UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Dr. Heather Adams

Dr. Heather Adams (English) received a Distinguished Paper Award for “Of Epidemics and Epideictics: Blaming and Rehabilitating Pregnant Teens in the Late 1970s” at the 2019 Rhetoric of Health and Medicine Symposium. Dr. Adams’s research performs feminist historiography of the recent past and investigates rhetorics of reproduction, pregnancy, and motherhood in relation to affect, gender, race, and class. Her book project, “Rhetorics of Shame: A Recent History of Righteous Reproduction explores rhetorical shaming and blaming practices, both private and public, that have shaped—and that continue to shape—discussions of women’s reproduction and sexual wellbeing. Dr. Adams’s scholarly and pedagogical interests also include rhetorics of health and medicine; visual rhetorics; ethnographic methods; decolonial and intersectional theories; and undergraduate research.

Emilia Phillips

Emilia PhillipsEmilia Phillips (English) published a four-book review in the New York Times’ Shortlist titled Confronting Grief, Mental Illness and Marginalization, in Verse.” Available online now, it will appear in the printed version of the New York Times on Sunday, Sept. 29. Phillips is the author of three poetry collections from the University of Akron Press, “Signaletics” (2013), “Groundspeed” (2016), “Empty Clip,” and four chapbooks, most recently “Beneath the Ice Fish Like Souls Look Alike” (Bull City Press, 2015) and “Hemlock” (Diode Editions, 2019). Her poems and lyric essays appear widely in literary publications including Agni, American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, Poetry, and elsewhere. She teaches in the MFA Writing Program.

Dr. Evan Goldstein

Evan GoldsteinDr. Evan Goldstein (Geography, Environment, and Sustainability) received a 2019 Early-Career Research Fellowship from the Gulf Research Program of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Now in its fifth year, the fellowship program supports the development of emerging scientific leaders who are prepared to work at the intersections of environmental health, community health and resilience, and offshore energy system safety in the Gulf of Mexico and other U.S. coastal regions. The support allows researchers to take risks on ideas, pursue unique collaborations, and build a network of colleagues who share their interest in improving offshore energy system safety and the resilience of coastal communities and ecosystems. The National Academies’ Gulf Research Program is an independent, science-based program founded in 2013 as part of legal settlements with the companies involved in the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster. It seeks to enhance offshore energy system safety and protect human health and the environment by catalyzing advances in science, practice, and capacity to generate long-term benefits for the Gulf of Mexico region and the nation.

Dr. Andrew Willis

Andrew WillisDr. Andrew Willis (Music) will give a rare complete performance of the “Six Partitas” (1731) by J. S. Bach on an unusual instrument – a replica of a Baroque piano similar to those Bach played. The concert will be this Saturday, Sept. 21,  in the Organ Recital Hall in the Music Building with three sections that begin at 1:30, 3, and 4:15 p.m. The concert is the culminating presentation of Willis’ research into the performance of this repertoire, and the performance of all six Partitas retraces the voyage of exploration that produced some of Bach’s most sophisticated writing for the keyboard.

Dr. William Adams

Dr. William Adams (Kinesiology) received new funding from QKC, LLC for the project “Use of an isotonic hydration beverage on acute hydration status.”

Maintaining a state of normal hydration on a day-to-day basis is essential to sustain life and has been shown to reduce risks of long-term morbidities. Maughan et al., has previously tested various beverages’ ability to retain total body water when consumed acutely and tracked over the subsequent 4 hours. B beverage hydration index (BHI) was then developed to provide a practical and objective determination of a beverage’s ability to restore hydration when compared to water with a higher BHI value interpreted as a greater volume of water retained over that of water. Sollanek et al., expanded on this research to examine the influence of body mass and sex on BHI showing that the BHI is valid across sex and variations in body mass. In situations (i.e. athletics, military operations, occupational work) where fluid needs to be restored over a short period of time, consuming a beverage that increases body water retention is advantageous and may prevent the deleterious effects of dehydration. Unknown in scientific literature is the influence of an isotonic beverage on the ability of the body to retain body water in free living individuals. Thus the purpose of this proposal is to determine the body water retention capabilities of Hoist.

Dr. Paul Davis

Dr. Paul Davis (Kinesiology) received new funding from Cone Health for the project “BELT Program (2019-2020).”

The purpose of this project is to continue operation of an ongoing sustainable exercise component of the Bariatric Surgery Program known as the Bariatric Exercise Lifestyle Transformation Program.

Dr. Sara Heredia

Dr. Sara Heredia (Teacher Education and Higher Education) received new funding from Exploratorium for the project “Spanning Boundaries: A Statewide Network to Support Science Teacher Leaders to Implement NGSS.”

Dr. Heredia will have overall responsibility for the research, including design and iteration of the professional learning program, supervision of the graduate student and research associates during data collection and analysis, and dissemination of research.

Dr. Linda Hestenes

Dr. Linda Hestenes (Human Development and Family Studies) received new funding from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS), Division of Child Development and Early Education for the project “North Carolina Rated License Agreement Project.”  Dr. Steve Hestenes and Dr. Sharon Mims are co-principal investigators on the project.

The North Carolina Star Rated License was established in 1999 to better define the quality of child care in the state and to assist parents in choosing child care. The North Carolina Division of Child Development and Early Education (DCDEE) awards the Star Rated License to child care centers, family child care homes, and school-age programs based upon total points earned in two areas: (1) Program Standards and (2) Staff Education Standards. Program Standards points are awarded as child care programs meet basic licensing, enhanced standards, and ratio requirements. It is in this area that Environment Rating Scale (ECERS-R, ITERS-R, FCCERS-R, & SACERS-U) assessments are used. Child care programs with higher rating scale scores can earn more Program Standards points. Since June 1999, the UNC Greensboro has successfully managed the Environment Rating Scale assessment portion of the North Carolina Star Rated License process.

Dr. Sophia Rodriguez

Dr. Sophia Rodriguez (Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations) received a continuation of funding from the University of South Carolina, Prime: Spencer Foundation for the project “Promoting education equity for immigrant students: Examining the influence of school social workers.”

This mixed-methods study focuses on the role of school social workers in promoting access and education equity for vulnerable immigrant students in public K – 12 schools. School social workers may play an important role in shaping school climate and directing immigrant students to key resources, but we know relatively little about how they are doing so—or why, under some conditions, they are not. Beginning from the assumption that school social workers are structurally positioned within schools to shape the (re)distribution of goods and services available to students, the researchers use the framework of street-level bureaucracy to identify the ways in which school social workers broker resources for immigrant students, and how their own views of immigration influence the choices they make along the way. Their project includes a national survey of school social workers and in-depth interviews with a subset of this national sample. The researchers’ contribution promises to advance how we understand access, opportunity, and education equity for immigrant students by highlighting the influence of school social workers within schools.

Dr. Jeffrey J. Milroy

Dr. Jeffrey J. Milroy (Public Health Education) received new funding from Special Olympics, Inc. for the project “Proposal to Examine Collegiate Recreation and Sports Experiences of College Students with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities (IDD) and Recreation and Sports Staff Who Serve College Students with IDD.”

The purpose of the study is to examine collegiate recreation and sports experiences of students with IDD and explore the experiences of collegiate recreation and sports staff who serve students with IDD. The researchers propose to examine participation of college students with IDD in recreation and sports to gain a better understanding of how college students with IDD are, desire to be, and can be meaningfully included within collegiate recreation and sports. They will also assess potential differences between college students with IDD and those who serve them on campus across the following 3 school designations: a) PSE program and Special Olympics Unified Sports, b) PSE program and Special Olympics Club, and c) PSE program only. The researchers will investigate potential successes and challenges that arise and potential resources/strategies that are needed to successfully facilitate the inclusion of college students with IDD within recreation and sports across each of the 3 school designations.

Dr. Nicholas Oberlies

Nicholas OberliesDr. Nicholas Oberlies (Chemistry and Biochemistry) received a continuation of funding from Washington State University for the project “Natural Product-Drug Interaction Research – UWA to WSU Transfer.”


Dr. Stephen Sills

Dr. Stephen Sills (Office of Research and Engagement – Center for Housing and Community Studies) received new funding from the Hayden-Harman Foundation for the project “Needs Assessment for the Residents of 27260 High Point NC.”

This proposal was developed by the UNCG Center for Housing and Community Studies in response to a request from Dr. Patrick Harman, Executive Director at Hayden-Harman Foundation, for a needs assessment of the population of zip code 27260 in High Point, NC to be used by the Foundation and by the Welfare Reform Liaison Project.

A community needs assessment is a process used by organizations to determine priorities, make community improvements, or allocate resources. It involves determining gaps between community need and community assets. The goal of the needs assessment will be to identify primary concerns of families and how they are currently addressed; neighborhood concerns and how they are addressed; the resources needed to address family and neighborhood needs; identify how residents learn about community resources; and finally, what additional resources they would like to have in the community.

Over the course of the 3-month project, the UNC Greensboro Center for Housing and Community Studies (CHCS) will provide technical support and analysis from the Center Director and Staff. CHCS will: 1) attend partner meetings; 2) conduct 3-5 community ‘listening sessions’ or focus groups with community members; 3) conduct a multi-modal resident survey (online and paper through community partners); 4) complete telephone and face-to-face interviews with key informants (8-10);  perform an analysis and mapping of jurisdictional data; and 5)produce a report and presentation identifying community assets, resident needs, and gaps between need and current resources.

Dr. Jeremy Bray

Dr. Jeremy Bray (Economics) received new funding from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism for the project “Alcohol consumption and related comorbid conditions: health state utilities for economic evaluation.”

Effective prevention and treatment of alcohol use disorder (AUD) in the US could save more than 80,000 lives each year. Although abstinence has traditionally been the goal of AUD interventions, reductions in drinking levels have been shown to decrease the harms of AUD, providing an additional “goal post” for prevention and treatment. At the same time, patient-centered care and patient-reported outcomes are having a greater impact on health care decision-making than ever before. Thus, there is an urgent need for rigorous alcohol health services research to inform practice and policy. Moreover, it is critical that this research parallel medically-focused health services research to solidify a “level playing field” in comparative assessments for resource allocation decisions.

Increasingly these resource allocation decisions are informed by cost-effectiveness analyses that use health utility as an outcome. Health utility captures individual preferences for living in a given health state and is the foundation of quality adjusted life years (QALYs), the preferred outcome measure for cost-effectiveness analysis. Health utilities and QALYs are rarely used by alcohol health services researchers, however. The lack of health utilities for alcohol health states is a critical shortcoming in alcohol health services research that disadvantages alcohol services in resource allocation decisions.

To promote the use of health utilities in alcohol health services research, the researchers will conduct secondary data analyses of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions-III (NESARC-III).

The researchers will involve graduate and undergraduate students in all aspects of the study as integral members of the research team, providing intensive exposure to and training in research. They will disseminate the results to the clinical, practice, policy, and research communities to advance the use of health utility in alcohol health services research. Their findings will result in broader use of health utilities and QALYs for policy and clinical decision making in alcohol health services, and thereby lead to improved patient and population health.

Dr. Catherine Sykes

Dr. Catherine Sykes (Adult Health Nursing) received new funding from the NC Area Health Education Center for the project “UNCG Clinical Site Development 2019-2020.”

This project will allow the development of a new clinical site for community training for BSN students. The Moss Street Partnership School is an elementary school providing K-5 education to almost 400 students. The School opened in August 2018 and is operated by UNC Greensboro in partnership with Rockingham County Schools and the Moss Street community. Located in a rural and underserved area, and designated as a low-performing school, the Moss Street Partnership School was identified by the UNCG School of Education as an ideal partner to meet the mandate of the 2016 NC Legislature for the development of “lab schools” by all UNC-System universities with educator preparation programs.

Dr. Elizabeth Van Horn

Dr. Elizabeth Van Horn (Family and Community Nursing) received new funding from Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing for the project “Exploration of Competence in New Graduate Nurses.”

The primary goal of nursing education programs is to graduate competent novices who are ready to begin their nursing careers. However, since competence is either not defined or is uniquely defined by each institution, there is a gap in knowledge between how nursing education programs and their stakeholder employing institutions define competence and the skills, knowledge, and attitudes they expect of new graduate nurses. In order to bridge this gap, nursing education programs need to have a frame of reference about what employers expect of new graduates. The purposes of this study are to (1) explore the concept of competence in new graduate nurses, including its definition and evaluation the hospital setting; and (2) provide foundational data to design and conduct a larger study of nursing education programs and their evaluation of end-of-program competence in nursing students.

Dr. Catherine Scott-Little

Dr. Catherine Scott-Little (Human Development and Family Studies) received a continuation of funding from the DHHS Administration for Children and Family for the project “Exploring teacher-family relationships: Avenues for increasing the quality of care in infant-toddler classrooms.”

The project will investigate current family engagement practices in licensed infant and toddler classrooms across the state to inform future policy and practice. Surveys of infant and toddler teachers, program administrators, and families will be conducted, with follow-up qualitative interviews of teachers and administrators. Survey scores will be compared to secondary observed quality data.

Dr. Lucía I. Méndez

Dr. Lucía I. Méndez (Communication Sciences and Disorders) received new funding from East Carolina University for the project “More PEAS Please! Bridging the GAP Between Preschool and K-12 Learning Environments.”

This interdisciplinary five-year research grant, awarded in collaboration with researchers from East Carolina University, North Carolina State University, and North Carolina A&T State University, will support the investigation of effective science education approaches for underrepresented minority preschool children. Dr. Méndez’s research focuses on literacy-based approaches to academic vocabulary instruction for bilingual and culturally diverse preschoolers and the role of language in promoting school readiness skills, including literacy, early math and sciences.

Dr. Steven Fordahl

Dr. Steven Fordahl (Nutrition) received new funding from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases for the project “Dietary Fat, Brain Inflammation, and Dopamine System Function.”

Prolonged consumption of a high saturated fat (SF) diet is known to cause brain inflammation, and has recently been shown to impair dopamine neurotransmission similar to chronic drug use. Brain imaging studies show that obesity gradually reduces dopamine neurotransmission, but mechanisms that drive these changes are not known. A hallmark of SF-induced obesity is insulin resistance caused by chronic inflammation that impacts both the brain and peripheral tissues. Insulin signaling is essential to fine tune dopamine neurotransmission and helps trigger satiety circuits, but insulin signaling is weakened by pro-inflammatory cytokines. Cytokines are released in the brain by immune cells called microglia, which can be directly triggered by SF. 

This project seeks to identify whether microglia respond to SF in a way that increases inflammatory cytokines, and whether the increase in cytokines alters dopamine neurotransmission by interfering with insulin signaling. Determining the role of microglia in this process would provide a therapeutic target to normalize dopamine neurotransmission in obesity, and restore normal satiety signals. The researchers will also explore the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory unsaturated fatty acids to reduce brain inflammation and restore dopamine neurotransmission. The researchers hypothesize that a diet enriched with flaxseed oil, a potent source of anti-inflammatory omega 3 fatty acids, will attenuate the actions of pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-a, IL-6, and IL-1ß) induced by the SF diet, improve insulin sensitivity, and restore deficits in dopamine neurotransmission after prolonged SF intake. The researchers will also test whether inflammation caused by saturated fat-induced obesity interferes with insulin-induced satiety. Data collected from this project will demonstrate the efficacy of flaxseed oil to treat obesity-related changes in dopamine neurotransmission, and will provide a novel treatment approach to prevent over-eating. Ultimately, identifying the impact of inflammation of dopamine neurotransmission, and characterizing how these changes in dopamine signaling interfere with satiety will help us understand how diet-induced.

Dr. Campbell McDermid

Dr. Campbell McDermid (Specialized Education Services) received new funding from Saint Catherine University for the project “Dietary Fat, Brain Inflammation, and Dopamine System Function.” Jennifer Boyd Johnson is co-principal investigator on the project.

UNCG will collaborate with the CATIE Center to complete the following: program expansion and operations, culture/language and interpreting mentors, situated learning program and experience, program evaluation, service learning, and field-induction.

George Hancock

George Hancock (SERVE Center) received new funding from the U.S. Department of Education for the “National Technical Assistance Center for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NTACHE).”

The purpose of this project is to provide administrative, logistical, and technical support to improve educational opportunities and outcomes for children and youth experiencing homelessness in our nation’s school communities. This outcome will be achieved by (1) disseminating information about effective programs and practices related to issues surrounding the education of children and youth in homeless situations, (2) fostering collaboration among various organizations with interests in addressing the education of homeless children in order to promote local awareness of homeless issues, (3) fostering greater understanding of and compliance with the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, and (4) assisting the Department of Education with data collection and analyses.

Hancock also received new funding from the NC Department of Public Instruction for the “North Carolina Homeless Education Program and Foster Care Education Program.” Lisa Phillips and Sara Bigley are co-principal investigators on the project.

The NC Foster Care Education Program will: coordinate with North Carolina Department of Public Instruction staff on data the collection program for the 2019-20 school year, which includes changes and updates on federal requirements as well as the opening and closing of the system; provide training to new local education agency Points of Contact (POCs) on the data collection program through on-site trainings as well as an annual webinar for POCs; update training tools to assist POCs with the data collection process and post to website; as required under reauthorization, post yearly counts of foster students; track barriers to foster students reported during technical assistance calls; communicate regularly with all LEAs and charter schools on the required submission of data in PowerSchool and for those who do not comply with federal reporting requirements; assist POCs in utilizing data to assess program needs in PowerSchool and enhance the delivery of services to their students; analyze data from the US Department of Education for program development and identifying LEA; and evaluation of NC Star relative to transient student populations (homeless, foster, Title I).

The NC Homeless Education Program will: Coordinate with NCDPI staff on data collection program for the 2019-2020 which includes the opening and closing of the system for LEAs; provide training to new liaisons on the data collection program and process through on-site training as well as during the annual training for homeless liaisons; regularly update training tools to assist homeless liaisons with the data collection process and post to website; as required under ESSA, post annual counts of homeless students identified and the barriers of homeless students in the state on the NCHEP website; track data requests and the barriers identified of homeless students during technical assistance calls with local liaisons; communicate regularly with all LEAs, charter schools, virtual schools, lab schools, and others on the required submission of data in PowerSchool, non-compliance with submission of the federal reporting requirements, and assist liaisons and other school officials as needed; assist homeless liaisons in utilizing data to assess program needs and enhance the delivery of services to their students; and analyze data from the US Department of Education, including the yearly NC data workbook, and other sources for program development,

Hancock also received new funding from Chatham County Schools for the project “Chatham County Schools – District Needs Assessment – Exceptional Children’s Programming.”

A comprehensive needs assessment (CNA) will guide strategic planning efforts and lead to the identification, selection, and implementation of evidence-based practices that support school improvement throughout the local education agency (LEA).  SERVE has a history of providing sound comprehensive needs assessments, facilitated by teams that include experienced school, district, and State administrators.

Dr. Jeremy A. Rinker

Dr. Jeremy A. Rinker (Peace and Conflict Studies) received new funding from the City of Greensboro Human Relations Department for City of Greensboro Human Relations Department – Graduate Student Training.

Launched in the Spring of 2010, the Landlord Tenant Dispute Program (LTDP) intended to provide training for graduate students in mediation and conciliation while simultaneously supporting and assisting the City of Greensboro with housing disputes. UNC Greensboro’s Peace and Conflict Studies Department and the City of Greensboro Human Relations Department co-founded the program to assess the needs of residents and landlords concerning miscommunication and the seemingly only option to fight their issues in court. LTDP emphasizes its goal of mediating disputes by handling over 250 cases per year.

Dr. Merlyn Griffiths

Dr. Merlyn Griffiths (Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Hospitality, and Tourism) received a continuation of funding from Duke University for the project “Exploring Reactions to Health Warnings on Waterpipe Tobacco Ads.”

Waterpipe tobacco smoking (WTS) is becoming widespread in the United States among young adults. Increases in WTS are partly due to advertisements that entice young adults to engage in WTS. These ads include waterpipe products (e.g., themes of flavored tobacco and waterpipe apparatus) and social allure ads promoted by waterpipe bars, cafés, and lounges. The latter instill and reinforce young adults’ views of WTS as a fun social activity by emphasizing social interactions embedded within relaxing or festive surroundings with food, music, and dance. These social allure ads contain enticing themes (e.g., eroticism, exoticism, social acceptance, and occasion appropriate) to capture attention, persuade and encourage patronage at these locations; they may also spur young adults to engage in WTS socially at homes and at parties.

Often devoid of health warnings, waterpipe product and social allure ads likely mislead young adults to believe WTS is safe, promoting experimentation with WTS and reducing the desire to quit among users, the abstract notes. Thus, as shown with cigarette health warnings, designing effective verbal and graphic health warnings is vital to curbing the effects of these ads. For these reasons, the researchers propose to explore the efficacy of varied health warnings (verbal only vs. verbal plus graphic warnings) to decrease ad appeal on desire to engage in WTS and examine potential cognitive and emotional mediators, such as perceived risks of WTS and attitudes toward WTS. This study will be the first to examine these outcomes among young adults who engage in WTS and susceptible nonusers, two populations of high interest to regulators and the public health community.

Sonja Knowles

Sonja Knowles (Chemistry and Biochemistry) received new funding from the National Institutes of Health – National Research Service Award for the project “Co-culturing to Elicit Chemical Diversity in Fungi.” Dr. Nicholas Oberlies is co-principal investigator on the project.

This project is a training grant for a pre-doctoral student. The project is mapping the chemical ecology of interspecific interactions in fungi.

Dr. Brooke Kreitinger

Dr. Brooke Kreitinger (Languages, Literatures, and Cultures) received new funding from the German Embassy for the project “’Wunderbar Together’ Campus Weeks 2019.” Dr. Benjamin Davis is co-principal investigator on the project.

The researchers look forward to participating in this fall’s “German Weeks” with a focus on the significance of the past, present, and future of the transatlantic relationship, the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the anniversary of women’s suffrage in Germany and the U.S. All German courses scheduled in the fall will incorporate readings and assignments that allow students to explore these topics. Specifically, Dr. Benjamin Davis’ upper-level seminar “GER 406: Berlin Stories” will focus on the cultural representation of gender in the Weimar Republic, the Third Reich, the BRD and DDR, and post-wall Germany. Dr. Brooke Kreitinger’s upper level literature course “GER 305: Masterpieces of German Literature: from the Bismarck Era to the Present Day” will address literature related to the women’s suffrage movement as well as the anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall through engagement with the literature and history of divided Germany and the Wende. Participating in the 2019 “German Weeks” will allow the researchers  to complement their curricular offerings with invited speakers, a film event, campus competitions, and meaningful public outreach via traditional, and social media.

Dr. Terri Shelton

Dr. Terri Shelton (Office of Research and Engagement/Center for Youth, Family, and Community Partnerships) received new funding from Sandhills Center Local Management Entity; Prime: Guilford County for the project “Guilford County Specialty Courts Staff Support.

As part of the process initiated by the Guilford County Board of Commissioners in 2010, UNCG CYFCP was selected to provide one (1) qualified FTE Juvenile Court Case Coordinator.  The funding provided to the Specialty Courts has increased since 2010 and UNCG CYFCP presently provides two (2) qualified FTE Juvenile Drug Treatment Court Case Coordinators, two (2) qualified FTE Drug Treatment Court Case Coordinators, two (2) qualified FTE Mental Health Court Case Coordinators and one (1) qualified FTE Specialty Court Manager.

Dr. Julie Edmunds

Dr. Julie Edmunds (SERVE Center) received new funding from the UNC System Office for the project “Evaluation of the Aggie Success Academy at North Carolina A&T State University.

This will be an evaluation of the impact of the Aggie Success Academy on: 1) the number of credits earned in freshman year; 2) students’ freshman GPA; 3) students’ confidence and perceptions of belonging and community; and 4) students’ persistence to sophomore year.

The study uses a randomized controlled trial in which all students who meet the eligibility criteria are invited to participate in the Aggie Success Academy. 

The study design and the outcomes examined will give an unbiased estimate of the impact of the program on core outcomes that are associated with long-term success in college.

Dr. Ayesha Boyce

Dr. Ayesha Boyce (Educational Research Methodology) received new funding from Purdue University, Prime: National Science Foundation for the project “Network for Computational Nanotechnology (NCN) – Cyber Platform.

Boyce will oversee external evaluation using a Values-Engaged, Educative evaluation approach. The evaluation team will utilize a mixed-methods strategy in which data from one type of method (quantitative or qualitative) is merged, connected, and/or embedded with data from another type of method. Mixed-methods evaluations provide richer data and allow for better triangulation of data, and result in more nuanced evaluation results. Qualitative and quantitative data will be collected concurrently as a way to extend the breadth, scope, and range of inquiry to learn about different phenomena within the same study, and to capture the richness and diversity of the program and program participant experiences. This evaluation will provide formative data to guide NCN improvement and summative assessment of NCN quality and impact. A comprehensive evaluation plan is currently being developed and will be implemented this fall.

Dr. Noah Lenstra

Dr. Noah Lenstra (Library & Information Science) received new funding from the University of Oklahoma, Prime: Institute of Museum and Library Services for the project “Community Health and Wellness: Small and Rural Library Practices, Perspectives, and Programs.

This work will be focused on assessing and understanding how small and rural public libraries design, implement, and assess health and wellness programs. During the three-year period of this National Leadership Grant program, Dr. Noah Lenstra will fulfill the North Carolina components of this four-state project. Dr. Lenstra will perform field research/data collection at public libraries in Farmville, Elkin, and West Jefferson, North Carolina. He will collaborate on data analyses and dissemination so that the research is impactful both in the scholarly and in the practitioner communities.

Dr. John Willse

Dr. John Willse (Educational Research Methodology) received new funding from the American Board of Pediatrics for the project “Experiential Measurement Training with American Board of Pediatrics (2019-2020).

This assistantship is an appointment at the American Board of Pediatrics’ (ABP) office in Chapel Hill, NC. The primary role of the graduate assistant will be to assist ABP psychometric staff with both operational psychometric work (e.g., standard setting, statistical analysis, technical report writing, practice analysis) and applied research projects (e.g., conducting literature reviews, designing research studies, analyzing data, preparing manuscripts and presentations).

Willse also received new funding from Scantron Corporation/Castle Worldwide for the project “Experiential Measurement Training with Castle Worldwide, Inc. (2019-2020).

OAERS will provide research services pertaining to data management, data analysis, data documentation, report writing, general assessment activities, and other duties associated with the functions of Scantron Corporation, formerly known as Castle Worldwide, Inc.

Dr. Matthew Hughes

Dr. Matthew Hughes (Psychology) received new funding from the National Institutes of Health – National Institute on Aging for the project “The Experience of Subjective Age during Everyday Life.” Dr. Dayna Touron is co-principal investigator on the project.

The age someone feels predicts important outcomes in health, cognition, and general well-being, such as depressive symptoms and chronic illness, above their actual chronological age. Thus, determining the daily contexts associated with changes in subjective age may help us find ways to promote younger subjective ages and better health. The proposed study will use ESM (experience sampling methodology) to capture fluctuations in subjective age during daily life and connect these fluctuations to their specific contexts.


Dr. Jianjun Wei

Dr. Jianjun Wei (Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering) received new funding from 3iNanotech, Inc. for the project “SBIR: A Chip Based Nanosensor for Troponin T Detection in Human Blood.

There is an unmet need of point-of-care (POC) biosensor technology for decentralized laboratory testing, especially for protein biomarker measurements in human blood. The challenge of whole blood assay is the complexity, such as with cell interference. The researchers have made some progress on a chip-based biosensor that incorporates an optical transmission sensing scheme with an automated size-dependent sample delivery function in a single nanoscale unit.

This proposal describes further development of the biosensor technology for a rapid early diagnosis of heart failure, especially myocardial infarction, by monitoring cardiac biomarkers. The researchers account a device with a microstructured fluidic, flow-over dam with the nanoledge array (stair-step) features milled into the top of the dam. The device will realize the cell flow-over dams with undercut sidewall angles and pass over top of the dams with overcut sidewall angles. Arrays of nanoledge structures milled in the dam are functionalized specific ligand (e.g. a DNA aptamer) and used in the detection of Troponin T, one of the biomarkers for acute myocardial infarction (MI) or a heart attack.

This research offer promise for a complete lab-on-chip biosensor combining on-chip/in-line blood sample handling integrated with a simple, label-free, optical detection system. UNCG will act as a subcontractor working with 3iNanotech, Inc. to engage in the device design, surface functionalization, and the protein biomarker detection.

Christopher Jasso

Christopher Jasso (Public Safety and Police) received new funding from the Governor’s Crime Commission for the project “UNC Greensboro Police Department – Mobile Data Terminals.

As with most pieces of technology, there is a shelf life in which an item becomes outdated. Laptops are no exception to this, especially ones that are used inside of police patrol vehicles. The amount of wear and tear that gets placed on them paired with the aging of the machine causes a need for replacement. The UNC Greensboro Police Department purchased the current laptops in 2012 and since then they have gone through many repairs and updates. In 2017 alone, there have been approximately 130 service tickets submitted by UNC Greensboro Police employees that range in nature of repair needs. This number is likely to be doubled or tripled if we took into account the requests that are taken directly to our Technical Services Unit without submitting a ticket. With new laptops in our patrol vehicles, our patrol officers will have the assurance and reliability that is necessary to perform their jobs effectively. The replacement of our laptops will also affect our Technical Services Unit as there will be fewer service tickets and more time can be spent working on other tasks.

Dr. Jeffrey Milroy

Dr. Jeffrey Milroy (School of Health and Human Sciences – Institute for Promotion of Athlete Health and Wellness) received new funding from Prevention Strategies for the project “SBIR: APC: A collaborative approach to reduce time between concussion symptom onset and treatment.

The goal of the proposed research is to translate empirical evidence into a web-based segmented behavioral intervention targeting Athletes, Parents, and Coaches (APC) to decrease the time between concussion injury, onset of symptoms, and treatment among high school and youth sport athletes.

Nearly 4 million sport-related concussions (SRC) are reported annually in the US, and this number has been steadily increasing, in part due to greater awareness about the nature of the injury. Although concussions do occur outside of sport, student-athletes competing in contact or collision sports are at greater risk for multiple head injuries. These injuries can result in significant short-term deficits, including diminished neurocognitive function (e.g., attention, learning and memory, complex problem solving, processing speed/efficiency, and reaction time), postural control and self-reported symptoms. Consistently, findings indicate rates of depression and diminished quality of life are likely to occur in weeks to months post- concussion. 

Consequently, declines in academic performance for student-athletes are also linked to SRCs. The post-injury recovery period is a particularly vulnerable time as sustaining additional head trauma has been linked to a myriad of serious long-term neurological deficits. Therefore, immediate removal from play of a student-athlete who has sustained a potentially concussive impact is a critical strategy for risk reduction. Alarmingly, recent studies suggest that among high school student-athletes, more than 50% of potential SRCs go unreported.

As such, the specific aims of this Phase I SBIR project are to 1) create a detailed outline of the first 4 digital media intervention component prototypes for athletes, coaches, and parents (12 total), 2) develop one fully functional digital media intervention component prototype for parents and coaches and develop 2 fully functional digital media intervention component prototypes for athletes (4 total), and 3) pilot test the scientific and technical merit (feasibility) of each (4) of the fully developed digital media intervention component prototypes. The objective of each fully completed digital media intervention component prototype is to target known individual and environmental risk and protective factors related to concussion reporting by athletes. We will conduct a feasibility study to examine both the commercial feasibility and potential program effect of the prototype modules. A phase II proposal will be dedicated to fully developing and testing the completed intervention.

Dr. Melissa R. Floyd-Pickard

Dr. Melissa R. Floyd-Pickard (Social Work) received new funding from the Guilford County Department of Public Health for the GCSTOP project. The Guilford County Solution to the Opioid Problem (GCSTOP) is a collaborative, impactful effort to decrease opioid overdose deaths.

Dr. Ana Paula Höfling

Dr. Ana Paula Höfling (Dance) will have a launch for her new book “Staging Brazil: Choreographies of Capoeira,” Friday, Sept. 6, at Scuppernong Books, at 6 p.m. The book is described as “the first in-depth study of the processes of legitimization and globalization of capoeira, the Afro-Brazilian combat game practiced today throughout the world.” The event is free and open to the public.