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InsideApril 2017

Around Campus

MOCA welcomes new director

Caitlin Doherty headshot Caitlin Doherty, MOCA Jacksonville’s new director, joined the museum last month bringing a global view of contemporary art to the position, as well as an intense academic focus having worked at schools all over the world. Born in Northwest Scotland, Doherty’s career has spanned three continents and three academic institutions in Ireland, Qatar in western Asia, and in the United States.

In one of those campus settings, she was a faculty member. In two others, the university was connected with a contemporary art institution, which for Doherty makes the affiliation between MOCA and the University of North Florida familiar territory that she understands. 

“I’m excited about navigating and being a part of this organization,” Doherty said. “I’m very committed to the notion of building a mutually beneficial relationship between the University and MOCA and really seeing how each can be not only a partner but also an asset to each other, from a student, as well as faculty perspective.”

With a strong international focus, Doherty hopes to see MOCA continue to grow its U.S. reputation but also extend its reach to new borders, possibly with homegrown MOCA-curated exhibitions that would tour around the world. “We absolutely need to continue to grow our regional and national perspective,” Doherty said. “But adding some international opportunities would be like adding a string to our bow.”

Since January 2015, Doherty worked as chief curator and deputy director of curatorial affairs at the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University, which serves as both a teaching institution and cultural hub for the East Lansing region. From 2012 to 2015, she served as exhibitions and speaker curator at Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, a branch campus of VCU School of the Arts in Richmond, Virginia — where she organized major exhibitions of international contemporary art and design.

Doherty taught art history, design history and museum and gallery studies from 2008 to 2010 at Ireland’s Waterford Institute of technology. Prior to that, she worked as the inaugural director of Lismore Castle Arts, one of Ireland’s leading contemporary art galleries.


MOCA board member Alison Lee, who led the search committee, sought an individual who could build on past achievements and further strengthen the Museum’s relationship with UNF. “Caitlin’s international experience in contemporary art, her university art museum background and her extensive experience in arts programming make her the ideal director to fulfill the Museum’s mission,” Lee said.


Doherty holds master's degrees in art history from the University of Edinburgh and in museum and gallery studies from the University of St. Andrews, both in Scotland.

Around Campus

The Center for the Advancement of Women in Engineering

Alexandra Schonning on stageDr. Alexandra Schönning, a professor of mechanical engineering, wants girls to know that landing jobs in the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics is something they are capable of doing.

Recruiting young people — especially girls — into STEM fields has been a focus of several national initiatives. Dr. Schönning intends to build collaborations with these programs and lead the way in Florida. To do this, she has created The Center for the Advancement of Women Engineers at the University of North Florida.

Schönning, as the Center’s director, will begin working with local industry and the K-12 education community to solve two problems: too few women engineers — about 14 percent nationally — and an overall shortage of young people entering the field. “We want to work with children, and that includes girls and boys, to educate them about what engineering is,” Schönning said. “We want to share with them the broader impact of engineering, to make them understand that it is a humanitarian helping profession.”

In determining a student’s focus, Schönning believes stereotypes can play a role and start very early. “By the age of six, girls already do not identify themselves or other girls to be as intelligent as the boys,” she said. “We cannot ignore this anymore. We need to help build their confidence and let them know they can still be powerful and strong.”

Her overall goal for the Center is to recruit, retain and advance women in engineering. Recruitment will include outreach to the schools, as well as providing follow-up online resources for students.

To retain students, Schönning wants to create a coaching program at UNF, enhance the curriculum and add a course to reinforce life and career skills needed in the workplace. She envisions the Center as a hub of information, using the Women Leaders in STEM forum, conferences and other information from industry partners to help women advance in the field.

Around Campus

New First-Year Experience Seminar begins this summer

UNF students seated in classGetting students on the right path early is the idea behind a new course at UNF being offered for the first time this summer. The one-credit First-Year Experience Seminar is designed to help students have a smooth transition to college by providing them with the tools they need to start, stay and finish strong at UNF.

“We want students to have a smooth transition to college so they are on track to graduate on time,” said Karen Patterson, dean of Undergraduate Studies. “We want to do whatever we can to help students achieve their goals, while contributing to retention efforts.”

The pilot course will be offered at no cost to 100 first-time-in-college students. Advisors will recommend the course to those whom they feel, academically, could benefit from it the most, as well as first generation students who may need some extra guidance on how to navigate their way through college.

Universities with similar programs across the country have shown significant increases in graduation rates among those who participated, as well as increases in retention and decreases in the number of students on academic probation.

Patterson said the course has been a collaborative effort among several departments and the Provost’s Office wants to ensure that attention is being paid to all the critical needs of undergraduate students. This seminar is one of several retention initiatives that fits that focus.

Students will meet weekly and, each session, will hear from a UNF faculty member on a different topic. Faculty speakers were selected based on proposals submitted to the Office of Undergraduate Studies. Sessions will cover a variety of subjects from study strategies to time management to financial fitness. Students will learn about opportunities on campus, including research, study abroad and internships, the importance of a healthy mind and body, and lots more.

The First-Year Experience Seminar will be offered Mondays and Wednesdays from 1 – 2:10 p.m. during Summer B and Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 6 – 7:15 p.m. during the fall.

Around Campus

Campus ‘Food Fighters’ win funding to feed the hungry

From left UNF students Courtney Hogan and Brianna Ballard with Dr. Lauri WrightUNF students Courtney Hogan and Brianna Ballard — aka Food Fighters — have been doing a bit of superhero work since January. The duo has been recovering unserved food from the Osprey Cafe, which would otherwise be thrown away, and repackaging it into deliverable meals for people in need.

With the help of about 10 student volunteers, Hogan and Ballard have delivered more than 580 meals since the start of the year. Their efforts were celebrated in February when the team won a $10,000 grant after presenting their project at the United Way of Northeast Florida’s annual Upstream Pitch Party. Upstream is a partnership between the United Way, UNF and other local colleges to help students jump-start their ideas for social change.

Sydney Solan, United Way’s individual and student engagement coordinator who leads the way for the nonprofit’s Upstream competition, said the organization is excited to see what the team achieves moving forward. “We’re so glad they chose to get involved with United Way of Northeast Florida and Upstream,” Solan said. “They bring exactly the renewed energy and fresh ideas our community needs.”

Courtney Hogan, a junior majoring in an Interdisciplinary Studies, began working on the project after being hired as a Project Leader in the Environmental Leadership Program at UNF. While she was exploring options, a friend introduced her to Brianna Ballard, a senior nutrition major, who was researching programs for food recovery as well. “It seemed perfect that we work together,” Hogan said.

Ballard agreed. “Both of our passions just aligned, Courtney on the food recovery side and me on the nutrition side,” Ballard said. They started the club called Food Fighters: Student-Powered Hunger Relief; found support with club advisor Dr. Lauri Wright, director of UNF’s doctorate in clinical nutrition; and partnered with the Northeast Florida Aids Network of Jacksonville.

“This is truly a student-led initiative to relieve hunger in the community,” Wright said. “Brianna and Courtney have organized a successful program for people in need. Many of the people they are feeding don’t know where their next meal is coming from.”

The UNF club is now an established affiliate of the Food Recovery Network, a national project that works to unite students on college campuses to fight food waste and hunger. Hogan said they will use the grant to buy biodegradable containers for packaging the meals and also plan to look for rentable space in a commissary or shared commercial kitchen so they can cook meals as well. Hogan will continue the project next year and envisions an even greater reach in the future. “We would like to extend beyond offering a meal to someday providing other resources they need to fund their next meal themselves,” Hogan said, explaining that might be nutrition or cooking classes or job training resources.

Ballard, who is set to graduate this month, said she isn’t ready to leave the project behind. “I feel we are really making an impact and seeing how that touches someone else’s life truly makes me feel proud,” Ballard said. “I’m just not ready to let it go, so I’m looking for ways to stay in Jacksonville.”

Hogan would welcome Ballard’s continued help. “I’m really grateful for all that Brianna contributes to the project,” Hogan said. “It’s been the most rewarding experience I’ve had at college.”

Two other UNF student teams also were awarded $10,000 for their Upstream projects: Vaughn Sayers and Farouk Smith, created a mentoring program for young men, and Tylyn Dagsaan and Noelle O’Connor, presented a public art collaboration between local artists and middle-school students. UNF senior Julia Driscoll won an honorary prize basket as the People’s Award winner for her project to connect volunteers with Jacksonville’s refugee population.


Construction Cam provides a bird's eye view

View of Skinner-Jones Hall construction from engineering cameraFrom his office window, James Sorce, advisor and instructor in UNF’s Department of Construction Management, can see the renovations to Skinner-Jones Hall — what will be the new home for large portion of the College of Computing, Engineering and Construction. Wanting to record the progress of the work, Source asked the construction company for permission to have two construction cameras put into place. With the help of UNF’s CCEC Research Technology Services, the UNF community now has access to an online image of the current construction, as well as a time-lapse recording.

The renovated building, which combines Buildings 3 and 4, will include a four-story addition, new entry lobby and feature a completely renovated and enhanced interior. The project is scheduled for completion in December.

Take a look at the current views and the time-lapse video of the construction!


UNF undergrads present research

UNF students share research at Florida conference Undergraduate students involved in research at the University of North Florida shared an extensive portfolio of projects in February with peers from around the state.   


UNF students presented a record 55 posters — more than any school in attendance — at the Florida Undergraduate Research Conference, an annual interdisciplinary conference open to all undergraduate researchers in Florida. The conference allowed students to listen to other presentations, attend workshops and visit with graduate school recruiters. 


Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton hosted the event, which is held at a different Florida university each year. The trip was sponsored and coordinated by the University’s Office of Undergraduate Research.


UNF Gallery at MOCA hosts ‘Iterations’

MOCA displays Lorrie Fredette's Complex Interplay, photo courtesy of artistWhen considering artistic inspiration, few would think of a disease that ravaged millions and decimated the world populations. That is exactly what Lorrie Fredette used as the inspiration for the exhibition “Iterations,” a site-specific installation of “The Great Silence,” now in its third presentation at the University of North Florida Gallery at MOCA Jacksonville. Fredette’s three-dimensional exploration of art and science is on view from April 8 through Sept. 10.

More than 2,000 smooth muslin-and-wax covered pods are the result of countless hours of labor, each one a unique object handcrafted by the artist. Together, they create a large-scale sculpture inspired by the smallpox virus with a unique configuration. At more than 29 feet long and just over five feet wide, the artwork is an undulating, floating canopy — it will be attached directly to the ceiling and suspended approximately eight and a half feet above the gallery floor. Thus, the installation’s title, "The Great Silence," is Fredette's interpretation of the virus and its history.

Read more about the UNF Gallery at MOCA.

Faculty Forum

Dr. Karen Patterson

Dr. Karen Patterson headshotDr. Karen B. Patterson is a professor of special education and serves as the interim associate vice president for Faculty Resources and dean of Undergraduate Studies. In her role as dean, Patterson oversees academic advising and academic support services, as well as undergraduate research. Her professional experiences have included teaching students with emotional and behavior disorders and autism in the Cleveland Public Schools. Her research focuses on improving practices for underserved students, college students with disabilities, collaborative partnerships and parental involvement for students at risk for failure. Patterson co-sponsored UNF’s student chapter of the special education national organization, Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), and is an Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award recipient. She served as Chair of the Exceptional, Deaf, and Interpreter Education Department. Patterson received her doctorate from Kent State University.

What brought you to UNF?
I came with family. We moved to Jacksonville when my husband accepted a job as an assistant professor of mathematics at UNF.

What’s the most rewarding academic experience you’ve had at UNF in or out of the classroom?

Teachers have strong influences on student outcomes, and good teachers know that in order to be effective, they also need to be reflective and critical about their performance while taking active steps for continuous improvement. However, the preservice teachers I work with do not have a range of experiences from which to draw upon and so it is necessary to create those opportunities for them in our courses. I recently taught a classroom management course in one of our technology labs where students were able to watch the recorded performances via lecture capture and then critique the observations. They could then use that feedback to improve their future presentations over the duration of the course. For me, what was most rewarding was that students saw the value of self-reflection and recognized that they could be “critical friends” to each other. I was not the only “teacher” in the lab, and it was great! This process allowed preservice teachers to examine their beliefs and reflect on their performance, so that they could gain insights on their abilities and level of preparedness for managing even the most challenging student behaviors.

What advice would you give to a student who is about to graduate?
Be courageous. Stay focused on your goals and and consider mentoring someone who is just starting out. Although you may feel you lack experience, it is always good to reach back and help others, because your contributions could be invaluable to someone who really needs you.

What is the biggest change that you’ve encountered in higher education since you entered the field?
I don’t think it’s a change so much as the fact that the challenges expanding over the course of my being in higher education. Access, affordability and using new knowledge and instructional techniques were all challenges when I started, and in my opinion they are still challenges but to a greater extent today. As things become more internationalized, the disparities that exist in higher education are more evident.

What would you most regret not having done by the end of your life?
I would regret if my husband and I would not have been able to see our two daughters grow into the amazing young ladies they are today.


Osprey Profile: Bella Genta

Bella Genta headshotWhat is your major and why did you choose it? I am in an Interdisciplinary Studies, concentrating in International Conservation. I have always been passionate about the natural environment, particularly coastal and marine systems, and want to pursue a career in coastal resource management and sustainable development. Being able to create a degree program that would allow me to be a leader in this field on an international level is so valuable. It will help ensure that I’m prepared to tackle the modern environmental problems that affect people and wildlife globally. 

Why did you decide to attend the University of North Florida? UNF’s commitment to nature — its appreciation and student access to it — really blew me away. This, in addition to the focus on engaging undergraduate students in research, study abroad and internships, made UNF an easy sell.

Where are you from? Sarasota, but I attended school in Osprey, Florida. (Swoop!)

What do you like most about UNF? Initially, I loved the small class sizes, personalized education and student experience focus. As I move closer to graduating and leaving the University, I realize it’s been the people I have met — fellow students, professors, administration and professional staff — that have made me love UNF as much as I do.

What has been your coolest UNF experience so far? I have been able to study abroad in Peru, Morocco and Spain and also have been able to serve as the student body president. The combination of international travel and leadership in Student Government have been pivotal in my personal and professional development, so I think they are equally amazing.

Who is your favorite professor? Do you have a favorite class? I have so many! I loved the classes I took with Dr. Swota (Contemporary Ethical Issues), Dr. Michelman (Social Innovation) and Dr. Pyati (Chemistry). While I’ve enjoyed many of the classes I’ve taken thus far, I just came back from the St. Johns River Experience class that is co-taught by James Taylor and Dr. Troendle. This class — and its corresponding trip — provided such a comprehensive look at the river’s history, culture and ecology; it’s hard not to fall in love with the St. Johns River and our little portion of Northeast Florida.

How do you recharge on campus or in Jacksonville? I love being connected to nature in new and exciting ways, like rock climbing and paddle boarding. There are opportunities to do both of these activities on campus, but I also like taking advantage of the public parks system in Jacksonville. The Riverside/ Springfield area is also a great area of town to escape to and explore, whether the riverfront, museums or restaurants.

What’s your favorite UNF tradition? My high school didn’t have any sports teams, so I have really tried to take advantage of the culture around basketball games here at UNF. River City Rumble, against JU, and the Homecoming games are always my favorites. I love watching the annual Can Castle event, also a part of Homecoming. It’s a great way to participate in friendly competition and also support the Lend-A-Wing Pantry.

What’s your biggest challenge so far as a UNF student? Recently, I have felt very overwhelmed with all the opportunities I want to take advantage of before I graduate. While I believe I have made good use of my time thus far, UNF is uniquely committed to undergraduate development, and I want to make sure I am not taking this for granted.

What does being an Osprey mean to you? Being an Osprey means being part of a growing tradition and the Jacksonville community.

When you’re looking to de-stress and relax a bit, where do you go on campus? Why do you like that spot? I love the UNF Nature Trails by Eco-Adventure. Even though it is an on-campus location, it feels like a little, isolated oasis. The trails are a great, quiet way to walk and de-stress, and — if you’re lucky — you can spot some amazing animals out there too!

If you could meet one historical figure for coffee, who would it be? I recently learned about Christina, King of Sweden, who became the heir to the throne when she was six years old. Although she didn’t rule until she was 18, she transformed Stockholm into a major cultural center of the time, while also turning every social norm about women on its head. She even chose to be called “King.” I think it would be amazing to have coffee with her and learn firsthand how fearless she was.

If you could witness any historical event, what would you want to see? The launch of Apollo 11 to the Moon in 1969!

What three traits define you? Passionate, Dedicated, Confident

Do you have any advice for high school students? Don’t stress about fitting in when you go to college. As long as you concentrate on what is important to you, personally and educationally, you are going to find people there that will support and encourage you. It’s those people who are going to be key to you succeeding not only in college, but also in life.

When will you graduate? What do you want to do after graduation? Spring 2018. Following graduation, I want to pursue a master’s degree in Natural Resource Management and Sustainable Development.


Biscuit named for UNF business professor

UNFs Reinhold Lamb seated showing biscuit named after himMany Jacksonville citizens are familiar with the breakfast restaurant that has been making waves in the city — Maple Street Biscuit Company. The “community of stores” features southern biscuits with a modern twist, and its menu is constantly changing to satisfy its customers. But, one thing that will never leave Maple Street’s menu is the “Reinhold,” a biscuit dish named after the University of North Florida’s Reinhold Lamb, a professor of accounting and finance.

The founder of Maple Street Biscuit Company, Scott Moore, gave nothing but praise and gratitude when speaking of his relationship with Professor Lamb who has given him business advice since Maple Street first opened its doors in 2012.

“It’s good to have a friend who can be alongside you and ask those tough questions. That is who Reinhold is to me, and that is why his biscuit will always remain,” said Moore.

It is because of their relationship and Professor Lamb’s counsel that Moore named a signature biscuit after him — a nod to being a good and loyal friend who has since become a shareholder in the company. At the time of creation of the biscuit, Lamb thought his friend had facetiously named the item after him.

“Once the menu was getting finalized, he emailed me a copy for another look. I saw “The Reinhold” on the menu and thought he was joking. I replied ‘Ha ha, very funny.’ Next thing I saw was it on the menu board at the first store — San Marco,” stated Lamb. The biscuit is available in all nine restaurants, including one in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Despite it being weird “having a sandwich named after you,” according the professor, he enjoys telling Moore that they are changing the world one Reinhold at a time whenever a customer mentions that his biscuit is their favorite menu item.

Three of the five shareholders of the Maple Street Biscuit Company have a connection to the University of North Florida. Along with Dr. Lamb, two UNF alumni, Gus Evans, ‘02 and Mark Cagnassola, ’95, ’97, are company partners.

Faculty and Staff

Coggin College of Business Regalia for UNF faculty and staff accomplishments

Dr. Nathan Kunz
, assistant professor of operations management, co-authored the article “Sustainable Business Growth: Exploring Operations Decision-Making,” recently published in the Journal of Global Responsibility.

Diane Denslow, instructor of management, with Konstantin B. Kostin and Diane Denslow, published the article “Enhancing E-Marketing Efficiency Via Revenue Management Technology,” in the Journal of Chinese Economics, Vol. 15., No. 1, 2017.

College of Arts and Sciences


Dr. Vladimir Mashanov published the paper “Inhibition of cell proliferation does not slow down echinoderm neural regeneration” in Frontiers in Zoology.

Andrew Faus, an undergraduate student in Dr. Vladimir Mashanov’s lab, presented the poster “Reference transcriptome of the highly regenerative echinoderm Sclerodactyla briareys” at the Florida Undergraduate Research Conference in February.

Charles B. Coughlin traveled with four students, Lester Manley, David Ha, Morsal Osmani and Vincent Volante, to the Florida Undergraduate Research Conference in Boca Raton in February. The students presented laboratory research results in scientific posters about how food additives impact bacteria commonly found in the human gastrointestinal tract.


Dr. Stuart Chalk and research collaborators published the paper “Computational Chemistry Data Management Platform Based on the Semantic Web” in The Journal of Physical Chemistry A in December.

Dr. Joshua Melko and students Tri Le and Gregory Miller published “Determining Rate Constants and Mechanisms for Sequential Reactions of Fe+ with Ozone at 500 K” in the January issue of The Journal of Physical Chemistry A.


Tricia Booker, journalism adjunct at UNF, published her first book titled “The Place of Peace and Crickets: how adoption, heartache, and love built a family.” In this memoir, Booker recounts her personal history with international adoption that brought three children into her life. Published by Twisted Road Publications, the book was released March 15 and is available at several area bookstores and on


Dr. Philip Kaplan published “The Ring of Polycrates: Friendship and alliance in the east Mediterranean,” in the Journal of Ancient History 4.2 in November.

Dr. Theo C. Prousis delivered a talk, “Euthanasia in Nazi Germany: When Medical Ethics Went Haywire,” for a panel on Medical Ethics Today: Lessons Learned from Anne Frank and the Holocaust, sponsored by the Duval County Medical Society Foundation, the Jewish Federation and the Museum of Science and History.

Dr. Harry Rothschild presented his paper, “Man and Tree, Tumor and Burl: Illness, Ecology, and the Consonance between the Human Body and the Natural World in Early Medieval and Medieval China” at the Association of Asian Studies Northeast conference at Boston College.

Mathematics and Statistics

Dr. Pali Sen, with graduate student Ben Webster, published “Analysis of Survival Functions in Predicting Length of Stay in Florida Hospitals” in the Journal of Basic and Applied Research International, Vol. 19, Issue 3, pages 194 – 205, International Knowledge Press, December 2016.


Dr. Andrea Venet and her UNF percussion students performed in concert alongside guest artist and Saturday Night Live percussionist Valerie Naranjo as part of the UNF Cummer Chamber Music Series in February. Repertoire included compositions, transcriptions and arrangements by Naranjo, inspired by West African and Native American music styles. Dr. Venet also gave a lecture recital presentation titled “Affekt and Execution; Historical Considerations and Contemporary Techniques for Performing Bach on Marimba” at the University of Central Florida in February.

Philosophy and Religion Studies 

Dr. Andrew Buchwalter published “ ‘The Ethicality in Civil Society’: Bifurcation, Bildung and Hegel’s Supersession of the Aporias of Social Modernity,” in David James (ed.), Hegel’s Elements of the Philosophy of Right: A Critical Guide (Cambridge University Press).


Dr. Lev Gasparov co-authored the accepted manuscript “New ligands for uranium complexation: A stable uranyl dimer bearing 2,6-diacetylpyridine dioxime” published in Inorganic Chemistry Communications.

Dr. Jason Haraldsen gave a talk on Magnetic Dirac Modes at the 2nd International Symposium on Science and Technology of 2D Materials. Dr. Haraldsen’s research student Thomas LaMartina presented a poster at the Florida Undergraduate Research Conference at Florida Atlantic University.

Dr. John Hewitt was interviewed about the NASA discovery of seven earth-like exoplanets on WJCT’s First Coast Connect and WJXT morning show. He was also awarded a Julena Steinheider Duncombe Grant from the American Astronomical Society to host a summer workshop on the Solar Eclipse.

Sociology, Anthropology and Social Work
Drs. Suzie Weng and Jennifer Spaulding-Givens presented a poster “Informal mental health support in the Asian American community and culturally appropriate strategies for community-based mental health organizations” at the Society for Social Work and Research conference, New Orleans.

Dr. Suzie Weng, with a former research assistant W. T. Wolfe, published “An Asian American community in the Southern United States: An exploration of fear of crime” in Journal of Ethnicity in Criminal Justice. Dr. Weng also presented the poster “An untapped resource for nonprofit social service organizations: An examination of a partnership with corporate employee resource groups” at the Society for Social Work and Research conference, New Orleans.

Drs. Paul Clark and Jennifer Spaulding-Givens published “Can a Low-Complexity Community-Based Project Have Transformative Effects?” in The Journal of Baccalaureate Social Work, February.

College of Computing, Engineering and Construction

School of Computing
Dr. Karthik Umapathy presented his ACM Transactions on Computing Education (TOCE) paper titled “A Meta-Analysis of Pair-Programming in Computer Programming Courses: Implications for Educational Practice” at the 2017 ACM Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education (SIGCSE) Symposium in Seattle in March. ACM SIGCSE is the premier computer science education conference. Dr. Umapathy co-authored the ACM TOCE paper along with Dr. Abert Ritzhaupt from the University of Florida.

School of Engineering

Dr. Patrick Kreidl, electrical engineering, was awarded $25,000 by the Florida Center for Cybersecurity for a project with Dr. Shigang Chen at the University of Florida titled “Defensive and Resilient Cyberspace with Threat Tracking and Prediction based on Temporal-Spatial Network/Data Activity Profiling” in March.

Dr. Chiu Choi published “Velocity Feedback Experiments,” in the International Journal of Engineering Pedagogy, vol. 7, no. 1 (2017), pp. 4-16.

College of Education and Human Services

Department of Exceptional, Deaf and Interpreter Education
The ASL, Deaf Education and ASL/English Interpreting programs sponsored a Deaf Social on March 4 bringing together high school teachers, students and parents; UNF faculty, adjunct instructors, lab assistants, alumni, ASL students, interpreting students and deaf education students; deaf-blind consumers; deaf senior citizens; Florida Black Deaf Advocates representative; a retired interpreter trainer from St. Petersburg and many others from the community. The evening included deaf culture and sign language games, food and lots of conversation.

Dr. Jennifer Renée Kilpatrick
, with colleagues Drs. Hannah Dostal (University of Connecticut) and Kimberly Wolbers (The University of Tennessee) presented two papers at the Writing Research Across Borders IV at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogotá, Colombia: “An experimental Study of Strategic and Interactive Writing Instruction,” which shared the findings of a yearlong investigation comparing the language and writing outcomes of third- through fifth-grade students participating in Strategic and Interactive Writing Instruction with the outcomes of students participating in business as usual instruction; and “The Language Zone in Strategic and Interactive Writing Instruction,” which discussed the development of “The Language Zone,” a space where teachers and d/hh students participate in language related work during writing.

Dr. Caroline Guardino
and nine undergraduate deaf education students volunteered at the Jacksonville STEAM Festival where students presented Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math projects. The UNF deaf ed students accompanied the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind and St. Augustine deaf and hard-of-hearing students while touring the festival. UNF students were immersed in American Sign Language as well as challenged to practice their teaching skills during the event.

Department of Leadership, School Counseling and Sport Management

The UNF College of Education and Human Services Education Doctoral program has been selected as a new member of the Carnegie Project on the Educational Doctorate ( The Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate is the “knowledge forum on the EdD. The consortium has a membership of over 80 schools of education in the US, Canada and New Zealand working collaboratively to improve professional preparation in education at the highest level.” Membership to this prestigious Consortium is a recognition of the important role that UNF plays and continues to play in our community, as well as the college’s commitment to preparing outstanding educational leaders.

Dr. LaDonna Morris attended the Black, Brown and College Bound Summit, sponsored by Hillsborough Community College, in Tampa on Feb. 24. She and Chadwick Lockley, Joanna Hillman and Taylor Hoffman, three students pursuing a master’s in higher education administration, presented “Ground Zero: An Innovative Diversity Plan Proposed by Higher Education Administration Graduate Students at the University of North Florida” to an enthusiastic audience of college recruiters, diversity officers, and college and high school students. The graduate students received scholarships from COEHS and the Graduate School to attend. Grammy award winner and education advocate John Legend was the featured keynote and serenaded the group with his hit, “All of Me.”

Drs. Luke Cornelius and Terence Cavanaugh published “Grading the Metrics: Performance-Based Funding in the Florida State University System” in the Journal of Education Finance. The article was a policy analysis of Florida’s 10-factor performance-based funding system for state universities. The paper also discussed problems and issues with the metrics, their ongoing evolution and political issues related to performance-based funding in Florida, as well as an analysis of the metrics to university elements that also found significant correlations to other university elements such as school size and population makeup.

Additionally, Dr. Terence Cavanaugh presented “Repurposing Public Domain Literature into Open Source Educational Resources,” and with Dr. Nicholas Eastham, “Using The 3-D Printer as Assistive Technology,” which explained how they developed a fast 3-D printing process to convert data into physical graphs for students with vision impairments, at the annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education (SITE) in Austin, Texas, in March.

Justin Lerman and Rudy Jamison, two of our EdD students, with Matthew Ohlson and Principal Joseph Theobold, community partner leader from Putman County, presented “The Virtual Pathway to College and Career Readiness” at the Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference in March. The presentation was published in the conference proceedings. CAMP (Collegiate Achievement Mentoring Program) Osprey is a leadership-mentoring program partnering collegiate student leaders with students from a high-poverty, rural elementary school. To overcome geographic and financial barriers, CAMP Osprey uses “virtual leadership mentoring” available on the UNF campus to conduct weekly leadership mentoring sessions. The proposal shared successes and challenges associated with program development, implementation and technology adaptation along with previous outcomes associated with collegiate mentor and elementary mentee participants.

Department of Foundations and Secondary Education

Drs. Dan Dinsmore, Brian Zoellner, Meghan Parkinson and Anthony Rossi (Department of Biology), along with two undergraduate research assistants, Mary Jo Monk and Jenelle Vinnachi, recently published an article in the International Journal of Science Education titled, “The effects of different types of text and individual differences on view complexity about genetically modified organisms.” This research was funded by a seed grant from the UNF Environmental Center.

More than 100 area educators and prospective educators attended ESOL Career Ladder for Student Success (ESOL CLASS) events in March at UNF’s College of Education and Human Services. The evening consisted of face-to-face information sessions for those interested in becoming Florida ESOL certified teachers. The two recruiting sessions focused on UNF world language majors and DCPS paraprofessionals and a special professional development workshop.

Department of Childhood Education, Literacy and TESOL
Dr. Christian Winterbottom, with D. Simpson, S. Loughran, E. Lumsden, P. Mazzocco, R. McDowall Clark, published “'Seen but not heard.' Practitioners work with poverty and the organising out of disadvantaged children’s voices and participation in the early years" in European Early Childhood Education Research Journal.

In collaboration with UNF’s Thomas G. Carpenter librarians Maria Atilano and Jeff Bowen, Dr. Katie Monnin hosted this year’s Will Eisner Week Event in March. The event focused on the connection between the literary-level reading experience explicit in graphic novels and the library's current and growing graphic novel collection. A follow-up event will take place in September during Banned Books Week. The second event will focus on why an increasing number of graphic novels are appearing on banned books lists across the country and the problems (and the potential solutions) such a phenomenon presents to valuing graphic novels in 21st century libraries and schools.

Dr. Katrina Hall and Seaside Community Charter School partners Deb Lacovara and Amanda Patow participated in the Center for Community Based Learning’s 4th Annual Community Engagement Participant Summit on March 3 at the Adam Herbert University Center. As part of the summit, the team worked on creating the “story” of their partnership to share with stakeholders.

Drs. White, Hall and Ari were awarded a 2017 Academic Affairs Foundation Scholarship Development grant of $20,000 for “Preparing Students for a Global Society: Creating and Implementing an Interdisciplinary Thematic Secondary Public School Curriculum.” The team will work on curriculum and professional development for Seaside Charter K-8, a public school inspired by principles of Public Waldorf. To learn more about the model, visit The Alliance for Public Waldorf Education at

Dr. Stacy Boote recently published an article with Dr. David Boote in The Elementary School Journal titled “Leaping from Discrete to Continuous Independent Variables: Sixth-Graders’ Science Line Graph Interpretations.” The article describes challenges sixth-graders with varying levels of science and mathematics achievement encounter when transitioning from interpreting graphs having discrete independent variables to graphs having continuous independent variables. The data analysis from sixth-graders’ think aloud interviews and written graph interactions yielded a number of interesting findings. Recommendations to aid students were also provided.

Hicks Honors College
Dr. Leslie Kaplan will serve the state-level honors college association as president of the Florida Collegiate Honors Council from February 2017 – 2018.

Center for Instruction and Research Technology
Megan Bracewell and Allison Archer presented a session titled “Revamping Faculty Development: Bridging the Divide Between Distance and Blended Learning” at the Online Learning Consortium Innovate Conference in New Orleans.

Student Affairs
Lt. Gen. Rick Tryon headshotLt. Gen. Rick Tryon joined the Division of Student Affairs in March as director of the Taylor Leadership Institute. A retired lieutenant general in the U.S. Marine Corps, Tryon served in the Marines for 40 years. Among many postings over his long career, he deployed in support of the Gulf War in 1991, served as a commanding general over U.S. Marines and multinational forces in the Iraq War from 2008 to 2010, and headed the U.S. Marine Forces Command and U.S. Marine Forces Europe from 2013 to 2014. In 2015, Tryon joined UNF as professor and senior fellow in International Leadership in Hicks Honors College. He earned his bachelor’s at the U.S. Naval Academy and holds master’s degrees from Webster University and Johns Hopkins University.

On Campus Transition will host their 10 Year Anniversary Celebration and 10th graduation ceremony on April 20.

Twelve members of UNF’s Student Government traveled to Tallahassee in March to give UNF Student Government members visit Tallahasseestudents a voice on several key legislative agenda items. Led by Bella Genta, Student Government president, the group met with 10 state officials including representatives, senators, legislative aides and the governor’s education staff. In their lobbying efforts, the students asked that Bright Futures funding be restored to 2010 levels and made available for summer tuition payments. They also requested support for the Board of Governor’s Legislative Budget Request to provide increased funding for the UNF Counseling Center to decrease wait times, and asked for reconsideration of the Excess Credit Hour Surcharge. Students also had an opportunity to attend the Senate to watch floor debate and voting, tour the Old Capitol and meet with UNF alumni.

Thomas G. Carpenter Library

Dr. Elizabeth Curry, library dean, was selected to receive the 2017 ASCLA Leadership and Professional Achievement Award, a national award from a division of the American Library Association (ALA) at the ALA Conference in June. The ALA is the oldest and largest library association in the world with more than 56,000 members; its ASCLA division is the Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies. Curry is recognized for her many collaborative projects and her work to create and facilitate the Sunseekers Leadership Institute and the Sunshine State Library Leadership Institute, both of which have been transforming leaders in Florida for over two decades.


Dateline balloons to celebrate our faculty and staffMilestone anniversaries
Congratulations to the following employees with a milestone anniversary at UNF in April:

30 years
Barry Wynns, Coordinator IT Support, University Housing

20 years
Fong Chuen Lai-Chin, Executive Secretary, Faculty Association

15 years
Carolyn Gavin, Office Manager, Marketing and Logistics
Karen Haltiwanger, Budget Associate, Enrollment Services
Heather Kite, Assistant Director, Recreation
Robert Mailey, Assistant Maintenance Superintendent, Physical Facilities

10 years
Cornet Ellison, Maintenance Mechanic, Physical Facilities
Felicia George, Director, Class Compensation Employment, Human Resources
Dawn Harmon-O'Connor, Assistant Director, Research Integrity, ORSP

5 years
Kevin Hulen, Assistant Director, Distance Learning Course Development, Center For Instruction and Research Technology
Eva Skipper, Applications Programmer, Enterprise Systems
Steven Wilson, Groundskeeper, Physical Facilities

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

Shannon Bellemare, Office Manager, Philosophy and Religious Studies
Christopher Brandt, Maintenance Mechanic, Maintenance and Energy Management
Justin Dickey, Teacher, UNF Preschool
Caitlin Doherty, Executive Director, MOCA Jacksonville
Raymond Drayton, Pest Control Technician, Grounds
Matthew Grandstaff, Administrative Secretary, Student Affairs
Cheryl Huffman, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Joel Lamp, Associate Athletics Director, Development
Judy Lee, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Brianna Pollock, Teacher, UNF Preschool 
Riley Sackett, Financial Aid Specialist, Financial Aid Office
Michelle Spagna, Senior Library Services Associate, Library
Karine Stukes, Coordinator Admissions Processing, Enrollment Services Processing Office
Thomas Witcherd, Groundskeeper, The Flats
Amber Ziegler, IT Support Tech, User Services

Great Job
The following employees were promoted recently:

Elizabeth Gregg, Associate Professor, Chair, Leadership SC and SM
Jessica Murray, Assistant Director, Continuing Education
Diane Scott, Office Manager, Internal Auditing
Nathaniel Swanson, IT Systems Engineer, Systems Engineering
Richard Tryon, Director, Taylor Leadership Institute


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

Adam Danisovszky, Coordinator Institutional Research, Institutional Research
Chelsea Dawkins, Teacher, UNF Preschool
Nicole Dorman, Coordinator, Academic Support, One-Stop Center
Chalonda Glenn, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Eric Goodbred, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services
Annie Gordon, Administrative Secretary, Student Government Business and Accounting Office
Sidney Halfhill, Maintenance Mechanic, Maintenance and Energy Management
Takiyah Joseph, Coordinator, Career Services
Diane Leake, Administrative Secretary, Brooks College of Health
Jennifer Macklin, Applications Systems Analyst, Enterprise Systems
Jacqueline Moes, Police Communications, University Police Department
William Parker, Production Specialist, Student Government
Heather Patterson, Coordinator, Administrative Services, President's Office
Jeffrey Smith, Custodial Worker, Osprey Hall
John Touchton, Library Services Coordinator, Library
Jennifer Wessel, Custodial Worker, Custodial Services

Around Campus

Swoop Summary

UNF baseball player at batOspreys Take Series Over Dallas Baptist with 6-2 Win in Finale
North Florida earned a signature series win with a 6-2 victory over perennial baseball power Dallas Baptist at Harmon Stadium on Sunday afternoon, March 26. Learn more about Osprey baseball.

Ospreys Down Stetson to Open ASUN Play
North Florida women's tennis took down Stetson, 5-2, on Saturday, March 25, to open ASUN competition. The win is the 10th straight to open ASUN action. Learn more about women's tennis.

Men's Track & Field Posts Solid Performances at Sheraton Spring Break Invitational

The North Florida men's track and field team had a strong showing Friday, March 24, at Hodges Stadium in their home event, the Sheraton Spring Break Invitational. The Ospreys dominated the 1500m event, taking the top two spots and six of the Top 10 finishing items. Learn more about men's track and field.


School Records Highlight Women's Track & Field PerformancesUNF womens track and field
The North Florida women's track and field team saw a pair of school records broken on Friday, March 24, at the Sheraton Spring Break Invitational and the Raleigh Relays. Junior Eden Meyer bettered the school record mark in the 10,000m in Raleigh, while senior Tianna Hearn set a new school record in the 400m Hurdles at Hodges Stadium. Learn more about women's track and field.

North Florida Sweeps Spring Hill
North Florida beach volleyball swept Spring Hill to pick up wins three and four against the Badgers in a mid-week match up, Wednesday, March 22. Learn more about North Florida beach volleyball.

Dallas Moore Named to NABC All-District Team for Third Time in Career
The National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) announced March 22 the NABC Division I All-District teams and UPS All-District coaches for 2016-17, and North Florida's Dallas Moore earned recognition on the prestigious list. Learn more about Dallas Moore.

Meyer Sisters Earn ASUN All-Academic Honors for Indoor Track & Field
Eden Meyer is taking home North Florida's first ASUN Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award in Women's Indoor Track and Field. Eden and twin sister Grace were the lone Ospreys to earn All-Academic Team designations. Learn more about Eden and Grace Meyer.

The Goods

Edible Flowers

Edible flowersThere is a Chinese proverb that says: “When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one and a lily with the other.” It turns out you would not only be able to eat the loaf of bread, but also the lily, as long as it is a daylily! Dr. Andrea Arikawa, registered dietitian nutritionist and assistant professor in the Nutrition and Dietetics Flagship Program, discusses myths and facts about edible flowers.

Myth: All flowers are edible.
Fact: Although there are many flowers that can be enjoyed as part of a dish, some may be poisonous and may cause adverse reactions, such as mouth and skin irritation and ulcers, vomiting, diarrhea and even convulsions. Only eat flowers if you are sure they aren’t poisonous. For an extensive list of edible and poisonous plants, North Carolina State University provides great online resources.

Myth: Edible flowers can substitute meals.
Fact: Edible flowers should be used to add color, flavor and texture to foods and, as such, they should be used as a garnish to dishes. Although edible flowers may contain phytochemicals that provide health benefits, they provide very few calories and therefore, they shouldn’t be used to replace meals.

Myth: Flower shops are good places to purchase edible flowers.
Fact: Unless labeled as edible, flowers purchased at flower shops, nurseries or garden centers may not be safe for consumption due to exposure to manure or pesticides that aren’t approved for use in plants intended for consumption. Similarly, flowers that grow by roads can pick up toxins from the environment, including the toxic fumes from car exhausts. It’s important to make sure that, if pesticides are used in flowers that will be eaten, they have been approved for their intended use, and the instructions for their application have been followed.

Myth: Edible flowers shouldn’t be cooked.
Fact: Edible flowers can be enjoyed in many preparations. They can be added to salads raw (dandelion, nasturtium, daylily), used to make tea or flavored water (hibiscus), but they can also be candied (rose petals) or breaded and fried (pumpkin and zucchini blossoms, daylily). Before eating, flowers should be carefully washed and, in many preparations, the stamens, styles, pistils and sepals (in other words, the stalks that hold the pollen and the green stems that hold the petals together) should also be removed. 

Myth: People who suffer from allergies can safely eat edible flowers
Fact: Ingestion of edible flowers can result in allergic reactions, particularly in those who have asthma, pollen allergies, hay fever and other types of allergies. Edible flowers should be introduced into the diet one at a time and in small quantities to prevent and/or minimize side effects and allergic reactions.

The Goods is a monthly column about food myths and facts by faculty members in the Nutrition and Dietetics Flagship Program that runs in the “Taste” section of The Florida Times-Union. Have a question about edible flowers? Contact Arikawa at 
Here is a recipe for hibiscus tea to ease you into the colorful world of edible flowers.

Hibiscus Tea

6 cups water

1 ounce or ½ cup dried hibiscus flowers

1 cinnamon stick

4 tablespoons honey (optional)*

1 small orange, sliced



Bring water to light boil, turn off the heat and add the hibiscus flowers and cinnamon stick. Cover and steep for 20 minutes. Strain tea into a pitcher, add the honey and orange slices. Serve over ice.


Calories (per 8oz. serving): 40, Carbohydrates: 10 g, Fat: 0 g, Protein: 0 g.

* If honey isn't used, this tea provides 0 calories per serving.

Bright Birds Know

UNF Student Union by Kim Lindsey


UNF's Student Union ranked at the top


The University of North Florida's Student Union was recognized by College Rank in March as one of "The Best 25 Student Union Centers" in the nation, one of only two facilities at Florida institutions to make the list. Selection was based on aesthetic design and architecture, student offerings in campus life, events and traditions as well as proximity to other campus features.


It's not the first time the building has received accolades. In 2012, the Florida Chapter of the American Institute of Architects named it the best educational building and architects voted it as the top building in the state. The public also voted it as the No. 4 building overall in the state.

Here are a few facts:

  • At 150,000 square feet, the Student Union was completed in 2009 for $40.1 million
  • Nearly 6,500 events are hosted there annually
  • It boasts a 108,000-square-foot grass amphitheater
  • As a certified "green" building, the building uses energy-saving measures, recycled materials and natural light