August Scholarly News


Submit scholarly news—publications, paper presentations and professional awards and service (appointment to boards, etc.)—to Janet Smith in Public Affairs at or 568-8008.


Emily K. Akerson (Associate Director, Institute for Innovation in Health and Human Services) received two grants from the Virginia Department of Social Services – $46,389 for "Healthy Families Shenandoah County" and $21,904 for "Healthy Families Page County" to continue to meet the needs of at-risk families by providing education, resources, and support. Akerson received two grants of $2,280 and $1,200 from the Shenandoah County Community Service Act for "Healthy Families Shenandoah County." Akerson received $2,000 from the Association of American Medical Colleges for "Interprofessional Course Development: Ethical Decision-making in Healthcare: An Interprofessional Approach" to reward the recipient for participation in the Interprofessional Education Collaborative collection.

Dr. Robin D. Anderson (Head, Graduate Psychology; Professor, Psychology) and Dr. Richard F. West (Professor Emeritus, Graduate Psychology) received $999,376 from the John Templeton Foundation for "The Development of a Test of Rational Thinking" to develop a test to assess individual differences in rational thinking.

Dr. B.J. Bryson (Professor, Social Work) received $185,734 from the Virginia Department of Education for "WHS 21st Century Community Learning Center" to improve academic achievement and college readiness of Waynesboro High School students by focusing on environmental education that supports in-school content.

Dr. Timothy J. Carter (Head, Sociology and Anthropology; Professor, Sociology) received two grants from Carmeuse Lime & Stone – $77,048 for "Middle Marsh Extended" to conduct archaeological testing and assessment of Nieswander's Fort, Wesley Merritt's 1864 cavalry encampment, and the Stickley slave quarter sites identified as part of the ongoing cultural resources investigation being conducted on the Middle Marsh Project locale in Frederick County, Va., and $11,545 for "Phase I Archaeology at Middle Marsh Run" to complete the remaining field work north of Hite Chapel Road, to complete the initial report of findings and to file the sites identified in the Middle Marsh Run, Northern Reserve and Middletown Wood project areas with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources.

Dr. Harriet C. Cobb (Professor, Graduate Psychology) received $10,000 from the Harrisonburg City Public School Division for "JMU/HCPSD Consortium Combined-Integrated Psychology Internship" to provide funding for internship placement in classrooms and schools in Harrisonburg.

Dr. Diane L. Foucar-Szocki (Head, Learning, Technology and Leadership Education; Professor, Adult Education) received four grants from the Virginia Department of Education – $200,000 for the Skyline Community Learning Center-Year 3 to establish a Community Learning Center at Skyline Middle School, $200,000 for the Thomas Harrison Community Learning Center-Year 3 to implement new efforts targeting English (reading/writing) with the intention of removing the school from English and School Improvement status and strengthening the community learning center efforts for enduring sustainability, $200,000 for the Smithland Community Learning Center-Year 3 to establish the Smithland Community Learning Center, linking the Big Brothers Big Sisters AMP IT UP Academic Mentoring program and the Career Development Academy Adult and Family Learning Center for quality out-of-school, extended day programming and $150,000 for the Career Development Academy to offer high quality, affordable contextualized EL CIVICS services to area immigrants and refugees for their achievement of English language proficiency and civic understanding.

Dr. Kevin L. Giovanetti (Professor, Physics and Astronomy), Dr. Gabriel Niculescu (Associate Professor, Physics and Astronomy) and Dr. M. Ioana Niculescu (Associate Professor, Physics and Astronomy) received $89,271 from the National Science Foundation for the "MRI Consortium: Development of the Forward Photon Tagger for the CLAS12 Detector at Jefferson Lab" to develop and construct the forward tracking system, hodoscope and read-out electronics of the forward tagger.

Dr. Reid N. Harris (Professor, Biology) and Andrew H. Loudon (Graduate Student, Biology) received $6,000 from Gregory Lipps, LLC for "Microbial Defenses of Hellbenders" to investigate the function of hellbender microbial communities by determining if the compositions of bacterially produced metabolites are constant and are capable of inhibiting the amphibian chytrid fungus.

Dr. Kimberlee Hartzler-Weakley (Administrator, Institute for Innovation in Health and Human Services) received $200,000 from the Virginia Department of Education to establish the Spotswood/Waterman Community Learning Center, linking in- and out-of-school learning through afterschool school-based and community-based enrichment, school- and home-based tutoring, school- and community-based summer enrichment and school- and community based Family Literacy Nights. 

Dr. Michael S. Kirkpatrick (Assistant Professor, Computer Science) received $30,000 from Purdue University to study applications for physically unclonable functions in securing Smart Meters, pursuant to the United States Department of Energy Smart Grid research and development objectives.

Dr. Robert A. Kolvoord (Interim Director, Engineering; Professor, Integrated Science and Technology) received $49,953 from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration for "The Evolving Role of Visualization in Science and Education: Gordon Research Conference, Workshops and Visionary Grants to Advance Visualization Research in Science and Education" to address a research gap in the dual use of visualization tools for the advancement of science and for the improvement of education in and outside of the classroom. Kolvoord received $12,700 from the Virginia Geographic Alliance to sponsor the 4th National Summit on Geospatial Technologies in K-12, a two-day conference on the use of geospatial technologies across the K-12 curriculum, coupled with a two-day workshop on geospatial technologies for Virginia middle- and high-school teachers.

Amber N. McBride (IT Specialist, Furious Flower Poetry Center) received $6,000 from the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities for "Sheer Good Fortune: A Tribute to Toni Morrison" to host a tribute to the poet at Virginia Tech.

Dr. Jonathan J. Miles (Professor, Integrated Science and Technology) received $42,000 from the U.S. Department of Energy for "Wind for Schools in Virginia: Best Practices Manual" to provide a manual that will present generally accepted, informally standardized methods and techniques that have been developed to accomplish the goals of Wind for Schools. 

Kenneth F. Newbold Jr. (Director, Research and Innovation, Institute for Energy and Environmental Research and Institute for Infrastructure and Information Assurance) and Alleyn Harned (Executive Director, Virginia Clean Cities) received $226,351 from Virginia Clean Cities Inc. for the Virginia Clean Cities Entity Agreement to reduce petroleum consumption in the transportation sector by advancing the use of alternative fuels and vehicles, idle reduction technologies, hybrid electric vehicles, fuel blends and fuel economy.

Dr. Cynthia R. O’Donoghue (Head and Professor, Communication Sciences and Disorders) received $45,500 from the Scottish Rite Foundation of Virginia for "Scottish Rite Clinic and Fellowships" to continue support for the JMU-Scottish Rite Language Disorders Clinic.

Dr. Kenneth R. Rutherford (Director, Center for International Stabilization and Recovery; Professor, Political Science) received $492,552 from the U.S. Department of State for "CISR Core Services to WRA" to encourage and stimulate the support of programs undertaken by the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement by acting as an information clearinghouse, identifying, gathering, managing and distributing information. Rutherford received $10,674 from Action on Armed Violence for "Burundi Armed Violence Reduction and Prevention Programme: Phase II" to provide psychosocial support to facilitate the healing process of victims of armed violence in Burundi.

Dr. Michael J. Saunders (Professor, Kinesiology) and Nicholas D. Luden (Assistant Professor, Kinesiology) received $68,903 from the Dairy Research Institute for "Tolerance to Intensified Cycle Training and Subsequent Adaptations: Influence of Chocolate Milk/Dairy Protein Supplementation" to investigate the efficacy of carbohydrate and protein intake to support athletes during heavy training.

Nick D. Swayne (Interim Director, Education Support Center; Coordinator for External Relations, College of Education; Instructor, Learning, Technology and Leadership Education), Dr. Gabriel Niculescu (Associate Professor, Physics and Astronomy), Dr. Kevin L. Giovanetti (Professor, Physics and Astronomy) and Dr. Cynthia A. Klevickis (Professor, Integrated Science and Technology) received $169,997 from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia for the "Virginia Initiative for Robotics in STEM Education" to provide upper elementary, middle-school and high-school personnel of the cities of Martinsville, Hopewell, Richmond, Harrisonburg, Waynesboro and Staunton and Augusta and Page counties with a unique STEM development and instructional strategies program in using robotics to enhance SOL/STEM content.

Dr. Wayne S. Teel (Professor, Integrated Science and Technology) received $15,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency for "Producing Biochar on Small Farms to Enhance Soil Fertility and Provide Heat" to design and build two biochar pylosis systems on two Shenandoah farms to increase farm productivity and reduce potential nutrient pollution problems in their respective watersheds.

Dr. Megan E. Tracy (Assistant Professor, Anthropology) received $5,119 from the National Science Foundation for "Regulating Accountability and Transparency in China’s Dairy Industry" to focus on the ethical, economic, political and technological questions raised when animal welfare is constructed as the means to ensure safe food of animal origin for consumers.

Dr. Brian C. Utter (Associate Professor, Physics and Astronomy), Dr. Kevin L. Caran (Associate Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry), Dr. Klebert B. Feitosa (Assistant Professor, Physics and Astronomy) and Dr. Kyle G. Gipson (Assistant Professor, Engineering) received $186,625 from the National Science Foundation for "MRI: Acquisition of Rheometer to Expand Interdisciplinary Materials Science Research with Undergraduate Researchers" to enable interdisciplinary research involving significant undergraduate participation, collaboration within and beyond JMU’s Center for Materials Science, and meaningful student learning.

Dr. James W. Wilson (Assistant Professor, Integrated Science and Technology) received $23,412 from the National Science Foundation for "INTEROP-Spatial Ontology Community of Practice: an Interdisciplinary Network to Support Geospatial Data Sharing, Integration, and Interoperability-Year 3" to develop and deliver educational materials related to the portal, tools and ontological repository for use in undergraduate university courses.



Dr. Laura A. Lewis (Professor Emerita, Anthropology) wrote "Chocolate and Corn Flour: History, Race, and Place in the Making of 'Black Mexico,'" which was published by the Duke University Press in August.

Dr. Matthew A. Rutherford (Associate Professor, Management), Dr. Laura L. Parks (Assistant Professor, Management), David E. Cavazos and Charles D. White wrote "Business Ethics as a Required Course: Investigating the Factors Impacting the Decision to Require Ethics in the Undergraduate Business Core Curriculum," which was published in the Academy of Management Learning and Education, August 2012.

Dr. Kristen St. John (Professor, Geology and Environmental Science), R. Mark Leckie, Kate Pound, Megan Jones and Lawrence Krissek wrote "Reconstructing Earth's Climate History: Inquiry-based Exercises for Lab and Class," which was published by Wiley-Blackwell, May 2012.



Jonathan R. Paulo (Education Librarian, Libraries and Educational Technologies) is serving as a librarian in the Semester at Sea's Fall 2012 Atlantic Exploration. Paulo's Aug. 23-Dec. 7 journey takes him to 16 cities in 14 countries – Canada, Ireland, England, Belgium, Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Ghana, South Africa, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Dominica and the United States. He is blogging about his adventures at

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Published: Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Last Updated: Thursday, November 2, 2023

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