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Summer 2014 Edition

Spotlight News

  • Three professors were awarded University Faculty Fellowships for the 2014-15 academic year. The three faculty selected include Sadegh Davari, professor of computer science and computer information systems; Lillian McEnery, associate professor of reading and language arts; and Lie June Shiau, professor of mathematics.

University Highlights

  • The Houston Endowment presented the second $500,000 installment of a $1 million grant awarded in support of UHCL’s transition to a four-year university. The funds have made a significant impact on the expansion of services offered by Academic Advising, the Placement Testing Center, the Office of Veteran Services, the Student Success Center and the Math Center. Expanding its academic offerings to include freshman- and sophomore-level coursework is the most significant development in the university’s history since its opening in fall 1974.

  • Almost 200 students registered for UHCL’s first freshman Student Orientation and Registration sessions, known as SOAR. The students are part of UHCL’s historic first freshman class and were chosen from more than 1,800 freshman applicants.

  • The 2014 Houston Bay Area Juried Exhibition was displayed in the UHCL Art Gallery over the summer. The exhibition was the first of its kind in the Houston area, offering entry only to artists who live, work or go to school within 15 miles of the UHCL Art Gallery.

  • UHCL's “The choice is clear” advertising campaign and marketing materials received multiple awards during the 29th Annual Educational Advertising Awards presentation by the Higher Education Marketing Report. The gold went to the total advertising campaign, “The choice is clear,” a campaign created for the university by the advertising agency Richards/Carlberg.

Faculty and Staff Highlights

  • Celebrating the efforts of faculty and staff, UHCL recognized many for their work during the 36th Annual UHCL Faculty and Staff Awards Ceremony. President William A. Staples, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Carl A. Stockton and Vice President for Administration and Finance Michelle Dotter honored 118 faculty and staff with service awards. Additionally, Director of Technical Services Jerry Jones received the 2013 Hugh P. Avery Prize – The President’s Distinguished Staff Service Award, named in honor of Hugh P. Avery for his years of service to UHCL. Staff Merit Award recipients included Associate Vice President of Finance Usha Mathew, Senior Academic Advisor for Distance and Off-Campus Education Leticia Sanchez-Retamozo and Office of Career and Counseling Services Administrative Secretary Laura Velie. Stockton awarded the Outstanding Lecturer Award to Senior Lecturer in Computer Engineering Vernon Bryant and the Outstanding Adjunct Award to adjunct professor of Social Work Peter Wuenschel. Faculty awards presented by Staples including the President’s Distinguished Service Award to Professor of Psychology Sharon Hall, the President’s Distinguished Research Award to Professor of Management Kevin Wooten and the President’s Distinguished Teaching Award to Assistant Professor of Sociology Stephen Cherry.

  • Executive Director of the Environmental Institute of Houston and Associate Professor of Biology and Environmental Science George Guillen was awarded $204,300 from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality/Environmental Protection Agency (Federal Pass Thru) for his proposal, “National Rivers and Streams Assessment.” He was also awarded $48,750 from Texas Parks & Wildlife for his proposal, “Distribution, Abundance & Habitat Use by the Saltmarsh Topminnow.”

  • Director of the Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities and Professor of Psychology Dorothea Lerman received a $29,996 award from Organization for Autism Research for her proposal, “Evaluate a Model of Training in Which Caregivers Trained by Professionals Will Then Train Other Parents to Implement Functional Communication Training.”

  • Department Chair of Social and Cultural Sciences and Associate Professor of Criminology Everette B. Penn was awarded $203,175 from the Department of Justice for his proposal, “Collaborative Partnership to Reduce the Social Distance Between At-Risk Teens, Their Parents/Community & Law Enforcement.” He also recieved a $12,600 award from City of Columbus, Ohio, for his proposal, “Providing Material and Consulting Services for Teen and Police Services Academy.”

  • Associate Professor of Instructional Design and Technology and Curriculum and Instruction Jana Willis received $67,534 from Tietronix Inc. for her proposal, “Collaboration with Tietronix Software Inc. to Create a Game that will Provide In-Depth Immersion into The Field of Energy Education.”

Students Highlights

  • School of Education Information and Library Science student Jean Darnell, a Fort Bend Independent School District librarian at Goodman Elementary School, received the Texas Library Association’s Black Caucus Roundtable Conference Scholarship, which included a stipend to attend the organization’s annual event in Austin.

  • School School of Human Sciences and Humanities undergraduate geography student Cassandra Seabourn received the Outstanding Student Award from the UHCL Department of Social and Cultural Sciences and will be interning at the National Geographic Society as their sole Map Division Intern.

Alumni Highlights

  • Lejo Abraham, ’06 MBA, ’06 MS, ’02 BS, is vice president of investments/financial adviser for Wells Fargo Advisers LLC.

  • James Bevil ’83 BS, was named as guest curator for a new exhibit, “On the Run: Currency, Credit and Capitals of the Republic of Texas,” located at the Capital Visitor Center, Austin.

  • Donna Black, ’92 MA, ’88 BS, was selected by the National Association of School Psychologists for the 2014 Government and Professional Relations Outstanding Advocate Award.

  • Ismael Capelo, ’14 Ed.D, has been appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to the School District Mentoring Program Advisory Committee.

  • Keith Parrott, ’95 MHA, is chief executive officer of Baptist Health System in Birmingham, Alabama.

  • Shane Spees, ’97 MHA, is president/CEO of North Mississippi Health Services.
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