashville Troy Tomlinson said,“We were truly impressed with the level of talent of the Belmont students. Maddie’s abilities and commercial appeal moved us to sign her to a publishing deal and begin what I suspect will be a long time relationship and many years of success.”
The “All Access” program was developed to give Belmont students the opportunity to present their music to the world’s leading music publisher. Students were able to submit two music videos to the Sony/ATV Creative team, who then selected six students to perform live for the team in Columbia Studio A on February 23. The “All Access” program will continue in the upcoming school year.
Larkin feels incredibly honored to be chosen. “I am so grateful to be joining the Sony/ATV team! Since I first started coming to Nashville to write when I was 15, I have dreamed of being able to call Sony my home. Thank you to God, my family and everyone that has believed in me. I feel so blessed,” she said.
Professor and Chair of the Biology Department Dr. Darlene Panvini taught a botany class in Fall 2014 that visited the Historic Sam Davis Home and Plantation in Smyrna multiple times as part of the class’s service learning component. The students collected leaf samples from more than 40 trees on the property to apply for arboretum certification with the Tennessee Urban Forestry Council. Panvini’s Fall 2012 botany class did similar work to advance the arboretum on Belmont’s campus towards reaching certification by the Nashville Tree Foundation.
Linday Millward and Joanna Sorrell, Belmont students, accompanied Dr. Panvini on April 30 to present all of the identified, pressed tree samples for the 41 tree to Director of Collections and Education Alex Collins. The pressed tree samples will be stored in an herbarium cabinet that the Belmont Biology Department donated to the plantation last August.
Associate Professor of Music Business Dr. Cheryl Slay Carr was recently interviewed on the television talk show, “Mind Your Music Business.”
Hosted by Jesse Goldberg, Dr. Slay Carr discussed her book,”Music Copyright Law,” co-authored with David Moser and the release of her new CD, “Invocation.”
In April, pharmacy students in the Ambulatory Care Pharmacy course led educational classes at Room In The Inn, a community of participants, guests, volunteers and staff who work together to offer hope to Nashville’s homeless population. The organization serves more than 4,000 homeless individuals each year.
Assistant Professor in the College of Pharmacy Dr. Ashton Beggs teaches the course to second and third year students each spring, focusing on disease states seen in primary care settings and best practices for patient education.
Room In The Inn offers over 3,000 classes annually, covering a wide range of subjects including health, spirituality, GED preparation and art. Participants earn points for taking classes and can use them to purchase socks, gloves, bus passes or other useful items.
Dr. Beggs’s students taught five classes at Room In The Inn in April. These classes focused on primary care topics including diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, smoking cessation and asthma.
Student Catie Martin stated, “I thoroughly enjoyed the time we spent teaching the clients at Room at the Inn. It was a very rewarding experience to be able to teach these individuals about diseases and to see how much they already knew!”
Student Kandice Squires said she was impressed with how much her students learned during the class. “Teaching Diabetes Bingo at Room In The Inn was an incredible, enlightening experience,” Squires said. “The attendees were very interactive; sharing their current knowledge, answering questions, and having discussions with each other and students, which demonstrated they were retaining the information presented during the game.”
In a partnership with The Tennessean, seven Belmont students were recently selected to write short, pithy profiles of each of the seven candidates vying for Nashville’s open mayoral seat. Participating students include MacLean Pillon, Sarah Ellis, Morgan Bolen, Mara White, Jonathan Joyce, Kirk Bado and Hayden Rutledge, all studying political science or journalism at the University.
Working with Opinion Engagement Editor at The Tennessean David Plazas, students listened to candidate interviews and turned them into short profiles that highlighted main platform stances and remaining questions. With a millennial’s viewpoint in mind, topics included education, affordable housing and transportation, among other things that are top-of-mind for the demographic.
Moving forward, the students will join Plazas in a podcast interview produced by the Tennessean and will be present at the June NashForward debate, held on Belmont’s campus. At the event, the students will have the opportunity to ask questions of the candidates in the town hall setting.
For Pillon’s profile on Megan Barry, click here.
For Eillis’s profile on Charles Robert Bone, click here.
For Bolen’s profile on David Fox, click here.
For White’s profile on Bill Freeman, click here.
For Joyce’s profile on Howard Gentry, click here.
For Rutledge’s profile on Jeremy Kane, click here.
For Bado’s profile on Rebrovick, click here.
For an overview on the student’s profiles, click here.
Assistant Professor of Management and Business Law J. Haskell Murray presented his paper, “An Early Report on Benefit Reports,” at the University of Connecticut’s Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Conference. Other invited academic presenters included professors from Yale University, University of Michigan and Georgia Institute of Technology. Practitioner presenters included an EVP of Newman’s Own Foundation, CEO of Greyston Bakery, CEO of EcoLogic Solutions and the Director of Sustainable Development and Community Engagement at Praxair.
The Audio Engineering Society (AES) Nashville hosted its annual Spring Mixer student mixing competition at Viacom Studios on April 23. Belmont’s team, “We Dim Boyz,” took second place in the event. The team consisted of AES student members Shane Bauman, Dave Villa, Cory Wilhite and Luke Woodward.
Teams from six audio programs throughout the Middle Tennessee region, including Belmont University, Blackbird Academy, The Art Institute of Tennessee, MTSU, Nashville State Community College and the School of Audio Engineering, mixed a song chosen by the AES committee in identical mixing suites, courtesy of CMT. The final mixes were submitted to a panel of six judges for review based on the AES mix criteria. The results were presented at the Spring Mixer event, held at West End United Methodist Church, where students, educators and industry professionals listened to pieces of the student mixes and the judges’ critiques.
Three foreign language students recently received national awards this spring:
Marissa Mitchell and Kelsea Riddick have been awarded Teaching Assistant Program (TAPIF) grants from the French Ministry of Education to serve as English Teaching Assistants in France for the 2015-16 year.
Emma Cate Whitefield has been awarded a grant from the Austrian Ministry of Education to serve as an English Teaching Assistant in Austria for 2015-16.
These grants are based, among other factors, on the student’s ability in the respective country’s language, as well as their knowledge of its culture. Mitchell, Riddick and Whitefield represent the high quality of work, both in teaching and in advising, that occurs in the Department of Foreign Languages at Belmont.
Two doctoral students in Belmont’s Occupational Therapy program recently completed their residency projects which provided wheelchairs and professional support to children and their families in San Carlos, Mexico. Claire Grecco and Tara Harper completed complimentary projects under the academic advisement of Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy Dr. Teresa Plummer and with assistance from the faith-based charitable organization, Reach Out and Care Wheels (ROC Wheels), based in Bozeman, Montana.
For her project, Grecco piloted the creation of a local chapter of Youths Empowered with the Helper Spirit to Reach Out and Care at Nashville’s Ezell Harding Christian School. Through the program, students learned about the international need for wheelchairs and helped raise money to provide wheelchairs for children.
Both Grecco and Harper traveled to Mexico to distribute five custom-fitted wheelchairs provided by ROC Wheels and took photo and videos of the children receiving the wheelchairs so they could share the experience with those who helped raise necessary funds. While in San Carlos, Grecco and Harper also assisted local therapists in fitting over 60 adult and pediatric wheelchairs and provided education regarding their use to caregivers.
Harper’s project was to create a caregiver education manual to support the caregivers to the children who received the wheelchairs. The manual includes important health information regarding seating and mobility, as well as wheelchair maintenance and adjustment.
Doctoral candidates in occupational therapy each design a culminating project which requires 640 hours to advance their skills in the areas of clinical practice, research, administration, leadership, program and policy development, advocacy, education and/or theory development.
Edgehill’s Best, a free community newspaper run once a year, is scheduled to hit the shelves within the Edgehill community by the beginning of June. Produced by a partnership between Rose Park Math and Science Magnet Middle School and Belmont University, the project began under the direction of Belmont’s Director of Community Relations Joyce Searcy and engages Rose Park 7th and 8th graders in creating a newspaper as part of their journalism class. The partnership brings together professors from Belmont’s Media Studies and Education Departments and teachers from Rose Park including 8th Grade Language Arts Teacher Audrey Lyell.
Last year’s edition was created under the guidance of Belmont Media Studies Instructor Dorren Robinson and Assistant Professor of Media Studies Dr. Hyangsook Lee. The duo, working alongside Department Chair Dr. Thom Storey and Searcy, produced the eight-page edition. This year, Belmont’s Education Department joined the partnership and Chair of the Education Department Dr. Mark Hogan traveled to Rose Park weekly to teach the students about journalism and writing.
With 11 Rose Park students participating in the publication of this year’s edition, Dr. Hogan said the opportunity to work directly with the students has been invaluable. “The students had great ideas and showed leadership in bringing a project to completion. I believe they learned about writing for publication, specifically for newspapers and how that is different than classroom writing for assignments,” Dr. Hogan said. “This also allows the Teacher Education Department to further engage in our commitment to be the ‘feet in the street’ education program in Nashville.”
This year’s Nashville Film Festival featured four films from China, their directors and a number of representatives from China’s film industry. Assistant Professor of Asian Studies and Chinese Dr. Qingjun Li was the translator for the community VIP session entitled, “The Future of Film in China.” This year, for the first time, Chinese box office sales eclipsed those in the U.S.
Belmont alumnus Logan Snider, December 2014 graduate with a major in music performance (flute) and a minor in Japanese, was recently selected for the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme. JET is now in its 27th year and is aimed at promoting grass-roots international exchange between Japan and other nations.
The number of countries sending participants has risen over the years, as has the number of participants. Since JET began, there have been more than 60,000 participants from 63 countries. Snider was a member of Belmont’s Japan Travel Study in 2012 led by Drs. Cynthia Bisson and Marieta Velikova. Snider will join Belmont alumna Dianna Antenucci who is in her third year as a JET. So far, four Belmont students have received JET appointments.