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Office of Research to gain support of two faculty members

Two senior UT faculty members will bring their experience to help advance UT’s research enterprise.



Dr. Connie Schall, professor of chemical engineering, will be the interim associate vice president for research beginning Jan. 1, and Dr. Amy Thompson, professor of public health, will join as a faculty fellow for the remainder of the 2016-17 academic year.

“I am delighted that President Sharon L. Gaber and Provost Andrew Hsu are such strong advocates of UT’s research mission by providing the financial support to have two talented individuals contribute their expertise to our research office,” Dr. Frank Calzonetti, vice president of research, said.

Schall will represent the UT Research Office both on and off campus in Calzonetti’s absence. She also will provide leadership and support to the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs.

Schall, who has a strong record of publications and external funding on protein crystallization and ionic liquids, can help provide support to faculty members preparing and submitting grant proposals to external agencies.



Working closely with the University Research Council, Thompson will focus her energies on the assessment of the University’s research enterprise that will be incorporated into the UT strategic plan. This assessment will examine UT’s current research support infrastructure and staffing, as well as provide direction for strategic investments to enhance the institution’s national research stature.

Thompson, who also is the co-director of the Center for Health and Successful Living, has a broad portfolio of publications and external grants, and most recently has been involved in cancer survivorship, firearm violence, and public health policy research.

Both Schall and Thompson will have offices in the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs administrative suite in the Research and Technology Building.

Distinguished educator to deliver commencement address Dec. 17

Toledo native Dr. Timothy Law Snyder, president of Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, will present the keynote address at the UT fall commencement Saturday, Dec. 17, at 10 a.m. in Savage Arena.

Snyder, who will receive an honorary degree during the ceremony, will address 2,066 candidates for degrees: 93 doctoral, 584 master’s, 1,346 bachelor’s and 43 associate’s degrees.



The ceremony will be streamed live at http://video.utoledo.edu.

Snyder is a distinguished American educator and academic administrator whose career includes success as a computational mathematician, musician, published scholar, lecturer and podcaster. He attended Toledo Public Schools and graduated from UT in 1981 with bachelor’s degrees in both psychology and mathematics. Additionally, he earned a master’s degree in mathematics from UT in 1983.

Snyder also holds a second master’s degree, as well as a doctoral degree, in computational mathematics from Princeton University.

“We’re honored to have Dr. Timothy Snyder return to his alma mater as our fall commencement speaker,” said UT President Sharon L. Gaber. “His career is proof that goals can be multidirectional, and success follows people who work hard to make lasting contributions, no matter what career paths they choose over a lifetime.”

In 2014, The University of Toledo Alumni Association recognized Snyder with its College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics’ Outstanding Alumnus Award.

“I return to my hometown with pride and excitement to deliver the keynote commencement address. My educational path and career were profoundly shaped by my years at UT,” Snyder said. “I continue to resonate with UT’s mission to improve the human condition and advance knowledge, among its other values. I hope to inspire graduates to pursue their life goals with creativity and integrity.”

Snyder has held academic positions at Berklee College of Music in Boston, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and at Georgetown University, where he was chair of the Department of Computer Science and its first dean of science. Additionally, he served as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Fairfield University in Connecticut and vice president for academic affairs at Loyola University Maryland. In 2015, Snyder was appointed the 16th president of Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.

He has published and presented widely on his research, which includes computational mathematics, data structures, design and analysis of algorithms, geometric probability, digital signal processing, computer music, and the education of the millennial generation. More recently, he has been researching risk assessment in commercial airline safety, as well as HIV and its prevention.

A musician most of his life, Snyder was lead singer in the touring rock-and-punk band Whirlwind from 1976 to 1983. His music can be found on iTunes and SoundCloud. He is also active in social media through his Twitter handle @LMUSnyder.

The University’s fall commencement ceremony will recognize graduates from the colleges of Arts and Letters, Business and Innovation, Judith Herb College of Education, Health and Human Services, Medicine and Life Sciences, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Nursing, and Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Additionally, UT’s College of Engineering will hold graduation ceremonies for its undergraduate and graduate candidates Friday, Dec. 16, at 5:30 p.m. in Savage Arena.

For more information, visit utoledo.edu/commencement.

University to hold breast cancer screening event Dec. 9

Clinical breast exams and mammograms are important tools used to detect breast cancer in its early stages, when the chances of survival are highest. But one-third of women older than 40 have not had a mammogram in the past two years.

web center for health and successful livingThe University of Toledo’s Center for Health and Successful Living with support from Susan G. Komen of Northwest Ohio will sponsor free clinical breast exams and mammograms Friday, Dec. 9, from noon to 4:30 p.m. at UT’s Eleanor N. Dana Cancer Center on Health Science Campus.

Women older than 40 who have not had a breast exam or mammogram in the past three years, or those who have found a lump during a self-breast exam, are encouraged to attend.

“Women tend to be more worried about everyone else and put their own health on the back burner,” said Dr. Amy Thompson, co-director of the Center for Health and Successful Living and professor of health education. “We want women to take the time to have a breast cancer screening. An ounce of precaution truly is worth a pound of cure.”

Registration is required. Call Barbara Oxner at 419.344.5172.

UT to partner with Lucas County to evaluate grant program

The Lucas County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council recently received a nearly $650,000 federal grant to provide transition services to individuals living in halfway houses after serving prison sentences.

The three-year program funded by the U.S. Department of Justice seeks to assist 100 to 150 male offenders with co-occurring disorders, such as addiction or mental health illness, in an effort to reduce the county’s recidivism rate of 22.6 percent.

The University of Toledo will receive $77,081 of that funding to serve as an outside investigator to assess the results of the program.

“Every program funded by a federal grant is required to be evaluated for its success,” said Dr. John Laux, professor of counselor education and associate dean for student affairs in the College of Health and Human Services, who will be the program evaluator. “We will serve as a neutral observer of their program methods. Our job is to measure effectiveness of the program in an effort to determine its effectiveness.”

The funding UT receives will support two graduate students in the counselor education program with tuition and a stipend for research related to the evaluation of the program.

“The students selected to assist with the research affiliated with this program will have a unique opportunity to learn more about the populations they will someday serve,” Laux said. “It also can open the door of opportunity leading to future PhD studies in the field.”

Laux said it is a unique way the University can serve the community.

“Our department is proud to partner with the county to support them in their efforts as they work to help former inmates overcome obstacles that can lead to recidivism,” he said.

Faculty member receives career award to advance research

Dr. Emily Diehm, assistant professor of speech-language pathology, has received the American Speech, Language and Hearing Association’s 2016 Advancing Academic Research Career Award.



According to the association, this honor is intended to support young faculty members advance their academic and research careers in the field of communication sciences and disorders. The award is a formal mentorship program and also includes $5,000.

The award not only focuses on research, but also funds proposals that include a teaching component.

“My teaching portion of the application I wrote included a lot of discussion of a ‘flipped classroom’ as I’d eventually like to provide my students with lots of hands-on opportunities while in graduate school to learn how to conduct assessments and develop practice intervention techniques,” Diehm said.

She began researching child language and literacy problems during her undergraduate studies in 2007 and became a speech-language pathologist in 2010.

Along with child literacy problems, Diehm is researching the content and pedagogical knowledge that speech-language pathologists and teachers have with respect to dialectal variations.

“All of us speak a dialect. Linguistically, there is no single dialect that is better than the others,” she explained. “I want to make sure that teachers and speech-language pathologists are able to identify features of non-standard dialect use and provide culturally sensitive instruction.”

With a background in American Sign Language, Diehm became interested in the connection between language and literacy after she learned of low literacy rates among those who communicate through sign language.

“The long-term goal of my research would be to better identify students who are likely at risk for literacy disorders and provide appropriate interventions that target their specific deficit areas before they even begin to struggle with reading and writing,” Diehm said.

UT distance learning instructor recognized by Quality Matters

The University of Toledo continues to earn accolades for its online courses.

Jessica Kruger, a UT doctoral student in health education, teaches three classes that have been recognized by Quality Matters, a peer review process that certifies the design of online and blended courses.



The courses recently recognized are:

• HEAL 1310: Nutrition for Fitness and Health, which is for all majors and teaches foundational knowledge of nutrition.

• HEAL 1360: Alcohol and Contemporary Issues in College, which focuses on the effects alcohol can have on college students.

• HEAL 3300: Drug Awareness, which teaches everything about drugs, legal and illegal, good and bad.

“It is important to make sure courses are meeting a standard, include more rigorous work, and focus on the student,” Kruger said.

“We work hard with our health education doctoral students to help develop their teaching skills, but Jessica has gone above and beyond to maximize her teaching effectiveness in the online learning environment,” Dr. Joseph A. Dake, professor and chair of the School of Population Health, said. “We are proud to have her as one of our majors.”

Kruger said programs like Quality Matters are important because instructors can take what the QM peer review team suggests and improve the course being taught.

“I encourage students to try online courses and to pay close attention to whether or not a course is Quality Matters-approved,” Kruger said. “Having Quality Matters approval shows that the class has been reviewed for its design and that it is put together in a way that is conducive for student learning and is easy to navigate.”

Kruger believes distance learning is important because it is a great way to provide students with more flexibility; however, it requires strong self-discipline.

“Just because a course is online does not mean it is easy or takes less time,” Kruger said. “Online courses require students to be self-motivated to work on projects and learn the materials on a schedule.”

Faculty who would like to learn more about Quality Matters or the course review process are encouraged to contact Phoebe Ballard, director of instructional design and development, at phoebe.ballard@utoledo.edu or 419.530.4379.

UT awarded $286,782 to continue Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness

For the second time in two weeks, The University of Toledo has received a grant to prevent and address sexual assault on college campuses and help victims.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine awarded UT $286,782 to continue operations of the University’s Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness, which was created last year.

The new funding is part of $79.5 million announced recently to support 356 crime victim service providers across the state through the Attorney General’s Expanding Services and Empowering Victims Initiative. The funds being awarded are from the Victims of Crime Act provided to Ohio from the U.S. Department of Justice. The fund is financed by federal settlements, fines and fees.

“Victims come first, and we want to set the example of how to do this successfully for other universities across the country to follow,” said Dr. Kasey Tucker-Gail, associate professor of criminal justice and director of the UT Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness.

“In the aftermath of a crime, it’s critically important that victims have easy access to comprehensive care and services,” DeWine said. “Through these grants, agencies throughout the state will be able to continue or even expand upon the ways they help victims of crime in Ohio.”

Last week the U.S. Department of Justice awarded UT a $299,202 grant to enhance efforts to prevent and address sexual assault victimization on college campuses through the creation of a coordinated community response team. The team will develop prevention, education and intervention policies and practices for sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking.

“This is a national issue that we are committed to tackling here at UT through education, prevention and research,” said Dr. Megan Stewart, assistant professor of criminal justice and director of development and programming for the Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness.

The UT Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness is a community where education, advocacy and research intersect that strengthens the University’s commitment to raise awareness and increase education and prevention of sexual assault and violence.

Alumni to be honored at annual Homecoming Gala Oct. 14

Graduates from each of The University of Toledo’s degree-awarding colleges will be recognized Friday, Oct. 14, at the UT Alumni Association’s Homecoming Gala.

The event, which annually draws sellout crowds to the Student Union Auditorium, will begin at 6 p.m.

The program features the recipients of the Alumni Association’s highest honors: the Gold T, the Blue T and the Edward H. Schmidt Outstanding Young Alum.



Dr. Celia Williamson, UT professor of social work and director of the Human Trafficking and Social Justice Institute, is the 2016 recipient of the Gold T, which is presented to a graduate in recognition of outstanding career accomplishment.

Williamson earned an associate’s degree from the UT Community and Technical College in 1983 and a bachelor of arts degree in social work in 1988. In 1993, she founded Second Chance, which provides services to women and youth involved in sex trafficking or commercial sexual exploitation. The Second Chance Program has won the prestigious FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award for its service to women and assistance in securing justice. Chair of the Ohio Attorney General’s Anti-Trafficking Commission, Williamson and her colleagues developed the first international academic journal on human trafficking. She founded and serves as president of the National Research Consortium on Commercial Sexual Exploitation. She also developed one of the first conferences on human trafficking in the nation.



Ted Hahn, a partner in the Trust Co. of Toledo, is the 2016 recipient of the Blue T, which is presented to an Alumni Association member who has made outstanding contributions to the progress and development of the association and the University.

Hahn received his bachelor’s degree from the College of Business and Innovation in 1965 and his MBA from that college in 1967. President of the Alumni Association during the 2004-05 school year, he also has served on the UT Foundation Board of Trustees. Hahn and his wife, Suzi, a 1970 graduate of the Judith Herb College of Education, have endowed a scholarship at the University and have been generous donors to academics, athletics and Alumni Association projects.



Rob Bleile is the 2016 recipient of the Schmidt Award, which is presented to a graduate who is 35 years of age or younger in recognition of outstanding achievement in his or her field of endeavor.

Bleile is president of American Timber and Steel in Norwalk, Ohio, and co-founder of Research Metrics, an international mobile mystery shopping and auditing firm. He has been very active with the Alumni Association. Currently second vice president of the association, he will become president of the organization during the 2018-19 school year. A member of the President’s Club, Bleile is married to Ala, a 2004 College of Business graduate with degrees in international business and accounting.

A limited number of seats remain for the Homecoming Gala. Tickets are $30 per person.

Call the Office of Alumni Relations at 419.530.2585 (ALUM) for more information or to make reservations.

DaZy Aphasia Centre founder receives award for increasing awareness of communication disorder

Jackie Davis-Zychowicz, the founder of the DaZy Aphasia Centre in the College of Health and Human Services, is being honored for her efforts in aphasia education with the Voices of Hope for Aphasia Founder’s Award.

She received the honor at a gala in Florida Sept. 30.



According to Voices of Hope for Aphasia, the Founder’s Award is intended to recognize people who have made extraordinary contributions to understanding the communication disorder by fostering success in groups, helping family and friends, or educating the community about aphasia.

“I am honored and speechless,” Davis-Zychowicz said. “I accepted the award for all northwestern Ohio area people with Aphasia and their families and friends.”

After suffering from a stroke 11 years ago, Davis-Zychowicz started a support group with her husband, Frank, and Melodie Dregansky for people with aphasia. This support group led to the opening of the DaZy Aphasia Centre in 2007 and eventually its relocation to The University of Toledo Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic, which is in the Health and Human Services Building on Main Campus.

Aphasia is a communication disorder that results from damage to the parts of the brain that contain language, typically in the left half of the brain. Individuals who experience damage to the right side of the brain may have additional difficulties beyond speech and language issues. Aphasia may cause difficulties in speaking, listening, reading and writing, but does not affect intelligence.

According to the National Aphasia Association, about 25 percent to 40 percent of people who survive a stroke get the disorder.

“The DaZy Aphasia Centre is a place where people with aphasia can come and feel safe while learning to be able to communicate again,” Davis-Zychowicz said. “We are a family, and you will always feel accepted.”

In addition to housing the DaZy Aphasia Centre, the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic offers several programs, including audiology services and preschool services for children with communication and learning problems.

Since opening in 2007, the DaZy Aphasia Centre has helped more than 65 families of persons suffering from the disorder.

“It’s Jackie who has come forward for those who want to do something but are too scared,” Frank Zychowicz, UT alumnus, said.

“I am so proud of the support that we have given both the person with aphasia and their family and friends. Isolation is a very real problem following a diagnosis of aphasia. I see the progress of the members, using their talents and their communication tools,” Davis-Zychowicz said. “Our center gives them new connections with people that understand what they are going through.”

The DaZy Aphasia Centre offers individual sessions, group sessions and other activities, including music therapy.

For more information about the DaZy Aphasia Centre, contact Michael Dillon, clinical program supervisor, at michael.dillon@utoledo.edu.

Department of Justice grant to support campus sexual assault and victimization prevention programs

The University of Toledo has received a competitive grant from the U.S. Department of Justice to enhance efforts to prevent and address sexual assault victimization on college campuses.

The UT Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness will use the $299,202 grant to create a coordinated community response team to develop prevention, education, and intervention policies and practices for sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking.

Dr. Kasey Tucker-Gail, left, and Dr. Megan Stewart of the UT Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness received a U.S. Department of Justice $299,202 grant to prevent and address sexual assault victimization on college campuses.

Dr. Kasey Tucker-Gail, left, and Dr. Megan Stewart of the UT Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness received a U.S. Department of Justice $299,202 grant to prevent and address sexual assault victimization on college campuses.

“Addressing victimization on college campuses is a national discussion right now, and we want to be at the forefront of successfully addressing these issues and serve as an example to other universities on how to do it right by investing in education, prevention and intervention programming that are unique to a campus community,” said Dr. Kasey Tucker-Gail, associate professor of criminal justice and director of the Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness.

The response team would include the UT Police Department, the Toledo Police Department, YWCA Hope Center and other University and expanded community partners working together to strengthen existing education and prevention programming and also the delivery of comprehensive strategies that help survivors heal.

“This is an aggressive community education initiative to encourage a culture that is comfortable talking about and identifying sexual and domestic violence so that we can better prevent and address these crimes that occur far too often on college campuses,” said Dr. Megan Stewart, assistant professor of criminal justice and the program coordinator for the project.

The grant will support training on sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking for members of the University community, the creation and implementation of a campus-wide bystander intervention program, and an awareness campaign with various activities and events throughout the school year to engage students.
The Justice Department’s Office on Violence Against Women awarded grants totaling $25 million to address this important issue. Only 45 institutions of higher education in the country received funding for these initiatives. This announcement was made at the conclusion of September as National Campus Safety Awareness Month

“Schools that individualize their response to sexual, dating and domestic violence are better able to meet the unique needs of their student populations, especially underserved groups,” U.S. Office Violence Against Women Principal Deputy Director Bea Hanson said.  “Coordinated, comprehensive responses allow college communities to develop sustainable strategies to address these crimes.”