College of Education

Dr. Karyn A. Allee-Herndon, assistant professor of elementary education, Dr. Lucy Bush, associate professor of education, Dr. Jeffrey Hall, associate professor of education, Dr. Kara Cowdrick, adjunct professor, Dr. Sharon Augustine, associate professor of education, and Dr. Sybil Keesbury, associate professor of education, will co-present “Collaboration, co-teaching and community: Innovative learning environments for improving teacher candidate outcomes” at the 2022 Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education Annual Meeting and Conference March 3-4 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Dr. Allee-Herndon, Dr. Wynnetta Scott-Simmons, professor of education, and Dr. Annemarie Kaczmarczyk of SUNY Cortland will co-present a follow-up to a January Learning Ally session to take a deeper dive into a conversation with practitioners to help them understand systemic trauma, how that impacts children and strategies to support literacy learning that is trauma sensitive at the Spotlight Learning Series: Early Literacy and the Whole Child Virtual Conference. Dr. Allee-Herndon, Dr. Kaczmarczyk and Dr. Sherron Roberts of the University of Central Florida, will co-present “Reading, ‘riting, & racism: Refocusing on anti-racist literature” at the National Association for Multicultural Education Conference, held virtually. Dr. Allee-Herndon was also  elected secretary/treasurer of the Constructivist Theory, Research and Practices Special Interest Group (SIG #25) of the American Educational Research Association for a one-year term beginning April 26.

Dr. Susie Morrissey, assistant professor of mathematics education, co-presented “Importance of a Shared Coherent Language for Mathematics Learning” at the Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education conference, along with colleagues from the Illinois Institute of Technology and the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. The article detailing the presentation was published in the conference proceedings.

Dr. Leah Panther, assistant professor of literacy education, and Mercer doctoral student Merlong Hightower Taylor presented “New genres for new times: Centering student identity and agency with genre-bending strategies” at the Georgia Council of Teachers of English annual conference in Peachtree City.

Dr. Katherine Perrotta, assistant professor of middle grades and secondary education, authored “A wholesome verdict: Using historical empathy strategies to analyze Elizabeth Jennings v. The Third Avenue Railway Company of 1855” in Social Education – the National Council for the Social Studies.

College of Health Professions

Dr. Jeannette Anderson, clinical associate professor of physical therapy, and Dr. Lisa Lundquist, professor and dean, presented “Leadership Development of DPT Students: Utilizing Bolman and Deal’s Four-Frame Model” at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting held February 2-5 in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. Daniel Dale, clinical assistant professor of physical therapy, co-presented “Strengthening Student Skills Through Simulation: A Possible Way to Manage Acute Care Site” at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting held Feb. 2-5 in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. Jeff Ebert, clinical associate professor of physical therapy, and Dr. Ellen Perlow, clinical associate professor of physical therapy, presented “Is It Really Musculoskeletal Pain? A Case-Based Approach to Upper Quadrant Differential Diagnosis and Medical Screening” at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting held Feb. 2-5 in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. Ann Lucado, associate professor of physical therapy, co-presented “Ligament Reconstruction with Internal Brace: Implications for Post-Op Rehab of Chronic Wrist and Thumb Instabilities” at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting held Feb. 2-5 in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. David Taylor, clinical associate professor of physical therapy, co-presented “U.N. Decade of Healthy Ageing: How You Can Help Make Healthy Aging a Reality” at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting held Feb. 2-5 in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. Deborah Wendland, associate professor of physical therapy, presented “Step Activity during Offloading of Diabetic Neuropathic Plantar Foot Ulcers” at the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting held Feb. 2-5 in San Antonio, Texas. Dr. Wendland was recognized with the President’s Award from the Academy of Clinical Electrophysiology and Wound Management for her service as the Academy’s program chair for the American Physical Therapy Association Combined Sections Meeting.

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dr. John Marson Dunaway, professor emeritus of French and interdisciplinary studies, had his translation of Sir Michael Edwards’s Pour un christianisme intempestif: savoir entendre la Bible (Paris: Fallois, 2020) published in February as Untimely Christianity: Hearing the Bible in a Secular Age by Fortress Press.

Dr. Gordon Johnston, professor of English and creative writing, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in Creative Nonfiction for his river memoir “Going to Water – Wise Creek of the Ocmulgee River,” which was published in the Winter 2022 issue of Susurrus online literary journal.

Scot J. Mann, associate professor of communication and theatre, served as an official adjudicator for the Society of American Fight Directors’ Performance Skills Test for Florida Atlantic University, Roosevelt University and the Actor’s Gym of Chicago. He also certified new instructors in his capacity as Master Firearms Safety Instructor for the national Theatrical Firearms Safety Course through a rigorous online session with members of the Experience Waterworld Show of Universal Studios, Hollywood. At Mercer, Mann directed Edward Albee’s Tony Award-winning play The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?

Dr. Barry Stephenson, associate professor of biology, was interviewed by the Wildlife Society for an article discussing a recent publication, “The effect of albinism on avian predator attack rates in eastern garter snakes,” in Zoology. The article was co-authored with Nikolett Ihász, coordinator of lab services in the Department of Psychology, and former Mercer undergraduate student Zeshan Velani.

College of Nursing

Dr. Seongkum Heo, professor, co-authored “Testing of a Health-Related Quality of Life Model in Patients with Heart Failure: A Cross-Sectional, Correlational Study” in Geriatric Nursing; “Cognitive function of recipients primary or secondary defibrillator therapy: A comparative study involving non-defibrillator patients with systolic heart failure” in the Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing; and “The impact of Advance directive perspectives on the completion of treatment directives in patients with heart failure: A prospective study” in the Journal of Clinical Medicine.

College of Pharmacy

Dr. Ajay K. Banga, professor, co-authored “In vitro percutaneous absorption studies of cannabidiol using human skin: Exploring the effect of drug concentration, chemical enhancers, and essential oils” in the International Journal of Pharmaceutics.

College of Professional Advancement

Dr. Arla Bernstein, assistant professor and program coordinator of communication, was appointed vice chair of the Experiential Learning Division of the National Communication Association. Also, on Feb. 18 and on behalf of the Faculty Welfare and Development Committee in the College of Professional Advancement, Dr. Bernstein conducted the webinar “Community-Engaged Research During the Pandemic – and Beyond.” Topics included faculty incentives for community-engaged research and its role in the tenure, promotion and review process.

Dr. Rui Gong, assistant professor of mathematics, co-authored “Association of residential economic and racial segregation with mortality in the U.S.,” accepted for presentation at the American Society of Preventive Oncology 2022 Annual Conference to be held March 13-15 in Tucson, Arizona.

Dr. Hani Q. Khoury, professor of mathematics, published a book, titled Giving Up Is Not An Option: Memoirs of a Palestinian American, available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble. He will participate in a book signing at the Alif Institute, located at 3288 Marjan Dr. in Atlanta, on March 12, 5-6 p.m.

Dr. David Lane, professor of counseling, was appointed to the board of directors for Warrior 2 Citizen, a veterans service organization specializing in programs for veterans and their families designed to help families during deployment, reintegration back into the family after deployment and transition from active duty to civilian life. In addition, Warrior 2 Citizen has programming for resiliency, PTSD and moral injury. Warrior 2 Citizen serves all branches of the active-duty military as well as the National Guard and Reserve components. Dr. Lane’s role on the board will be curriculum development and programming.

Dr. Tri M. Le, assistant professor of mathematics and computer science, authored “Model Averaging Is Asymptotically Better Than Model Selection For Prediction” in the Journal of Machine Learning Research.

Dr. David Purnell, adjunct professor of communication, and Lisa Spinazola co-authored Narrating Estrangement: Autoethnographies of Writing Of(f) Family, to be released by Routledge on May 10.

Mercer Engineering Research Center

Andi Mitchell, executive director, was recognized by the USAF and the Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce for her service as chair of the 2021 Middle Georgia Military Affairs Committee.

School of Business

Dr. Laura Boman, assistant professor of marketing, was featured in WalletHub’s piece on “Cheap Car Insurance in Georgia.”

Dr. Andrés Marroquín, associate professor of economics, and Dr. Antonio Saravia, associate professor of economics and director of the Center for the Study of Economics and Liberty, co-authored “Trust and beliefs about robots in Latin America” in the International Journal of Social Economics.

Dr. Gina Miller, professor of marketing, will present her accepted paper, “The Gaps Services Model: A Framework for Developing Post-Pandemic Marketing Strategies,” at the 58th MBAA International Conference to be held March 23-25 in Chicago, Illinois. Her paper will also be published in the conference proceedings. 

Dr. Geoffrey Ngene, associate professor of financial economics, was featured in Money Geek’s piece on “Best Low-Interest Rate Credit Cards and Offers in 2022.”

Dr. Briana Stenard, assistant professor of management and entrepreneurship, presented her original experiential exercise, “SCAMPER Ideation Toolkit,” at the 2022 United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (USASBE) annual conference in January. Her exercise toolkit won third place in the USASBE 3E Entrepreneurship Experiential Exercises Competition.

School of Engineering

Dr. Alireza Shams, assistant professor of environmental and civil engineering, presented two research projects at the Transportation Research Board 101th Annual Meeting Jan. 9-13 in Washington, D.C.: “Extracting Highway Cross Slopes from Airborne and Mobile LiDAR Point Clouds” and “Evaluation of Mobile Terrestrial LiDAR Scanning Systems to Estimate Material Volumes for Pavement Resurfacing and Rehabilitation.”

School of Law

David Hricik, professor of law and associate dean for faculty research and development, was a panelist for the Feb. 23 webcast panel discussion of “Legal and Ethical Issues Arising from the Theranos Matter” for Atlanta IP Inn of Court. Hricik also presented “Ethical Issues in IP Practice” on Feb. 28 to the Connecticut Intellectual Property Law Association.

Lauren Mauldin, director of communications and marketing, co-presented the session “Writing Effective Web Copy for Higher Education” on Feb. 1 at the CASE District III Conference in Atlanta. Mauldin was appointed by the Macon-Bibb County Planning and Zoning Commission to the Design Review Board, an advisory board to the commission to review and make recommendations regarding rehabilitation and construction projects within local historic districts.   

Karen J. Sneddon, interim dean and professor of law, and David Hricik, professor of law and associate dean for faculty research and development, co-authored the article “Writing to Clients” in 27 No. 4 Georgia Bar Journal 54 (Feb. 2022).  

Pam Wilkins, associate professor of law and associate dean for academic affairs, presented “Masculinity and the Death Penalty” on March 4 at the Association of Legal Writing Directors Scholars Forum.

School of Medicine

Dr. Mohammed Abdelsaid, assistant professor of pharmacology, presented “Covid-19 Spike-protein Causes Cerebrovascular Rarefaction And Deteriorates Cognitive Functions In A Mouse Model Of Humanized ACE2” at the International Stroke Conference 2022 Feb. 9-11 in in New Orleans, Louisiana. He also co-authored a review article, “Physiologic Insulin Resensitization as a Treatment Modality for Insulin Resistance Pathophysiology,” in International Journal of Molecular Sciences.

Dr. Jennifer L. Barkin, associate professor of community medicine and obstetrics and gynecology, spoke at the 40th anniversary of the University of Pittsburgh’s Epidemiology Data Center (EDC@40) Feb. 10 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The seminar series featured the research of former trainees.

Dr. Andrew Benesh, interim assistant director of the marriage and family therapy program, presented a seminar on “Strategies for Using Mindfulness Effectively in Therapy” to the Middle Georgia Chapter of the Georgia Association for Marriage and Family Therapy on Dec. 10.

Michael Caputo, clinical instructor of marriage and family therapy, successfully completed all training and educational requirements and was awarded full licensure as a marriage and family therapist by the Georgia Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists as of Dec. 7.

Dr. Ibolja Cernak, professor of pathophysiology and neuroscience, was featured by Connectivity Traumatic Brain Injury Australia on United Nations Day of Women and Girls in Science.

Dr. Brian H. Childs, professor of bioethics and professionalism and chair of bioethics and medical humanities, and Caroline Anglim, a Ph.D. candidate in religious ethics at the University of Chicago Divinity School, will present the 2022 Cummings Conversations on Faith, Learning, and Service March 28-29 at Maryville College. The overall theme is “Neighborly Love: Reimagining Social Responsibility in Medical Ethics,” and Dr. Childs’ talk is titled “Who is My Neighbor?”

Dr. Raghavan Chinnadurai, assistant professor of oncology, authored “Complexity of secretory chemokines in human intestinal organoid cultures ex vivo” in Gastro Hep Advances, published by the American Gastroenterological Association.

Dr. Krista Mincey, associate professor of community medicine, served as lead author on a recently published book chapter, “Serving without hurting: How to walk the Black faculty tight rope without falling over,” in the edited book African American Leadership and Mentoring Through Purpose, Preparation, and Preceptors.

Joseph Slattery, assistant director of medical simulation, earned his Certified Healthcare Simulation Operations Specialist (CHSOS) credential through the Society for Simulation in Healthcare. This adds to his previously earned credential as a Certified Healthcare Simulation Educator (CHSE), making him one of only three dual credentialed situationists in the state of Georgia (two of whom are at Mercer), and one of less than 100 in the world.

Dr. Jacob Warren, Rufus C. Harris Endowed Chair, director of the Center for Rural Health and Health Disparities and professor of community medicine, was appointed by U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra to the federal Advisory Committee on Infant and Maternal Mortality (ACIMM). A collaboration between more than a dozen federal agencies and external advisors, ACIMM helps to shape the whole-of-government response to maternal and infant health in the United States.

Staff and Administration

Rebekah Anaya, associate director of study abroad, served as a panelist for Via TRM’s “State of Education Abroad Survey” webinar on Feb. 23.

Tony Kemp, associate vice president for events and special programs, adjudicated initial virtual scholarship and musical theater submissions from high school students for this year’s Georgia Thespian Conference. He was also part of the three-person scholarship selection team during the in-person experience held Feb. 3-5 in Columbus.

Kyle is senior director of media relations at Mercer. In addition to being the primary media contact for most academic and administrative units of the university, he serves as editor of the Mercerian alumni magazine and News@Mercer e-newsletters, and he coordinates hometown and university news releases.