|The magazine of University of Houston-Clear Lake
fall 2009 | volume 16 | number 1
FIVE HONORED WITH FACULTY FELLOWSHIPS
Five UHCL faculty members received University Faculty Fellowships for the 2009-10 academic year. UHCL President William A. Staples awarded the fellowships to Associate Professor of Curriculum and Instruction Sue Brown, Professor of Industrial Hygiene and Environmental Science Dennis Casserly, Professor of Educational Leadership Larry Kajs, Professor of Philosophy Keith Parsons and Professor of Finance Grady Perdue.
Faculty and academic administrators from each of the university’s schools nominate honorees for these fellowships. The fellowships are awarded in recognition of each professor’s exemplary accomplishments and contributions to UHCL through teaching, research and service. A stipend accompanies the fellowships to be used for educational expenses, which may include research, conferences or educational materials. A plaque in Atrium II lists the names of past recipients of University Faculty Fellowships.
In addition to receiving a University Faculty Fellowship, Brown also received a two-year $202,283 award from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board’s Teacher Quality Grants Program for “UHCL Mathematics Institute 2009-2011.” Brown has successfully competed for this grant for 20 consecutive years, a record for a UHCL faculty member.
THREE FULBRIGHT SCHOLARS DEPART FOR DISTANT LANDS
UHCL Associate Professor of Geography Jeff Lash and Associate Professor of Sociology Mike McMullen were awarded Fulbright Scholar grants by the U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. In addition, Professor of Fine Arts Sandria Hu received a Fulbright Specialists grant.
McMullen, Lash and Hu are three out of approximately 1,100 U.S. faculty and other professionals who will travel abroad as part of the Fulbright program during the next academic year.
Lash, who earned a master’s degree in geography education from Texas State University and a bachelor’s degree in art history from the University of Texas at Austin, will be a visiting lecturer in political geography at the University of Belgrade, Serbia, through the Fulbright program.
McMullen has been granted a lectureship at the American University in Cairo for the 2009-10 academic year. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from University of Kansas and a doctorate in sociology from Emory University in Atlanta.
A past recipient of multiple Fulbright Scholar grants, Hu joined a distinguished list of Fulbright awardees when she received notice of being named the recipient of a Fulbright Specialists award offering her two-and-a-half weeks abroad. With the grant, Hu lectured at the University of Arts in Belgrade, Serbia. Hu also will exhibit her work at the U.S. Embassy there.
The Fulbright Specialists Program is designed to award grants to qualified U.S. faculty and professionals, in select disciplines, to engage in short-term collaborative two- to six-week projects at higher education institutions in more than 100 countries worldwide.
Established in 1946, the Fulbright program has provided approximately 294,000 people with the opportunity to observe each other’s political, economic, educational and cultural institutions. Participants exchange ideas and to embark on joint ventures of importance to the general welfare of the world’s inhabitants.
UHCL EDUCATORS ENTER 'VIRTUAL' HIGH SCHOOL
The School of Education’s instructional technology program has been named as a provider of online, graduate-level distance education courses that prepare teachers across the state to teach within the Texas Education Agency’s Texas Virtual School Network.
“We are one of only six agencies in Texas that provide training for teachers who have no experience in online instruction and one of only two that have been approved to provide advanced training for experienced online teachers,” says Program Coordinator and Clinical Associate Professor of Instructional Technology Richard Smith. “Other agencies provide the equivalent of extended online workshops that come with continuing education credit. In contrast, UHCL provides three graduate-level courses that can also be applied to a master’s degree in instructional technology or the UHCL Online Distance Educator Professional Development Certificate. ”
The classes offered through UHCL include one course designed for teachers who are completely new to online teaching and two other courses for teachers who already have experience in teaching distance education courses.
The Texas Virtual School Network, authorized by the 2007 Texas Legislature, provides online courses to students throughout the state, supplementing courses taught in public school districts and open enrollment charter schools.
“This designation from the Texas Virtual School Network is quite an honor,” says UHCL School of Education Associate Dean James Sherrill. “It speaks to the quality of instructors and course content available in all of our offerings.”
UHCL’s instructional technology program has provided graduate-level online courses as part of its master’s degree and certificate programs since 1989.
NEW EDUCATION AND HEALTH CARE PROGRAMS APPROVED
Growing fields in education and health care have inspired the Bachelor of Applied Science in Interdisciplinary Studies with tracks in early childhood education and healthcare services.
Tracks in early childhood education are designed to meet the need for directors and teachers employed in early childhood programs outside of the public-school environment. Program coursework focuses on children from birth through age five and offers three tracks: educator of young children, young children with disabilities, and early childhood leadership.
Several courses cover children’s learning up through the primary grades to meet the National Association for the Education of Young Children Teacher Education Accreditation requirements. Course content includes teaching diverse learners, curriculum and assessment, instructional strategies, child development, family and community relations, and leadership skills.
According to the Gulf Coast Regional Employment Database, hiring in early childhood education is projected to grow by 41.8 percent between 2004 and 2014. In addition, by 2013, Head Start will require that at least 50 percent of their teachers and all of their education coordinators have at least a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education. NAEYC-accredited centers, which represent the highest standards for educating young children, have incrementally mandated the same requirement for their teachers and childcare directors.
The healthcare services track is designed for students holding an Associate of Applied Science in an allied health-related field. Classes take place at UHCL’s facility in the Texas Medical Center. The program provides bachelor-level training for the administrative and managerial aspects of health care. Courses cover financial and economic dimensions, group practice management, planning and marketing, reimbursement, legal issues and human resources.
Health care leadership careers in both the public and private sectors include opportunities in medical and surgical hospitals, group practices, insurance companies and outpatient care centers. A track in information technology is scheduled for 2010.
THANK YOU FOR FLYING WITH US
A festive atmosphere transformed the UHCL Bayou Building and Alumni Plaza into a neighborhood celebration as the university welcomed close to 2,000 people to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the first lunar landing on July 18.
With the support of sponsors United Space Alliance, JSC Federal Credit Union, ARI Construction, First Church of Pearland, Wyle, Prismatic Magic, Travel Dreams CWT Vacations – Diane Vest, Silver Eagle Distributors, and H-E-B, as well as partners IEE, JSC Astronomical Society, Lunar Planetary Institute and The Moon Society, visitors were able to relive the excitement of man’s first step on the moon at “Fly Me to the Moon: A Community Celebration of the First Lunar Landing.”
The free event honored NASA Johnson Space Center and all who contributed to the success of those first steps. A familystyle picnic set the tone and guests enjoyed live entertainment, interactive games and exhibits and a presentation of the footage of the Apollo 11 landing on July 20, 1969.
“UHCL and NASA Johnson Space Center have maintained a steadfast partnership since the university first opened as an educational facility supporting the technical and scientific community NASA brought to the Clear Lake area,” said Associate Vice President for University Advancement Dion McInnis. “‘Fly Me to the Moon’ let us celebrate the amazing accomplishment of man’s first step on the moon as well as UHCL and NASA Johnson Space Center’s longtime relationship, both past and present.”
Among the guest speakers at the event were retired NASA flight director Glynn Lunney, who was on duty during the historic Apollo 11 flight, and his son Bryan Lunney, who is a current flight director. They are the only father-son flight directors in NASA history.
“Dr. Lunney and Bryan Lunney’s vast experience with NASA and manned space flight provided a real-life perspective during the event,” said Director of Alumni and Community Relations Charity Ellis. “Thank you to all our sponsors for helping UHCL commemorate this important milestone in human history with so many from our community.”
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