Randolph Wins 2015 Anthropology and Sociology Student Presentation Award

Achievers.RandolphSenior Alpha Chi member Anna Randolph’s research won this year’s overall Anthropology and Sociology Student Presentation Award at the 2015 Alpha Chi Honors Society National Convention. Student presentations are the centerpiece of every Alpha Chi Convention, and an award is given to a student in each of the 28 disciplines.

Randolph’s project, entitled “Cultural Appropriation in URBN Incorporated 2014 Lookbooks: Erasing Cultures, Making Trends,” was conducted with senior sociology student Courtney Bright as a part of Dr. Andi Stepnick’s Visual Sociology course. The research focuses on a sociological approach to understanding cultural appropriation in the fashion industry, particularly in the context of the multinational lifestyle corporation, Urban Incorporated.

According to the Alpha Chi judges form, this award is given to a student that demonstrates exceptional “focus and organization of the presentation, depth and complexity of the treatment, use of research materials, engagement with the audience and contribution to scholarship in the field.”

Gustke Receives National Endowment of Humanities Grant


Belmont English Department Lecturer Charmion Gustke recently received a grant from the National Endowment of the Humanities to participate in the Summer Institute “Transcendentalism and Reform in the Age of Emerson, Thoreau, and Fuller” in Concord, Massachusetts.

Gustke will be one of 25 scholars participating in the two-week program focusing on antislavery, women’s rights and the treatment of Native Americans during the antebellum period. Project faculty will investigate how these critical efforts were informed by the historical and religious underpinnings of Transcendentalism’s reform agenda as a whole.

The Seminar will therefore explore Transcendentalists’ motivation to correct the inequities of America’s educational and religious institutions, their transatlantic relationships with social activists across the ocean, their burgeoning awareness of an environmental consciousness and their ability for merging the intellectual transformation in 19th Century science with their reform ethic.

Students Present at Economic Association Annual Meeting

COBASpencer Barnes and Andrew Kennedy, Belmont economics majors in Belmont’s College of Business, recently attended and presented their paper, co-authored by fellow Belmont student Gaëlle Deslandes, entitled “Viva La Gini Revolution: An Empirical Consideration of a Maximum Wage Policy to Help Battle Income Inequality” at the Issues in Political Economy (IPE) 22nd Undergraduate Research Conference in Economics.  The 2015 conference was recently held at the Eastern Economic Association Annual Meetings in New York City. The conference brings together undergraduates from across the country to present and share their research with peers. Students also serve as session chairs and discussants.

In their paper, the students used data from the March 2013 U.S. Consumer Population Survey to examine the potential effect of a maximum wage on wage inequality. They also explored how current measures of the Gini coefficient in the U.S. compares with other nations during historic revolutionary periods.

Their findings revealed that while income inequality is an important factor for revolutions, the role of government appears to be more influential in citizen revolts. The study also concluded that a maximum wage can be an effective tool for lowering income inequality. These results shed some light on non-conventional approaches to addressing income distribution and achieving socially desirable outcomes.

The students were accompanied  by Research Advisor and Faculty Member Dr. Colin Cannonier.

Curb College Hosts Law and Professionalism Clinic

2015CEMB Clinic photo 2Belmont’s Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business conducted its 4th Entertainment Law & Professionalism Clinic earlier this month. Originally implemented in 2009, the clinic was developed to expose Belmont students to the practice of professionalism while serving entertainment industry legal needs at no cost to participating students.

This year’s clinic was staffed by CEMB Lecturers Drs. John Ouellette and Vincent Peppe, Assistant Professor of Music Business Dr. David Maddox and Associate Professor of Music Business Dr. Cheryl Slay Carr. The Clinic is operated through a partnership with the Tennessee Volunteer Lawyers & Professionals for the Arts, an arm of the Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville led by Executive Director Casey Summar.

This year’s clinic also afforded a select group of Belmont Law and undergraduate students the opportunity to participate as non-clients by shadowing clinic attorneys or supporting the administrative functions of the clinic.  A companion professionalism convocation/seminar was offered by Dr. Slay Carr, who conceptualized the clinic to educate students on professionalism within the entertainment sector and instruct students on how to select and meet with attorneys and other business professionals.

Pedagogical insights from the Clinical Project are captured in an article by Slay Carr published in The Journal of The Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association.

Doctor of Nursing Practice Students Attend Student Summit

policy summit 2015Four doctor of nursing practice (DNP) students attended the AACN Student Policy Summit held in Washington, DC March 22-24. The students were immersed in program sessions focused on the federal policy process and nursing’s role in professional advocacy. 

As part of the summit, participants made visits to Capitol Hill with Associate Dean of Nursing Dr. Martha Buckner, meeting with legislative staff of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pension committees.

Student Jennifer Jaramillo said, ”The policy summit was such an amazing opportunity to advocate for nurses in Tennessee and across the nation. Building a network with other nursing leaders was an invaluable experience that will enrich our future practices. Advocacy and policy play a major role in our nursing practice and the future of our profession.”

Pictured are DNP students Jennifer Jaramillo, Kathryn Dambrino, Danielle Voss, and Kristen Allen as they wait for a meeting in Senator Bob Corker’s office.

Occupational Therapy Students Participate in Day on the Hill

Belmont OT2On March 3, more than 50 Belmont Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) students attended Tennessee Occupational Therapy Association’s (TNOTA) Day on the Hill.

The students joined a group of 120 other students and practitioners from across the state, forming the largest organized representation to date for TNOTA Day on the Hill.

The group was led by Belmont Professor of Occupational Therapy Dr. Hachtel and John Williams, TNOTA’s state lobbyist who provided an orientation regarding pertinent bills potentially affecting the profession on the state legislature’s docket this session.

After the orientation, the students met with Health Committee members to discuss the role of occupational therapy and how specific bills affect services provided to the legislator’s constituents. Additionally, Belmont OTD students helped staff TNOTA’s booth at Legislative Plaza to promote the profession to all state government officials.

Gustke Published in ‘Cather Studies 11′

Gustke_CharmionBelmont English Department Lecturer Charmion Gustke recently wrote an article entitled “The Trafficking of Mrs. Forrester: Prostitution and Willa Cather’s A Lost Lady” that will appear in “Cather Studies 11: Willa Cather and Modernist Crux,” a collection of essays published by the University of Nebraska Press.

Gustke’s article explores the exchange and objectification of Cather’s illusive Mrs. Forrester in light of the rise of prostitution in Denver in the early 1900’s and the subsequent social outcry against “the white slave trade.”

Students Present at History Honor Society Regional Conference

150228_0004Members of Belmont University’s Xi-Alpha Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta (History Honor Society) recently presented papers at the organization’s 2015 Tennessee Regional Conference held at Austin Peay State University.

The participants, Kaytlynn Lowhorn, Cassia Kisshauer, Braxton Fralick and Erin Weber, presented original historical research on topics in American History. The students were accompanied by Xi-Alpha Chapter Faculty Advisor Drs. Cynthia Bisson and Douglas Bisson.

Walton Presents Paper at Midsouth Philosophy Conference

melanie_waltonAssistant Professor in Belmont’s Department of Philosophy Mélanie Walton, recently presented a paper at the 39th annual Midsouth Philosophy Conference at Rhodes College in Memphis.

The paper, entitled “Inclining Thought: Heidegger and Anselm,” is an exploration into the necessity of actualizing one’s natural rational disposition through cultivating a specific inclination to reason, proposed by the contemporary existentialist Martin Heidegger and curiously demonstrated by the medieval philosopher Saint Anselm. While at the conference, Walton also delivered a response paper on John Duns Scotus and the nature of God’s will.

Interdisciplinary Faculty Team Receives Grant from Higher Education Commission


(L to R): Dr. Lunsford, Kate McGowan, Dr. Bonnie Smith Whitehouse, Dr. Darlene Panvini, Dr. Kim Daus and Dr. Sally Barton-Arwood

In 2014, Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Dr. Lauren Lunsford, Director of Clinical Practice Kate McGowan, Associate Professor of English Dr. Bonnie Smith Whitehouse, Professor and Chair of the Department of Biology Dr. Darlene Panvini, Professor and Associate Dean of the College of Sciences and Mathematics Dr. Kim Daus and Associate Professor of the Education Department Dr. Sally Barton-Arwood were awarded an Improving Teacher Quality grant from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission as part of the federal Race to the Top initiative.

As part of the grant, these faculty members developed a summer workshop entitled “Food and Gardening:  Growing Partnerships between Science Teachers and English Teachers to Support Instruction of the 6-12 Reading Literature and Informational Text Common Core Standards” for area teachers. In planning the workshop, STEM, English and Education faculty worked collaboratively to read, review state and national educational standards, plan lessons and assess best practices for learning and teaching.

The entire team presented on their research, workshops and innovative ongoing collaboration at the National Science Teachers Association in Chicago on March 12.

For 2015, the team, now including Associate Professor of Math and Education Dr. Ryan Fox was awarded a second grant and will be presenting another series of workshops this summer. The friendship and research yielded by their ongoing work exemplifies Belmont’s commitment to interdisciplinary collaboration and community partnerships.

Belmont PharmD Graduates Matched for Residencies

pharmacy 2014-165Twenty-four graduates and soon-to-be graduates of Belmont University’s College of Pharmacy have been selected for pharmacy residency programs following the annual match process conducted for the American Society of Health-Systems Pharmacists (ASHP). About 4000 residencies are being offered in 2015 through the ASHP Match, a competitive application process.

Belmont placed 90 percent of applicants in first-year residencies, compared to an overall placement rate of 65 percent.  For second-year residencies, Belmont placed 75 percent compared to an overall placement of 70 percent.  First-year pharmacy residencies provide post-PharmD training in health systems, managed care oand community settings, while second-year residencies provide advanced training in a focused area of patient care.

Graduates selected for first-year residencies include Samantha Wheeler (Baptist Medical Center South in Jacksonville, Florida), Mary Martin Johnson (Birmingham VA Medical Center in Birmingham, Alabama), Jessica Yost (Charleston Area Medical Center in Charleston, West Virginia), Denise Ann Bentley (Cookeville Regional Medical Center in Cookeville, Tennessee), Noah Ploegman (Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska), Nicholeah Jade Lay (Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center in Knoxville, Tennessee), Lindsey Bruce Thomas (Mission Hospitals in Asheville, North Carolina), Maggie Montgomery (New York Harbor Healthcare Systems in New York, New York), Jessica Brinkley (Saint Thomas West Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee), Sara Rower (St. Luke’s Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri), Margaret Morgan Goodman (St. Thomas Rutherford Hospital in Murfreesboro, Tennessee), Meghan Quillen Duquette at (VA North Texas Health Care in Dallas, Texas), Patrick David For (Vanderbilt University Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee), Vanessa Kirkwood (Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center in Indianapolis, Indiana), Jocelyn Grace Mason (Providence Health and Services in Providence, Oregon) and Emily Paige Doss and Nilamben Mahesh Patel (VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System in Nashville, Tennessee).

Belmont PharmD graduates accepted for second-year residencies include Kelly Lynn Maguigan (Critical Care residency at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee), Shannon McVeigh (Geriatric residency at Central Arkansas Veterans Health Care System in Little Rock, Arkansas), Kendall Shultes (Oncology residency at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri), Erika Wass (Oncology residency at Loma Linda University in Loma Linda, California) and Emily Brinser and Kenneth Carver (Health System Pharmacy Administration residencies at HCA/University of Tennessee College of Pharmacy in Nashville, Tennessee).

In addition, Traci Okoli, a fourth-year PharmD student, was granted a research fellowship by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at their Clinical Research Pharmacy Coordinating Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Chemistry Students Present at American Chemical Society National Meeting

group_SMACS_posterChemistry Professors Drs. Alison Moore, Rachel Rigsby and Justin Stace recently traveled with students to the 249th American Chemical Society (ACS) National Meeting in Denver, Colorado. The conference, themed around “Chemistry of Natural Resources,” included 130 poster sessions, more than 10,000 papers presentations, nearly 4,000 poster presentations and more than 6,000 oral presentations.

The following Belmont Chemistry majors presented undergraduate research posters during the conference:

  • Sami Ansari: “Comparison Between Two Extraction Techniques Used to Isolate Antioxidants from the Pith and Carpellary Membrane of pomegranates”
  • Daniel Beagan : “Synthesis and Reactivity of an Enzyme-Mimic Nickel(II) Complex”
  • Spencer Colling: “Ligand Exchange of an Enzyme-Mimic Schiff-Base Copper(II) Complex: A Kinetic Study”
  • Vickie Lim: “Computational Analysis of Conformational Tunneling of Glyoxylic Acid”
  • Leena Patel :“Determining The Effects of Processing on Antioxidant Activity in Cilantro, Parsley and Rosemary”

Additionally, the students presented a poster highlighting student members of Belmont’s American Chemical Society (SMACS) chapter at SCI-MIX, a meeting-wide poster event for student chapters across the country, as well as selected research posters from every ACS division.

Belmont SMACS past-president Vickie Lim accepted a Commendable Chapter Award honoring the chapter for their activities and outreach during the 2013-2014 academic year. Belmont’s SMACS chapter, led by Dr. Alison Moore, has received a prestigious Commendable Award seven of the past eight years. Only about 100 chapters from across the country and Puerto Rico are honored with this award annually.

AED Club Volunteers at Project C.U.R.E


Belmont University’s Alpha Epsilon Delta (AED) Premedical Honor Society members volunteered at Project C.U.R.E.-Nashville on Saturday, March 21 and sort through medical supplies including IV tubing, suture supplies and casts/braces to prepare for shipment.Participating members included Nancy Le, Libby Ligon, Madeline Johnson, Austin DeMaagd, Himesh Zaver, Jacob Dahm, Brooke Pugsley and Alicia Hsu.

Project C.U.R.E. was founded in 1987 and Nashville’s location is one of five distribution centers in the U.S. where donated medical supplies are sorted, packaged and labeled to be sent to various countries in need of health care supplies. Thanks to the dedication of thousands of volunteers nationwide, two to three cargo containers of life-saving aid leave Project C.U.R.E.’s warehouses weekly.

Jones and Giordano Present at Southeastern Psychological Association Meeting

linda_jonespete_giordanoPsychological Science Chair and Associate Professor Dr. Linda Jones and Psychological Science Professor Pete Giordano attended and presented at the annual meeting of the Southeastern Psychological Association (SEPA) meeting on March 18-21.

Dr. Jones is the co-chair of the SEPA subcommittee for the Joint Committee on Equality of Professional Opportunity/Psi Chi undergraduate poster research program.  She facilitated the review and presentation of over 170 undergraduate research posters and was a co-presenter on two symposiums entitled “Leveraging Undergraduate Research Opportunities” and “Undergraduate Publishing Opportunities.”  Dr. Giordano gave the SEPA/Psi Chi Distinguished Lecture entitled “Identity Development in College Students:  Can Random Comments Change Lives?”

Founded in 1955, SEPA is the largest psychological organization in the southeast and one of largest in the U.S. The purpose of SEPA is to advance psychology as a science, a profession and a means of promoting human welfare. SEPA’s mission is to stimulate the exchange of scientific and professional ideas across the diverse areas of psychological inquiry and application.

Dowell Wins Student Communication Speech Competition

The six speech finalists

The six speech finalists

Belmont’s Communications Studies Department holds the COM 1100 speech competition every semester to honor students’ exceptional speaking. Each speech instructor chooses one participant from their class to participate and six are chosen to advance to the final round. On March 18, Allison Hardee, Julia Crone, Chase Wofford, Brandon Corsi, Rachel Holloway and Tucker Dowell competed in the contest. 

This semester’s winner was Tucker Dowell who delivered his speech, “Tell Me How To Feel” about what poetry is, the way poetry makes people feel and how poetry can heighten one’s emotional intelligence.  

“I learned that people respond to emotion. People respond to you being genuine. The poetry isn’t necessarily all that good. The speech wasn’t necessarily all that good. From a technical stand point, there are many flaws in both. I learned that people relate to emotion. By being vulnerable, you show the part of the audience members that the audience members themselves are scared to show others. You allow someone to feel themselves, to be themselves, when you take the burden off their shoulders. People like feeling themselves. People like being themselves,” said Dowell. 

Dowell concluded his speech with a poem of his own saying,

“Close your eyes and feel me
Feel me
As you rake your nails against your coffin
Feel it
That pit
That pit inside your soul
Making it hard to chew
So hard to chew”

Professor and Chair of the Communication Studies Department Dr. Mary Vaughn described the criteria judges look for to explain what set Dowell apart. “A speaker must have great delivery, quality research sources, effective oral citation of sources, clear and logical structure, compelling and engaging supporting material and effective opening and closing devices. Not an easy package,” Vaughn said. 

The event is organized by Lambda Pi Eta, Belmont’s speech honor society and is judged by area alumni and Lambda Pi Eta students.  Judges this year included Brianna Kirby, Cory Mabry, Julia Ragsdale and Jake Townsend.

To hear Dowell’s speech in full, click here

Taylor Contributes to Maternal and Child Health Navigator


Dean of the College of Health Sciences Cathy Taylor was part of the original design team of national experts, supported by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB), who worked to develop and launch the MCH Navigator beginning in 2010.

The MCH Navigator is an online portal and clearinghouse for maternal and child health professionals, students and others working to improve the health of women, children, adolescents and families for training on key MCH and leadership topics. The project contains in-depth training portals on specific issues of importance to public health professionals and highlights learning opportunities focused on MCH topics.

The team worked on the project for several years, and after development and testing, the Navigator is housed and maintained at Georgetown University with permanent support by a grant from the MCH Bureau, Health Resources and Services Administration and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Click here to learn more about the project.

The team’s paper, “The MCH Navigator: Tools for MCH Workforce Development and Lifelong Learning,” describes the Navigator and the development process and was published last month in the MCH Journal. Click here for the abstract and full text. 

Hopfensperger Published in ‘Legacies of Our Great Grandmothers — Early Tennessee Women’

Achievers.HopfespergerFinancial Officer for the Massey College of Business Susan Hopfensperger researched and wrote the biographies of six women living in Tennessee on or before 1850 that were included in the two-volume set of books “Legacies of Our Great Grandmothers – Early Tennessee Women,” soon to be released for sale. The year 1850 was chosen because that census was the first to list all women by name. Earlier censuses had listed only the head of household and included tick marks to indicate the age ranges of males and females.

Hopfensperger researched, wrote and submitted proof documents to record the lives of Adelicia Hayes Franklin Acklen Cheatham, her mother, Sarah Hightower Hayes, Sarah Lewis Pine Hardin McNeil, Josephine Thompson Bryan Hardin and Catherine Wheatley Saunders and her sister, Mary Wheatley Saunders. All of these women are ancestors of the General Francis Nash chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) members. Hopfensperger is an associate member of the chapter and serves as Volunteer Genealogist and chapter chair of the State Regent’s book project.

The books, a fundraiser for the DAR State Regent’s project, are priced at $130 per set.  More than 260 women are featured in approximately 1,300 pages. Each biographical sketch was verified and all proof documents were cited in footnotes. Funds raised will be used for patriotic, historic preservation and educational purposes.

Hopfensperger and other writers are scheduled to sign copies at the Tennessee DAR State Conference in April.

Belmont Security Adopts Fuel-Efficient Ford Fusion Hybrid Patrol Cars

Patrol CarThe Office of Campus Security (OCS) is transitioning its fleet of patrol vehicles from Ford Crown Vics to more fuel efficient and economical Ford Fusion Hybrids as part of the department’s commitment to Vision 2020. The lower fuel costs, in conjunction with decreased maintenance costs and improved resale value, are expected to result in significant savings and double fuel efficiency.

The newly designed markings, created by OCS in conjunction with University Marketing, feature the new uniform patch displaying the Belmont bell tower and help project a more visible, professional image for the officers.

“We wanted our vehicles to be clearly marked and readily distinguishable as both Belmont University and Campus Security to promote security on campus and to aid in promoting our mission of community policing: being a professional campus security organization  dedicated to providing service, support and response to the Belmont community,” said Chief of Campus Security Pat Cunningham.

The mid-sized Ford Fusions are smaller, lighter, more fuel and energy efficient, easier to maneuver and better suited to the campus environment, while still offering comfortable transport when providing escorts or assisting citizens. The Fusions also feature new LED light bars which provide increased visibility, particularly in low lighting and inclement weather, to alert motorists when security is directing traffic around an accident or road hazard.

Belmont Mock Trial Team Wins Regional AAJ Competition

Mock Trial TeamBelmont University College of Law’s Mock Trial teams recently competed in Louisville, Kentucky at the regional tournament for the American Association for Justice (AAJ).

The winning team, comprised of Ardath Griffin, Rachel Hogan, Ron Laffitte and A.C. Agee, were the No. 1 seed going into the elimination round and won the regional championship. This team will go on to the national tournament in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in April to represent Belmont College of Law.

This is the second year in a row that Belmont has had an undefeated team at the tournament. When evaluated by individual judges, Belmont now has a two year combined record of 47-4.

A second team, comprised of Nelson Suarez, Tim Wills, and Miles Brooks (with special witness Courtney Lutz), ranked fifth after the preliminary rounds, narrowly missing the quarterfinals by one point from a singular judge.

College of Law Associate Professor and Faculty Advisor Amy Moore said, “I am so proud of our students! They have put in countless hours of practice and have dominated at the regional tournament. We are very excited to participate in another national level competition.”

Gonzales Featured in The Tennessean & USA Today


Dean of the College of Law Judge Alberto Gonzales was recently featured in a story published in The Tennessean entitled, “Alberto Gonzales, Now at Belmont, Relives Bush Years.” Highlighting Gonzales’s background, career and upbringing, the story describes his years working as general counsel for then-Governor George Bush and then as his year’s as Attorney General.

To read the story, click here.

As a Ganette publication, USA Today also posted the story online.

Gonzalez, Velikova Lead Student Cuban Trip

Cuban tripTwenty-five Belmont students, led by faculty members Jose Gonzalez and Marieta Velikova, recently returned from a 10-day trip to Cuba where Gonzales and Velikova taught a course entitled “The Emergence of Private Enterprise within the Boundaries of a Communist Economy.”

During the trip, students explored the economic and policy changes the island is undergoing and how those changes are impacting the economy, particularly small business owners. In addition to exploring the island and its culture, student participants heard from local economists and lawyers, attended sessions at the University of Havana and interacted with medical students after hearing a presentation on the Cuban health care system.

Gonzales said he encourages all of his students to study abroad whenever possible and even leads multiple trips annually. “I think it’s one of the most valuable experiences that one can have while in college, when done correctly. Every trip I plan though, I like to anchor it around the broader theme of entrepreneurship and economic development. Cuba is no exception. We conceptualized this trip to explore recent economic reforms undertaken in Cuba that allow micro enterprise development to flourish,” Gonzalez said.

Senior marketing and music business major Erin Beezley said she has spent a lot of time traveling abroad, but when the opportunity to venture to Cuba presented itself she was eager to learn more. After spending time in Cuba and the people she met, Beezley said she hopes other students will follow and spend time in the country. “The people were kind and welcoming, the food was delicious and the culture was vibrant…I hope other Americans will open their minds and hearts…and share in the same life-changing journey that I was lucky enough to experience.”



Alpha Chi Chapter Brings Home National Convention Awards

Alpha Chi ConventionBelmont’s Alpha Chi National Honor Society chapter recently sent sixteen members (led by Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Faculty Sponsor Mélanie Walton) to the 2015 National Convention in Chicago to present their academic and creative work and brought home four award for best presentation. Belmont had the greatest number of presenters among the convention’s 250 total student presentations and the greatest number of discipline specific top prizes for a single university in attendance.

Congratulations to Ali Alcott, Sofia Elmaliki, J. T. Faircloth, Sam Frawley, Samantha Gould, Adam James, Jared Mitchell, Jesse Peck, Justin Smith, Ashley Virgin and Miranda West for exceptional presentations. Congratulations to prize winners Dora Geving and Zara Latif for their work, “Nematodes Roaming the Field of Parkinson’s Disease,” Dean Palya for his work, “Concept Albums: Creating Effective Stories Through Music and Sound,” Anna Randolph for her work, “Cultural Appropriation in URBN Incorporated 2014 Lookbooks: Erasing Cultures, Making Trends” and Chapter President Taylor Smith for her work, “The Effects of Neuromuscular and Proprioceptive Training on ACL Injuries in Female Soccer Players.”

Professional Organizations Seek Bennett’s Expertise

Achievers.BennettBelmont Professor of Journalism Dr. Sybril Bennett facilitated a panel at the Rotary Club of Nashville on March 16 entitled “The People, The Police and the Pulpit.” Panelists included Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson, Mount Zion Baptist Church Pastor Bishop Joseph Warren Walker III and Pastor and community activist Michael Joyner. From Ferguson, Missouri to the Federal Government, the panel discussed how issues of relationships between law enforcement and its citizens continue to create needs for change.

Bennett also served as a judge for the national Scripps Howard Journalism Awards. The Scripps Howard Awards program offers 17 categories and $180,000 in prize money. The competitions recognize work across multiple platforms and category eligibility. What was once extended primarily to newspapers, now embraces television stations, networks, online media outlets and independent producers.The judging took place at the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida. Winners can be found here.

Belmont Legal Aid Society Hosts DACA Clinic

Achievers.DECABelmont’s Legal Aid Society hosted a week-long Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Clinic with Tennessee Justice for Our Neighbors (TN JFON) as an alternative to spring break March 9-13. The students worked Monday through Friday, and performed around 350 pro bono hours. Bethany Jackson, an attorney with TN JFON was the supervising attorney and assisted the students throughout the process. 

Hannah McCann, Kaile Pippin, Jamie Sawyer, Shelby Dodson, Tammy Mezera, Breanna Pendilton, Hannah Zeitlin, Stephanie Fisher, Sarah Yandell, Brittany Dinaso, Christy Zepeda and Sara Page made up the group of law students who were able to see 21 clients and assist them in filing new Initial DACA applications or DACA renewals.

DACA status allows young immigrants to receive a social security number, a work permit and a two-year protection against removal proceedings, as long as they show continual residence within the U.S. since 2007. This allows the recipients to apply for a driver’s license, attend college and qualify for employment opportunities that may have been impossible before receiving DACA.

Espiritu, Lee, Searcy and Stewart Attend Gulf-South Summit on Service-Learning and Civic Engagement


Stewart Presents at Conference

Belmont University’s Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy Dr. Elena Espiritu, Assistant Professor of Media Studies Dr. Hyangsook Lee, Director of Community Relations Joyce Searcy and Director of Service-Learning Tim Stewart recently attended the Gulf-South Summit on Service-Learning and Civic Engagement in Little Rock, Arkansas, sponsored by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and the University of Arkansas Clinton Center for Public Service.

Dr. Espiritu presented a poster on “Supporting Professional Healthcare Educational Program Curriculum Standards Through Service-Learning Leadership Experience” and Dr. Lee presented a poster on “Breaking Media Stereotypes: One tutoring session at a time” and co-presented with Stewart on “Connecting Campus to Community: Integrating a Web-based Software Platform to Support Service-Learning and Civic Engagement.”

photo (4)

Espiritu’s Poster Presentation

Stewart also co-presented “Service-Learning Administration 101” at a pre-conference workshop with colleagues from the University of North Carolina Greensboro and the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Stewart serves on the Executive Committee of the Gulf-South Summit as the evaluation chair and Professor and Chair of the Communication Studies Department Dr. Mary Vaughn served as a proposal reviewer for this year’s Gulf-South Summit.

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