College of Health & Social Sciences
San Francisco State University
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August 2016


Two graduating students honored with College hood

Colin Wong     Jamie O'Quinn
Colin Wong
(B.A. '16, Liberal Arts and Consumer & Family Studies/Dietetics) and Jamie O'Quinn (M.A. '16, Human Sexuality Studies) received the honor of wearing the College of Health & Social Sciences academic hood at this year's Commencement. 
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Faculty development/scholarship 

Announcements from Mickey Eliason, assistant dean, faculty development and scholarship

I am looking forward to beginning my second year in this new role, and truly enjoyed getting to know more of our stellar faculty in the past year. This fall, we welcome a large cohort of new faculty to integrate into our fold and I would like to extend a warm welcome to you all. I will be sending out announcements of upcoming events this fall via emails and through this newsletter. Here is a little preview of just a few of the events under development:

Funding Opportunities Workshop

This hands-on workshop with Jessica Mankus from ORSP will be held near the beginning of each semester and is designed to help faculty become more proficient at seeking funding for their projects.

Writing Groups

I will continue to offer ongoing writing groups during the semester as well as a short Writing Challenge for 10-12 days over the winter break. 

Brown Bag Lunches

The start of a new brown-bag lunch series co-hosted with the Graduate College of Education. These informal presentation/discussions will include at least one faculty member from each of our colleges who does work related to children, youth, and/our families. The first will be on Wednesday, September 21, in Library 121 from 12 noon to 1 p.m. It will feature Lygia Stebbing and Ashley Williams from Child and Adolescent Development and Amber Friesen from Grad College of Education discussing their work in South Africa.

Research interest groups

Last year, we started a small project with a group interested in social justice pedagogy. This coming year, I hope to launch at least one additional group and expand the existing one. Contact me with ideas if you are interested in finding a group for discussion and/or research collaborations.

These events are a great way to connect with faculty from other departments, hear about the great research others are doing, and to find possible collaborators for projects. I will also continue to be available for individual consultations if you need a sounding board for ideas, another pair of eyes on a proposal or manuscript, or want to brainstorm a change in your research program. I can also help review RTP materials.


Bagley, Jacobson receive ORSP small grants

Jimmy Bagley    Carrie Jacobson

Assistant Professor Jimmy Bagley of the Department of Kinesiology and Assistant Professor Carrie Jacobson of the School of Nursing have each been awarded support through the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) Small Grant Program. The ORSP Small Grants Program fosters the professional development of investigators and creative artists at SF State by supporting original projects that contribute significantly to the professional achievement and growth of applicants. 

Bagley’s project is titled “Effects of Concurrent Exercise Training during Simulated Microgravity on Myonuclear Content in Human Skeletal Muscle.” Jacobson’s is “Does Increasing Simulation Training in an Undergraduate Nursing Reproductive Health Curriculum Affect Students’ Learning?”

Roberts to lead ICCE

Nina RobertsNina Roberts, professor in the Department of Recreation, Parks & Tourism, has been named faculty director of the Institute for Civic and Community Engagement (ICCE). She will begin her tenure January 2017. 
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Van Olphen appointed WAC/WID director

With support from the Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning, Associate Professor Juliana van Olphen was appointed director of Writing across the Curriculum/Writing in the Discipline (WAC/WID) in Fall 2016. She, along with Associate Directors Peter Ingmire and Jennifer Swanson from the Learning Assistance Center, support the integration of best practices in teaching and assessing student writing. Among their current priorities, they are currently piloting two programs: a mentoring program for faculty teaching Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR) and an assessment of GWAR student papers from multiple disciplines. Monthly roundtables have featured faculty discussing best practices for teaching research skills and grading student papers. For more information about other WAC/WID priorities and activities, please contact Juliana van Olphen at


Department of Health Education

Newly named Schweitzer fellow proud to feed families in need

Hana Shirriel
Hana Shirriel, a master of public health (M.P.H.) graduate student, was recently selected by the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship (ASF) to be one of its 2016-17 class of San Francisco Schweitzer Fellows. It's the ASF's mission to prepare the next generation of professionals who will serve and empower vulnerable people to live healthier lives and create healthier communities. Fellows create and carry out sustainable community service projects addressing chronic health issues and the underlying causes of health inequities in society, including poverty, education and the environment. Shirriel will be building upon a food pantry project she started at West Oakland Middle School in 2015.
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Eliason researches health of older lesbian, bisexual women

The results of a nationwide study conducted by a team of researchers, including Professor Mickey Eliason, suggest that group intervention is an effective tool to help older lesbian and bisexual women improve their overall health behaviors. The study, published July 7 in a supplement to the journal Women's Health Issues, addresses growing concerns over health disparities amongst older lesbian and bisexual women, which include elevated levels of stress, anxiety, substance abuse and larger body sizes in comparison to their heterosexual counterparts.
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M.P.H. students help transform public housing with art 

Health Ed faculty with HOPE SF artwork
Over the past five years, the Health Education Department and the Health Equity Institute have partnered with HOPE SF, an initiative led by the San Francisco Mayor’s Office and the San Francisco Foundation to transform some of the most distressed public housing in San Francisco. As part of their master of public health coursework, students participated in a community-engaged arts process with professional artist Brett Cook that brought them together with HOPE SF residents and program staff to explore how art can foster and enhance community-building. 
Pictured: Faculty members Jessica Wolin, Sarah Wongking and Jessica Tokunaga with HOPE SF artwork.  
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Peper, Harvey, publish article about diaphraghmatic breathing

Professor of Health Education Erik Peper and Associate Professor of Health Education Richard Harvey co-authored the article "Abdominal SEMG feedback for diaphragmatic breathing: a methodological note," which appeared in the spring 2016 issue of the journal Biofeedback (E. Peper, A. Booiman, I-M Lin, R. Harvey and J. Mitose).
Read the abstract

Fernández-Peña and coauthors publish report on immigrants in health care

Immigrants play a crucial role in keeping America healthy, says “Immigrants in Health Care: Keeping Americans Healthy Through Care and Innovation,” a report by by Marcia Drew Hohn, retired director of The ILC Public Education Institute; Justin P. Lowry and James C. Witte, both of the Institute for Immigration Research at GMU; and Dr. José Ramón Fernández-Peña, of SF State and the Welcome Back Initiative. 
Read the report

Department of Kinesiology

Marialice KernKern recognized for scholarship and service

Professor of Kinesiology Marialice Kern received the 2015 Southwest American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Recognition Award last fall. This honor is bestowed on an exercise scientist who demonstrates exceptional scholarship and service to the Southwest Regional Chapter of the ACSM. The chapter’s newsletter noted Kern’s seminal papers on the impact of high fat feeding, exercise training and aging on glucose uptake and GLUT4 expression; and her research projects on the impact of hydration on exercise performance, the validation of the Bod Pod for estimating body composition in older adults as well as evaluating the use creatine supplementation in children and adolescents. Her long list of service activities for Southwest and National ACSM also helped earn her the award. 

Mi-Sook KimKim recognized for distinguished leadership in kinesiology administration

Professor of Kinesiology Mi-Sook Kim has been named a recipient of the American Kinesiology Association (AKA) Distinguished Leadership Award for master’s-level institutions. The award recognizes “outstanding administrative and leadership performance of an individual in an administrative unit at an AKA member institution.” She will be honored at an AKA event in Dallas/Fort Worth in January 2017. Kim served as the Department of Kinesiology’s chair from 2012 to 2016 and was recently appointed associate dean in SF State’s Division of Graduate Studies.
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Bolter writes chapter in sport psychology handbook

Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Nicole Bolter contributed to the Routledge International Handbook of Sport Psychology, which was published in February. Bolter and co-author Maureen Weiss from the University of Minnesota penned the chapter "Developing Moral Character through Sport: Delivering on the Promise."

Bagley publishes muscle research article

Assistant Professor of Kinesiology Jimmy Bagley co-authored the article "Improving human skeletal muscle myosin heavy chain fiber typing efficiency," which was published in the Journal of Muscle Research and Cell Motility in April. This work was a collaboration among Bagley, Andy Galpin (CSU, Fullerton) and Kevin Murach (University of Kentucky).
Read the abstract

School of Nursing

Foster, McDevitt receive award for service

Presentation of Derf award
Ashley Foster (SF State BSN) and Anna McDevitt (SF State/Sequoia BSN) are the Spring 2016 recipients of the Philip Derf Service Award. Derf was a student at SF State's School of Nursing from 1990 to 1994. He was known as an extraordinary asset to his fellow classmates, and his commitment to public service touched many of the faculty and students. Sadly, he passed away before completing the program. In his memory, it has become an SF State School of Nursing tradition for each graduating class to choose a classmate from among its ranks to receive the award.

Baby once abandoned in campus laundry room and cared for by nursing student is now SF State grad

More than 125 media outlets reported on the graduation of Jillian Sobol (B.S. ’16, Hospitality and Tourism Management), who was abandoned and found as a newborn in an SF State laundry room 32 years ago. Esther Wannenmacher (now Raiger), B.S. '86, then a nursing student, used what she had learned about neonatal care to help the baby survive until paramedics arrived. 
Read the story in the SF Chronicle
Watch the NBC Nightly News story

Two Nursing alumni present at conference in South Africa

Two alumni of the School of Nursing presented posters at Sigma Theta Tau International's 27th International Nursing Research Congress in Cape Town, South Africa, on July 21, 2016. Tammy Nguyen graduated in fall 2015 from the GMSN program with a concentration in pediatrics. Her poster was her culminating experience that she completed for her graduation, “Implementation of Pediatric Resuscitation Training to Improve Team Performance and Patient Outcomes.” Maria Christina Fernandez graduated in spring 2016 from the RN-MSN/FNP program. Her poster, "Efficacy of Low Microbial Diet in Immunocompromised Adult Bone Marrow Transplant Patients,” is about utilizing evidence-based literatures on low microbial diet in order to decipher the effectiveness and importance of the said diet in immunocompromised adult bone marrow transplant patients.
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School of Public Affairs & Civic Engagement

Leveling the Playing Field: The Willie L. Brown Jr. Fellowship

A CHSS feature story focuses on Jared Walker, a Willie L. Brown, Jr. Fellow who worked as an intern in the San Francisco City Administrator’s Office. The fellowship program, directed by Professor of Urban Studies & Planning Raquel Pinderhughes, offers public-sector opportunities to students who have overcome obstacles. 
Pictured: Jared Walker and SF City Administrator Naomi Kelly at City Hall
Read the story

Department of Physical Therapy

PT students present research at Graduate Showcase

Three students represented the Physical Therapy program for the annual Graduate Showcase at SF State on April 21, 2016. Two of the DPT 3 students presented the research they conducted as part of the research intensive PT 420 sequence. Megan Yamashiro presented her findings comparing MRIs of knees with and without osteoarthritis, performed under the direction of faculty member Rich Souza. Stacie Wong represented her research group (including Rebecca Noonan and Catherine Chen under the direction of faculty member Amber Fitzsimmons) to present the reduction in falls experienced by inpatients with an interprofessional patient safety initiative. DPTSc student Valerie Block had a poster at the Showcase describing her dissertation study of Fitbit activity monitoring in people with multiple sclerosis. She will present her research again at the national Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers in June.

PT grad students recognized for academic excellence

Amanda (Dea) Dauphinee and Valerie Block from the Graduate Program in Physical Therapy were honored at SF State’s Graduate Recognition Ceremony on May 25, 2016. Diane D. Allen represented the Physical Therapy faculty. The annual ceremony honors graduate students who have achieved academic excellence. The academic accomplishments of each student are read while Ann Hallum, dean of the Division of Graduate Studies, hoods each one. Faculty representing the various graduate programs are recognized. Congratulations to our honored graduates!

Department of Recreation, Parks & Tourism

Recreation and Park interns recognized

Rec and Park interns
At a Recreation and  Park Commission meeting at SF City Hall, Recreation and Park Department General Manager Phil Ginsburg thanked 12 graduating students from SF State’s Department of Recreation, Parks & Tourism, who spent four months working as interns alongside and embedded with San Francisco Recreation and Park Department staff. This is the seventh year of the internship program, in which 50 students have participated. Half of them have gone on to work for Rec and Park in some capacity after their internships concluded, and about 10 of them have become full-time permanent employees at Rec and Park. This year, the interns worked on a variety of projects, including improving staffing efficiency, updating site emergency plans, applying for Audubon Society certification for TPC Harding Park and improving communication between staff and community recreation council groups.

Tierney wins award for Yampa River book

Photographer John Fiedler and Professor Pat Tierney have won the 2016 Colorado Book of the Year Award in the Pictorial Category for their book, “Colorado's Yampa River, Free Flowing and Wild from the Flat Tops to the Green.” The book takes you on a journey down the last major free flowing river in the Colorado River Basin, from the Rocky Mountains to its confluence with the Green River in Dinosaur National Monument. Considerations for the award in this category include not only the photographs but also how the text and sidebars are linked to the photos. 

Students engage in service-learning in Costa Rica

waterfall near Costa Rica/Panama border
During 2016 Spring Break, 19 Recreation, Parks & Tourism (RPT) seniors traveled on a faculty-led study abroad trip to Costa Rica with Associate Professor Pavlína Látková and Assistant Professor Jackson Wilson. This international ecotourism trip was part of RPT 470 service-learning class and designed to enable students’ participation in a service-learning experience and experiential learning abroad.
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Project evaluates California passenger rails

For the past two years, Associate Professor Pavlína Látková, Assistant Professor Jackson Wilson, and Assistant Professor Aiko Yoshino have been working on the California Passenger Rail Evaluation project sponsored by the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans). Látková and four graduate and undergraduate research assistants recently spent 14 days collecting data on trains from Auburn to San Diego. This is just the latest work in the $1,267,398.00 funded research project focusing on examining current users and non-users of California Passenger Rail system. Collected data are being analyzed and reported in a series of professional technical reports to assist Caltrans to increase California Passenger Rail user satisfaction with their services, reinforce the mobility of individuals in California, and expand awareness of rail safety and current sustainable practices among California Passenger Rail users and non-users. 

Class looks at dog regulations in parks

dog near sign that reads No Dogs Allowed
After decades of debate filled with many accusations and claims, the Golden Gate National Recreation Area recently proposed a new “dog management” rule. One claim that has consistently been made was that reducing or eliminating off-leash dog recreation will reduce not only canine, but also their human companions’ physical activity. Jackson Wilson’s graduate research methods class (RPT 810 Research Methods in Recreation, Parks & Tourism) studied this claim using structured observations and surveys at three parks with different leash regulations. The class will be submitting their findings to a peer-reviewed journal this summer. 

School of Social Work


Susanna JonesSchool welcomes new director

Susanna Jones, Ph.D., M.S.W. begins her position as director of the School of Social Work on August 8, 2016. Jones comes from Long Island University (LIU) in Brooklyn, New York, where she was in the department of social work for 15 years. During her time as faculty at LIU she held numerous administrative roles. Jones is originally from Los Angeles and is a product of the CSU system. She completed her undergraduate studies at CSU Northridge and later attended San Jose State University, where she received her MSW. Susanna completed her Ph.D. in social welfare and has a certificate in women's studies from the City University of New York, Graduate Center. 
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Lee delivers presentations, keynote, at meetings in South Korea

Associate professor Yeon-Shim Lee presented her work at the Joint World Conference on Social Work, Education and Social Development 2016, held June 27-30 in Seoul, South Korea. She presented “Predicting Help-Seeking Attitudes Toward Mental Health Services Among American Indian Older Adults in USA: Is Andersen’s Behavioral Model a Good Fit?” and “Contributing Factors of Depressive Symptoms among Rural Older Adults in South Dakota, USA.” In addition, Lee was a keynote speaker at two symposia in July, also in Seoul, that brought together scholars, medical and social service providers and activists to address “Elder Mistreatment and International Human Right: Health, Mental Health and Prevention.” The symposia were sponsored by Seoul City Dobong Senior Welfare Center and Guang Mong City Senior Welfare Center.  

Takahashi presents on transformation and change at NASW conference

Professor Rita Takahashi delivered a paper/presentation at the NASW National Conference on June 24 in Washington, D.C. The theme of the conference was “Leading Change, Transforming Lives.” Consistent with that focus, the presentation connected what she found to be essential elements required to successfully and appropriately lead change and transform lives for social justice and equity. Using qualitative data she acquired from thirty years of oral history research, she pinpointed four major factors that must be present for change to occur. These are captured in the acronym, WILL, which stands for will, insight, liberty, and leadership. The title of Takahashi’s presentation was “WILL for Social Justice and Equity: Factors for Transformation and Change.”

Department of Sociology and Sexuality Studies

Professor recalls early days of sexuality studies

Jim BroganIn an interview, Jim Brogan, professor emeritus of English at San Francisco State University, shares his memories of teaching sexuality studies at the University. In the 1970s, Brogan taught “Gay and Lesbian Love in Lit,” the first course on a gay topic at SF State. 
Read the interview

M.A. Sexuality Studies Program holds capstone event 

On May 26, the Department of Sexuality Studies held its graduate symposium for the M.A. program. The symposium is the department’s annual opportunity to share and celebrate thesis work the students have completed for their master of arts degree. This year’s event showcased a wide range of topics including ’zines, policy documents, films, survey data and open-ended interviews representing the rigor of student work in the program. Importantly, students discussed new possibilities for sexuality education: policy innovations, pedagogical possibilities, and commitments to address students’ embodied experiences of race, gender and sexuality. For example, students called on social movements — feminist and LGBTQ liberation — to address these inequalities and provided significant insights into the ways that education, journalism, popular culture, health care and the criminal justice system have too often failed to address the needs of marginalized communities. 
Pictured (left to right): Sexuality Studies M.A. students Christian Bannister, Crystal Madrilles, Jay Lykens, Reed Milliard and Lexus Killingsworth

Department of Sociology welcomes new faculty 

Valerie Francisco-Menchavez    Marla Ramirez
The department offers a warm welcome to two new assistant professors: Valerie Francisco-Menchavez (left) received her Ph.D. in sociology from the City University of New York Graduate Center. Her academic interests include global and transnational sociology, migration and immigration studies, and diaspora with a special interest in the Philippine migration. 
Marla Ramirez received her Ph.D. in Chicana and Chicano Studies with a doctoral emphasis in Feminist Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research examines immigration policies of the Great Depression era, specifically focused on the experiences of Mexican repatriation and banishment of U.S. citizen children of Mexican descent.
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Sears book honored by Lambda Literary Awards

In June, Associate Professor Clare Sears traveled to New York City to attend the 28th Annual Lambda Literary Awards Ceremony, where her book, "Arresting Dress: Cross-Dressing, Law, and Fascination," was honored as a finalist in the LGBT Studies category. The book traces the career of anti-cross-dressing laws from municipal courtrooms and codebooks to newspaper scandals, vaudevillian theater, freak-show performances and commercial “slumming tours.” It shows that the law did not simply police normative gender but actively produced it by creating new definitions of gender normality and abnormality. It also tells the story of the tenacity of those who defied the law, spoke out when sentenced and articulated different gender possibilities. The Lambda Literary Awards are the most prestigious awards in LGBT literature.  

Watermelon Woman posterSymposium to celebrate ‘Watermelon Woman’ anniversary

With the support of a CHSS mini-Grant, Assistant Professor and CREGS Director Darius Bost will convene a symposium September 23-24 at SF State in honor of the 20th anniversary of Cinema Studies Professor Cheryl Dunye's critically acclaimed film "The Watermelon Woman." The symposium, titled "Black Feminist/Lesbian/Queer/Trans* Cultural Production," will honor Dunye's body of work — which grapples with questions of race, class, gender, and sexuality — by exploring the overlaps and tensions between the various critical approaches that have emerged in the "new black studies."  The symposium will feature a film festival, keynote address by filmmaker Dee Rees ("Pariah," 2011, and “Bessie,” 2015), scholarly presentations by nationally recognized scholars from around the country, and readings by novelist Jewelle Gomez and performance artist Brian Freeman. For more information, contact

Faculty present on HIV prevention, sexuality education 

Professor Colleen Hoff presented “HIV Prevention Among Gay Couples” as part of a plenary on health equity in HIV/AIDS prevention at the annual meeting of the Society for Prevention Research. The meeting, held in San Francisco in June, had the theme of “Using Prevention Science to Promote Health Equity and Improve Well-being.” 

Professor Jessica Fields participated in an international summit on sexuality education at Linköping University in Norrköping, Sweden this June. She was one of a dozen researchers from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, the UK and the U.S. who gathered to discuss the state of sexuality education research and practice and to establish an international network of collaborating scholars.

Sexuality Studies students attend Gloria Steinem Leadership training

Memorial in DC for Orlando massacre victims
In June, five Sexuality Studies M.A. students attended the Gloria Steinem Leadership Institute training in Washington, D.C. on behalf of CREGS (the Center for Research & Education on Gender & Sexuality) and URGE (Unite for Reproductive and Gender Equality). The event included skills workshops and panels with guest speakers such as abortion doulas, reproductive rights lawyers and religious-affiliated activists. The students who attended (Nicolette Gullickson, Rachel Henry, Joanna Lamstein, Michelle Parra and Jillian Salazar) will start an URGE chapter on the SF State campus in Fall 2016. 
Pictured: While in D.C. for the training, students participate in a memorial for victims of the Orlando massacre.


Below is a selection of recent news stories featuring members of the CHSS community. For a more comprehensive list, see the In the Media page on the CHSS website.
  • Criminal Justice Lecturer James Dudley discusses police reform measures in a radio segment on KQED's Forum with Michael Krasny (7/12/16)
  • Connie Ulasewicz, professor in the Department of Consumer & Family Studies/Dietetics, talks about sustainability in fashion during a panel discussion hosted by the Commonwealth Club of California and broadcast on KQED Radio (6/11/16) 
  • Professor of Health Education Erik Peper authors a piece on the effects of LED screens on users’ vision, in the neighborhood newspaper The Western Edition (7/2/16)
  • Research led by Patrick Tierney, professor in the Department of Recreation, Parks & Tourism, is cited in an editorial in the Marin Independent Journal (6/10/16)
  • In a podcast, Roe McDermott, a journalist, columnist and a Fulbright Scholar in the Sociology and Sexuality Studies Department., discusses what the Stanford case tells us about everyday sexism and how sexual assault is handled in and out of the courts system in Ireland, in Irish Times (6/10/16) 
  • Professor of Urban Studies & Planning Raquel O. Rivera Pinderhughes is quoted in a story about Portland's fear of becoming the next San Francisco, in SF Weekly (6/8/16)


CHSS connection is published every other month by the College Office. Send newsletter submissions to Michael Broder, director of college relations, at The deadline is September 16 for the October 2016 issue. Send photos too! 
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