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President Walter Harrison Endowed Faculty Development Grant Winners Announced

April 20, 2022
Submitted By: Ann Brown

President Walter Harrison Endowed Faculty Development Grant Winners Announced

Faculty members Carolyn Pe Rosiene (Department of Computing Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences), Wes Younts (Center for Social Research, College of Arts and Sciences) and Karen Tejada (Department of Social Sciences, Hillyer College) have been awarded President Walter Harrison Endowed Faculty Development Grants (2022–23 academic year).

Carolyn Pe Rosiene, Professor of Computing Sciences in the College of Arts & Sciences, will revolutionize the approach to presenting course material in in CS 115, Fundamentals of Computing II, using contextual learning techniques. The major challenge in this course is keeping student’s attention and excitement. Some students are naturally drawn to programming, while others need some form of active learning methods to keep them engaged. Grant funds will be used to provide course release time that Dr. Rosiene will use to develop materials, including embedding short little bits of lecture (theory) into actual code demonstrations and students’ immediate hands-on application of theoretical materials.

Wes Younts, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice, and Director of the Center for Social Research, will purchase computers for research analysis and use by research assistants in the Center for Social Research to support four major research projects underway at the Center. The first project, North Hartford Ascend Pipeline, supported by a Department of Education Promise Neighborhoods grant, seeks to ensure that children in the three North Hartford Promise Zone neighborhoods (Clay Arsenal, Northeast, and Upper Albany) have access to high quality supports and services to ensure their educational and career success. The second project, Expansion of CT’s Newborn Screening System: An Integrated Approach to Improving Long Term Health Outcomes, aims to conduct research to support the US Department of Health and Human Services HRSA grant received by Connecticut Children’s Medical Center to extend and improve the screening of newborn babies and long-term follow-up for severe, chronic health conditions (e.g., severe combined immunodeficiency, sickle cell anemia). A third project, Evaluation of Hartford Talks (LENA) Program, will evaluate the City of Hartford, Department of Families, Children, Youth, and Recreation, LENA program, an early childhood program designed to support language development, by developing strategies for tracking and monitoring the growth, implementation, and outcomes of the Hartford Talks program. The fourth project, Best Practices for Recovery Housing in Litchfield Co., Connecticut, supports research on sober housing for the Northwest CT Community Foundation.

Karen Tejada, Associate Professor of Sociology, will continue her multi-year, multi-sited research project titled, Putting Them on ICE: Policing Salvadoran Communities on Long Island. Originally funded by a prestigious Russell Sage Foundation grant in 2019, Dr. Tejada will code, memo and analyze the fieldwork results of 25 interviews and 50 fieldnotes compiled over the past few years and begin drafting two chapters for her academic book on the subject. The book project seeks to capture what Salvadoran scholars, Leisy Abrego and Cecilia Menjivar (2010), call “legal violence,” a concept that underscores how legal statuses are constructed by the nation-state to then be implemented at the local level in ways that oppress and marginalize the undocumented and those with mixed statuses. Grant funding will be used for two course releases and funding to attend a conference.

The President Walter Harrison Endowed Faculty Development Grants, given annually, are internal grant awards intended to support the needs of mid- to late-career faculty and the University of Hartford by supporting significant scholarly efforts. These grants are made possible by a generous gift from a group of donors to honor past University of Hartford President Walter Harrison.