Pitt-Bradford professors spend summer writing, researching, presenting and more

The University of Pittsburgh at Bradford spent its summer writing, researching, making presentations, teaching abroad and publishing.

Dr. Livingston Alexander, president of Pitt-Bradford and Pitt-Titusville and professor of psychology, published an article in the International Journal of Leadership and Change titled “What Leadership Development Institutes can Never Teach College Presidents About Leadership.” The article identifies areas of potential vulnerability for new college presidents and suggests constructive ways to supplement insights gained in professional development seminars in order to enable more successful presidencies. Alexander is also a member of the journal’s Applied/Clinical Editorial Board.

Dr. Vaughn Bicehouse, assistant professor of education, had a manuscript, “The Portraiture of Nick: Scene two, the Middle Years,” accepted for publication by the Journal of Case Studies in Education.

Dr. Jessie Blackburn, assistant professor of English, gave a workshop on multimodal rhetoric, community development and rural literacies in Banwen, Wales.

Dr. Donna Dombek, associate professor of education, and Marietta Frank, interim director of Hanley Library, made a presentation on mythological beasts that they aligned with the Pennsylvania and National Common Core standards at the 17th Annual Children’s Literature Conference at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg.

Dr. Michaela Drignei, assistant professor of mathematics, worked with Colin Poirier, an applied math major from Turtlepoint, on a research project titled “Some Elementary Inverse Problems Involving the Timing of Signals.”

Dr. Rick Frederick, professor of history, gave a talk on “The Fabulous Field Family” at the Peabody Free Library in Columbia City, Ind. He was also elected chairman of the board of the Eldred World War II Museum in Eldred and worked on a chapter about the 1928 election for publisher Blackwell-Wiley about the Harding-Coolidge-Hoover years.

Judy Hopkins had an essay, “School’s Over; Lesson Learned,” published in the L.A. Affairs column of the Los Angeles Times.

Dr. Tracee Howell, executive associate to the president, presented “Monstrous (In)Tuition: Alan Moore’s ‘Promethea’ as Comix Literacy Narrative” at the Northeast Modern Language Association’s 2013 Convention at Tufts University. The paper argued that Moore’s little-studied graphic novel “Promethea” may be read as a philosophical exploration of narrative theory.

She also served as an Advanced Placement reader for the AP English Language and Composition Exam, as did composition instructor Ann Hultberg.

Howell also presented, along with writing center consultants Catherine Kula, Dani Michel and Writing Center Director Dr. Dani Nier-Weber, an interactive workshop at the East Central Writing Centers Association 2013 Conference at Clarion University titled “Toeing the Line: Risking, Reconciling and Reflecting in Writing Center Work.”

Kula, Michel, Nier-Weber and Mary Valvo presented the workshop at the International Writing Centers Association Conference held in conjunction with the Conference on College Composition and Communication.

Anna K. Lemnitzer, assistant professor of art, took part in a group exhibition, “The Story of the Creative,” in the See Exhibition Space in Long Island City, N.Y. She also was commissioned and executed custom, sculptural metal walls for a private residence in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Dr. Ron Mattis, associate professor of engineering, presented a paper titled “Incorporating Excel With VBA Into an Introductory Chemical Separations Course” at the International Journal of Arts and Sciences Conference in Toronto.

Dr. Nancy McCabe, associate professor of writing, taught a fiction workshop in Ireland for Spalding University’s brief-residency Master of Fine Arts in Writing program and served as the prose writer-in-residence for a week at the Chautauqua (N.Y.) Institution.

Her essay “A Panda Raised by a Goose” appeared in Natural Bridge, and she wrote about her dog, Mollie, for the Ploughshares Writers and Their Pets blog series.

Carol Newman’s poem “Birth Rite” will be soon be published in an anthology about the Allegheny River called “Written on Water” edited by Linda Underhill and Helen Ruggieri. She was also recognized by the Chautauqua Literary Arts Contest with an honorable mention for a short story called “The Turtle Story.”

Dr. Reece Wilson, assistant professor of education, had three articles published in scholarly journals. “Family Literacy Packs: Pre-service Teachers’ Experiences with Family-School Connections” was published in Reading Improvement; “The Effects of Genre on Student Learning From Informational Text” was published in the International Journal of Humanities and Social Science; and “The Work Sampling System: Pre-Service Teachers’ Experience With Assessment” was published in the National Teacher Education Journal.

In addition, Wilson, along with Dr. William Schumann III, assistant professor of anthropology; Jeremy Callinan, adjunct faculty in the computer information systems and technology program; and Gregory Mirth, a 2013 environmental studies graduate, presented at a conference, “Innovations in Technical Education to Advance Sustainability: Student Leadership” at Alfred (N.Y.) State University.

The team presented “Mapping Campus-Community Partnership with GPS Tools” based on a project conducted by Pitt-Bradford last fall. The project mapped trails in the Smethport, Pa., area and created a mobile phone application and lesson plans for teachers to use to enhance the trails.

Dr. David Soriano, associate professor of chemistry, conducted research over the summer with Seth Habicht, a chemistry major from Kane. The pair created a bioplastic by mixing sugar and whey protein and heating. Soriano said once he finds out whether the substances are biodegradable, he can find out more about what they might be used for.

Dr. Klaus Wuersig presented two papers. He presented “The Evolution of Freshmen Project Experiences due to the Internet” at the International Conference on Engineering Education and Research in Marrakesh, Morocco, and “Using MatLab to Solve Problems in Electrical Engineering Courses at the International Symposium on Project Approaches in Engineering Education at the Eindhoven University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands.

Tim Ziaukas, professor of public relations, picked up an unusual academic credential this summer in England when he received a certificate in Egyptology from the University of Manchester. The three-year online program is a survey of ancient Egyptian history, art and architecture with a focus on hieroglyphic studies.

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