Belmont Faculty, Staff Present at Gulf South Summit Conference

Gulf South Summitt Pic

Pictured from left to right are McAbee, Holt, Lovvorn and Gustke.

Four Belmont faculty members delivered a presentation entitled “Transformational Community Partnerships: Examining the Components of a Reciprocal Relationship” at the Gulf South Summit On Service-Learning and Civic Engagement in Higher Education held March 26 through 28 at Auburn University. Dr. Linda Holt, Dr. Jason Lovvorn and Dr. Charmion Gustke of the English Department along with Dr. Donovan McAbee of the School of Religion presented on the theory and practice of successful, service-learning partnerships, including ideas about reciprocity, trust and assessment.

Director of Service-Learning Tim Stewart, served on this year’s Executive Committee for the conference. Stewart served as co-chairman of the Evaluation sub-committee and also co-presented “Service-Learning Administration 101” at a pre-conference workshop with other service-learning directors from the College of Coastal Georgia, Birmingham-Southern College and the University of Georgia.

Psychology Faculty, Students Present at Psychological Association Meeting

EPA group 2014Psychological Science faculty and students attended the annual meeting of the Eastern Psychological Association in Boston, Mass. on March 13 through 16. Eastern Psychological Association (EPA) was founded in 1896 and is the oldest of the regional Psychological Associations in the United States. Its sole purpose is to advance the science and profession of psychology through the dissemination of professional information about the field. Those attending were, pictured left to right, Dr. Lonnie Yandell, Savannah Ladage, Antario Jones, Caroline Baumgartner, Breanna Wood, Monica Roufael, Savannah Johnson, Jasmine Jarupat, Jade Tucker, Stephanie Seeley, Shelby Wall, Melanie Chinsoon, Dr. Pete Giordano and Dr. Linda Jones.

For the second year in a row, a Belmont student won a research award for research presented at the conference. Jasmine Jarupat’s psychology senior capstone study titled “Prosocial Behavior and Just World Belief Predicted by Mortality Salience and Religiosity,” supervised by Shen-Miller and Giordano, received the sixth place award out of 100 competitors. The award was given in a graduate student competition, and Jarupat’s poster was inadvertently considered even though she is an undergraduate. The award citation indicated to her that “you have been recognized for your excellence in presentation, research methodology and research idea,” she said. (more…)

Smith Presents Paper

Clancy_SmithClancy Smith, instructor of philosophy, presented a paper on March 21 entitled “Being-Out-of-Step: Peirce, Dubois, and Yancy on Otherness and the Socio-political Dimension of ‘Feeling’” at the American Comparative Literature Association’s annual conference at New York University in Manhattan.

Bennett Honored with Journalism Achiever Award

Bennett_NBJC_AwardDr. Sybril Bennett, professor of journalism, was one of two recipients of the 2014 National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) Achiever Award at the Region Three conference held in Charleston, S.C. She was recognized with Don Griffin, retired consumer reporter from Action 9 in Charlotte, N.C. She has been a member of NABJ as long as she has been a journalist, celebrating 25 years this year.

Bennett was also on The Black Beat: Making Connections and Telling Our Stories panel.


Belmont Seniors Present at Computing Sciences Conference

image ­ trask_gilmore

Pictured are Andrew Trask, left, and David Gilmore, right.

Belmont seniors Andrew Trask and David Gilmore had their papers accepted independently to the 12th Annual Consortium for Computing Sciences in Colleges (CCSC) Mid-South Conference. They presented their papers at The LeMoyne-Owen College in Memphis, Tenn. on April 5. CCSC Mid-South conference seeks to provide a forum for the exchange of information on computing and computing education.

Trask graduates in May with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance and Bachelor of Science in Applied Discrete Mathematics. His paper, “Distributing a Fully Connected Neural Network: A Novel Approach,” describes a novel approach to distributing artificial neural networks, which reduces their evaluation time by an order of magnitude.

Gilmore graduates in May with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. His paper, “Online-analytical processing: RDBMS vs. Hadoop,” describes a way to speed up a common business query task from seven hours to 12 minutes.

Belmont Again Honored as Most Innovative in Community Involvement

innovation award 4x6For the second year in a row, Belmont University has been recognized as the most innovative in the Involved category of the Mayor’s Workplace Challenge.  The aim of the mayor’s program is to recognize Nashville businesses and nonprofit organizations in the areas that most contribute to a high quality of life and healthy living including being green, involved in the community and being healthy.

Belmont took top honors in the Involved category for being a community champion for its leadership in actively promoting volunteer service inside and outside the workplace.  Examples of those efforts include the University’s new leadership development certification called “African-American Women on Boards,” its many programs among churches in the Edgehill neighborhood and its continued partnership with Metro Parks to improve the athletic facilities at E.S. Rose Park.

The University also earned a platinum seal, the highest designation, in the Healthy category and received a gold seal in the Green category. Read more about the Nashville Mayor’s Workplace Challenge.

Equestrian Club Ends a Successful Show Year

The Belmont Equestrian Club earned 10 ribbons at its final competition of the year held March 1 and 2 at Murray State University. Additionally, the club was awarded a seventh place team ribbon in the Zone Five Region One division for its success at competitions during the 2013-2014 show season. Club members competed against students from other universities including Vanderbilt University, Middle Tennessee State University, University of Tennessee at Knoxville and Sewanee.

“I am so proud of our team this year and our success as a University. We have worked hard over the last 12 months to show our region that Belmont has what it takes to be competitive in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association. I couldn’t be happier with the way we finished our first year of competition,” said Belmont Equestrian Club President Julie Anderson.

Club members earned the following ribbons:
Julie Anderson: two sixth places
Morgan Wilters: second and fifth places
Courtney O’Connor: third, fourth and fifth places
Caitlyn Marsh: second and fourth places
Allison Harpole: fifth place

Belmont West Student Featured on Game Show

Belmont West student Grayson Flatness was a featured contestant on the game show “The Price is Right,” which aired last week.

Sporting a Belmont University T-shirt, Flatness attended the show’s “Spring Break Edition” taping where he competed in the Grocery Game. The goal of the game is to purchase products that total between $20 and $21. Flatness was shown five grocery items and was instructed to choose an item and a quantity of that item to buy.

“Being able to participate in such a historic show will always be a memory that I cherish for the rest of my life and share with plenty of my friends. I am proud that I was able to represent the likes of Belmont University and Nashville on national television. I advise any and all future students of the Belmont West and East to make use of your time and resources because you never know what amazing opportunities may arrive,” Flatness said.

Morelan, Schmanski Sworn into SGA Office

Photo by Sam Frawley.

Photo by Sam Frawley.

Student Government Association (SGA) outgoing president Chase Geiser inaugurated rising juniors Jeanette Morelan and Skyler Schmanski as the 2014-2015 SGA president and vice president, respectively, on Monday in the Beaman Student Life Center. Students, faculty and staff, including members of Senior Leadership and SGA Congress, attended the ceremony.  In their new roles, Morelan and Scmanski are responsible for leading the organization and serving as the primary liaison between students and administration.

Hahn Published in Pharmacy Education Journal

HahnMediumDr. Lindsay Hahn, assistant professor of pharmacy, recently had a manuscript published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education (AJPE).  The article reviewed the development and implementation of a solid organ transplant elective course for second- and third-year pharmacy students, assessing the course’s impact on their knowledge in the management of medications, adverse effects and complications in organ transplantation patients.  Hahn concluded that course participants  significantly improved their confidence and knowledge regarding solid organ transplantation and became open to exploring careers or residencies in this area.  The full manuscript can be found on the AJPE website.

Treybig Presents at Mid-South Flute Festival

Ash Wright Photography - (615) 428-6366 - http://ashwright.comOn March 29, Dr. Carolyn Treybig, of the Belmont University School of Music, and Dr. Deanna Little, of Middle Tennessee State University School of Music, presented a clinic session titled ”Just + Equal = Intonation; A Lecture Demonstration of Trevor Wye’s Publications on the Chord of Nature, Just Intonation, and Difference Tones” at the 2014 Mid-South Flute Festival. The lecture/performance delved into sympathetic vibrations, harmonics, the history and development of tuning temperaments, discussion of pitch tendencies on the flute, vibrato, and tuning considerations for flutists when performing with differing ensembles and families of instruments. The Mid-South Flute Festival is an annual festival that brings together hundreds of flutists. Both Treybig and Little are Altus Flutes performing artists.

Social Work Students, Professors Present at National Conference

Matt Thompson smiles with his poster.

Matt Thompson smiles with his poster.

Social Work senior Matt Thompson recently presented a poster at the Baccalaureate Program Director’s (BPD) national conference on social work education.  His poster, which was selected to be a part of the student conference within the larger BPD conference, was entitled “Welcome Home: Current Military Pre and Post Separation and Transition Protocol.”  This poster provided an overview of current practices that are followed as men and women leave the armed services. As Thompson discussed the poster with conference attendees, he noted areas where policies should be reviewed as well as areas where social work expertise could be utilized to provide more effective services to new veterans.   Thompson, drawing on his social work education as well as his experience in the military, summed it up this way:  “Compassion and caring are not substitutes for action and advocacy.”

Assistant Professor of Social Work Julie Hunt and Associate Professor of Social Work Sabrina Sullenberger also presented at the BPD conference.  Sullenberger co-presented a workshop entitled “High-impact Educational Practices in Teaching Social Work Research” with colleagues from Indiana University.   Hunt’s roundtable presentation was entitled ““Integrating Spiritual Sensitivity into Cultural Competence Education for our Changing World.”

Reflecting on her work at the conference, Hunt said, “It was an honor to lead a roundtable discussion with a diverse group of colleagues from universities around the country on ways to integrate spiritually sensitive content in their social work curriculum. We had a productive and meaningful sharing of ideas, and their interest in this conversation has continued as we have been corresponding since the meeting, sharing syllabi, and ideas for readings and course assignments.”

Social Work Classes Visits State Capitol

day on the hill winners 2014Social work juniors in Dr. Jennifer Crowell’s Policy II class recently participated in Social Work Day on the Hill at the Tennessee Legislative Plaza.  They met with legislators, observed committee meetings and participated in a policy presentation and poster competition. Prior to the Day on the Hill, students worked in class to identify bills under consideration at the state level, and analyze the bills in the context of social work values, ethics and populations served, and then made recommendations on how to improve the bills they had studied.  This collective work led the class to identify one topic to focus on for the policy presentation, the issue of Human Trafficking in Tennessee.  At Day on the Hill, junior Christi Sidwell was selected as Belmont’s representative to speak in front of a crowd of students, faculty and social workers from across the state about Senate Bill 1655 and House Bill 1870. Christi spoke passionately about the issue in Tennessee and also about how the bills as proposed could be strengthened to ultimately provide better services and seek justice for people in Tennessee who have been trafficked.  The hard work of all the students was recognized when Belmont University was announced the winner of the undergraduate competition.

Bryan Griffith, a junior social work major at Belmont, said, “Social Work Day on the Hill gave me great insight into how our state’s policies are influenced by social workers by people who see and experience social issues firsthand. I got to sit in on a committee hearing and see how research based on the reports of people who work directly with (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) families can be presented to the representatives who write laws about (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) eligibility. It was an exciting experience for me because I really got to see how legislature works. Only so much can be understood about how our government functions through reading from a textbook. If more people were to take a trip to legislative plaza, meet their representative, and observe their representative’s interactions with other members of the general assembly and organizations, we might have a better understanding of our legislature’s behavior.”

Law Students Attend Annual Bar Association Conference


Franklin Graves (left) and Phillip Turner (right) at the conference.

Franklin Graves (left) and Phillip Turner (right) at the conference.

The American Bar Association (ABA) selected two Belmont University College of Law students to attend the 29th Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference in Washington, D.C. from April 2 through 4.

Phillip Turner, class of 2016, was one of 12 law students selected from ABA-accredited schools to manage all of the social media and blog coverage for the three-day conference.  The ABA’s Law Student Reporters Program allows law students to attend over 30 continuing legal education (CLE) and keynote events in order to live tweet, blog and engage with attorneys.  The 29th Annual conference featured high-profile speakers and panels covering a wide-variety of intellectual property law topics, including patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets and international law.

Franklin Graves, class of 2014, attended the conference last year as a law student reporter and returned to the conference as the newly appointed chairman of the Communications Subcommittee for the ABA’s Section of Intellectual Property Law.

Graves and Turner are members of the Law Student Action Group, which is designed to connect law students with attorneys from around the world to work on ABA projects, writing and drafting assignments and online CLEs. Read more at the Law Student Reporters Program blog.


Schneller Co-Authors Article, Presents at Conference

Beverly Schneller-XLAssociate Provost for Academic Affairs Beverly Schneller is the co-author of “Leveraging the Talents of Faculty Members to create an Engaged Retirement Ecosystam at the University of Baltimore” published in Faculty Retirement.  Best Practices for Navigating Transition  (Stylus Press, 2014).  The volume is the result of two years research into retirement practices nationwide funded by a Alfred P. Sloan Foundation grant through the American Council on Education (ACE).

Schneller also presented “Dana Gioia and the California Horizon” at the national meeting of The College English Association in Baltimore, Md. on March 26-29. Her talked analyzed four of Gioia’s lyrics representative of his use of temporal and physical borders and the sacredness of place.

Physical Therapy Professor, Student Recognized for Research

SellsMediumDr. Pat Sells, associate professor of physical therapy, and a group of doctoral physical therapy students from Belmont University are in the midst of conducting research on how multiple sub-concussive hits affect children ages five to 12. The research team has enlisted The Brentwood Blaze, a youth football organization, for study participants, and those efforts were recently featured in an article on the Brentwood Home Page.  Click here to read the story in its entirety.

College of Arts, Sciences’ Professors President at Oregon Conference

Annette Sisson

Annette Sisson

Allison Moore

Allison Moore

Director of General Education Allison Moore and English Professor Annette Sisson presented “Taking on the Sophomore Slump: Intentional Learning through Campus Collaboration”  on Feb. 28 in Portland, Oreg. at the Association of American Colleges and Universities Conference on General Education and Assessment, which focused this year on “Disruptions, Innovations, and Opportunities.”

Alumna Wins Reality TV Contest

Belmont alumna Kayla La France (’09) won the TV show “King of the Nerds” and earned $100,000. The contest on TBS invited competitors to face challenges that test their intellect, ingenuity, skills and pop-culture prowess. The nerds compete as teams before moving on to individual challenges with the goal of being named the quintessential master of all things nerdy.

While at Belmont, La France earned a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Physics with minors in mathematics and public relations. She went on to get her master’s degree in space science from the University of North Dakota and resides in Green Acres, Wash.

First Health-Focused Immersion Serves in Guatemala

pharm spring breakThe College of Pharmacy partnered with University Ministries for an international spring break Immersion trip geared towards health professional and pre-health professions students. The team was comprised of four faculty and staff members, one professional medical interpreter, eight undergraduate students with an interest or major in healthcare-related fields and two fourth-year pharmacy students. Together they provided diabetes, asthma and vision screenings, as well as nutrition, hygiene and first-aid education to migrant workers at Finca la Azotea coffee plantation in Antigua, Guatemala. Additionally, the team spent one day working with at Escuela Proyecto la Esperanza, a nongovernmental organization school for underprivileged children assessing height weight and vision percentile projections.

Immersion activities included learning about the processes of growing, harvesting, roasting and packaging coffee, grocery shopping in a neighborhood market, visiting a private university, Universidad Francisco Marroquín, touring the Moore Pediatric Surgery Center and attending religious services on Ash Wednesday.

“The impact we may have had from simply educating the plantation employees may save lives one day. We had a few patients share they had family members who died or had been in danger because they did not know basic first-aid.  According to our partner in Guatemala, who initiated and helped organize this trip, many other coffee plantations are now expressing interest in collaborating with Belmont to provide similar services at their locations in the future,” said Jordan Tarter, a fourth-year pharmacy student.

This established and ongoing partnership in Guatemala directly complements the College of Pharmacy’s and Belmont’s overall commitment to missions. This is evidenced by the ability of pharmacy and undergraduate students from varied programs to concentrate their experiential learning in missions or public health, if they so choose. It also provides an opportunity to explore interdisciplinary learning and collaboration, as students representing a variety of health and pre-health professional fields combine in one immersion experience.

Chemistry Students Present at American Chemical Society Conference

ACS Dallas group 2014Dr. Rachel Rigsby and Dr. Alison Moore, both associate professors of chemistry, took five students to the National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) that was held March 16-20 in Dallas, Texas. The ACS’ 247th National Meeting & Exposition featured thousands of presentations on new discoveries in science. The topics included food and nutrition, medicine, health, energy, the environment and other fields where chemistry plays a central role. Some connected with the meeting’s theme of “Chemistry and Materials for Energy,” which showcases energy technologies. The National ACS meeting is host to more than 15,000 chemists from all disciplines and career paths, including undergraduate and graduate students, teachers, professors, post-docs, researchers and industry representatives.  

Belmont students Vickie Lim, Daniel Beagan and Lee McGill presented research posters at the conference.  Bavly Daowd, Vickie Lim and Leena Patel presented a poster on Belmont’s Student Chapter of the American Chemical Society’s (SMACS) activities. They also accepted a Commendable Award for their SMACS chapter activities for the 2012-13 academic year.

Murphree Presents as Part of Lost Ladybug Project

Murphree - Lost Ladybug DayDr. Steve Murphree, professor of biology, was a “Scientist on the Spot” on March 22 at the kickoff event for the Adventure Science Center’s Lost Ladybug Project. Murphree was available to answer questions about The Lost Ladybug Project, and he also gave a 30-minute presentation about Middle Tennessee lady beetles.

This event was part of the national Lost Ladybug Project, funded by the National Science Foundation, which is studying the decline of some native lady beetle species. Across North America ladybug species composition is changing. Over the past 20 years, native ladybugs that were once very common have become extremely rare. During this same time ladybugs from other parts of the world have greatly increased both their numbers and range. This is happening very quickly, and scientists don’t know how, or why, or what impact it will have on ladybug diversity or the role that ladybugs play in keeping plant-feeding insect populations low. Murphree will continue as the local entomology consultant until this year’s project ends in early October.

Math Students Present at Conference

MCS group 2014Nine students and six faculty members recently attend the Mathematical Association of America (MAA)’s 2014 Southeastern section meeting at Tennessee Tech in Cookeville, Tenn. The Southeastern Section of the MAA (MAA SE) advances the mathematical sciences within the states of Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. The conference was held March 13-15. Math majors Max Shenfield, Jackson Streeter, Annie Brunelle and So “Sara” Chung competed in the Math Jeopardy tournament. Senior Mathematics major Angela Gaetano gave a presentation on “The Impact of Censoring on Estimator of Slope Parameter in a Simple Regression Model” and junior Mathematics major Annie Brunelle gave a presentation on “Brownian Motion and Probability Simulations.” Other students that attended the conference included Mary Yang, Savannah Halliday, Geoffrey Gross and Isak Wilson.

Mathematics faculty were also actively involved at the conference. Dr. Andy Miller completed his three year term as Tennessee state director and gave a presentation on “Real World Projects, Real World Writing.” Dr. Robin Lovgren gave a presentation on “Herding Cats – Using Attendance App to Learn Names and Keep Up with Your Students.” Dr. Mike Pinter spoke on “Ideas for Ending a Course Effectively.” Kay Geving presented her work titled “College Algebra Course Redesign.” Dr. Sarah Ann Fleming gave a presentation in the Graduate Student Workshop on “Job Application Materials.” Dr. Danny Biles was also in attendance at the conference.

Physics Students Present ‘Circus’ to Peers

Physics Circus-1The Society of Physics Students recently presented a “Physics Circus” convocation event.  The students presented various intriguing and exciting physics demonstrations. Physics students showed and explained the science behind phenomena such as beautiful Chladni patterns, the “ring launcher” device, alien-looking ferrofluid formations, and more. Dr. Scott Hawley, associate professor of physics, serves as the faculty adviser for this student organization. 

Pinter Presents at Faculty Conference

mike_pinterDr. Mike Pinter, Teaching Center director and professor of mathematics, presented a poster at the annual Southern Regional Faculty Instructional Development Consortium (SRFIDC) Conference, March 2-4. The conference, held at Dalton State College in Dalton, Ga. had Embracing Ownership: Encouraging and Empowering Self-Directed Faculty as its theme. Pinter’s poster presentation, entitled “Using Faculty Reading Groups to Build Community and Support Self-Directed Faculty,” described a variety of faculty reading groups used as a faculty development activity at Belmont.

In addition to detailing some planning logistics for the groups, the presentation included reading group objectives, namely: build community among faculty across all areas of campus; provide an opportunity for faculty and selected staff (for example, Student Affairs) to interact; serve as a lead in or follow up associated with a Teaching Center workshop or retreat, or some other campus event; provide an opportunity for faculty to explore current ideas from research on teaching and learning; and provide an opportunity for reflection on spiritual or personal growth and development. Some reading group outcomes were shared in the poster, including data about number of participants over the last ten years.  

Professional Complete 100 Black Women, Belmont Leadership Program

100 Black Women -7-LThe National Coalition of 100 Black Women Inc. (NCBW), Metropolitan Nashville Chapter and Belmont University’s College of Business Administration completed their leadership training program with 16 Nashville professionals receiving certification in nonprofit leadership.  The African-American Women on Boards Certification Program provided an introduction to the basics of board service, governance, strategic planning and overall responsibilities. The women were awarded their certificates during the 2014 Sister for Sister Conference Leadership Development Workshop on March 21.

“The African-American Women on Boards Certification Program is a key outreach initiative of the College of Business Administration at Belmont University. I am very pleased with the initial project encouraging diversity among nonprofit organization leadership, and believe as the program grows diversity in board governance will increase in our area.  These women, leaders in Middle Tennessee business, nonprofit and government sectors, are investing in their personal growth through this program, with the goal of being certified to serve on nonprofit boards,” said Belmont’s College of Business Administration Dean Pat Raines. “We believe the curriculum’s focus on leadership, financial literacy, strategic planning and diversity and inclusion at the board level reflects not only a need in Tennessee but also is far reaching into a national platform for training 100 Black Women across the United States.  This is exciting for these women leaders and for Belmont as we hope to encourage change in diversity on boards at both the local and national levels.”

Belmont and 100 Black Women announced their collaboration for the leadership development certification designed to train and prepare African-American women for leadership service on nonprofit, government and corporate boards a year ago, and the first module of the program began in the fall. The new initiative strived to develop and market competent, qualified and committed professional business women of color to help them gain access and share their skill sets to help organizations reach their full potential. Immediate past president NCBW National President M. Delois Strum said she plans to use the African-American Women on Boards Certification Program with Belmont as a model for board governance that may expand to NCBW chapters across the country.

Other supporting organizations included the Nashville Coalition of 100 Black Women Foundation Inc., Meharry Medical College, HCA and members of the national leadership arm of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women Inc.

« Previous Entries Next Entries »