Faculty and Staff Sketches

February 8, 2016


In the News

John Kilbourne, professor of movement science, honors, was interviewed by the South Haven Tribune for a story on his development and research on Activity Permissible Classrooms.

Jonathan Hodge, associate professor of mathematics and department chair, and David Austin, professor of mathematics, were interviewed by the podcast, "Relatively Prime," for a story about gerrymandering and mathematical voting theory in politics.

Mark Schaub, chief international officer, was interviewed by WOOD Radio for a story about Grand Valley hiring a part-time campus recruiter for the Peace Corps.


Book explores women characters in popular TV shows

Wendy Burns-Ardolino

Wendy Burns-Ardolino

A new book by a liberal studies faculty member explores the relationships of women characters in popular television shows and the impact of fans who follow those shows.

"TV Female Foursomes and Their Fans" by Wendy Burns-Ardolino, associate professor and chair of liberal studies, explores seven TV shows — "The Golden Girls," "Designing Women," "Living Single," "Sex and the City," "Girlfriends," "Cashmere Mafia" and "Hot in Cleveland" — and their popularity with viewers. All these shows featured four women lead characters, and although they aired in different decades (1980s-present), Burns-Ardolino said they have commonalities and have redefined women's roles on television.

"The characters form bonds of sisterhood and support each other through challenges," Burns-Ardolino said.

She added that each show has confronted complex issues of the day, such as the AIDS crisis, pay equity or domestic violence.

"One of the strengths of these shows is that they were not afraid to tackle complex issues, and that resonated with their audiences," Burns-Ardolino said. "It may have opened up new world views for some fans." She researched fan-based message boards while writing the book.

Burns-Ardolino will host a book launch and book signing reception on February 18, from 5-7 p.m. at the DeVos Center, University Club room. The book is published by McFarland; for more information, visit www.mcfarlandbooks.com.


Clinic participates with insurers

The Grand Rapids interdisciplinary clinic that is operated through a partnership with Grand Valley's physical therapy department and other colleges is now participating with several insurers.

Calvin College Rehab Services, at 1310 E. Beltline Ave., is participating with Priority Health, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Blue Care Network, and Medicare. The clinic offers physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, social work and audiology services for patients with neurological needs. For more information, call (616) 526-8947.

Partners are Grand Valley, Calvin College and Western Michigan University.


Vail receives MSTA award

Janet Vail

Janet Vail

Janet Vail, a research scientist at the Annis Water Resources Institute in Muskegon, was awarded the 2016 Informal Science Educator Award by the Michigan Science Teachers Association. 

Vail was selected for her contributions to the improvement of non-school-based science education, as well as scholarly contributions.

At AWRI, Vail has provided environmental education for schools, teachers, students and businesses for more than 25 years, including 20 years with the innovative research vessel education program. More than 5,000 students and teachers take part in the hands-on science programs each year where they learn about Lake Michigan and environmental stewardship. 

Vail also organized the first of three "State of Lake Michigan" conferences and serves as co-chair of the U.S. EPA Lake Michigan Forum. During the past 18 years, Vail has conducted the "Making Lake Michigan Great" research vessel tour, which has made its way to 33 ports of call in Lake Michigan, and allows families, school groups and the general public to take part in water sampling experiments. 

The MSTA was created to fill a void in providing guidance for the improvement of science education in the state. A state chapter of the National Science Teachers Association, MSTA has grown to one of the largest science organizations of its kind in the U.S.



Jeffrey Rothstein, associate professor of sociology, wrote an article, "The New UAW Contract: A Somewhat 'Clear Path,'” published online by New Labor Forum..

Marie Vanderkooi, assistant professor of nursing, gave a presentation, “Healthcare Informatics: Realities and Future Directions in Health Informatics,” at the International Conference on Health Information Technology Advancement held at Western Michigan University. She was also reappointed to the Informatics Nursing Content Expert Panel for the American Nurses Credentialing Center for a three-year term. 

Maureen Ryan, assistant professor of nursing, gave a presentation, "Addressing Health Care Disparities in a Low Socioeconomic Neighborhood: Development of a Community Based Hands Only CPR initiative,” at the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Baccalaureate Education Conference in Orlando, Florida.

Barbara Hooper, assistant professor of nursing, received the Outstanding Mentor Award at the Kappa Epsilon at-large Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International annual induction and awards ceremony.

Monica Johnstone, director of communications and advancement for CLAS, will have artwork, "Patina: Ancient Amphora," included in the curated international traveling exhibition "A Matter of Time Textiles," which will begin in Sydney, Australia, in March.

Henry Duitman, associate professor of music, gave a presentation, “Conductors in the Pit: Opportunities and Challenges,” at the International Conference of the College Orchestra Directors Association in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Gamal Gasim, associate professor of Middle East Studies and political science, was a co-author of an article, "The Political, Social, and Religious Attitudes of Muslim Americans," published in the Journal of Islamic Perspective and Culture.

Eric Kunnen, associate director of eLearning and emerging technologies, hosted a live "ThinkIn" event, “Serendipitous Learning Potential Through Intentionally Designed Learning Spaces," with Michigan State University's HUB for Innovation in Learning and Teaching. 

Scott Stabler, professor of history, was a co-author of a chapter, “'No More Auction Block for Me’: The Fight for Freedom by the United States Colored Troops at the Battle of Nashville,” for a book, Tennessee Campaign of 1864: Spring Hill, Franklin, and Nashville, published by Southern Illinois University Press.