New MBA degree focus is in healthcare admin

Francis Marion University’s School of Business is collaborating with the university’s Department of Nursing to add a new graduate degree to its repertoire.

Beginning in the fall of 2015, FMU will offer a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Healthcare Executive Management (MBA-HEM). The degree is aimed at individuals already working in the healthcare field, as well as those who aspire to enter the field. It also continues FMU’s university-wide alignment with the growing needs in the healthcare industry, particularly in the underserved Pee Dee Region. FMU is also rolling a new undergraduate degree in healthcare administration this year.

The MBA-HEM is a 30-hour program, just like FMU’s standard, online MBA. The MBA-HEM, however, consists of 18-credit hours from the School of Business and 12-credit hours through courses taught through FMU’s Master of Science in Nursing Program.

Like FMU’s other MBA degrees, the MBA-HEM is being offered primarily as an online course. Students attend on-campus sessions no more than three times per semester.

Peters named to prestigious ACE fellowship

Dr. Susan Peters, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship at Francis Marion University and the Forrest D. Williams Professor of Entrepreneurship in the university’s School of Business, has been named to a prestigious one-year fellowship with the American Council on Education (ACE).

The ACE fellowship is the nation’s premier higher education leadership development program. Peters and the other fellows in her class will spend the next year observing and participating in a variety of events and experiences. They will also engage in a special project under the mentorship of a team of experienced campus leaders from across the country.

ACE released the names of the members of it 2015-16 class on March 25, through its online newsletter, Higher Education and National Affairs.

Peters says she believes participation will broaden and deepen her knowledge of leadership, strategy and the world of higher education.

“This is a remarkable opportunity for me to gain experience in areas of administration I know little about,” says Peters. “It allows me to study university administration intensively and discuss issues not only with other fellows, but also with the mentor at the university that hosts me, my sponsor and with other university presidents throughout the United States.”

The ACE Fellows Program enables participants to immerse themselves in the culture, policies, and decision-making processes of another institution. Fellows participate in three multi-day seminars, engage in team-based case studies, visit other campuses, and attend national meetings, all while developing a personal network of higher education leaders across the United States and abroad.

Each fellow will also engage with their mentor on a project involving a critical issue in higher education at their home institution. Peters plans to delve into the area of student retention, focusing on retention of first generation students. That’s a subject area that’s more than just academic to Peters.

“This is particularly near and dear to my heart as I was a first generation student who floundered and ended up dropping out,” says Peters. “I was one of the fortunate ones who had the chance to go back – and then I never quit.”

Peters hopes that her research will turn into some actionable initiatives aimed at serving students who, like her, were the first in their family to graduate from college.

Haselden, Anaza, Love, Edwins honored with excellence awards

Four Francis Marion University faculty members were honored for outstanding individual work at the annual faculty awards recognition banquet last spring.

Associate Professor of Education and Coordinator of the M.Ed./L.D. Graduate Program Dr. Kathryn G. Haselden received the Award of Excellence in Teaching; Assistant Professor of Marketing Dr. Nwamaka A. Anaza received the Award for Excellence in Research; Associate Professor of English and Coordinator of the English Composition Program Dr. Meredith Love-Steinmetz received the Award of Excellence in Service; and Associate Professor of English Dr. Jo Angela Edwins received the Charlene Wages Shared Governance Award, a special award presented by Francis Marion University chapter of the American Association of University Professors. The Shared Governance Award is given to a faculty member who has made significant contributions to shared governance at FMU.
Each award carries a cash prize.

Knowles honored as Mason award winner

Travis Warren Knowles, associate professor of biology and director of the Wildsumaco Biological Station in Ecuador, is the J. Lorin Mason Distinguished Professor for the 2015-16 year at Francis Marion University.

The honor was announced at this spring’s faculty dinner and formally presented at Spring Commencement ceremonies.

Knowles began his career at FMU as an instructor of biology in 1991. Over the years, he has been cited for his outstanding classroom teaching, leading study travel courses to places like Costa Rica, the western United States and southern Appalachians, and for helping with honors program field trips in the United States. He also has led informal faculty-student book discussions since 1998.

Most recently, Knowles helped bring about the creation of a biological station at Wildsumaco Wildlife Sanctuary, on the east slope of the Andes in Ecuador. The sanctuary, which is on property that’s part of an adjacent birding lodge, is in the shadow of the 12,560-foot high Sumaco Volcano. The unique combination of jungle, mountain, rain forest and overall rugged terrain means Wildsumaco is a “hot spot” for bio-diversity. Researchers from FMU and the allied universities participating in the project have discovered dozens of new or rare species at Wildsumaco. The opportunity to be a part of that research has been a boon to Knowles’ students and to others.

The J. Lorin Mason Award is named in honor of a former chairman of the FMU Board of Trustees and is the highest university honor bestowed upon a FMU faculty member to recognize contributions to teaching, professional service and scholarly activities.

College of Liberal Arts

Dr. Karen Gittings, assistant professor of Nursing, has been appointed as the university’s coordinator of Bachelor of General Studies. …Francis Marion University’s Department of Political Science & Geography hosted the annual meeting of the South Carolina Political Science Association on February 27-28.  … Professor Lynn Kostoff’s new novel Words to Die For was published in April 15, received a Starred Review in Booklist, and was named one of the best “Political Noirs” in the last two years by, a site based in England that receives five million hits a year. Kostoff is now at work on The Head Start, which has been accepted by his agent. …

Dr. Jeremiah Bartz, assistant professor of Mathematics, was named a 2014-2015 Project NExT Fellow by the Mathematical Association of America. Bartz also reviewed the textbook Beginning Statistics (2e) by Warren, Denley, and Atchley. His comments and suggestions for improvements in the chapter on confidence intervals have been incorporated into the current eBook version. … Dr. Sharon K. O’Kelley served as the chair of a program review committee for the South Carolina Department of Education tasked with evaluating a proposal for a new program in mathematics education at a South Carolina institution of higher learning. …

Francis Marion University’s master’s level nursing program received full accreditation by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). FMU’s accreditation was formally approved at the ACEN board’s March meeting, following a lengthy process that included a campus visit last fall. … The Department of Nursing’s RN-to-BSN program was recognized by as offering one of the best online classroom experiences. … Dr. Tracy George, an instructor in the Francis Marion University Department of Nursing co-authored “Shared decision aids: Increasing patient acceptance of long-acting reversible contraception,” which appeared in Healthcare. George’s co-authors were C. DeCristofaro, B.P. Dumas and P.F. Murphy. … Dr. Vicki Martin graduated with her Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA, this spring. … Dr. Ruth Wittmann-Price, chair of FMU’s Department of Nursing, was named a  Academy Fellow by the Academy of American Nursing. She is one of 163 Fellows named nationwide. … Wittman-Price also will be inducted into Felician University’s School of Nursing Hall of Honor at Felician’s homecoming celebration on Oct. 1. … Wittman-Price  authored a successful grant proposal on “Enhancing Nursing Education to Promote Advocacy for Patients Living with Developmental Disabilities,” for South Carolina’s Developmental Disabilities Council, Office of the Governor. The proposal, co-authored by Susan Orrico of FMU’s Provost’s Office, earned an award of $40,000. … Wittmann-Price was also appointed to the board of the Felician Center in Kingstree, S.C. The Felician Center Inc. is a Catholic, nonprofit, charitable organization sponsored by the Felician Sisters of North America and supported by the Bishop of the Diocese of Charleston, South Carolina. Among the center’s sponsored program is a health check outreach that includes nursing students from Francis Marion University. …

A paper by Dr. Jessica Burke, assistant professor of Sociology, has been accepted for publication in an edited volume entitled Cultural Metaphors by Which We Live, to be published by Green Legacy Publishing Company. The paper is “Cultural Metaphors and Black-White Interracial Relationships.” Burke has two additional papers in various stages of a submission for publication. … A chapter by Burke and Dr. Jessica M. Doucet entitled “Unusual Suspects and Unsuspecting Victims: Correlates of Females Who Kill Male Intimate Partners,” has been accepted for publication in the edited volume Dark Denials and Despicable Damage: Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault in America. That book is edited by Drs. Ashraf Esmail (of Dillard University) and Dr. Lisa Eargle, chair of the Department of Sociology at FMU. It is scheduled to be published some time in 2016. … Doucet has co-authored a book chapter titled, “Civic Community and Violence in Rural Communities,” that has been accepted for publication in the International Handbook of Rural Criminology edited by Joseph F. Donnermeyer. Doucet served as reviewer on several manuscripts for the Journal of Interpersonal Violence and Social Science Research. …

Dr. Eargle is the lead author on a paper “Residing Still In Harm’s Way: Ten Years After The Katrina Disaster,” that was recently accepted for publication by the journal of Race, Gender and Class for their special issue on the 10th anniversary of the Hurricane Katrina disaster. Another co-authored paper by Eargle, this on Islamism in Pakistan, was recently published in the Journal of Education And Social Justice. She has also written the foreword for two books, A Qualitative Case Study: South Louisiana Teachers Who Remain in the Profession (authored by Shirley Williams) and Cultural Metaphors By Which We Live (edited by Rose Duhon-Sells and Ashraf Esmail), which are to be issued by Green Legacy Publishing sometime this year. … Dr. Eargle recently served as a reviewer on a book proposal about financial crime for Oxford University Press. She reviewed a paper on education and attitudes towards animals for the Journal of Education and Social Justice. …

Dr. Larry Engelhardt, associate professor of Physics, is lead author (with co-authors from the University of St. Thomas, MN and Yale University, CT) on a paper entitled “Simple and synergistic ways to understand the Boltzmann distribution function,” scheduled to be published in the American Journal of Physics. … Assistant Professor of Physics Dr. Ginger Bryngelson is co-author on two papers published in the Astrophysical Journal. In December 2014, the Journal published “Early Observations and Analysis of the Type Ia SN 2014J in M82,” and in May 2015 it published “Detection of a Light Echo from the Otherwise Normal SN 2007af.” … The installation of the planetarium’s new digital projector (secured through a grant obtained by Dr. Jeannette Myers) was completed in December 2014, and has since been used to present 12 public shows and countless shows to school and community groups (all at no charge). The new system has also been an integral part of numerous “NASA Saturday” events for children put on through a partnership between Dr. Myers and Science South. … The dual appointment of Dr. Derek Jokisch, associate professor of Physics, to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has been renewed. Jokisch and his colleagues at ORNL are conducting research to support an update federal laws regarding radiation exposure limits.

School of Education

Dr. Shirley Bausmith, Dean of the School of Education, was elected vice president of the South Carolina Education Deans Alliance (SCEDA) for the 2015-16 school year. Bausmith also participated in the S.C. Equitable Access stakeholders meeting, and the Apprenticeships to Support ECE meetings. …  Dr. Karen Fries of the School of Education was appointed the School of Ed’s liaison to Prince Edward Island University, FMU’s newest university exchange partner, and was named coordinator of FMU’s Masters program in Learning Disabilities. Fries also served as an editor for Sage Open Access Journals, and participated in the Clarendon County school district’s Teacher of the Year interview process. … Dr. Callum Johnston presented a paper entitled, “The Science in Children’s Literature: Why Children’s Literature is a Natural Medium for the Development of Science Skills in Young Children,” at the 2015 International Business and Education Conferences, London, United Kingdom this summer. It was one of 290 papers accepted and presented, from a total of more than a thousand submitted from around the world. … Dr. Tammy Pawloski, director for the Center of Excellence for the Teaching of Children in Poverty, was named the Boys and Girls Club of the Pee Dee 2015-16 “Champion for Youth,” and will honored at a September banquet.

School of Business

Francis Marion University’s School of Business received an extension of its accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International, the premier global accrediting body for business schools. The extension is through the 2019-20 school year and covers both the undergraduate and graduate (MBA) programs. Francis Marion is one of more than 700 business schools in 50 countries to receive the accreditation and has received AACSB accreditation continuously since 1995. Less than five percent of business schools worldwide earn the accreditation, according to the AACSB. …  Dr. Fred R. David co-authored “Mission Statement Theory and Practice:  A Content Analysis and New Direction” in the International Journal of Business, Marketing, and Decision Sciences, Vol. 7, No. 1, Summer 2014. David’s co-authors were David E. Meredith and Forest R. David. Forest R. David (MBA ‘00) is Dr. David’s son … David, writing with Forest David, is co-author of a new edition of the management textbook, Strategic Management: Concepts and Cases-A Competitive Advantage Approach. 15th Edition. Upper Saddle River, NJ. Prentice-Hall Publishing Company. … Dr. Susan Peters is serving as an editor for the South East Case Research Journal. She’s served as a member of the editorial board for Case Research Journal from 2011-2014 …