Having an Impact

Three members of the Moravian College faculty and staff were presented recently with Impact Awards, in recognition of significant contributions to the campus community. Receiving the awards were:

Cecilia Fox, assistant professor of biology and premedical advisor, for her organization and support of the “Relay for Life” held on the “All-College Community Service Day in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.” As a result of her efforts, more than 200 participants raised $10,200 to help fight cancer. The award was presented by Beverly Kochard, vice president of student affairs and dean of students.

Heikke Lempa, assistant professor of history, for organizing the international conference “Self, Community, World: Liberal Arts and Moravian Education.” Scholars from around the world gathered to discuss the adaptation of traditional Moravian practices to the secular liberal arts classroom. The award was presented by Ann Stehney, vice president of planning and research.

Phyllis Walsh, coordinator of community service, for her coordination of the first “All-College Community Service Day in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.” More than 900 students, faculty, and staff participated in on- and off-campus community service activities. The award was presented by Dennis Domchek, vice president for administration.


Several Moravian College faculty members played significant roles in the recent national meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in Atlanta. Professors presented lectures on a number of topics, chaired sessions, attended workshops, and represented organizations.

  • Two students presented posters outlining their honors and undergraduate research. Bryn Lipovsky '06 presented a poster "Ligand effects on DNA-binding of dirhodium compounds" on her honors research with assistant professors of biochemistry Shari and Steve Dunham. Lipovshy’s travel expenses were partially funded by a competitive travel grant from The ACS though the Women Chemist's Committee-Eli Lilly Grant program, with support from the Moravian SOAR program. Rebekah Sikorah '06 presented a poster, “Transitions States for the Ring Opening Reaction of Triaziridine,” on her undergraduate research conducted with Carl Salter, associate professor of chemistry. Sikorah also received travel support from the Moravian SOAR program.
  • Shari Dunham, assistant professor of biochemistry, made an oral presentation entitled "Covalent dsDNA-interactions of dirhodium(II,II) carboxylate and amidate compounds" in the symposium on "Cleavage Reagents and Applications to Cancer" on her research that includes undergraduate co-authors. Dunha also attended a faculty development workshop sponsored by the Committee on the Advancement of Women in Science (COACh). Shari's travel expenses were partially funded by a grant from COACh and a grant from the Moravian Faculty Development and Research Committee.
  • Carol Libby, adjunct professor of chemistry, represented the Lehigh Valley ACS section (LVACS) at the ACS Council meeting as well as participating in the meetings of the Local Section Activities Committee and the Minority Affairs Committee of the ACS. Carol's travel expenses were funded but LVACS.
  • Carl Salter, associate professor of chemistry, represented Serena Software at the Technical Exposition, helping chemists to understand how computational chemistry can solve their research problems, and providing advice to chemical educators on how to implement computational chemistry into their curriculum.
  • Diane Husic, professor of biology, made an oral presentation, “Research across academic department boundaries; professional payoffs and pitfalls” as part of a symposium entitled “Starting a Successful Research Program at a Predominantly Undergraduate Institution,” sponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) and the Younger Chemists Committee of the ACS (YCC). Diane also chaired a session of the symposium, “Designing a research-supportive undergraduate curriculum”. As chair of the Chemistry Division of CUR, she also participated in meetings with CUR Councilors and the new director ACS-Petroleum Research Fund to discuss joint initiatives in funding sabbaticals for faculty at predominantly undergraduate institutions, the diminishing pipeline of young scientists interested in petroleum research, and enhancing diversity in science and with Research Corporation about their grant programs that support faculty-student research. Diane’s travel expenses were funded by a grant from the Moravian Faculty Development and Research Committee.
  • Dan Libby, professor of chemistry, presented a talk, "Twenty-eight years from Piaget to POGIL: The continuous development of active learning in organic chemistry" in a symposium "Process oriented guided inquiry learning" sponsored by the Chemical Education Division of the ACS. Libby also chaired a session of the "Process oriented guided inquiry learning" symposium and participated in the meetings or the Women Chemists' Committee of the ACS, which he serves as national meeting program chair. Dan's travel expenses were funded by a grant from the Moravian Faculty Development and Research Committee.

On March 18, psychology major Wesley Bush ’06 presented “Profiles in Coping with Work-Family Conflict Based on Spirituality and Religious Levels and Orientation” at the Eastern Psychological Association in Baltimore, MD. The paper was co-authored with classmate, Laura DeValdenebro ’06 and Robert Brill, associate professor of psychology. The paper was developed as part of an independent study project Wes and Laura did with Dr. Brill during the Fall semester. Wes' trip was partially funded by a SOAR Travel Grant.

Psychology major, Erica Engelhardt ’06, was selected to be one of Lehigh Valley Hospital's "Human Resource Scholars" for this spring semester. Erica has been working with an HR Mentor developing a comprehensive tool for managers to use to help them decide when to resolve an issue on their own or when to report the issue to HR. Erica is in charge of researching the policies that will be included in this reference tool, surveying HR consultants and their managers to determine what common issues they deal with and then presenting this tool to the vice president of human resources.

Cecillia Fox, assistant professor of biology, coordinated Brain Awareness Day activities which took place at the Da Vinci Discovery Center on March 18th. This project was designed to promote public awareness of the functions of the central nervous system as well as current advances in brain and spinal cord research. Students studying neuroscience from Moravian, Muhlenberg and Cedar Crest colleges assisted on the implementation of “hands-on” neuroscience activities for children (K-8th grade) and provided general neuroscience information for their families. Over 400 children came through our program. Elementary and middle school teachers in the Lehigh Valley also participated and were provided packets of information regarding the details of the activities to share in their science classroom experience.

Cecilia Fox accompanied two SOAR students, Rachel Siegfried ’02 and Paras Varvarelis ’06, to present research at the Pennsylvania Academy of Science Conference in Hershey, Pa., on March 25. The title of their presentation was: Selenium as a Potential Neuroprotective Agent in the 6-OHDA Striatal Lesion Model. On April 8th, The group headed to the NEURON Conference at Hunter College in NY to present this same research. Cecilia also co-lead a workshop with Jennifer Swann from Lehigh University entitled: Diversity in the Neurosciences. They discussed the present status of “diversity” at our institutions and nationwide, the challenges faced in enhancing diversity on campuses as well as potential initiatives to increase diversity in the future.

Cecilia Fox, worked with Sarah Mueller ’06 to conduct research for Mueller’s honors project entitled Long Term Selenium Administration as a Protective Agent in the 6-OHDA Lesion Model. The project won 2nd place in the John C. Johnson Award for Excellence in Student Research at the Northeast Region District II Beta Beta Beta Convention on March 25th.

Associate professor of English, Joyce Hinnefeld’s novel manuscript PILGRIM’S SONG was one of nine finalists for the 2006 Bellwether Prize in Fiction. The Bellwether Prize (officially the Bellwether Prize for Fiction in Support of a Literature of Social Change) was founded by author Barbara Kingsolver and is sponsored by the National Writers’ United Service Organization. The prize is intended to “advocate serious literary fiction that addresses issues of social justice and the impact of culture and politics on human relationships.”

Shalahudin Kafrawi, assistant professor of religion and philosophy, took part in a panel discussion on "Media Mockery: Religion, Freedom of Speech and the Power of the Press" at DeSales University on March 14, 2006. Panelists include Martin Till (publisher of the Express Times), Matt Kerr (former WAEB radio director and current director of communications for the Allentown Catholic Diocese) and Kafrawi. His working paper was entitled "In the Name of God or in the Name of Freedom?"

Joanne McKeown, associate professor of French, reports a pending publication: "Visions as Illness and Inspiration: Young Estelle L'Hardy and Sister Anne-Catherine Emmerich in works of Doctor Antoine Despine and Poet Clemens Brentano,” which should appear in Journal of Christianity and Foreign Languages Vol 7, 2006, in April.

Gary Olson, professor and chair of the political science department, attended two recent conferences. The first was "U.S. foreign policy toward Venezuela," February 17-19, 2006 in New York City. Some 150+ representatives from the U.S., Canada and Venezuela, including Bernardo Alvarez, Venezuela's Ambassador to the United States, discussed the Bush administration's campaign against the Bolivarian Revolution now underway in Venezeula. On March 10-13, 2006, Olsen participated in the Left Forum, a gathering of hundreds of activists and intellectuals from around the world, held at the Cooper Union in New York City. There were eight-four panels on topics ranging from the recent "NO" vote against the EU treaty in France and Holland and The Politics of Hip-Hop Music to Threats to Civil Liberties and Iraq: Exit Strategies. Gary's recent piece, "Venezuela's Threat," published as a ZNet Commentary, was translated and widely circulated within Venezuela. It also appeared on forty web sites, including German and Italian translations.

Gary Olson attended the Inter-Institutional Meeting of the Washington Semester Program at The American University in Washington, D.C. from March 31 - April 2, 2006. Over the years, 115 Moravian students have spent a semester in this program which involves seminars and internships. Yo-Ju Lee (Foreign Policy Semester) and Elyse Jurgen are enrolled this term. Elyse is currently on a three week study trip to South Africa as part of the International Development Semester. If you have students who are interested in studying in Washington, please contact Gary who is Moravian's adviser for the program.

Joel Nathan Rosen, assistant professor of sociology, whose book, The Dimming of the Competitive Fire: American Sport and the Retreat from Excellence, will be published by McFarland in Spring 2007, recently returned from the 13th Annual Spring Training Conference in Tucson, Arizona, where he presented "Fandom, Failure, and Despair: An Introspective Look at Professional Baseball in Cleveland" hosted by NINE: A Journal of Baseball and American Culture. NINE's latest edition also features an article Dr. Rosen delivered at last year's Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture entitled "The Mouth Roars No Longer: Pete Franklin, Sports Talk, and Cleveland Indians Baseball, 1967-1987." He and co-editor David C. Ogden of the University of Nebraska--Omaha have also been invited back to Cooperstown for this summer's symposium where they will discuss the first of their five volume series on sport and the construction of reputation entitled Separating Wheat from Chaff. Dr. Rosen would like to extend his gratitude to FDRC for providing much of the funding for his 2005-2006 travels.

The Ohio Newspaper Association awarded Robert Stinson, emeriti professor of history, a second prize in its annual competition for writers of original columns at its convention in Columbus in February. Bob writes a column called "A Second Look" for the Oberlin News-Tribune, the weekly paper where he now lives. He writes on local affairs and sometimes national or more general topics. Bob was just a tad put out, though, because last year he won first prize.

Joel Wingard, professor of English, attended the Conference on College Composition and Communication in Chicago, 22-25 March. Wingard attended a meeting of the Council of Writing Program Administrators Network for Media Action, of which he is a member of the steering committee; attended the opening general session; chaired a session on "Re/Reading Our Professional Texts"; attended seven other concurrent sessions and wrote reviews of them for the online journal Kairos; attended a featured session on “Writing and the Secretary of Education’s Commission on the Future of Higher Education”; attended a talk by featured speaker Patricia J. Williams, law professor, author, and columnist. He also met with the Small-College Composition Special Interest Group.

Erica Yozell, assistant professor in Spanish, presented a paper titled "Next Generation: Albertina Carri's 'Los rubios'" at the 53rd Annual SECOLAS (Southeastern Council on Latin American Studies) conference in Charlotte, NC, April 6-8.

May 3, 2006

This special issue of InCommon Light, containing the Gaudeamus column, will serve to keep the campus community apprised of notable faculty and staff achieve-ments during the InCommon newsletter’s temporary hiatus.