Monday, January 30, 2012

Thomas-Brown Kicks Off Winter 2012 Term in SOE Research Colloquium Series

The first winter term session in the School of Education Research Colloquium Series featured Dr. Karen Thomas-Brown, assistant professor in the UM-Dearborn School of Education. Her presentation on January 26, focused a study she conducted at MacArthur Elementary School in Southfield (MI). She studied the effects on participants of an after-school program called a geography club. She described the theoretical framing of the work as well as the practical impact on students’ “geographic literacy,” as indicated by evidence of many types from various sources.

The next colloquium in this series will be on February 23, 2012, at 4:30-6:00 p.m. in the School of Education conference room (252 FCS). At that session, John Branch, a student in the SOE doctoral program and lecturer at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at UM-Ann Arbor, will present the findings of a study he has conducted on analogical reasoning in higher education.

Faculty and students from across the UM-Dearborn campus are invited to attend. Please visit the SOE Research Colloquium page for more information regarding dates, speakers, topics and updates:

2012 MHealthy Rewards program launched

Last week, the university launched its annual MHealthy Rewards program This program is designed to get faculty and staff in the habit of reviewing their health and taking action to achieve their goals.

This year's program has been simplified and includes just two steps:

Complete the confidential annual health questionnaire. This takes less than 15 minutes and you will be able to view your personal health report immediately.
Complete a confidential wellness screening.

Qualifying, benefits-eligible employees who complete both steps by May 2012 receive a $100 before-tax reward in their paycheck. Use the incentive to treat yourself, donate to your favorite charity or a worthwhile cause, surprise someone you value with a token of appreciation, or whatever you choose.

Not only can your participation help improve your health, but also MHealthy Rewards will provide the university with longitudinal data that contribute to the study of the health of our faculty and staff community and the impact of employer-sponsored health and well-being programs. To get an accurate reflection of the university’s health profile, it is important that even those who consider themselves healthy and active participate in MHealthy Rewards.

If you have questions or encounter any difficulties with the questionnaire, or if you would like to provide feedback on the program, please contact MHealthy I hope you will join me and many of your fellow colleagues in making a commitment to health and wellness.

Monday, January 9, 2012

New Leadership for ECEC

The new year has arrived with some changes at the Early Childhood Education Center (ECEC). Professor Mary Trepanier-Street has retired after a fabulous 33-year career at UM-Dearborn, including 16 years as director of the ECEC. Mary’s inspirational leadership of the ECEC has helped the center attain prominence within the region and state as the premier facility of its kind – a multi-level educational laboratory. Mary will surely be missed, but we are delighted that two outstanding members of the School of Education community have stepped forward to assume major leadership roles at the ECEC.

Seong Hong, associate professor of education and coordinator of the early childhood program, is the new ECEC Director. She oversees the academic program provided to the children, as well as the practicum and internship experiences provided to prospective teachers. Professor Hong has been at UM-Dearborn for 12 years, and she is a highly regarded scholar in the area of early childhood education. She has also helped launch, and is currently heavily involved with, collaborative research projects between the SOE and the Oakwood Health Systems Center for Exceptional Families.

Deborah Jones, currently education coordinator, will assume the title of ECEC Site Director, overseeing the day-to-day operations of the center. Debbie has worked at the ECEC for nearly 10 years, and has most recently been responsible for supervising the staff of the ECEC and providing support to teachers to foster a high-quality learning environment, implementing a welcoming and thriving learning environment at the ECEC, and nurturing and maintaining the collaboration between the ECEC and Oakwood Health Systems Center for Exceptional Families.

Please join me in thanking Seong Hong and Deborah Jones for their willingness to lend their considerable talents to the leadership of the ECEC at this important transitional moment in its history. I am confident that they will be worthy stewards of the ECEC that it continues not only to provide first-class educational experiences for the children who attend but also to serve as a splendid training site for prospective teachers.