Sergiy Dmytriyev

Sergiy Dmytriyev is an assistant professor of Management in the College of Business. His research centers on exploring stakeholder theory (creating value for all stakeholders rather than prioritizing shareholders) and business humanization (considering employees as ends in themselves rather than means for achieving financial returns). His scholarly works have been published in leading academic journals including Journal of Management, Journal of Management Studies, and Business Ethics, the Environment & Responsibility. Dr. Dmytriyev has co-authored several books including Humanizing Business: What Humanities Can Say to Business (Springer, 2022) and Research Approaches to Business Ethics and Corporate Responsibility (Cambridge, 2017). He also serves as Research Integrity Editor for the Journal of Business Ethics.

Dr. Dmytriyev integrates his scholarly work on stakeholder theory and humanizing business in his teaching. The students in his Management Consulting courses run real-life projects by actively helping local organizations with strategic development and growth.

He joined JMU in 2019 after completing his Ph.D. in Business Administration at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. Since then, Dr. Dmytriyev has received several scholarly awards from the College of Business (the First Place Awards for Discovery Publication in 2022 and 2023) and the Management Department (Paul Bierly Best Publication Awards in 2021 and 2022).

Sergiy Dmytriyev
Assistant Professor
Joseph Kush
Assistant Professor of Graduate Psychology
Assistant Assessment Specialist
Joseph Kush

Joseph M. Kush is an assistant professor in the Department of Graduate Psychology at James Madison University, as well as an assistant assessment specialist at the Center for Assessment and Research Studies. He received a B.S. in Psychology from Syracuse University and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology – Research, Statistics and Evaluation from the University of Virginia. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Dr. Kush’s methodological research is primarily interested in improving statistical methods and research designs for the social sciences, including multilevel structural equation models, propensity score matching and moderated nonlinear factor analysis. He has worked closely alongside substantive researchers in the areas of educational and behavioral interventions and measurement related to social, emotional and behavioral assessments. His work has appeared in journals such as Structural Equation Modeling, Educational and Psychological Measurement, Journal of School Psychology, American Educational Research Journal, Educational Researcher and Prevention Science. Further national media of Dr. Kush’s work has appeared in Inside Higher Ed, Forbes, NBC Washington, and Education Week.

Dr. Kush teaches graduate-level coursework in inferential statistics and causal inference methodology, and currently supervises two students in the Assessment and Measurement Ph.D. program. Dr. Kush is a member of the American Educational Research Association (Division D), American Psychological Association (Division 5), Society for Prevention Research and Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness.

More information about Joe can be found on his website.

Shraddha Joshi

Dr. Shraddha Joshi is an assistant professor in the Department of Engineering at James Madison University. She received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Clemson University. She received her B.E. in Mechanical Engineering from Nirma University in Gujarat, India.

Dr. Joshi’s research interests predominantly lie in the area of (engineering) design theory and methods with a focus on the conceptual design phase coupled with research in engineering education. Her research spans across three pivotal domains. The first domain is enhancing creativity tools by delving into tools and methodologies that amplify creative capacities within the engineering design process. The second domain is exploring the role that physical prototypes can play during the conceptual design phase. The third domain is examining the intricacies of engineering design instruction and revealing approaches that enhance successful teaching methods.

During her tenure at James Madison University, Dr. Joshi has authored (or co-authored) ten manuscripts including journal articles as well as peer-reviewed conference articles. Dr. Joshi has mentored multiple undergraduate students by providing them with opportunities to work on her research projects and to present this research at regional and national conferences. She has led multiple workshops and panels at the ASEE annual conference and exposition. She has served as a reviewer for multiple journals including the Journal of Engineering Design, International Journal for Engineering Education, and International Journal for Design Creativity and Innovation. She has recently submitted a proposal titled: “Students’ ways of experiencing prototyping in the context of engineering design projects,” to NSF’s Research Initiation in Engineering Formation (RIEF).

William Lukens

Bill Lukens is an assistant professor in Geology and Environmental Science and serves as a coordinator of the Climate Science Minor. His research is centered on reconstructing Earth's past climates and environments using fossil soils and mummified trees. Of particular interest are ancient periods that offer insights into our potential future under anthropogenic climate change. His student-driven research group employs a multifaceted approach, combining fieldwork, laboratory analysis and data science to address questions related to our planet's evolution and future trajectory.

Dr. Lukens earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Geology from Temple University, completed his Ph.D. in Geology at Baylor University, and held postdoctoral research positions at Baylor University and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He joined JMU in 2019.

A large focus of his work involves reconstructing ancient landscapes in the rift basins of eastern Africa. Recent breakthroughs include the identification of Africa's earliest grassland and savanna biomes, prompting a new understanding of our distant ape ancestors and their habitats. This accomplishment underscores the success of collaborative efforts involving diverse, interdisciplinary teams in addressing longstanding scientific questions. Dr. Lukens has taken three JMU geology students on field excursions to Kenya, supported 16 paid undergraduate researchers with external grants, and has mentored 21 undergraduate students in their research projects.

Rachel Rhoades

Dr. Rachel Rhoades is assistant professor of theatre education in the School of Theatre and Dance. She has worked as an applied theatre and drama in education practitioner, teacher and researcher with young people from Grade 1 to the graduate level for 15 years. Her research focus is on working with local refugees, asylum-seekers and immigrants in partnership with five community organizations. Rhoades integrated her most recent research with the new Community-Engaged and Activist Theatre course, which included newcomer participants from Cameroon, China, El Salvador, Honduras, Kurdistan and Nepal. She has also led many professional development trainings on anti-racist and cross-cultural drama pedagogy. Rhoades has five single-authored publications, and recently published a co-authored chapter in the book, Into Abolition: A Guidebook for Liberatory Theatre-making Practices. She has presented at 15 conferences, including last summer’s International Drama in Education Association in Reykjavik, Iceland. Rhoades trained teacher candidates in the Masters of Teaching program at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, on integrating drama education techniques in cross-curriculum praxis. Rhoades has directed and facilitated devising projects in public schools, youth-serving community organizations, and through her own doctoral research with marginalized youth.

Benjamin Riden

Benjamin S. Riden, Ph.D., BCBA-D is an assistant professor in the College of Education at James Madison University. He earned his master’s degree in special education at the University of Utah and earned his Ph.D. at the Pennsylvania State University. He is a former middle and high school special education teacher in the Mountain West. He has provided one-on-one support for students with extensive support needs in the home setting.

His research interests include using principles of applied behavior analysis to support students with challenging behavior, preparing teachers to effectively manage their classrooms and single case research design. Dr. Riden has written papers for several academic journals including the Journal of Behavioral Education, Journal of Special Education Technology, Teacher Education and Special Education, and Beyond Behavior. He has published 29 manuscripts and delivered over 80 conference presentations, has reviewed for Education and Treatment of Children, Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal, and Behavior Disorders, and has acted as co-editor for several special issues that have been published in Beyond Behavior, Journal of Special Education Technology, and Behavioral Disorders (forthcoming). Dr. Riden is also an associate editor for the Journal of Special Education Preparation.

Ja’La Wourman

Born in Waukegan, IL, Dr. Wourman received her Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Writing from Michigan State University where she specialized in Digital Rhetoric and Black Entrepreneurial Writing. She is an assistant professor in the School of Writing, Rhetoric and Technical Communication (WRTC) and affiliate faculty of African, African American, and Diaspora Studies (AAAD) at James Madison University. Nationally, she has served as the Digital Media editor for the Computers and Composition Digital Press and Co-Director of their Digital Fellows program.

As a scholar and practitioner, Dr. Wourman has gained a global perspective on writing and design, largely influenced from being a military dependent traveling the world and growing up in Japan. Her research and scholarship looks at the intersections of identity and culture in professional organizations and social media platforms with a keen focus on developing inclusive design, communication and branding for all audiences. With these interests, Dr. Wourman has presented her work at numerous academic conferences and published in journals such as Kairos, Spark:4C4E, Technical Communication Quarterly, Conference on College Composition and Communication, and the Journal of African American Studies.

Dr. Wourman is also the recipient of many awards, fellowships and honors. She is a KCP “King-Chavez-Parks” Fellow, and currently serves as a Gilliam Entrepreneurship Faculty Fellow at James Madison University. Prior to coming to JMU, she was awarded the Excellence Award in Interdisciplinary Scholarship for co-directing a study abroad to Tanzania at Michigan State University and was nominated for the 2022-2023 Computers and Composition Michelle Kendrick Outstanding Digital Production/Scholarship Award which received Honorable Mention.

In addition to her research and teaching, she is a sought after public speaker and enjoys empowering college students and youth.

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