2013-2014 Faculty Fellows in Service Learning

CESR is pleased to recognize the Faculty Fellows class for the 2013-2014 academic year. Their courses are expected to be maintained in their respective departments as ongoing class offerings.

Robert Alley, Instructor, Jazz Studies/Music. MUA 167 The Jazz Mindset and its Application in Non-musical Environments brings the creative, innovative, cooperative, collaborative spirit found in jazz music to new areas of study and life. Through lectures, demonstrations by live performers (student and professional ensembles) as well as audio and video recordings, this course focuses on the inner workings of small jazz ensembles, the philosophy of the players as they make music, and how these concepts can be applied to areas ranging from leadership and management training to family dynamics and functionality. MUA 167 will be piloted in Spring 2015.

Two other service-learning courses are also in development: UH 210 Improv in Life (and Work) and UH 210 Leadership Lessons from Jazz.

Alvaro Baquero-Pecino, Assistant Professor, Modern Languages & Classics. SP 488 Immigration in Contemporary Film explores the relationship between immigration, film, culture, and society in Spanish speaking communities through in-depth discussion of representative texts and films, and their historical and political background. This class is thought as an analytical and interdisciplinary survey of motion pictures as an art form, entertainment industry, and communication medium via screenings, lectures, and readings about Latin American and Spanish contemporary films. The objective of this class is to learn to watch, interpret, and compare films portraying and recreating historical, social and political issues and challenges related to immigration in the Spanish Speaking communities. A revised version of this class is planned to be implemented during Spring 2015.

Diane Bragg, Instructor, Journalism. This course will expand students’ understanding of the First Amendment and its impact on democratic government. Students will examine the historical development of the idea of free expression, explore the legal limitations on expression, and examine the relationship between the First Amendment and Alabama governance. Students will work with the Alabama Press Association and the Alabama Broadcasters Association to cover issues such as Alabama’s Sunshine law, free speech legislation and the Freedom of Information Act. The course will give students a “road map” for understanding the First Amendment and its foundation in our country’s history. A proposal to integrate the service-learning project into Digital Media Workshop for Fall 2015 and Digital Community Journalism for Spring 2015 will be presented at the next journalism faculty meeting. In the event that the course cannot be offered within the framework of the two existing courses, it would be offered as a stand-alone course.

Nitin Chopra, Associate Professor, Metallurgical & Materials Engineering. MTE 491/591 Materials and Technologies for Advanced Energy Systems/Applications brings together important concepts in materials science, chemistry, physics, and other engineering to fundamentally understand the current as well as future energy systems, demands, and technologies. The course will facilitate information sharing on the materials challenges to enable widespread global usage of renewable & alternative energy. The course will explore the possibility of using wind, photovoltaics/solar power, supercapacitors, fuel cells, geothermal, nuclear, hydro, biomass, biosystems, hydrogen and advanced batteries to meet the power needs of the today’s world. The service-learning component will require students to develop novel and low-cost alternative energy systems for use in real-life situations. The course is currently taught in Spring 2014.

Lori Greene, Instructor, Human Nutrition & Hospitality Management, Restaurant, Hotel & Meeting Management Program. NHM 485 Supervised Practice in Dietetics Management and Communications is a new course that was developed a couple of years ago to help our Coordinated Program in Dietetics (CPD) meet the need for an increased hour requirement for our program. This rotation is their culminating rotation in our CPD with the emphasis of communications and dietetics management. In Spring 2014, students work with 5 community partners in the Birmingham and Tuscaloosa area: Brown House, Children’s Hands on Museum, Druid City Garden Project, Food Bank of Central Alabama, and the Good Samaritan Clinic. Students in this course have held taste testing for children of new fruits and vegetables, planted vegetables and fruit trees in our community, developed cookbooks, developed and led cooking classes for preschoolers and diabetic patients, developed social media campaigns, and most importantly they have learned how to serve as an integral role for these community agencies.

Paige Johnson & Michele Montgomery, Assistant Professors, Capstone College of Nursing. NUR 422 Community Health Nursing focuses on the knowledge and skill competencies required for community/public health nursing practice. Educational and clinical experiences are community-based, community-oriented, and population-focused. Students will participate in health promotion and risk reduction for children and their families in the Tuscaloosa Pre K initiative. During an intensive clinical experience, the students will provide health screenings and health education for academically at-risk children and their families. This experience will provide nursing students an opportunity to engage in primary prevention while making the associations between poverty, lack of resources in communities and health status of children and their caregivers. The revised service-learning component of this course will begin in Fall 2014.

Caroline Parsons, Instructor, Communication Studies. COM 122 Critical Decision Making explores the theory and practice of basic principles of the decision-making process, providing a general introduction to persuasion, argument, and small-group communication. Students will utilize group problem-solving skills and roundtable deliberation to help improving the Black Warrior River. Students in the Fall of 2013 and Spring of 2014 contributed to an authentic deliberation on water quality in the State of Alabama. A revised version of this course will be introduced in Fall 2014.

Mary Wallace-Pitts, Instructor, Geography. GY 370 Watershed Management Plan Development is an intensive three-week Interim class that requires students to draft a Watershed Management Plan and/or a Source Water Protection Plan for a rural water supply or sub-watershed. Students participate in a number of field programs led by professionals from local government, state agencies and non profits. These field programs are designed to ensure that students perform service by collecting and compiling the data necessary to draft working plans. The preparation of Watershed Management plans is the first step in management of water resources. Many rural communities lack the necessary funding and expertise to prepare these documents. Water is and always will be our most critical resource and students are performing essential service by assisting communities protect their water resource. The revised service-learning component of this course will begin in Interim 2014.

Xiao “Michelle” Tong, Assistant Professor, Clothing, Textiles, & Interior Design. CTD 387 Fashion Marketing seeks to increase students’ knowledge and understanding of marketing activities such as pricing, promotion, branding, packaging, and distributing goods and services used in the fashion industry. The service learning team project enables students to do fieldwork with a local non-profit organization, providing opportunities to apply marketing theories and concepts learned in the classroom to real-world issues. The service-learning component of the course will be piloted in Spring 2015.