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College Roundup A selection of faculty, staff, student and alumni happenings

June 2017

Shawn Kent, an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, attended the Sequential Multiple-Assignment Randomized Trials Research Training Institute in June. The training, sponsored by the National Center on Special Education Research in the Institute of Education Sciences, focused on helping researchers “conduct novel and methodologically rigorous trials for developing and evaluating adaptive interventions,” Kent said.

Graduate student Kimberly Schwaeble has been nominated to serve on the board of directors for the Texas Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. Schwaeble, who’s pursuing an M.Ed. in higher education in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, is assistant director in the office of financial aid at Rice University.

Two doctoral students in the Department of Psychological, Health and Learning Sciences were selected as recipients of travel awards from the American Psychological Association. Lexie Posada, in the educational psychology and individual differences program, and Christine Pao, in the counseling program, each will receive $300 to attend the APA Convention in Washington, D.C., in August 2017. Posada and Pao were two of the roughly 100 students chosen from applicants across the country.

Doctoral student Greg Meyers has received the education medal from the Ministry of Education in Taiwan. Meyers, who's pursuing an Ed.D. in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, is the first American to receive the award. A former Houston school board member, he was honored for his efforts to enhance educational opportunities between the U.S. and Taiwan. He was presented with the award and a statement of recognition from Texas Governor Greg Abbott at the Houston Independent School District board meeting June 8.

March/April 2017

Three graduate students in the Department of Psychological, Health and Learning Sciences will present their work at the American Psychological Association annual convention in August in Washington, D.C., after receiving spring 2017 travel fellowships. The winning students, who each received about $500, were Alex Slaughter (mentor: Jonathan Schwartz), Ewune Ewane (mentor: Ezemenari Obasi) and Kim Smoots (mentor: Bradley Smith). PHLS research task force members Jorge Gonzalez, Ken Ripperger-Suhler, Wei Fan, Tammy Tolar and Nathan Smith selected the recipients based largely on the novelty and significance of the students’ research presentations and alignment with the department’s mission.

Guillermo Ortega, a higher education doctoral student in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, was accepted in April to serve on the American Educational Research Association’s Graduate Student Council for the 2017-18 school year. He will serve on the council and as the Connect Series co-chair in Division A. His research interests include the role of athletics in higher education, particularly for Latino students.

Silvester Mata, a Ph.D. in higher education student in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, was selected to participate in the American Educational Research Association’s Division J 2017 Emerging Scholars Workshop in at the AERA annual conference in April in San Antonio.

Assistant Professor Laura Turchi and Professor Cameron White, both in the Curriculum and Instruction Department, were honored as 2016 Authors of Scholarly Book Publications at the UH Inventor Patent Awards and Celebration of Researchers’ Luncheon in March.

Other College of Education faculty members were honored at the awards luncheon as 2016 New Researcher Grant Award Recipients: Consuelo Arbona, Andrea Burridge, Virmarie Correa-Fernández, Jerome Freiberg, Paige Evans, Jacqueline Hawkins, Sascha Hein, Catherine Horn, Laveria Hutchison, Milena Keller-Margulis, Anne McClellan, Robert McPherson, Rosenda Murillo, Ezemenari Obasi, Norma Olvera, Patricia Paquin, Lorraine Reitzel, Kristi Santi, Jonathan Schwartz, Bradley Smith, Tammy Tolar, Shelley Townsend and Laura Turchi.

Associate Professor Lorraine Reitzel and Assistant Professor Virmarie Correa-Fernández, both in the Department of Psychological, Health and Learning Sciences, and doctoral student Julie Neisler presented in March at the Annual Conference for the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco in Florence, Italy. They presented posters about smoking cessation outreach and research on homeless smokers. Neisler, a student in the measurement and quantitative methods in learning sciences Ph.D. program, also is a research assistant and president of the College of Education Graduate Student Organization.

Ronnie Burren, a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction student, spoke in March at the Women in Leadership Initiative Luncheon at Syracuse University about the challenges women leaders face from men.

February 2017

Jason Bergeron, a Ph.D. in higher education student in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, won the Steven B. Dealph Outstanding Fraternity/Sorority Professional Award. Bergeron is director of the University of Houston’s Center for Fraternity and Sorority Life. The award, presented in February at the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values Conference, recognizes a leader who embodies values of the profession and those of organizations that the advisor supports.

Anthony Rolle, chair of the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at the University of Houston College of Education, was selected to serve as president of the National Education Finance Academy for 2017-18. Rolle previously served as vice president. Rolle also won the academy’s 2017 Educational Considerations Outstanding Article of the Year Award. Rolle’s article focused on measuring the economic efficiency of educational organizations in Australia and examining the differences in expenditure patterns, organizational outcomes and academic outcomes. The group held its annual conference in late February.

Sly Mata and Toni Templeton, Ph.D. students in higher education and policy studies, presented at the National Education Finance Academy meeting in late February in Cincinnati. Their research focused on tuition and higher education funding. Mata’s presentation was titled “Price Matters: A Time Series Analysis of Tuition Prices and Enrollment with a Focus on Texas Public Universities.” Templeton’s presentation related to her paper “An Exploration of Technical Efficiency in Higher Education Institutions.”

College of Education Assistant Professor Shawn Kent won a $5,945 award from the UH Division of Research New Faculty Research Award Program. Kent proposed to conduct a small-scale study to examine the effectiveness of providing parent training to assist upper elementary and secondary students with reading difficulties.

The UH Asian American Studies Center awarded several student scholarships this semester, thanks to the Asian Pacific American Heritage Association scholarship endowment.

  • Students selected for the Academic Excellence scholarship ($1,000 each): Denny Do (dietian/nutrition), Thomas Santos (English, creative writing), Silvia Romo-Duarte (English, creative writing) and Andrew Wells (liberal studies)
  • Students selected for the Research Scholarship Award ($2,000 each): Jason Bergeron (higher education and policy studies), Daniel Chu (English creative writing), Anthony Foster (law professional), Silvester Mata (higher education and policy studies), Trang Phan (higher education and policy studies) and Toni Templeton (higher education and policy studies)

Maria Honey, a M.Ed. in higher education student, won the 2017 Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education Distinguished University Staff Award. It was presented during the group’s annual conference in late February in Austin. Honey works as assistant director of marketing and communications for Auxiliary Services and Student Housing and Residential Life at UH.

The Department of Curriculum & Instruction graduated five students from Vietnam during the fall 2016 semester. Khanh P. Duong, Hang T. Nguyen, Huy Nguyen, Phuoc M. Nguyen and Anh Thi Van Ha received an M.Ed. in curriculum & instruction specializing in social education, led by their professor Cameron White. The students are part of a partnership between the UH College of Education and Ho Chi Minh City University of Education in Vietnam. There have been about 20 students who have completed the M.Ed. program.

January 2017

Professor Augustina “Tina” Reyes, in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, was invited to join the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Questionnaire Standing Committee in November 2016. The group of leading education experts, chosen through a national search, consults with the testing company for the Nation’s Report Card.

Higher Education (M.Ed.) student Kimberly Schwaeble attended the Texas Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators conference in Frisco, Texas, in October 2016. As part of the training committee, Schwaeble helped organize a workshop for new financial aid administrators. She also attended the Federal Student Aid conference in Atlanta, Ga., in November.

Higher Education (Ph.D.) students Andrew Kapral and Kathryn Wheatley presented a paper at the Association for the Study of Higher Education conference in Columbus, Ohio, in November 2016. They used data from the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Advancement of Teacher Education to examine early career retention among public school teachers in Texas. The paper focused on connecting characteristics of university-based teacher preparation programs to teacher retention in Texas public schools during a five-year period.