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Seattle University

Achievements

Check out the most recent accomplishments of SU’s faculty and staff. Got some good news of your own? Please share it with us.

October 10, 2018

Ben Kim, professor of management in the Albers School of Business and Economics, has coauthored two publications in Issues in Information Systems. One is with Albers graduate students Sharmila Muralidharan, Katrina Phiri and Sonal Sinha:  “Analysis and Prediction of Real Estate Prices: A Case of the Boston Housing Market.”  The piece is titled “Parallel Polylithic Architecture: Microservices.”

October 10, 2018

Amelia Derr, assistant professor of social work, continued her partnership with the City of Seattle Office for Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) by offering two community-based programs recently. Derr and the OIRA team completed the second year of the Immigrant Family Institute (IFI) in June, a program designed to build systems knowledge, leadership and self-advocacy skills for immigrant families with youth of ages 10-14 who have had experience with the juvenile justice system or feel vulnerable to having such an experience. 

The focus of the IFI is to: 

  • build youth and caregiver knowledge and advocacy skills regarding their rights in the juvenile justice, law enforcement, education, and city service systems
  • build and heal relationships between police officers and immigrant families
  • increase police officer knowledge and cultural responsiveness regarding immigrant families 

More than 70 youths participated in the program this year.  The IFI is currently being featured as a model program by the Police Executive Research Forum, a national organization that sets best practices in policing. 

Building on the success of the IFI, and in response to requests from the participants, Derr and partners at OIRA developed and ran Strengthening Immigrant Families (SIF), a program to support family cohesion adapted from the Strengthening Families Program 10-14, an evidence-based prevention program. This past summer the first pilot session was delivered in four languages simultaneously to great success. This is the first time this evidence-based program has been adapted for multi-lingual participants. It will run again next year. 

Click here for a faculty profile of Derr.

- College of Arts and Sciences

October 4, 2018

Seattle University is one of 26 colleges and universities out of 648 schools to be named to The Princeton Review's Green Honor Roll. This follows SU being named a top-10 school when it comes to being green according to Sierra Club’s 2018 “Cool Schools” rankings. (We were ranked #8 this year–up from #48 in 2017–and SU was the only university in Washington State to make the magazine’s top 20.) 

Last month the university announced its decision to divest from fossil fuels within the next five years.

September 28, 2018

Rob Efird, professor of anthropology and sociology, and Asian studies, gave a talk this month at Harvard University’s Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies. Efird presented “Nature for Nurture: Environmental Education, Natural Experience, and the Healthy Chinese Child.” 

Drawing upon nearly a decade of field work, Efird discussed the emergence of, and challenges facing, environmental education in China. “For the past 15 years,” materials for the event explain, “the Chinese Ministry of Education’s attempt to promote environmental education in public schools has faced nearly insurmountable structural obstacles. By contrast, there is a growing popular embrace of the value of nature exposure for children’s health and well-being.” 

Efird’s research on environmental learning in China includes several book chapters, articles in the Journal of Contemporary China and Environmental Education Research, and a co-edited volume (with John Chi-Kin Lee) entitled Schooling for Sustainable Development Across the Pacific (Springer, 2014). He spent a year in Kunming as a Fulbright Senior Research Scholar during 2011-2012, and was a National Committee on U.S.-China Relations Public Intellectual Program Fellow from 2014 to 2016. 

Speaking at Harvard was a homecoming for Efird who received a master’s in Regional Studies—East Asia from the university before earning a doctorate in Socio-cultural Anthropology from the University of Washington. 

The Fairbank Center is a post-graduate research center promoting the study of modern and contemporary China from a social science perspective.

September 24, 2018

The 2018 Nursing Outlook Excellence in Research Award went to first author and College of Nursing Dean Kristen Swanson for her paper "Mentors' perspectives on supporting nurse faculty scholars," while first author and Professor Danuta Wojnar received the Education award for her paper "Preparing nursing students for enhanced roles in primary care: The current state of prelicensure and RN-to-BSN education." Nursing Outlook is the journal of the American Academy of Nursing.

September 6, 2018

Jennifer Schulz, senior instructor of Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies, just published “The Impossibility of Witnessing and the Imperative to Listen: Teaching Trauma in an Interdisciplinary Classroom” in Issues in Interdisciplinary Studies, volume 36. 

Schulz was also invited to submit a chapter entitled “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Clinic” for inclusion in the recently published Routledge Handbook of Well-Being, edited by Kathleen Galvin. 

The Routledge Handbook of Well-Being explores diverse conceptualizations of well-being, providing an overview of key issues and drawing attention to current debates and critiques. Schulz’s chapter is a work of creative non-fiction that draws from phenomenology as it tells a story of a community clinic that treats mentally ill and impoverished adults. Written as a series of thirteen scenes inspired by Wallace Stevens’ “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird,” it imagines new possibilities for treating these clients in terms of the whole of their beings and in the lived contexts of clinical spaces.

August 30, 2018

Holly Ferraro has been appointed to the Patricia Wismer Professorship, Provost Shane Martin announced Sept. 29. 

Ferraro is associate professor in the Albers School of Business, director of the Professional MBA Program, and a faculty fellow of the Center for Business Ethics.  She currently co-chairs the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative in Albers. 

“Ferraro’s general interest,” Martin wrote, “is in the relationship between one’s social identity (e.g., race, gender, and age) and how one navigates organizations. Her recent research investigates issue of gender and diversity and she collaborated with colleagues on a paper related to women and leadership. She is known for her outstanding teaching, her extensive scholarship in the field of diversity and inclusion, and the respect she has earned from her colleagues in Albers and from peers across the campus.” 

A two-year appointment, the Wismer Professorship is awarded to a tenured faculty member who is an accomplished scholar with a strong commitment to gender studies. The Wismer Professor serves the university as an intellectual leader, modeling academic excellence through a scholarly agenda and engaged campus conversation that is focused on issues of structural equality in keeping with our commitment to education for justice in the Jesuit and Catholic tradition. 

“The Wismer Chair has been an important resource for our university since 2009,” wrote Martin, “and a re-evaluation of its aims and direction is in order. The university will look to Dr. Ferraro for a thorough exploration of how the Wismer Professorship can, and should, take us into the next decade. We all look forward to Dr. Ferraro’s leadership of the Wismer Center.”

August 23, 2018

Caitlin Carlson, assistant professor in the Department of Communication, received the “Top Faculty Paper Award” in the Law and Policy Division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC). The award was given at the association’s annual conference earlier this month in Washington, D.C. 

AEJMC is an educational association of journalism and mass communication educators, students and media professionals. Its mission is “to advance education, foster scholarly research, cultivate better professional practice and promote the free flow of communication.”

August 22, 2018

As reported in Northwest Asian Weekly, Washington Governor Jay Inslee has appointed Nirmala (“Nimmy”) Gnanapragasam, associate professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, to a second term on the Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors.

The seven-member board “provides consumer protection to the public through the licensing of engineers, land surveyors and onsite wastewater designers, as well as recommends rules and regulations for administering licensing and regulatory laws,” as described on its website. Board members serve five-year terms.

Click here for Gnanapragasam’s CV.

July 16, 2018

Seattle University is once again featured in the “Fiske Guide to Colleges.” Revised and updated for 2019, the guide aims to provide “an insider’s look at what it’s really like to be a student at the ‘best and most interesting’ four-year schools” in the United States, Canada and the U.K. Begun more than three decades ago by former New York Times education editor Edward Fiske, the guide bearing his name includes about 320 colleges. 

SU’s profile reads, in part: “Although Seattle has cultivated a reputation based largely on software, Starbucks lattes, and perpetually gray skies, the city is also home to Seattle University, a vibrant Jesuit institution that attracts just over 4,500 undergraduates to its urban campus. With strong preprofessional programs and a commitment to social and spiritual engagement, SU continues to express its mission to empower leaders for a just and humane world.” 

The guide for college-bound students and their families also refers to SU’s campus as an “urban sanctuary” and makes note of the university’s Core Curriculum and the abundance of service-learning opportunities, among other attributes.

“SU students are outgoing, passionate and very intentional when it comes to how they engage in and outside the classroom,” says a social work major quoted in the publication.

Sounds like a pretty good place to go to school, eh?

July 12, 2018

Seattle University men's basketball was among teams honored by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) as the association announced the sixth annual Team Academic Excellence Awards.

The award, created by the NABC Committee on Academics, recognizes outstanding academic achievement by teams with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better for the 2017-18 season.

The Redhawks achieved a team cumulative GPA of 3.012 for the 2017-18 academic year. Five players concluded the year with a 3.2 cumulative GPA or higher while four Redhawks – Mattia Da Campo, Morgan Means, Matej Kavas and Jake Spurgeon – were also named to the 2017-18 Winter All-Western Athletic Conference Academic Team.

Seattle U was one of just two teams in the WAC, and one of 44 total Division I programs, to be honored.

In order to earn a NABC Team Academic Excellence Award, institutions in the NCAA, NAIA and NJCAA must count the grade point averages of all men’s student-athletes who competed during the 2017-18 season. 

Located in Kansas City, Missouri, the NABC was founded in 1927 by Phog Allen, the legendary basketball coach at the University of Kansas. Allen, a student of James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, organized coaches into this collective group to serve as Guardians of the Game.

- Sarah Finney, Athletics

June 17, 2018

Gloria Burgess, contextual education director in the School of Theology and Ministry, hosted and moderated a webinar sponsored by the International Leadership Association titled "Yes, to the Mess: Surprising Leadership Lessons from Jazz." Burgess also co-led a workshop at the Tobias Institute's Annual Leadership Conference in Indianapolis titled "Maestro: Inspiring Leadership Lessons from the Podium."

June 17, 2018

Anne Hirsch, associate dean for graduate education and professor in the College of Nursing, has been appointed by Washington Gov. Jay Inslee to serve as one of 29 individuals (and the only nurse) on the new Performance Measures Coordinating Committee, a panel charged with recommending standard statewide measures of health performance by 2015.

June 17, 2018

Professor Anne Enquist of the School of Law (center) received the Burton Award for Outstanding Contributions to Legal Writing Education at a ceremony at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., on June 9. Read more at School of Law.

June 15, 2018

Misuk Lee, assistant professor of management, received a best paper award for her paper, “Investigating the Impact of Online Browsing Dynamics on Promotion Effectiveness,” which she presented at the 2018 4th International Conference on Information Management in Oxford, UK.

June 14, 2018

A hydroelectric power utility company noticed cracks in a bridge connecting a dam and its intake structure…A county confronted a failed culvert which was blocking migrating fish from passing. 

Both turned to Seattle University’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering for solutions, and our students delivered. Not only that, their projects have now won awards from the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES). Each award comes with $10,000. 

SU’s projects were among just eight chosen from nearly 100 entries for NCEES Engineering Education Awards. SU teams have won 17 out of the 62 awards that NCEES has given out (27%) since 2009. 

In one of the winning projects, a team of SU students partnered with Snohomish County Public Works to design a replacement for the failed culvert in Stanwood, Wash. This restored passage for migrating juvenile fish, meeting the concerns of the county, the Stillaguamish Tribe and local property owners. 

For the other project, students worked with Seattle City Light to design a solution for cracked girders on the Ross Dam Intake Access Bridge at the Skagit River Hydroelectric Facility. The facility generates 10 percent of the electricity used by the City of Seattle, and the bridge is the only access point for conducting maintenance at the dam. 

SU’s two winning projects were completed last year through the Project Center. Civil and Environmental Engineering faculty, Instructor Mark Siegenthaler and Assistant Professor Joshua Pugh, served as advisors for the culvert and bridge projects, respectively.

Click here to learn more about the NCEES awards, and here for more information on SU’s Project Center.

Pictured left to right are CEE Faculty Project Advisor Joshua Pugh, CEE Senior Design Project Coordinator Nimmy Gnanapragasam and CEE Faculty Project Advisor Mark Siegenthaler.

June 12, 2018

Haytham Al-Ohali, a 1999 electrical engineering graduate, has been appointed by royal decree as vice minister of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Communications and Information Technology. He previously served as managing director for Saudi Arabia at Cisco Systems, Inc.

June 11, 2018

Kirsten Thompson, director of Film Studies, has published and made numerous presentations at conferences recently.

She authored “Rainbow Ravine: Color and Animated Advertising in Times Square, 1891-1945,” for the book The Color Fantastic: Chromatic Worlds of Silent Cinema (Amsterdam University Press). 

She also was selected as an external evaluator for the Performance Based Review Team on Pacific Research in New Zealand, a prestigious comprehensive assessment of all national research that occurs once every seven years in the New Zealand tertiary education system. 

In addition, Thompson presented: “The Color Revolution: The Disney Studio, Color and Visual Culture” at  Classical Hollywood Studies in the 21st Century (Wilfred Laurier University, Waterloo, Ont.); “Harvey Weinstein, # MeToo, #TimesUpNow, and Social Media” at Ends of Cinema, Center for 21st Century Conference (Milwaukee, Wisc.); “The Color Revolution: The Disney Studio, Du Pont and Faber Birren” at the Color in Film III Conference (London, UK); and “Arab Cinema and Animated Advertising: From the Frenkels to Future TV,” at Cinema of the Arab World (American University, Cairo, Egypt).

June 11, 2018

Two SU professors have received faculty awards, Interim Provost Bob Dullea announced June 7. 

2018 Provost’s Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching 

Professor Toni Vezeau, a faculty member in the College of Nursing, has been teaching at Seattle University for a quarter century. She has taught in all programs from the bachelors to doctoral level, focusing her efforts in supporting students very new to the field. She is passionate about the development of a new kind of nurse—one who is both compassionate and exceptional in leadership and skills. Vezeau has developed evaluation methods with the college so that all faculty ensure that students are well-prepared for licensure. She is known for a direct and individualized approach to both students and faculty. Jesuit-raised and Jesuit-educated, Vezeau has worked to keep the Jesuit mission central in all aspects of the college, ensuring both academic rigor and social consciousness. Vezeau deeply cares about her students and colleagues in the university. 

2018 Provost's Faculty Award for Excellence in Research, Scholarship, and Creative Endeavors 

Professor Mary Alberg, a faculty member in the Physics Department of the College of Science and Engineering, is a nationally recognized teacher-scholar. Her research is in theoretical nuclear and particle physics, most recently focused on the properties of the proton, the particle at the heart of every atom and the fuel of stars. Inspired by her own undergraduate research experience at Wellesley College, Alberg has made collaborative work with undergraduates central to her scholarly life. Her research program and mentorship of Seattle University students has been continuously supported by the National Science Foundation for over two decades. The impact of Alberg’s scholarship has been recognized by her election to Fellowship in the American Physical Society. She is the inaugural recipient of the Lynnwood W. Swanson Scientific Research Award, established by the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust to honor “a professor whose work has gained national recognition, and demonstrated leadership in engaging undergraduate students and promoting research and their institution.” 

The recipients will be recognized at the undergraduate commencement ceremony on Sunday, June 17 at KeyArena and at the Provost’s Convocation in the fall. They also will receive honoraria.

June 3, 2018

Jim Hembree, Ph.D., assistant vice president for university initiatives in University Advancement, has received a Fulbright Specialist Award in Business Administration. During his six-week residency at the University of Rwanda, Hembree will work with the university's senior leaders on the development of their institutional advancement program. His 2014 Fulbright builds on an earlier 2011 award, which was also hosted by the University of Rwanda.