Refugee crisis stretches beyond Europe


By Sam Roth (’17), JMU Public Affairs 

A grant from the Harrisonburg Refugee Resettlement Office is supporting Dr. Kenneth R. Rutherford’s efforts to help new students who are from refugee families integrate smoothly into life at Harrisonburg High School. The pilot program, “The Harrisonburg Peer Leadership Program for Adolescents from Refugee Families,” will pair new students with students who were themselves refugees, but have settled into life in Harrisonburg after a few years. 

Rutherford is director of the Center for International Stabilization and Recovery and a professor of political science at JMU. 

The older students, called Peer Leaders or PLs, will help the new students adjust to American life as quickly as possible. It is hoped, this project will lead to keeping students out of gangs and away from drugs. Currently, the PLs are from Iraq, Sudan, Eritrea and Congo. 

By working with the Harrisonburg Refugee Resettlement Office, the project will be able to gain new insight into understanding how adolescents can experience difficulty when adjusting to a new environment, said Cameron Macauley, trauma rehabilitation specialist with CISR. Rutherford hopes this program can provide these new students with the best support they could receive.. 

Check out more faculty accomplishments below.


Lisa Tubach (Associate Professor, Art) exhibited her artwork at the Anderson O’Brien Fine Art Gallery in Omaha, Nebraska. The project, “Hoping for Infinity,” showcases paintings that relate to her research on coral health at the Cape Eleuthera Institute in the Bahamas.

GRANTS (September 2015)

Dr. Nancy E. Barbour (Accreditation and Special Projects, College of Education; Professor, Early, Elementary and Reading Education) received $182,832 from the U.S. Department of State for an International Leaders in Education Program to showcase educational concepts, technology, civic life and culture for foreign secondary-level teachers.

Dr. Dennis B. Blanton (Assistant Professor, Anthropology) received $3,515 from the City of Staunton to continue conducting an archaeological survey of portions of Montgomery Hall Park in Staunton, Virginia.

Dr. Jennifer E. Coffman (Associate Executive Director, Office of International Programs; Associate Professor, Integrated Science and Technology) and Dr. Lee G. Sternberger (Executive Director, Office of International Programs) received $341,828 from the Institute of International Education Inc. to promote Swahili language skills for scholars at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.

Dr. Thomas C. DeVore (Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry) received $321 from the Academy of Applied Science for a Virginia Junior Science and Humanities Symposium.

Dr. Jeffrey S. Dyche (Associate Professor, Psychology) received $19,389 from Vista LifeSciences to collect data on the Android smartphone platform for two tests from the Automated Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics cognitive test battery.

Dr. Michele D. Estes (Associate Professor, Learning, Technology and Leadership Education) received $1,000 from the Virginia Society for Technology in Education for the spring 2016 Brainstorm conference at JMU.

Patricia A. Kennedy (Early Literacy Initiatives Director, Institute for Innovation in Health and Human Services) received $24,552 from the City of Harrisonburg to enable nurse practitioners to provide health care to the homeless within city shelters through the Suitcase Clinic.

Dr. Thomas E. Moran (Associate Professor, Kinesiology) received $2,000 from the United States Tennis Association to offer an adapted tennis program for children and adults with disabilities.

Dr. Jacquelyn K. Nagel (Assistant Professor, Engineering) received $5,000 from the National Institute of Aerospace to develop a medical sterilization system for NASA space exploration missions.

Dr. Robert L. Nagel (Assistant Professor, Engineering) and Dr. Jacquelyn K. Nagel (Assistant Professor, Engineering) received $48,268 from the National Science Foundation for the Summit on Global Sustainability in Engineering Education to develop a strategic processing approach.

Dr. Kenneth R. Rutherford (Director, Center for International Stabilization and Recovery; Professor, Political Science) received $3,033 from the Harrisonburg Refugee Relocation Office to provide training and technical support for a pilot Harrisonburg Refugee Project. Rutherford received $129,835 from the U.S. Department of State to provide training and staffing for a conventional weapons destruction fellowship program for recent college graduates.

Dr. Kristen E. St. John (Professor, Geology and Environmental Science) received $9,700 from the National Association of Geoscience Teachers for the appointment as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Geoscience Education.

Dr. Rhonda M. Zingraff (Associate Dean, College of Health and Behavioral Studies; Director, Institute for Innovation in Health and Human Services), Cheryl L. Henderson (Co-director and Instructor, Training and Technical Assistance Center) and John T. McNaught (Co-director and Instructor, Training and Technical Assistance Center) received $277,789 from the Virginia Department of Education to continue to assess needs and services provided by the Region 5 Training/Technical Assistance Center’s staff.


Elisabeth Pyburn (Doctoral Student, Assessment and Measurement Program) received the competitive “Best Paper by a Graduate Student” Award from the Northeastern Educational Research Association, when she was a graduate student of psychological sciences, for the paper “A psychometric evaluation of Miami University Diversity Awareness Subscales.”

Dr. Maureen G. Shanahan (Professor, Art History) received $20,000 from the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts, for the Inaugural Florence Gould Foundation Fellowship for French art and visual studies to research the works of Gaëtan Gatian de Clérambault during French colonialism in and after World War I.


Dr. Emeka A. Anaza (Assistant Professor, Sport and Recreation Management) and Dr. Angela I. Hayslett (Lecturer, Sports and Recreation Management) presented a paper, “Danger lurks! Does risk management work? Effectiveness of risk management strategies at university athletic venues,” at the North American Society for Sport Management Conference in Ottawa, Ontario.

Dr. Emeka A. Anaza (Assistant Professor, Sport and Recreation Management) presented “Service firm identification from an outsider’s or better yet an immigrant’s point of view” at the Academy of Marketing Sciences in Denver, Colorado. His co-presenter is from Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Dr. Alice M. Hammel (Instructor, Music), Dr. David A. Stringham (Assistant Professor, Music) and Dr. Gary K. Ritcher (Professor, Music) presented “Teaching music to students with special needs: A model for pre-service music teacher educators” at the Society for Music Teacher Education Symposium at University of North Carolina at Greensboro.


Dr. Emeka A. Anaza (Assistant Professor, Sport and Recreation Management) published “Salesperson resistance to sharing market intelligence in emerging sub-Saharan African markets” in the Journal of Marketing Channels, 22, 93-107. His co-authors are from Kansas State University and Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Dr. Mikihiro Sato (Assistant Professor, Sport and Recreation Management) published “Distance running events and life satisfaction: A longitudinal study” in the Journal of Sport Management, 29, 347-361. His co-authors are from Temple University.

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Published: Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Last Updated: Thursday, November 2, 2023

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