JMU Research, Scholarship & Creative Endeavors
Volume 3, Issue 3
Greetings! 
 
Despite a couple of late winter snowfalls, we remain quite busy as we move into the final month of the spring semester.  
 
Director of the Center for International Stabilization and Recovery (CISR), Ken Rutherford, traveled to Slovenia last month to celebrate the 20th anniversary of ITF Enhancing Human Security, a nonprofit organization supporting post-conflict rehabilitation efforts in Europe. Scroll down for a photo of Dr. Rutherford with President of Slovenia Borut Pahor, and make sure to add CISR to your social media accounts to follow their efforts in the U.S. and abroad. And don't forget, Post-Conflict Recovery Week activities start tomorrow. See the full list of events here
 
Virginia Clean Cities (VCC) facilitated an electric vehicle charging station install at Montpelier, the historic home of the fourth President of the United States, James Madison. The collaborative effort among VCC, Montpelier, Tesla, and Dominion Energy brought online two charging stations that can service up to 12 electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. This alternative energy infrastructure is the first of its kind in Orange County, as well as the first at a historic home in the United States. 
 
Community Engagement Spotlight.   Like so many places in America, the Southside of Chicago represents an area that has been historically plagued with socioeconomic disadvantages, lack of social resources, transitional housing, disenfranchised and marginalized youth. Those were some of the circumstances when I grew up there and to some degree still remain. Back then, other than the YMCA, there were no safe havens for boys or girls needing people who cared enough to help them navigate through these early difficult years. Today, I have the honor of serving on the Board of Trustees of Boys Home of Virginia -- a safe haven that provides a mentored, nurturing space for boys and the necessary components of both home and school life, with a mission to help each student “strive toward becoming a productive member of society, by developing his potential – spiritually, mentally, physically and socially”.  
 
In support of the many programs that have a positive impact on their students, Boys Home will raffle off a Harley-Davidson motorcycle this spring. Please consider purchasing a ticket (starting at $10) at the following website . The drawing for the 2003 gunmetal gray Harley-Davidson 100th Anniversary Edition Sportster 1200 (photo below) will take place on June 7th. Scroll down for more information on Boys Home.

Thank you!      

Yvonne Harris
           
Vice Provost for Research & Scholarship
James Madison University
From left to right: Stan Brown, Director of the Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement at the U.S. Department of State; President of Slovenia Borut Pahor; and CISR Director Ken Rutherford.
James Madison University and Virginia Clean Cities alternative fuel vehicles at
James Madison's Montpelier.
Faculty Grant Awards
For a monthly listing of recent faculty grant awards, please visit the Madison Scholar website . Here are some notable awards from January and February 2018:   
  
Ashleigh Baber (Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry) received $100,000 from the Research Corporation to investigate the role of surface modifications on the selectivity of titania/gold inverse model catalysts while increasing undergraduate interest in chemistry by performing research in a general chemistry classroom format. 
 
Jennifer Coffman (Associate Executive Director, Center for Global Engagement; Associate Professor of Integrated Science and Technology) received $46,317 from the Institute of International Education, Inc. for Project Go to teach Kiswahili to JMU's East Africa Field School and to learn about the peoples, cultures and environments of contemporary Tanzania through direct interaction. 
 
Kim Hartzler-Weakley (Associate Director of Research and Public Health, Institute for Innovations in Health and Human Services) received $94,000 from the Central Shenandoah Health District for an abstinence education program in Harrisonburg. 
 
Jonathan Miles (Professor of Integrated Science and Technology) received $50,000 from the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy to contribute to clean energy development and deployment in a manner that emphasizes education, outreach and research. 
 
Baback Vaziri (Assistant Professor of Computer Information Systems and Business Analytics) received $38,296 from Purdue University to analyze determining success factors for veteran entrepreneurship by building a predictive model.
Spotlight on Adapted Physical Education  
Photograph by Elise Trissel, Associate Photographer at University Communications & Marketing.
Four celebrated Paralympic athletes and three accomplished wheelchair basketball players led a Paralympic Skill Lab experience with select Kinesiology 100 classes in February. The event promoted engagement and education related to adapted sport, inclusion and sociocultural norms. Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Cathy McKay ('98) organized the experience, which was funded by an Innovative Diversity Efforts Award (IDEA) Program Grant and a Faculty Senate Engagement Mini-Grant.  
 
Prior to the skill lab, students viewed the award winning adapted sport film -- The Rebound: A Wheelchair Basketball Documentary , which was produced and directed by JMU alumni Mike Esposito ('10) and Shaina Koren ('11). Both quantitative and qualitative data were collected before and after the documentary viewing and the skill lab to gauge attitudes related to disability, disability sport and inclusive campus recreation. Read more

Student Completes Adaptive Ski and Sports Internship 
 
Senior, Carly McBain completed her exercise science internship this past summer at Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports in Killington, Vermont. Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports offers year-round athletic and holistic wellness opportunities for individuals with a wide variety of disabilities. McBain did a lot of the behind the scenes planning for two of Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports’ big summer events, while also making time to go biking and kayaking with program participants. She said her internship experience was a good mix of administrative work, direct interaction, and learning about adaptive equipment. McBain entered the exercise science program planning to pursue physical therapy but her interests shifted after she completed her internship. She now hopes to pursue a career in the field of adaptive sports. Read more
Kinesiology Professor Earns Statewide Honor 
 
Thomas Moran, professor of kinesiology, was among 12 recipients of the Outstanding Faculty Award presented by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and Dominion Resources. This award recognizes superior accomplishments in teaching, research and public service at Virginia’s institutions of higher learning. Nominees were selected by the institutions, reviewed by a panel of peers and chosen by a committee of leaders from the public and private sectors. Moran said, "I have been blessed to work with awesome colleagues, students, and individuals of all ability levels in the community who challenge me to grow as a person and a professional every day.” A ceremony honoring the recipients was held on March 1st and each recipient received an engraved award and $5,000 underwritten by the Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources.  
 
It should be noted that Mark Gabriele, professor of biology, also received SCHEV’s Outstanding Faculty Award, adding to a lengthy list of accolades in recognition of his teaching, scholarship and service. Read more
Q&A with the College of Science & Mathematics  
Our research and scholarship Q&A series turns to the College of Science & Mathematics (CSM). Dean Cynthia Bauerle shares her thoughts about how faculty and students collaboratively engage in research and discovery in labs and the field, and how research and scholarship might evolve over the next half decade. CSM houses the following departments: Biology, Chemistry & Biochemistry, Physics & Astronomy, Mathematics & Statistics, and Geology & Environmental Science. Read the Q&A here
Building a 'Scholarship Cabin'
Dr. Brantmeier outside of the Grillhof Seminar Centre at the University of Innsbruck in Austria.
Dr. Edward Brantmeier, assistant director of scholarship programs in the Center for Faculty Innovation and associate professor in the Learning, Technology, and Leadership Education (LTLE) Department, returned in January from a four-month educational leave, spanning from August to December. Brantmeier said most of his leave time was spent “merging the waters between research and teaching,” and a focus on three specific projects, including a book about culturally competent engagement.  
 
During the 16-17 academic year, Brantmeier taught his dream course -- Inclusive Leadership for Sustainable Peace -- for the JMU Honors College. His leave time provided him the opportunity to work with an undergraduate student researcher and Integrated Science and Technology (ISAT) major, Destin Webb, to develop a study on the impact the course had on student learning. This research project led to an invitation to present the preliminary findings on a plenary panel at a five-day learning community in Innsbruck, Austria.  
 
If Brantmeier could offer one piece of advice to people wondering, “How can I be productive in my scholarship?” it would be “build a cabin”. While on leave, Brantmeier remodeled a cabin in the wilderness of West Virginia, and stated that more specifically, we should not be caught up in our heads all the time, “We have to get out into the world and connect to our bodies. We have to do the things that we love to do.” Read the profile here
Boys Home of Virginia
Located in Covington, VA, the 1400-acre Boys Home campus has been in operation since 1906 (two years longer than James Madison University!). Since their founding, hundreds of boys have graduated from Boys Home, having learned independent living skills, attained academic enrichment through a residential education program that includes tutoring sessions and a nightly study hall, participated in physical and recreational opportunities (for example, hiking, ice skating, fishing, camping, sports, and field trips), and visualized professional opportunities beyond high school (college and technical schools, as well as public service).    
 
To better understand the impact of Boys Home, read the words of a graduate, Chad --  
"I arrived in April 1999, with a trash bag full of filthy clothes and no recollection as to how long I would remain at Boys Home. My probation officer said I would spend 30 days being evaluated and then released to go home; however, this was not the outcome because I would remain at Boys Home until I graduated in 2004." Visit the Boys Home website to learn more about Chad's journey and others like him.
Computer Science Faculty Receives Fulbright to Chile  
Professor of Computer Science Ramon Mata-Toledo was recently granted a Fulbright Distinguished Chair Award to partner with Adolfo Ibanez, a private university in Chile. During the months of March, April, May and June, he will develop a discrete mathematics and data science program at the university. Mata-Toledo qualified for this award by demonstrating excellence within his field, exemplified by the publication of six books, as well as recognition of his highly successful teaching career at JMU, including: the Outstanding Teaching Award, Diversity Enhancement Award, All Together One Award, and a Madison Scholar Award.  Read more
Graduate Student Presents at Political Ecology Conference
Katie Shedden, a JMU graduate student in the Master’s in Communication and Advocacy program, recently gave a presentation titled (In)visibility and Meaning in Food Labor: A Feminist Autoethnography at the Eighth Annual Dimensions of Political Ecology Conference in Lexington, Kentucky. This student-organized conference has become one of the largest, most highly-regarded international forums for critical discussions at the intersection of ecology, political economy and science studies. The conference gave Shedden the opportunity to connect with several panelists and attendees working in a variety of disciplines, including a member of the University of Kentucky staff from the agricultural extension office. Shedden was encouraged when the UK staff member told her that she felt moved by the narratives shared during the presentation and thought that her methodology offered great potential to connect the issue of gender inequity to an ‘apolitical’ audience. Read more
Business Faculty Presents at System Sciences Conference  
Dr. John Guo, assistant professor of computer information systems and business analytics, recently presented a paper titled The Buffer Effect of Receiving Social Support on SNS Exhaustion and SNS Satisfaction: An Exploratory Study of the Lonely and Emotionally Unstable at the 51st Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS). Dr. Guo worked alongside Dr. Janice Lo from Creighton University and Bree Bradley, a student from JMU’s Writing, Rhetoric and Technical Communication program, to investigate the effects of social overload on SNS users' perceptions of their experience related to social media activities.  
'Spaces Places Things' Sculpture Exhibit  
The Duke Hall Gallery of Fine Art at JMU welcomed four sculpture artists -- Sam Blanchard, Dan Carlson, Martha Burgess, and PLAKOOKEE -- for a group exhibition titled Spaces Places Things . Carlson is a JMU alumnus whose sculptures, installations, videos and drawings have been shown across the country. Director of the Duke Hall Gallery of Fine Art, John Ros, said the exhibit presents sculpture in a “more spatial and active way.” The artists aimed to engage viewers in a process of contemplating the multilayered aspects of the space they occupy and the objects that share that space.
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