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InsideJune 2016

Around Campus

Damaged walkover to come down

Arena overpass that will come downThe north side of the UNF campus will have a new look this fall. Nearly a year after it was hit by a truck and damaged, the walkover connecting the UNF Arena and parking garage will be removed.

Demolition will begin June 13, following the last high school graduation ceremony in the Arena. The project is slated to be complete before UNF's summer commencement ceremony on Aug. 4. All structural elements from the southwest corner of the Arena to the northwest corner of Garage 38, including the steps into the Plaza, will be removed.

The expansive elevated walkway was built in 1993 and is constructed primarily of concrete. John Hale, assistant vice president of administration and finance, said the cost to repair the structure versus the cost to take it down was similar, so the resolution became a question of aesthetics. “We looked at several options,” he said commenting that restoration, enhancements and removal were all considered.

“Opening up this area will provide better sight lines into the Plaza and to the Arena,” Hale said. Once the structures are removed, landscaping enhancements will help complete the project along with new pedestrian-scale lighting.

The University Police Department will continue to provide traffic management and crossing assistance on UNF Drive during events. UNF Drive will be closed between the Student Union and Garage 38 from June 13–27 while the project is underway.

Around Campus

Campus Sexual Assault: What would you do?

Title IX Sexual Assault poster, No More You're walking in a campus parking lot. You see a student grab and push another student into a car. The aggressor walks away. The student who was pushed says everything is fine and that what you saw was really nothing more than a relationship spat. What would you do?

As an employee of the University of North Florida, your response is critical to the safety of those on campus and, in many cases, actually governed by law. What you do - or don't do - may actually place you and the University in legal jeopardy.

As part of continuous training provided by the University on Title IX regulations, the presentation “Campus Sexual Assault: What Would You Do?” is offered to departments and staff.

“This training is important for all employees,” said Joann Campbell, associate vice president and compliance officer. “It isn't a long presentation, yet it addresses a very significant component of Title IX about which all faculty and staff need to be informed. And we take as much time as needed to answer questions.” 

The training also explains reporting mandates for “responsible employees,” as defined in the regulations. Employees required by law to report sexual misconduct include administrators, supervisors, ranked full-time faculty, graduate teaching and research assistants, athletic directors, coaches and many others. 

In the scenario above, one student pushing another, the witness should report the incident immediately, Campbell said. First call the UNF Police Department at (904) 620-2800 and then Cheryl Gonzalez, UNF Title IX administrator, at (904) 620-2513.

Gonzalez's position, which is mandated by Title IX, is to oversee activities, review complaints and deal with patterns or systemic problems.

“Many people know Title IX as the 1972 law that mandated equal athletic opportunities for girls and women,” Gonzalez said. “But the law actually applies to every aspect of education, including admissions, recruitment, course offerings and much more. And it protects everyone from discrimination based on sex.”

Sexual misconduct and harassment, which includes acts of sexual violence, is a form of prohibited sex discrimination, as is gender-based bullying and hazing. Title IX Sexual Assault poster 2, No More

According to Gonzalez, the obligation for UNF and its employees is clear: if an educational employer, or its employees, knows or reasonably should know about sexual misconduct and harassment, the institution must take prompt and remedial action to stop the behavior and prevent its recurrence, even if the victim does not want to file a complaint.

In 1990, the Clery Act added requirements to notify campus community about crime, establish and publicize prevention policies, publish crime statistics and advise victims of their basic rights. In 2013, Congress reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act, requiring institutions to report on the number of domestic violence, dating violence and stalking incidents that occur on campus and update annual security reports to include prevention programs.


UNF, like other schools across the nation, drives awareness with the celebrity-endorsed NO MORE posters, a campaign to engage bystanders around ending domestic violence and sexual assault. Started in 2013 by a coalition of leading advocacy groups, service providers, the U.S. Department of Justice and major corporations, NO MORE is used by thousands of individuals, organizations, universities and communities throughout the nation. 

News stories about sexual assaults on campuses have attracted national attention over recent years. In 2011, accusations of sexual abuse at Penn State University rocked the athletic department and resulted in firings of employees who had knowledge of, but did not report, incidents to the police. In 2015, a Columbia University student carried a mattress around campus to protest the administration's refusal to expel her alleged rapist.


In 2016 news, amid an ongoing sexual assault scandal, Baylor University last week released an independent study that detailed the University's mishandling of sexual assault accusations. The impact of the scandal to date has included a lawsuit against the University filed by a former student, as well as dismissals and resignations of football and Baylor administrators.

With the potential for incidents to occur on any campus, UNF offers a variety of training to keep the University community informed. To schedule a presentation or request more information, e-mail the Center for Professional Development and Training at Visit the University's Title IX web pages for additional information and persons to contact. In addition, students may complete an online training program for prevention and awareness within the student tab and link to Student Records, then Campus Clarity.

Around Campus

Ozzie the Osprey, unsuited

Ozzie unsuitedIn February 2007, Matt Biegun - disguised as Ozzie the mascot - stepped onto the basketball court at the University of North Florida for the very first time.  The letters on his shirt spelled “UNF,” not “Ospreys” or “Ozzie,” and, though there had been previous mascots, the small group of people in the stands didn't really seem to care whether he was there. Some called him an eagle. A few even yelled, “Hey, bird, move out of the way!” 

Fast forward nine years. It's 2016, and Biegun is still the dude in the suit, as he likes to say, but everything else has changed. The stands are full, Ozzie's look has changed and the fans chant and clamor for their celebrity osprey. There's no denying that the 7-foot-2-inch character that Biegun brought to life and nurtured for nearly a decade is a beloved bird.

“It's a different world now,” he said. “Ozzie's at the top of his game just like UNF. Every year, this University, especially in athletics, keeps getting bigger and bigger.” As the longest-running person to wear the suit, Biegun has had a birds-eye view of Osprey athletics as the teams soared from Division II to Division I sports. He was also courtside in 2015 when the men's basketball team won its first Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament, securing a dance card for the Ospreys first trip to the NCAA Basketball Tournament.

“It's been a whirlwind,” Biegun said. “I've had a blast. I wouldn't change any of this.” With everything going well, it just may be the perfect time to walk away, said Biegun, who announced his retirement in April. Ozzie in arena

“I would always say just one more year,” he admitted. “I look forward to games. I get goose bumps coming into games. It's just so much fun. People have signs that say Ozzie. People are chanting Ozzie when I come onto the court. That's a cool feeling.” Yet at 36, which he calculates as 75 in mascot years, he is ready to turn over the costume to a younger entertainer. In addition to physical issues, the talented comedian is “un-suiting” for three more reasons: his two sons, 8 and 3, and his daughter, 1.

“It has just clicked lately that while I'm here entertaining these families, my kids are at home, and over time it has been eating at me,” Biegun said. “It finally dawned on me - I can't do this anymore.”

Ozzie has always been a part-time pleasure for Biegun, who has juggled mascot duties with his full-time job, first working as director of the morning news show at CBS 47 Action News Jax and now as supervisor of video communications with Duval County Public Schools.

The allure of performing for Biegun is all about the laughter and the kids. “There's just something about getting that laugh,” he said. “There's an addiction to that. If I can make somebody smile for that split second and forget any worries or fears they've got in their life, that's what it's all about.” The greatest Ozzie benefits go to the kids, Biegun said, explaining that he would always stop whatever he was doing to amuse a child.

For Matt Driscoll, head men's basketball coach, Biegun has made a difference and will be missed. “When you're the person behind the costume, you need to have the ability to express your passion and love not only for the sport, but also for the University,” Driscoll said. “Matt was constantly serving, being a great mascot and making a difference in people's lives by putting smiles on their faces.”

Biegun has not only worn the suit well all these years, he also designed it, being very particular about the details. He insisted Ozzie look friendly so children would not be afraid. He chose the body shape, head design and the big bird's oversize shoes.

Early this fall, Biegun will help select and train the new Ozzie and turn over the 30-plus pounds of fur, plastic and foam. He knows whoever suits up next will craft a personality for Ozzie, and he's fine with that. He simply wants to see Ozzie endure.

“Ozzie is there for the enjoyment of everyone,” Biegun said. “People should not be afraid to get a high five or ask for a photo. He's not going to bite. Well, wait, Ozzie does bite people's heads.”


University prepares for hurricane season

Hurricane winds in treesHurricane season is upon us, and the University of North Florida's close proximity to the coast demands extensive preparation and a high level of readiness.

Each year, the University's Crisis Management Team updates the Hurricane Hazard Specific Plan outlining actions required of UNF staff to ensure adequate preparedness, outreach and recovery in the case of a serious storm. Dan Endicott, director of environmental health and safety, said it's been several years since a hurricane plan was activated, but the university is ready if presented with a threat. “All actions depend on the path and the category of hurricane,” Endicott said.

The Incident Management Team carefully monitors storm track models. In the event of a hurricane, members of the IMT work together to secure the campus, prepare faculty, staff and students and provide recovery.

Though the University is not located in a storm surge area, UNF is in a high wind zone. If a hurricane hit seems probable, securing buildings and property becomes a top priority. Wallace Harris, director of facilities operations, said that includes everything from closing hatches on buildings to ensuring that benches and tables are secure. All gutters and outfalls are inspected and cleaned out if clogged. If a threat seems imminent, the police building and central plant are shuttered.

“We also top off fuel in generators and vehicles and pull out chainsaws and any other tools and equipment that may be needed in the recovery process,” Harris said.

Then there are other procedures unique to a college campus like securing chemicals in laboratories and making sure sculptures and art equipment are not vulnerable to high winds.

The University also participates in the Mayor's Security and Emergency Preparedness Planning Council, and coordinates with the City of Jacksonville and other large entities like the School Board and local colleges and universities to share procedures and best practices.

UNF's Hurricane Plan takes into account that faculty, staff and students must make personal preparations and take care of their families, so moving quickly is important. In the event of an imminent threat, students living on UNF's campus are encouraged to self-evacuate or stay with family or friends. Residential students remaining on campus would be evacuated to Atlantic Coast High School, according to John Simms, director of the Student Union, who has served as the shelter coordinator for the past three years. Simms said the school's gymnasium serves as a short-term shelter for UNF students.

In the event of a hurricane, there are also a number of backup systems in place to ensure that key university functions are not affected. Alternate services exist to allow for adequate communication with students, faculty, staff and parents. There are also payroll procedures in place to ensure that employees get paid on time.

The official Atlantic hurricane season is June 1–Nov. 30. More information on UNF's emergency plans are available at To learn how to prepare for a hurricane, read the JaxReady Emergency Preparedness Guide at If you would like additional hard copies of the guide, please contact Isabel Pease at

Additional information on hurricane preparedness is available from the Florida Division of Emergency Management and FEMA.

Around Campus

Local foundation donates funds for UNF patrol vehicle

Police car donatedThanks to the generosity of the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation, there's a new police patrol vehicle on the University of North Florida campus. In keeping with its mission to help hometown heroes, the Foundation awarded a grant to the UNF Police Department in April to purchase a 2016 Ford Explorer.

The new patrol car adds another measure of safety, according to Meghan Vargas, senior manager of Foundation development. “We are thrilled to be able to award a police vehicle to the UNF Police Department,” Vargas said. “As a UNF alumna, I know firsthand how important the police department is to the safety of the campus, students and faculty.”

To ensure a consistent level of safety, patrol vehicles are run night and day and therefore must be replaced often at a great expense to UNF, according to Mauricio Gonzalez, vice president of Student and International Affairs.

“The University is tremendously grateful for the partnership we have established with the Foundation and for its generous grant that enabled us to purchase a much-needed vehicle,” Gonzalez said.

Frank Mackesy, UNF police department chief, called the grant a huge benefit for the University. “We are thankful and inspired by the Foundation's willingness to give back to the community,” Mackesy said. “Every day we see the police car traveling the campus, the UNF community will be reminded of the Foundation's incredible generosity.”

The car, which is identified with a small red Foundation logo, is just another example of Firehouse's support of the University. In January 2015, the Foundation awarded the UNF Police Department with 12 automated external defibrillators and accessories valued at more than $16,000.

Around Campus

MOCA art camps offer fun and learning

Girl in MOCA Summer CampMOCA Jacksonville will offer summer art camps at its downtown location for ages 4 – 14 and on the University of North Florida campus at the Child Development Research Center for ages 6 – 9. In half-day and full-day sessions, experienced art educators will teach a variety of media and skills while providing the contemporary art history context for each project.

At MOCA Jacksonville, youngsters ages 4 – 6 have many artistic choices, from activities related to mythical dragons and fairytales to animals to superheroes and more. Children ages 7 – 10 can use different materials to create unique works of art that move or select art projects inspired by comic books, superheroes and famous icons.

For students ages 11 – 14, camp choices include photography to create unique photographs and edit them using computer software, illustration, animations, painting, ceramics, sculpture and more.

For a complete listing of camps at both locations, pricing, session schedules and registration, visit MOCA online. A 25 percent discount is available for UNF employees.

Faculty Forum

Josh Gellers, Assistant Professor, Political Science and Public Administration

Dr. Josh Gellers headshotDr.  Josh Gellers ,  an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, teaches courses in comparative politics and international relations including Introduction to International Relations, International Environmental Politics, Politics of Developing Countries, Comparative Politics and International Relations Theory.   

Gellers' primary research has focused on the origins and impact of environmental rights, and more recently, on the environmental politics in the developing world. In Xi'an, China, Gellers is currently examining whether environmental practices in developing states impact the distribution of Chinese foreign investment. Next year, he will spend four months in Sri Lanka under a Fulbright Postdoctoral Scholar Award to study public participation in environmental decision-making.

Describe your teaching style.
My teaching style is dynamic. I try my best so that no two classes in a row are held in the same format (i.e. lecture, film, discussion, simulation, etc.). This requires more work upfront, but it helps to ensure that the classroom environment won't grow stale and students will stay engaged. I also try to incorporate technology whenever possible. In the past, I have had students deliver TED-style talks using a variety of presentation platforms, used Twitter to tweet out student questions, communicated with students via WeChat, pulled images from Instagram and articles from Facebook, and shown videos from YouTube and Netflix. My next challenge will be to develop assignments that require the use of social media applications like Snapchat.

What is your personal philosophy?
My personal philosophy is “The wheel that squeaks the loudest gets the grease.” I don't believe that opportunity knocks randomly on your door; you have to put in work in order to get on people's radar screens. Practically, this means that students should attend events that interest them, network, talk to people whom they admire, read e-mails, follow up with contacts, speak with professors during office hours, and promote all the great things they do. With the advent of social media, it's even easier now than ever before to build a presence and let the world know who you are and what sets you apart from others. Opportunities will follow.

What advice would you give a student who is about to graduate?
Transitioning from college to the real world doesn't have to be a shock to your senses, and there is no set timeframe to which you must adhere (although student loan agencies will certainly care about your ability to begin paying them back). Let your passion guide your next steps in life, whether you find yourself in graduate school, the working world or traversing a distant land. When you find out what drives you, it will help you to choose a path that leads to a rewarding career that excites you, as opposed to a job you perform for want of a paycheck. You won't find the perfect fit right away, but each experience will lead you ever closer to finding your life's calling.

What's one thing in your field of study that people might not know?
The United States, which in some areas is considered an environmental leader, does not have environmental rights at the national level. Several U.S. states have adopted environmental rights within their respective constitutions, however.

If you could witness any historical event, what would it be and why?
I would witness the debate over the first draft of the proposed Constitution of the United States in 1787. The document has since shaped the trajectory of our country, and become a model for the rest of the world. I would be particularly interested in the Founders' private conversations about the original intent behind certain key phrases that have been interpreted in alternate ways throughout the Supreme Court's history. To get even a glimpse of the true meaning behind controversial clauses would be absolutely fascinating, and lay much judicial agonizing to rest.

Do you have a favorite spot on campus? 
My favorite spot on campus is the first reading room on the third floor of the Thomas G. Carpenter Library. It's quiet, bright, and you can see the vast expanse of natural beauty surrounding the campus every time you look up!

If the world were silent for 20 seconds and all ears were turned to you, what would you say?
Before you take a definitive stance on an issue, imagine how you would feel if you were a member of the group most directly impacted by a change in policy. How would you feel if you knew that your rights were being taken away? How would you feel if you were being denied basic rights granted to everyone else? Once you have answered these questions, ask yourself, would you willingly trade places with this group? If not, ask yourself how you can justify changing policy in a way that you wouldn't want if you were a member of that group.

Get to Know

Ashley Ballard

Ashley Ballard headshotJob title and department: Assistant Director, Department of Health Promotion

What do you do at UNF? I'm responsible for transforming this community to the healthiest university in the nation. A key focus of my job is the Healthy Osprey initiative, a nationally recognized initiative that promotes the development of a healthy body, mind and spirit.

What do you enjoy about working here? I'm into sports, and I love challenges! I love the challenge of new students coming on campus and encouraging them to live a heathy lifestyle.

What one memory do you most treasure? The birth of my daughter, Taylor

If you could have a dinner party and invite any four people, from the past or present, who would be on your guest list? Jesus Christ, First Lady Michelle Obama, Walt Disney and Venus Williams - Each of these four guests represents a particular area in my life; Jesus Christ because I am a devout Christian, and he is the center of my being, my role model; First Lady Michelle Obama because to me she epitomizes how an educated woman in leadership should be; Walt Disney because I'm amazed how he could create such a wonderful place that continues to grow without his physical presence; and Venus Williams because she is a terrific athlete who has used her power positively in so many ways. For instance, she was one of the key persons that fought for pay equalization in tennis among men and women.  

If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be? President of the United States - I want to understand the complexity of the position. I believe that would allow me to have more compassion and understanding for the individuals in office.

What superpower would you like to have? Mind reader - I want to know the true thoughts of a person. We often mask how we really feel out of compassion or fear from what the other person may say.

If you ruled the world, what would you change on Day 1? Peace among all nations

What would be the title for the movie version of your life? Busy Bee

What's at the top of your bucket list? To see the Northern Lights

What one food do you wish had zero calories? Peanut Caramel Candy Apple

Tell us something that might surprise us about you. I drive a Grabber Blue Mustang that I love! I am also a member of the Grabber Blue Mustang Club. Grabber Blue is one of the most iconic paint colors of all time. The Grabber Blue Mustang Club (Registry) goal is to promote, preserve and share ideas among Mustang lovers.

Where would you like to go on a dream vacation? Dubai

Tell us a few of your favorite things:
Movie: "National Lampoon's Vacation"
Physical activity: Running
Season: Fall
Sport to watch: Football
TV show as a kid: "Looney Tunes"


Swoop Summary

Mens golf champsMen's golf ties for 7th place at NCAA Regional
The No. 36-ranked North Florida men's golf team carded a final round 291 (+3) on May 18 to finish tied for seventh in the NCAA Tucson Regional played at The Gallery Golf Club at Dove Mountain. The Ospreys, who ended the 54-hole event with a tournament total of 867, narrowly missed advancing to the NCAA Championships as the top five team finishers qualified for the finals. Learn more about men's golf.

Women's tennis adds fifth NCAA appearance
After winning its second straight Atlantic Sun Championship to earn an automatic UNF womens tennis champsbid to the NCAA Championship, North Florida's women's tennis team was stopped by No. 5 Georgia in the first round of the tournament May 13 at the University of Georgia's Dan Magill Tennis Complex. UNF finished its season with a 13-7 overall mark and adds its fifth NCAA appearance in the last four years to its resume. Learn more about women's tennis.

Men's tennis team plays inaugural NCAA Tournament
North Florida men's tennis team, whose advance was ended by in-state rival No. 9 Florida May 14, celebrated a season of firsts. The Ospreys captured their first-ever Atlantic Sun Championship and advanced to their inaugural NCAA Tournament held in Gainesville, Florida, at the Ring Tennis Complex. The Ospreys wrapped up their season with an 11-12 mark. Learn more about men's tennis

UNF womens golf champsWomen's golf finishes 14th at regional debut
The North Florida women's golf team concluded their historic debut in NCAA Regional play with a final round 303 on May 7 at LSU's University Club to finish 14th in the Baton Rouge Regional. The Ospreys, who qualified for an NCAA Regional in just the fourth year of the program's history, finished the 54-hole event with a tournament total of 925. Learn more about women's golf.

Smoke Laval wins 200 at UNF
Head Baseball Coach Smoke Laval won his 200th game at North Florida after the Ospreys shutout NJIT, 6-0 at Riverfront Stadium. Laval has now won 200-plus games at three different schools: North Florida, University of Louisiana-Monroe and LSU. Learn more about coach Smoke Laval.

Spring Commencement includes many student-athletes
Twenty-two Ospreys student-athletes representing 11 different University of North Florida sports walked across the stage at Spring Commencement 2016 to claim their diplomas. While at North Florida, these student athletes excelled not only on the field but also in the classroom. Learn more about graduating student-athletes.

Faculty and Staff

UNF Graduation Regalia

College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Doria F. Bowers with colleagues F.Y. Chim and J.J. Saredy presented “Sindbis Virus Growth in and Dissemination from the Mosquito Midgut” at the Fourteenth Regional Virology Conference at Emory Conference Center in April. She also moderated the session, “Assembly, Entry and Exit.” 


Dr. Judith Ochrietor presented five posters at the annual meeting in April of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology: “In good taste: An investigation of lactate metabolons in the mouse tongue” with Dr. Jim Gelsleichter and students Haaris Zahir, Luz Castillo and Rita Seddeikwith; “Expression profile of Monocarboxylate transporters and Basigin gene products in the mouse cornea” with students Randall Maniccia and Joseph Fong”; “Analysis of immune molecule expression in mouse adipose tissue and deep fat” with student Sanny Juresic; “Characterization of Basigin and MCT-1 gene product expression in murine myocardium” with student Grace Morse; and “Analysis of the expression of the Basigin subset of the immunoglobulin superfamily in mouse brain” with student Tavia Hall.


Dr. Kenneth Laali and colleagues H. M. Savanur, R. G. Kalkhambkar published “Pd(OAc)2 Catalyzed Homocoupling of Arenediazonium Salts in Ionic Liquids: Synthesis of Symmetrical Biaryls” in Tetrahedron Letters in April. He also published the paper “Ionic Liquids as Novel Media for Electrophilic/Onium Ion Chemistry and Metal-Mediated Reactions: A Progress Summary” in the April journal ARKIVOC. Finally, he was granted a patent for “Synthesis of 4-(pentafluorosulfanyl) benzenediazonium tetrafluoroborate and Analogs.”

Dr. Amy Lane moderated a session on “Organismal Interactions in Wet and Not-So-Wet Worlds” at the Gordon Research Conference on Marine Natural Products in March; gave an invited lecture “Harnessing the Biosynthetic Potential of Marine Bacteria” at Florida International University in April; and presented three posters at the 251st American Chemical Society National Conference in April: “Natural Products from Marine Micro-organisms Inhibit Yeast Biofilm Formation” with student Jisun Ban, “Exploring the Biosynthetic Potential of Nocardiopsis Genus Actinomycetes” with student Joon Seok Oh, and “Actinomycete Bacteria as Sources of Antibacterial Metabolites” with student Robert Hughes.

Dr. Michael Lufaso and his colleagues published “Ba-doping Effects on Structural, Magnetic and Vibrational Properties of Disordered La2NiMnO6” in the Journal of Alloys and Compounds.

Dr. Christa Arnold published “Patient Medical Education Training: A Pilot Test of the AGENDA Curriculum” in Medical Encounter, 2016, 30, 106-108.

Drs. Tulika Varma and Stephynie C. Perkins presented the paper, “An examination of Nestle' India's Maggi Noodle Ban Crisis: A Study in Sentiment Analysis to Map Organizational Crisis Response,” at the International Public Relations Research Conference in Miami. Their manuscript was included in the published proceedings.

Dr. Nicholas de Villiers presented “The Videomaker and the Rent Boy: Gay-for-pay Confessional in 101 Rent Boys and Broke Straight Boys TV” at the Society for Cinema and Media Studies conference in Atlanta.

Dr. Clark Lunberry published “Dance of Light and Loss” in the May “Performing Arts Journal.”

An article by Dr. David Courtwright, “Scientists want to study marijuana. Big Pot just wants to sell it” was published in The Washington Post on April 29.

Dr. Chau Kelly published “Commodifying Water in Coastal Tanzania: Natural Resource Management and Social Relations, 1926-1937” in the March African Studies Quarterly.

Dr. Gregory Wurtz and his co-author published “Transformation quantum optics: Controlling spontaneous emission using coordinate transformation” in the Journal of Optics. He also published with his co-author “Nonlocality-driven supercontinuum white light generation in plasmonic nanostructures” in Nature Communications.

Political Science and Public Administration:
Dr. David Schwam-Baird published “Frankenstein in Colombia: America's Policy Missteps and the Paramilitaries” in the Journal of Third World Studies in April.

Dr. Josh Gellers presented “Crowdsourcing Global Governance: Sustainable Development Goals, Civil Society, and the Pursuit of Democratic Legitimacy” at the April International Conference of the Society for Human Ecology in Santa Ana, California, and published his work in International Environmental Agreements in April. He also delivered an invited guest lecture in April titled "Poverty, Environmental Degradation, and Human Rights: Exploring the Nexus" at the University of California, Irvine. Finally, he was awarded a 2016-17 Postdoctoral Fulbright Scholar grant from the Institute of International Education to travel to Sri Lanka to study public participation in environmental decision making.


Dr. Paul Fuglestad, with colleagues M. M. Wall, J. J. Shim and D. Neumark-Sztainer, published “Is Friendship Network Weight Status Associated with One's Own Psychological Well-Being? It Depends on One's Own Weight Status” in the April Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology.


At the April Nordic Conference for Behavior Analysis in Norway, Dr. Iver Iversen gave an invited presentation “Experimental analysis of variability in operant behavior”; gave an invited symposium presentation “The empirical foundation of Skinner's arguments about Selection by Consequences”; and presented a poster with Dr. Monica Vandbakk, “Stimulus control of within-session variability and stereotypy of operant behavior.” 

Sociology, Anthropology and Social Work:
Dr. Anne E. Pfister presented “Escalando al Futuro/Climbing the Future – Using Photovoice with Deaf Youth to Explore Language and Identity” at the 2016 Conference of the American Association for Applied Linguistics in Orlando. This paper was presented in a session she organized with colleague, Dr. Anneliese Cannon, titled “Participatory Research and Performativity in Applied Linguistics: Youth, Meaning Making, and Multimodality.” In a session with UNF faculty, Dr. Clayton McCarl and Dr. Laura Heffernan, she also presented UNF Digital Humanities projects, at The Humanities and Technology Camp in Gainesville.

Dr. Gordon Rakita was selected by the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology as the junior laureate for the 2016 triennial Lloyd Cotsen Prize for Lifetime Achievement in World Archaeology.

Dr. John Kantner was an invited discussant for two symposia at the 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology: “Chaco and Hopewell: Rethinking ‘Interaction Spheres' Through Multiscalar Network Analyses” and “Methodological Tool or Paradigm Shifter? Assessing the Status of GIS in Archaeological Research.”

Dr. Jenny Stuber presented “Normative Institutional Arrangements and the Mobility Pathway: How Campus-Level Forces Impact First-Generation Students” at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association in Washington, D.C.

Coggin College of Business

Dr. Reham Eltantawy, chair of marketing and logistics, won the UNF Outstanding Faculty Scholarship Award.

Dr. Gregory Gundlach, professor of marketing, with student Riley Krotz, published research monograph “Resale Price Maintenance after Leegin: The Curious Case of Contact Lenses,” 2016.

Dr. Nathan Kunz, assistant professor of operations management, presented a paper titled “Fleet Size Prediction in Humanitarian Operations” at the Annual Conference of the Production and Operations Management Society in Orlando in May.

Coggin student, Jacob Turner, was awarded the first Osprey Community Engagement Medallion this spring for his exemplary commitment to volunteerism, philanthropy and community-based work study.

College of Computing, Engineering and Construction

School of Computing:
Dr. Karthikeyan Umapathy was named a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. IEEE Senior Membership is an honor bestowed only to those who have made significant contributions to the profession.

School of Engineering:
Dr. Brian Kopp presented an update on his research to develop a two-way satellite communications scheme for the Data Collection System onboard the NOAA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites at the 120th NOAA Data Collection System Working Group meeting in May, at the Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USGS Earth Resources Observation and Science Center.

College of Education and Human Resources

Department of Exceptional, Deaf and Interpreter Education:
Drs. Jennifer Kilpatrick and Caroline Guardino traveled to Haiti in March to plan a future Transformational Learning Opportunity for deaf education students. They met with Mr. Gerald Oriol, secretary of state for the Integration of Persons with Disabilities and Jonas Cadet, president of the Haiti National Federation for the Deaf to discuss goals they have for schools, as well as administrators at four of the country's largest schools for the deaf. Dr. Kilpatrick and Ms. Cally Traetto, teacher at the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind, also conducted a three-day professional development seminar for the teachers at the Haiti Deaf Academy. Dr. Kilpatrick returned in May to observe and support teachers at the Haiti Deaf Academy in the implementation of the new strategies learned in March. She other professional staff she conducted a four-day professional development seminar at Centre St. Vincent and a six-day seminar at PAZAPA.

Hicks Honors College

In May, the U.S. Department of State: Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration featured on its Facebook page a video of the University of Florida's Hick's Honors College Refugee Project. Each year, freshman students in Hick's Honors College First Year Colloquium class are paired with children of Jacksonville's refugees, one of the largest populations in the Southeast, to provide meaningful service opportunities for students and to ease the children's transition to a new culture. Fall semester 2015 projects included Saturday soccer coaching, special events and a Thanksgiving dinner, a children's clothing drive, English tutoring, and mentoring, among other projects, representing a total of 9,250 student hours donated. The program included various partners: UNF students from the Honors Program and UNF Men's Soccer Team; and city and state agencies, Jacksonville Children's Commission, Duval County Schools and the Florida Department of Children and Families. 


Center for Instruction and Research Technology  


Julie Fuller , instructional designer, and  Stephanie Weiss , online learning librarian, presented a preconference workshop in April titled “Best Practices in Instructional Design for Distance Information Literacy Courses” at the 17th Distance Library Services Conference in Pittsburgh. Julie Fuller also led a conference panel discussion titled “Leaning Into Instructional Design.” 

Kevin Hulen , assistant director of instructional design, presented “Leveraging Expert Instructional Design Strategies to Develop Quality Online Courses,” in April at the Online Learning Consortium Innovate Conference in New Orleans.

Division of Student Affairs

Doreen Perez , director of student health, will present on Travel Health at the American College Health Association annual meeting on June 2.

Dr. Lucy Croft , associate vice president of student affairs, has been elected chair of the board for the National Association for College Activities. This is a three-year appointment with service as chair-elect, chair and immediate post chair.

Jennifer Miranda , Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life coordinator, facilitated at the Sigma Kappa Regional Leadership Conference in January 2016. She also presented at the Southeastern Panhellenic Conference in April.

Justin Sipes , associate director of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, attended the Donna M. Bourassa Mid-Level Management Institute in January. He was also confirmed as a master steward with Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity in November 2015.

Ashley Ballard , assistant director of health promotion, presented at the Partnership for a Healthier America national conference hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama on May 18. The presentation was on the Healthy Ospreys Eat Well Campaign, which focuses on creating a healthy environment at UNF.

Deborah Baker , assistant director for clinical services in the Counseling Center, participated in four presentations at the annual Association for the Coordination of Counseling Center Clinical Services conference in May: “Are Your Counseling Services Effective? The Nuts and Bolts of Evaluating Counseling Center Work”; “A Collaboration between Counseling Center and Disability Services in Support of Students diagnosed with High Functioning Autism”; “Strategies to Increase the Multicultural Competence of Counseling Center Staff and Trainees”; and “Polyamorous Clients: Ethical and Clinical Considerations for College Counseling Centers.”

Bill Delaney , assistant director of student affairs, presented a paper titled “Lamhatty, Thomas Darko, and the Shadow of the Ancient South” at the British Commonwealth and Postcolonial Studies Conference in February as part of a UNF panel. 

Cody Lewin  and  Beth Paris , coordinators in Housing and Residence Life, presented “Hungry for Change: Supporting Students' Awareness of Social Justice Issues in the World Café” in January at the Jon C. Dalton Institute for College Student Values. 

Nicole Fiore  and  Cody Lewin , coordinators in Housing and Residence Life, presented “The World Café: A unique way to dialogue about social topics” at the Southeastern Association of Housing Offices conference in February. 

Jake Moore  and  Kaitlin Legg  of the LGBT Resource Center presented “Queering the Campus: LGBTQIA College Access and Attainment” with a group of UNF undergraduates at the JASMYN Teaching Respect for All Conference in January. 

Dr. Annabel Brooks , director of the Taylor Leadership Institute, earned certification from Robert McNamara's Advanced Adult Development and Human Leadership Performance seminar, and completed the associated Leadership Influence series.

Dr. John Frank  and  Alison Noonan  of the Taylor Leadership Institute presented at the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators Conference in March. Their presentation focused on the Taylor Leadership Institute's approach to interdisciplinary leadership grounded in collaboration between Student Affairs and Academic Affairs.

Lauryn Stark , events planning coordinator for the Taylor Leadership Institute, presented “Praxeological Service-Learning”  at the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education Conference in March. 

Dei Allard , associate director of Housing and Residence Life, presented “Gender Inclusive Housing Experience on the UNF campus” at the Florida Housing Officers conference. She was also named a 2016 faculty member for both the Southeastern Association of Housing Officers Regional Entry-Level Institute and the Association of College and University Housing Officers – International National Housing Training Institute.

Tarah Trueblood , director of the Interfaith Center, presented at several national and international conferences this academic year. She presented “Five Essentials for Mobilizing Students around Interfaith Cooperation” at the Parliament of the World's Religions in October 2015. She copresented “Who's Engaged? Understanding Student Involvement with Interfaith Experiences” with the Interfaith Youth Core and “Race & Religion: Students Respond Through Dialogue & Action” with UNF students at the President's Interfaith and Community Service Campus in September 2015. At the same conference, she served as a panelist for the Interfaith Youth Core presentation “Empowering Student Leaders in Interfaith Community Service.” She copresented “Engaging Non-Religious Students in Interfaith Dialogue and Community Service” with the Interfaith Youth Core at the NASPA annual conference in March. Tarah Trueblood also spearheaded a team of UNF staff to establish the Cultural Competency Pursuit, a Student Affairs professional development curriculum which includes about 140 staff and faculty members.

Rachael McNeal , Interfaith Center coordinator, presented “The fierce urgency of now: how interfaith cooperation can advance social justice” as the co-keynote speaker with Mustafa Abdullah of the ACLU at Indiana State University's Social Justice Summit in February. Huffpost Religion published her piece “What St. Augustine, FL Can Teach Us About the Importance of Interfaith Literacy” in April.



Milestone anniversaries UNF branded red balloons

Congratulations to the following employees who will celebrate a milestone anniversary at UNF in June:

20 years
Donna Carlson, Accounting Associate, Campus Recreation

10 years
Willie Hunter, Director, One-Stop Student Services, One-Stop Center
Karen Folco, Office Manager, Coggin College of Business

5 years
Morgan Murray, Assistant Director, University Housing
Joanne Berglund, Head Coach, Women's Golf
Carole Goldberg, Academic Advisor, Academic Center for Excellence
Larry Snedden, Coordinator, Computer Systems, School of Computing
Audra Cohen, Head Coach, Women's Tennis
Rebecca Easom, Custodial Supervisor
Victoria Taylor, Law Enforcement Officer, University Police Department
Mark Tumeo, Dean, College of Computing, Engineering and Construction

The following employees were either hired by UNF or were promoted from OPS positions recently:

Diane Austin, Senior Applications Systems Analyst, Florida Institute of Education
Serhii Dubynskyi, Maintenance Mechanic, Physical Facilities
Shannon Dunnigan, Coordinator, Research Program Services, Biology
Brian Durham, Information Technology Support Technician, User Services
Willie Garcia, Coordinator Facilities Management
Eric Harris, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Gia Hunt, Custodial Supervisor, Custodial Services
Darlene Jones, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Kevin Morgan, Coordinator, Admissions
Ashley Nelson, Assistant Child Development Teacher, Child Development Resource Center
Daniel Orel, Coordinator, Institute of Police & Technology Management
Benjamin Taylor, Program Assistant, Military and Veterans Resource Center

Great Job
The following employees were promoted recently:

Lucy Tison, Office Assistant, Student Government Business and Accounting
Kimberly Pelzer, Manager Financial Services, Controller
Carley Robinson, Assistant Director, Advancement Services

Heartfelt well wishes in their new endeavors for the following employees, who left UNF recently:

Deanne Ashton, Program Assistant, Office of Academic Testing
Laura Berthiaume, Coordinator, Advancement Services
Christopher Brandt, Maintenance Mechanic, Maintenance and Energy Management
Fred Burnett, Head Athletic Trainer, Intercollegiate Athletics
Victoria Chandler, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Hannah Croft, Coordinator, Academic Support Services, International Business Curriculum
Lois Dellar, Office Manager, Education and Human Services
Harry Duncan, Senior Custodial Worker, Student Union-Custodial
Hayley Edwards, Assistant Coach, Women's Swimming
Crystal Fountain, Office Manager, Parking and Transportation Services
Julie Fuller, Instructional Designer, Distance Learning Fee
Victoria Harrell, Coordinator, Admissions, Transfer Student Services
Blair Hayes, Information Technology Support Technician, User Services
Charlotte Mabrey, Professor, Music
Joseph Moreau, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Derek Neukam, Custodial Worker, University Housing
Kristen Perez, Mental Health Counselor, Counseling Center
Synthia Robinson-Pack, Accounting Associate, Advancement Services
Scott Shoemaker, Maintenance Mechanic, Maintenance and Energy Management
Byron Taylor, Assistant Coach, Men's Basketball
Lisa Taylor, Assistant Coach, Women's Soccer
Robert Tyson, Police Communications Operations, University Police Department
Michael Walton, Database Administrator, Florida Institute of Education
David Washington, Program Assistant, University Center
Corey Williams, Senior Academic Advisor, ACE

The Goods


Radishes The GoodsAdd some color and kick to any salad by adding sliced radishes. Dr. Corinne Labyak, a registered dietitian nutritionist and assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics Flagship Program at UNF, discusses myths and facts about radishes, a great crispy addition for salads and side dishes.

Myth: Radishes are only red and white in color.
Fact: The skin of radishes come in various colors, including red, pink, purple, white and black, while the flesh is typically white. They come in different sizes too, ranging from small and round to the size of a carrot.

Myth: Radishes are grown only in the summer.
Fact: Radishes are grown year-round, and the best time to plant this colorful veggie is in early spring. They grow best in cool, moist weather, and are easy to plant and grow quickly, so they are a great vegetable to grow with kids.

Myth: Radishes protect the body from toxins.
Fact: Although the current evidence is insufficient to support these claims, radishes have been touted to soothe sore throats, aid in digestion and eliminate toxins. We do know that radishes are a cruciferous vegetable that contains antioxidants and phytochemicals, protecting cells from free radicals or toxins. These toxins can lead to heart disease and cancer development. So, add this vegetable to your diet for a crunchy healthy twist.

Myth: Radishes don't contain many nutrients.
Fact: These little powerhouses contain only approximately 20 calories in one cup and 2 grams of dietary fiber, and 29 percent of vitamin C. They are also good sources of folate, riboflavin, potassium, copper, B6, calcium, magnesium and manganese. Not only do radishes include these many nutrients, but they are also a great low-calorie, low-cholesterol snack. Radishes can be eaten raw and added as a zesty addition to salads but also soups, meats and side dishes. Eaten raw, slice the radish on the top and bottom and add a hint of salt for some extra flavor. Don't forget to add this vibrant vegetable to your next side dish or salad.

“The Goods” is a monthly column about food myths and facts by faculty members in the Nutrition and Dietetics Flagship Program that runs monthly in The Florida Times-Union's “Taste” section. Have a question about radishes? Contact Corinne Labyak at

Roasted Radishes

1 cup of radishes, sliced on top and bottom
Olive oil, 1 tablespoon
Salt, pinch
Pepper, pinch

Coat the radishes in olive oil in a plastic bag. Pour radishes onto a tray and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook at 450 degrees for about 25 minutes until radishes are a bit tender. Serve and enjoy.

Nutritional information:
Calories: 143 calories Carbohydrates: 4 grams
Total Fat: 14 grams Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
Protein: 1 grams Dietary Fiber: 2 grams
Sodium: 142 milligrams

Bright Birds Know

Students taking photos during a study abroad experienceWhen it comes to international study abroad programs, the numbers show that our Ospreys swoop overseas at twice the national average.

For the 2013-14 academic year, just under 1.5 percent of all U.S. students enrolled at institutions of higher education participated in study abroad programs for credit, according to NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

By comparison, 3.3 percent of students enrolled at the University of North Florida traveled to learn, or slightly more than twice the national average.

And student interest keeps increasing. During 2014-15, the number of UNF students studying abroad increased to 588, up from 544 the previous year.

There are a variety of programs available. For example, each summer semester for the past five years, Dr. Debra Murphy from the Department of Art and Design, has led more than 100 students abroad to Rome, Italy, to study art history, culture, archaeological sites and architectural monuments.

Another long-running program for freshman, led by Dr. Andrés Gallo and cosponsored by the Coggin College of Business and Hicks Honors College, provides students with a service-learning opportunity to benefit communities in Peru during spring break. Coggin also offers other programs that comprise a full semester or academic year.