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Smithsonian museum director and physicist to address UT graduates May 7

Leaders with a passion for diversity and science who have uplifted Americans through the arts, public service and higher education will address graduates at The University of Toledo’s spring commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 7, in Savage Arena.

During the 9:30 a.m. ceremony, former U.S. Congressman and physicist Dr. Rush D. Holt, who leads the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific and engineering society, will speak to graduates from the colleges of Adult and Lifelong Learning, Health Sciences, Social Justice and Human Service, and the Judith Herb College of Education.

Dr. Johnnetta Cole, director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art and the first African-American female president of Spelman College, will speak at the 2 p.m. ceremony for the colleges of Business and Innovation, Communication and the Arts, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and Languages, Literature and Social Sciences.

There are 2,843 candidates for degrees: 234 doctoral candidates, 727 master’s, education specialist and graduate certificate candidates, and 1,882 bachelor’s and associate’s candidates.

The ceremony will be streamed live on video.utoledo.edu.

Holt

Holt

Holt, who will receive an honorary doctor of public service degree during the morning ceremony, is the chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and executive publisher of the Science family of journals.

He served eight terms as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey’s 12th Congressional District. During his time on Capitol Hill from 1999 to 2015, Holt advocated for increased federal research funding, science education and innovation. Holt made national headlines in 2011 when he defeated IBM’s supercomputer Watson in a non-televised round of “Jeopardy!”

Holt previously served as assistant director of Princeton University’s Plasma Physics Laboratory, one of the largest alternative energy research facilities in the country.

Cole

Cole

Cole, who will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree during the afternoon ceremony, made history nearly 30 years ago as the first African-American female president of Spelman College in Atlanta. She later served as president of Bennett College for Women, making Cole the only person who has been president of both historically black colleges for women in the United States.

She also was the first woman elected to the board of Coca-Cola Enterprises. She was the first African American to serve as chair of the board of the United Way of America.

Other commencement ceremonies taking place are:

• College of Engineering — graduate commencement Thursday, May 5, at 5 p.m., and undergraduate commencement Saturday, May 7, at 3 p.m. Both ceremonies will be held in Nitschke Hall Auditorium.

• College of Nursing — Friday, May 6, at 1 p.m. in Savage Arena.

• College of Law — Sunday, May 8, at 1 p.m. in the Student Union Auditorium.

• College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences — Sunday, May 8, at 10 a.m. in Savage Arena.

• College of Medicine and Life Sciences — Friday, May 27, at 2 p.m. in the Stranahan Theater, 4645 Heatherdowns Blvd., Toledo.

For more information, visit utoledo.edu/commencement.

Faculty members receive promotion, tenure

A number of faculty members received tenure and promotion for the 2016-17 academic year approved April 18 by the UT Board of Trustees.

Faculty members who received tenure and promotion to associate professor are:

College of Business and Innovation

• Dr. Mai Dao, Accounting
• Dr. Anthony Holder, Accounting
• Dr. Yue Zhang, Operations and Technology Management

Judith Herb College of Education

• Dr. Victoria Stewart, Curriculum and Instruction

College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences

• Dr. Gaby Semaan, Foreign Languages
• Dr. Benjamin Stroud, English Language

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

• Dr. Malathi Krishnamurthy, Biological Sciences
• Dr. Rong Liu, Mathematics and Statistics

College of Social Justice and Human Service

• Dr. Wendi Goodlin-Fahncke, Criminal Justice and Social Work
• Dr. Debra Harmening, School Psychology, Higher Education and Counselor Education

The faculty member who received tenure and promotion to professor is:

College of Law
• Kara Bruce

The faculty member who received tenure is:

College of Law
• Gregory Gilchrist, associate professor

Faculty members promoted to professor are:

College of Communication and the Arts
• Dr. Timothy Brakel, Music

Judith Herb College of Education

• Dr. Svetlana Beltyukova, Educational Foundations and Leadership
• Dr. Judy Lambert, Curriculum and Instruction

College of Engineering
• Dr. Duane Hixon, Mechanical, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
• Dr. Douglas Nims, Civil Engineering

Jesup W. Scott Honors College
• Dr. Barbara Mann

College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences

• Dr. Linda Rouillard, Foreign Languages

College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

• Dr. Peter Andreana, Chemistry and Biochemistry
• Dr. Jonathan Bossenbroek, Environmental Sciences
• Dr. Rupali Chandar, Physics and Astronomy
• Dr. Joseph Schmidt, Chemistry and Biochemistry

College of Social Justice and Human Service

• Dr. Richard Johnson, Criminal Justice and Social Work

The faculty member promoted to associate professor is:

College of Law
• Bryan Lammon

The faculty member promoted to associate clinical professor is:

College of Health Sciences
• Dr. Lynne Chapman, Rehabilitation Sciences

University honors faculty, staff for advising, research, teaching, outreach work

UT outstanding advisors, researchers and teachers, and recipients of the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement, were recognized last week.

Recipients of the Outstanding Advisor Award are:

Winners of the Outstanding Advisor Award are Myrna Rudder, left, and Dr. Julie Murphy.

Winners of the Outstanding Advisor Award are Myrna Rudder, left, and Dr. Julie Murphy.

Dr. Julie Murphy
, assistant professor of pharmacy practice in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. She joined the faculty in 2012.

“Dr. Murphy encourages students to think on their own and guides them to find answers with thought-provoking questions rather than just giving them answers,” one nominator wrote. “This encourages students to self-reflect on their skills. She genuinely cares about students’ academic progress and helps them to embrace their strengths and improve their weaknesses.” Another wrote, “Even though Dr. Murphy was not my official adviser, I looked up to her as a mentor that I could always rely on for guidance and support throughout my academic journey.” Another wrote, “She is a very influential woman in pharmacy, and that motivates me. She works with students in research and takes students under her wing.” And another wrote, “She always greets you with a smile and puts significant thought into each advising response.”

Myrna Rudder, associate director of department student services in the College of Engineering. She joined the UT staff in 2000.

“Myrna deals with more than 1,000 students per year both domestic and international. She makes every person feel as if he or she is her only priority and goes out of her way to get things done for these students and the faculty she works with,” one nominator wrote. “Her dedication and drive have many times put me in awe of her. She is not only professional to work with, but a very genuine, nice person.” Another noted, “She always puts students’ needs in the forefront and with a smile.” Another wrote, “She always has a great attitude and is always willing to help anyone who walks through her door. Myrna is very tactful and informative when she interacts with students and faculty. She takes extra steps to make sure everyone who leaves her office has a desired result.”

Recipients of the Outstanding Researcher Award are:

Receiving Outstanding Researcher Awards are, from left, Dr. Joseph Slater, Geoffrey Rapp and Dr. Sarit Bhaduri.

Receiving Outstanding Researcher Awards are, from left, Dr. Joseph Slater, Geoffrey Rapp and Dr. Sarit Bhaduri.

Dr. Sarit Bhaduri
, professor of mechanical, industrial and manufacturing engineering in the College of Engineering, and director of the Multifunctional Materials Laboratory. He joined the faculty in 2007.

He has strong expertise in the development of a wide array of materials used in structural applications, including orthopaedics and dentistry. Bhaduri has developed unique biomaterials using innovative processes. Last year, Smith & Nephew, a multinational implant company, sold one million of the Oxinium knee and hip implants co-invented by Bhaduri. In recent years, he has focused on calcium phosphate-based bone cements, which have singular properties allowing for rapid injection, support for bone regrowth, and potential for delivering antibiotics to prevent infections. Bhaduri has a consistent record of obtaining external support for his research from the National Science Foundation and the Department of Defense. Moreover, he has an outstanding publication record, with more than 165 peer-reviewed journal articles, and his new structural/biomaterial technologies have formed the basis for more than 10 patents, leading to licensing opportunities and the development of new companies, such as OsteoNovus Inc., a UT spinoff.

Geoffrey Rapp, the Harold A. Anderson Professor of Law and Values, and associate dean for academic affairs in the College of Law. He joined the faculty in 2004.

His research interests focus on behavioral law and economics, with particular emphasis on financial market regulation and tort law. Rapp is recognized as a leading expert on policy and legal aspects of security fraud whistleblowers. His work helped lay the foundation for the whistleblower bounty provisions Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and was cited by the Securities Exchange Commission as it implemented the Dodd-Frank rules. Rapp also was asked to testify in Congress on the Dodd-Frank program. His scholarly efforts are influential not only in academic circles, where his works are widely read and cited, but also in the real world where his ideas strongly influence the decisions of judges and policymakers.

Dr. Joseph Slater, the Eugene N. Balk Professor of Law and Values in the College of Law. He joined the faculty in 1998.

Slater is widely recognized as one of the leading experts on public-sector labor law in the United States. His unique background in law and history has allowed him to write definitive texts on the history of public-sector labor law, particularly in the period from 1900 to 1960. His expertise is not limited to academic pursuits, however, as Slater actively contributes to current discussions on the public-sector labor law, as this issue has become a hot-button topic in recent years. Thus, he is frequently sought out by the national media and by conference organizers for his insight on current events and for his ongoing contributions to the field. Slater’s perspective has been influential at the national level, as evidenced by citations in two decisions of the National Labor Relations Board and by a federal court in Wisconsin.

Recipients of the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement are:

Recipients of the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement are, Dr. Marilynne Wood, left, and Dr. Cyndee Gruden.

Recipients of the Edith Rathbun Award for Outreach and Engagement are, Dr. Marilynne Wood, left, and Dr. Cyndee Gruden.

Dr. Cyndee Gruden
, associate professor in the Department of Civil Engineering in the College of Engineering. She began teaching at UT in 2003.

“The topic of Dr. Gruden’s engagement and outreach activities has focused on stormwater management. Both the quantity and quality of runoff from impervious surfaces is a problem for northwest Ohio. Large storms cause localized flooding and may contribute to the formation of harmful algal blooms. A sustainable approach to solve this problem is to implement what is considered green stormwater infrastructure,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. Gruden’s efforts exemplify how a faculty member can use engineering expertise not only to teach and do research, but to affect change by designing and building engineering infrastructure with engagement from UT students. Their research brought together constituents from the city of Toledo, Lucas County, the city of Oregon and Toledo Metroparks. Funding sources for her work include the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and the Lake Erie Commission.”

Dr. Marilynne Wood, professor of nursing in the College of Nursing. She joined the faculty in 2000.

“As principal investigator of the Elevated Lead Levels in Children and Adolescents: Behavioral Issues and Health Policy Implications research study, Dr. Wood has directed the team of investigators providing free blood lead level screenings and lead poisoning prevention/exposure education in our Toledo community. As an active pediatric nurse educator and practitioner, Dr. Wood strives to impact health policy requiring blood lead level screening before early childhood education and kindergarten. Preliminary findings of her research support the correlation of elevated blood lead levels in children and behavioral issues in school,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. Wood has worked with more than 250 College of Nursing undergraduate and graduate students on the study, and their work has directly impacted over 300 children in the Toledo area through lead screenings and more than 500 families through lead exposure education.”

Recipients of the Outstanding Teacher Award are:

Taking home Outstanding Teacher Awards are, from left, Shelley Cavalieri, Dr. Margaret Hopkins, Benjamin Davis, Andrew “Mick” Dier, Dr. Richard Molyet and Dr. Claire Cohen.

Taking home Outstanding Teacher Awards are, from left, Shelley Cavalieri, Dr. Margaret Hopkins, Benjamin Davis, Andrew “Mick” Dier, Dr. Richard Molyet and Dr. Claire Cohen.

Shelley Cavalieri
, associate professor of law in the College of Law. She has been teaching at the University since 2011.

“Professor Cavalieri has been far more than a great legal mind and educator to me. She has continually exceeded my furthest expectations of what an ideal educator would — and could — be. I have never come across someone who cares more for her pupils,” one nominator wrote. “She respects all, paying no attention to social status, age, gender or accomplishment, which provides yet another reason for those who encounter this magical individual to respect her. She is more than an educator in my eyes. She is a mentor. She is a counselor. She is an example of what all educators should aim to be. Although she would never seek drawing attention to herself, I feel she deserves recognition for all she does.”

Dr. Claire Cohen, associate lecturer in chemistry in the College of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. She joined the faculty in 2006.

“Best chemistry professor ever. She’s kind, fair and gentle. She really knows chemistry. She teaches the subject in such a way that even the hardest topic seems easy. She is very approachable, and I believe that is the best quality a professor should have. Being approachable means you’re nice,” one nominator wrote. “She is very understanding and that is why so many students take her class. Her class is so packed this semester; it’s so full, no more students can take her lecture. Because she is quiet, and because she teaches so many students, students may not vote for her because knowing a professor with that many in a class is hard to do. But trust me on this — she made me like chemistry and get an A.”

Benjamin Davis
, professor law in the College of Law. He began teaching at UT in 2003.

“Professor Davis creates an atmosphere wherein his students feel motivated to do more. As we walk into his class a few minutes early, there is undoubtedly music playing that gets us pumped up or at the very least wakes us up if caffeine is not a part of our daily intake,” one nominator wrote. “He has taught me and countless others about the power that each individual can wield in times of crisis. The ability and impact one can make is astronomical. In each of us, we have the capability to leave behind a legacy, and that raises deeper thought about how we would like to be remembered.” Another noted, “Davis will tell you the truth even if it is something that one might not want to hear… His integrity and respectful cadence just will not allow for anything less.”

Andrew “Mick” Dier, lecturer in criminal justice in the College of Social Justice and Human Service. He started teaching part time in 1999 and full time in 2012 after retiring from the UT Police Department, where he worked 30 years.

“He shares with us personal experiences that help us as students fully understand what criminal justice entails. He has an immense amount of resources and connections with people in our field of study. He is able to assist his students with receiving internships, co-ops and even jobs in our field,” one nominator wrote. “The most important reason for nominating him is he always has a very good sense of humor and enjoys to see his students excel.” Another noted, “Not only is he dedicated to his job but also his students. He goes above and beyond to make sure we are learning the tools we need for the real world. Each class, we receive different learning skills, his personal techniques, and ways to be better than we think we can.”

Dr. Margaret Hopkins, associate professor of management in the College Business and Innovation. She started teaching at UT in 2005.

“I am an older student who has been employed in the health-care industry, and it is refreshing to see a college professor teaching exactly what is needed to be successful in the real world. Dr. Hopkins’ experience, methods, content, delivery and professionalism speak exceptionally well for the University, as well as prepares the student as well as I’ve seen at UT,” one nominator wrote. “It is the genuine empathy and compassion Dr. Hopkins has for her students that stands out. She is one of the most selfless people I’ve had the opportunity to meet, and it seems like her mission is to help students not only through education, but provide experience and advice that holds value far above what my tuition pays for,” another noted.

Dr. Richard Molyet, professor emeritus and associate lecturer of electrical engineering and computer science in the College of Engineering. He joined the faculty in 1981. He received bachelor of science, master of science and doctoral degrees from UT in 1972, 1977 and 1981, respectively.

“Molyet truly puts his heart and soul into his profession and shows that through his high caliber of teaching skills and his words of wisdom outside the classroom. He makes an effort to know who every one of his students are and to remember them throughout their entire college experience,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. Richard Molyet may be a professor, but he definitely is not just a professor. He can be found at every campus visit, experience day, and every other interactive event the College of Engineering hosts with a huge smile on his face and ready to help answer any question or speak about a wide variety of topics. Molyet puts 150 percent into bettering his students and does more than his fair share in and out of the classroom.”

UT Chapter of Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi to initiate new members

The University of Toledo Chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi will hold its initiation ceremony for new members Saturday, April 23, at 1 p.m. in the Student Union Ingman Room.

More than 70 undergraduate and graduate students and three UT faculty members will be inducted into the honor society this year.

phikappaphi728x520_q85Dr. Dale Snauwaert, UT professor of educational foundations and leadership, will present the keynote address.

Student inductees into the honorary must be among the top in their class as juniors or seniors or in their graduate program to qualify for membership.

In addition to inducting new members, the society will honor four $500 scholarship winners. The winners were selected based upon academic performance, an essay, and letters of recommendation from faculty members. The winners are:

• Tala Abou-Dahech (Toledo), a freshman majoring in speech-language pathology. Valedictorian for her Toledo Early College High School class, Abou-Dahech also was a winner of a Jefferson Award for public service through Leadership Toledo, and a BCSN Student of the Month. She is active in many University and community groups. In her essay for the scholarship, Abou-Dahech wrote of the important role that the Toledo Early College High School played in her life by giving her confidence to succeed in college. Stephanie Hughes, associate professor in the UT Speech-Language Pathology Program, noted in her recommendation letter that Abou-Dahech “represents the best and brightest of the speech-language pathology undergraduate program.”

• Lucille Frank (Wauseon, Ohio), a junior, majoring in political science and French. In addition to many volunteer activities, she has served as an intern in the office of Toledo’s mayor. She has conducted research on the Keystone XL Pipeline, human trafficking, mental illness and food sustainability. In her essay, Frank wrote about her difficult transition from growing up in a small town to studying at UT, and her experience living and studying abroad in France. As Dr. Larry Connin, professor in the Jesup Scott Honors College, noted in his recommendation letter, “Lucy is one of the most active and engaged students I have been around. She is a committed activist and a ‘doer’ — always on the lookout to embrace the next new experience.”

• Megan Post (Fort Recovery, Ohio), a freshman majoring in pharmaceutical sciences and pre-med. In addition to a full schedule of work and volunteer activities, Post wrote in her essay about becoming certified as an emergency medical technician and volunteering with her county’s emergency squad. In his recommendation letter, Dr. Isaac Schiefer, assistant professor of medicinal and biological chemistry, stated that he selected Post to serve as a researcher in his laboratory, and that “Megan is exceptionally mature for her age and has a good grasp of her eventual career goals.” Post is one of two bachelor of science in pharmaceutical science scholars in her class in the UT College of Pharmacy.

 Lekha Vemuru (Toledo), a sophomore majoring in biology. She is active in many University organizations, and was selected last summer to conduct research in the lab of Dr. John Plenefisch, associate professor and associate chair of biological sciences, investigating cellular movement. In her essay for the scholarship, Vemuru wrote about the emotional experience of working in Managua, Nicaragua, over spring break teaching English and Spanish to children there. Sharon Schnarre, UT pre-med adviser, described Vemuru as “warm and caring, and I am confident she will be successful in her pursuit of a career as a physician and an asset to the profession.”

In addition to the undergraduate and graduate students who will be inducted into the honor society, three UT faculty members also will be inducted: Kelly Moore, associate professor of law and interim dean of the Jesup Scott Honors College; Dr. Martin J. Ohlinger, clinical assistant professor of pharmacy practice; and Dr. Ami Pflugrad-Jackisch, associate professor of history.

For more information, contact UT chapter Phi Kappa Phi President Wade Lee, associate professor of library administration, at 419.530.4490.

Panel to discuss dangers of lead poisoning April 22

According to the World Health Organization, lead is one of the 10 chemicals of major public health concern, especially for children.

The University of Toledo will host a professional panel, “The Prevention and Politics of Lead Poisoning,” Friday, April 22, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. in Health and Human Services Building Room 1600. Registration for the free, public event will begin at 8:30 a.m.

Business Hlogo 1c BlackLocal professionals will discuss the causes of lead poisoning, how to prevent it, and how to get involved in community action surrounding lead poisoning prevention.

“Together, we have concluded the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, is a salient issue for this region in Ohio,” said Nicole Sicha, a student pursuing a master’s degree in social work, who helped plan the panel. “Our purpose for this event is to offer the social justice community and the public a forum to discuss, educate, and potentially coordinate resources for those affected and in need.”

Parking will be available in lots 1N and 1S.

Seating is limited. To RSVP, email Dr. Heath Sloane, assistant professor in the UT Department of Criminal Justice and Social Work, at heather.sloan@utoledo.edu.

UT professor wins YWCA Milestones Award

The YWCA of Northwest Ohio recognized University of Toledo Professor of Social Work Celia Williamson during its 21st annual YWCA Milestones: A Tribute to Women March 10.

Awards were given to local women in seven categories: arts, sciences, volunteerism, education, business, government and social services. Each recipient has reached significant milestones in her field, demonstrated exceptional leadership qualities, and empowered other women to reach their full potential.

Dr. Celia Williamson spoke at the YWCA Milestones: A Tribute to Women, where she was recognized in the social services category for her efforts to fight human trafficking.

Dr. Celia Williamson spoke at the YWCA Milestones: A Tribute to Women, where she was recognized in the social services category for her efforts to fight human trafficking.

Williamson, who has devoted years of her time to fight human trafficking and other social injustices, was the recipient of the social services category award.

In 1993, Williamson founded Second Chance in Lucas County, the first program of its kind in Ohio that works with women and children who have been victims of prostitution and human trafficking.

In addition to her work with the Second Chance program, Williamson serves as director of the Human Trafficking and Social Justice Institute at The University of Toledo. Opening in April 2015, the institute was created to respond to human trafficking by teaching, research and service.

Williamson fit criteria for selection for the YWCA Milestones Award: strong leadership, exemplary achievements on campus and in the community, and living a life aligned with the YWCA mission.

“It is a great honor to receive such a prestigious award from the YWCA whose mission is to eliminate racism and empower women,” Williamson said.

Human trafficking info sessions made available to Toledo community

With the high rate of sex trafficking in the area, it’s important for Toledoans to be informed.

The University of Toledo’s Interprofessional Education program has teamed up with the Human Trafficking and Social Justice Institute for a series of “Lunch and Learns” focusing on human trafficking starting Thursday, March 24, at noon in Jacobs Interprofessional Immersive Simulation Center Room 1200.

Sessions will cover a variety of topics, including labor and sex trafficking, domestic and international trafficking, how to identify signs of trafficking, health-care professionals’ trafficking knowledge, and current trafficking prevention tactics.  

“It’s important for people to be well-informed about trafficking,” said Allison Spencer, program coordinator for UT’s School for the Advancement of Interprofessional Education. “By being informed, people are better-equipped to identify and fix the issue.”

Two additional sessions will be offered Thursday, April 14, and Monday, April 18.

Pizza will be provided at each session.

Space is limited, so participants are encouraged to reserve a spot here.

For more information, contact Spencer at allison.spencer@utoledo.edu.

Postdoctoral research associate, grad student to talk at library March 12

Community building ideas will come together this week at a public library event.

Dr. Adam Schneider and Clark Ausloos will take part in the Way Public Library’s second TEDx event, “(Inter)action,” Saturday, March 12, from 7 to 10 p.m.

intercationTEDx is a program of local, self-organized events bringing the community together. The Way Public Library hosts the forum as a means for sharing ideas to improve the community, said Natalie Dielman, programming specialist for the library.

“We have a great lineup of six fascinating speakers,” she said. “The theme of the event is (inter)action, and we want the talks and the event to spur action as well as interaction. To that end, we’ve got interactive activities during the breaks, access to speakers throughout the event, and talks that exemplify doing and connecting.”

Schneider, a postdoctoral research associate at UT’s Ritter Astrophysical Research Center, will present his work with directly imaging extra solar planets.

“It’s actually something that’s very, very hard to do,” he said. “We have to take a picture of a planet around another star.”

For his research, Schneider worked on the Gemini Planet Imager Exoplanet Survey, which is devoted to directly imaging young planets around nearby stars.

Researchers are looking for planets comparable to those in our own solar system, but that is often difficult. In order to make complete comparisons, researchers must observe the planet for a full orbit, which could take multiple years, Schneider explained.

Through direct imaging, scientists are able to put together a picture of what a planet might look like at any point in its orbit, substantially shortening the research time, he said. Furthermore, this method allows researchers to assess the chemistry of the planet, determining which molecules, such as water and methane, can be found there.

To relate it to the theme, Schneider said he is going to talk about Citizen Science, research conducted by amateur or nonprofessional scientists to assist large-scale projects. In order to complete many larger research projects, tools like this are important for scientists to collaborate.

Ausloos, a UT master’s candidate in counseling, is offering a perspective on the importance of play and make-believe in today’s society.

“I explore the factors that contribute to the general decrease of play in adults as we age and some ways we can reverse this,” he said. “I also mention various performing arts-based techniques that I’ve compiled in my experiences that can ultimately contribute to more effective communication, increase empathy with others, and increase self-empowerment.”

Ausloos’s passions lie in performing arts and counseling, which comprise the topic of his talk. After graduating with a bachelor of fine arts in musical theater and dance from the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point, Ausloos performed in shows nationwide. In 2010, he opened Next Stage Studios, a private performing arts company offering music, acting and dance lessons.

By strengthening adult’s creative juices, Ausloos said he believes society can be empowered. He stressed the importance of being creative and imaginative in every aspect of life: “I want the audience to see and understand why it is we lose our ‘creative juices’ and how we can empower ourselves and society to acknowledge these reasons and to learn ways around them.”

Refreshments, T-shirts, a photo booth and the opportunity to be a part of The Rough Draft Diaries — a radio podcast from WGTE — will be available at the event.

Tickets are $25 and can be purchased here.

For more information, contact Dielman at natalie.dielman@waylibrary.info or visit tedxwaypubliclibrary.com.

Staff member, student receive Ohio Liberator Awards for work to end human trafficking

The University of Toledo was represented well at the 2016 Liberator Awards last month. Katie Bush, UT clinical simulation and educational research associate, received a Liberator Award in the individual category, and Nora Riggs was recognized as an award winner in the student category.

The Liberator Awards were created in 2013 by author, advocate and survivor Theresa Flores in recognition of William Lloyd Garrison, an American abolitionist, journalist, suffragist and social reformer. These awards were created both to unite local people fighting human trafficking and to recognize the work of outstanding individuals and groups making headway in the fight.

UT graduate student Nora Riggs, left, and Katie Bush, UT clinical simulation and educational research associate, received Liberator Awards for their work to help fight human trafficking.

UT graduate student Nora Riggs, left, and Katie Bush, UT clinical simulation and educational research associate, received Liberator Awards for their work to help fight human trafficking.

Two years ago, UT Medical Center joined the Lucas County Human Trafficking Coalition, and since that time, the hospital has developed trainings that the Emergency Department staff — including nurses, EMTs, clerks and residents — are required to complete. These trainings are designed to teach emergency staff to recognize red flags that help identify trafficking victims, a critically important part of the their jobs because research shows that some of the only outside contact trafficking victims may have, other than with their traffickers and buyers, is with emergency personnel.

In July, Bush received a 30-minute slot in new clinical employee orientation to provide this training to all new nurses, clerks, aides and any other clinical employees throughout the hospital. Educational brochures on the subject also are available in the lobby.

“Eventually, we hope the entire hospital is aware of the resources available when we’re able to identify these victims,” Bush said.

In addition to developing these trainings, Bush was the primary author of the national Emergency Nurses Association position statement on Human Trafficking Patient Awareness in the Emergency Setting. This statement was created to educate emergency nurses throughout the country on their essential role in identifying trafficking victims. According to Bush, half the battle is simply getting the information out.

Human trafficking is an issue growing faster than drug trade, Bush said, and that’s why she intends to continue working and educating others about it. “You can use drugs once, but you can use a person over and over,” she said.

“I could not have accomplished many of the things UTMC is doing without support from [Nursing Director] Deanna Montanaro, [Staff Development Coordinator] Greg Shannon, and [Lead Nurse] Julia Benfield,” Bush said. “And it is a must that I thank the Lucas County Human Trafficking Coalition for all of the great work they are doing. Our community is very lucky to have the coalition.”

Riggs began her journey in the fight against human trafficking in 2011 during her sophomore year at Albion College, when she attended conferences and presentations and co-facilitated awareness events on campus. She spent summer 2013 conducting a research project on aftercare for survivors of trafficking and then in fall 2014, she came to The University of Toledo for the master’s in social work program and later joined the Lucas County Human Trafficking Coalition.

“[This award] reminds me that every single one of us plays a role in this fight, that we can all make a difference, and that it is not an individualistic task, but rather a community-wide effort,” Riggs said.

She said she wants to be in a constant state of learning and growing, keep the momentum going, and work to find the best ways to help trafficking survivors become thrivers.

To that end, Riggs continues to work with the UT Human Trafficking and Social Justice Institute. In November 2014, the UT Board of Trustees approved the institute, which opened in April 2015. Since then, the institute has been working on around 25 projects to fight human trafficking locally, statewide and nationally. In addition to providing trafficking victims with much-needed resources, these projects work to establish protocols and procedures for Lucas County health-care professionals to recognize and respond to human trafficking.

Trustees approve college merger, housing rates

The new College of Health and Human Services was approved Monday by the UT Board of Trustees.

The new college is a merger of the College of Health Sciences and the College of Social Justice and Human Service and will be led by Dr. Christopher Ingersoll, dean of the College of Health Sciences. The merger will be effective July 1 and in place for the 2016-17 academic year.

Business Hlogo 1c BlackThe trustees also approved a 2 percent increase in housing rates for on-campus residence halls in an effort to remain competitive while also covering rising operational costs.

In the past, the University had included housing fee changes as part of the annual budget, but opted to make the decision earlier this year so that prospective students and current students could make better-informed decisions about their housing plans for the upcoming school year.