Faculty, Staff — Update, Welcome


In January, Omer Topaloglu, marketing and deputy chair, marketing/information systems/decision sciences (Metro), presented on “When Does the Food Waste Matter the Most?” at the 18th International Conference of the Academy of Global Business Research and Practice in Singapore. Hosted by the Newcastle Australia Institute of Higher Education, the conference revolved around the theme “Leading Sustainability Transitions: Risk, Collaboration and Technology.” He also spoke to 11th and 12th graders at the Siriwat Wittaya School in Bangkok, Thailand, where he spoke about higher education, particularly in business, in the United States.

President Michael Avaltroni was listed among ROI-NJ’s “ROI Influencers: Power List 2024 — Higher Education,” which honors those who are helping to develop the next generation of talent. He was described as an outspoken new leader who brings new perspective to higher ed.”

Kenneth Schneider, vice president for enrollment management, and several FDU students were interviewed on NBC New York’s February 1 episode about the importance of the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and the effects of the timeline delay on student financial aid.

Abiola Adeniyi, health/human services (Van), was named a postdoctoral fellow in the Faculty of Medicine (obstetrics and gynecology department) and an interprofessional education (IPE) scholar at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in Canada, one of the top 50 research universities in the world. She will collaborate with faculty at UBC on research about Interprofessional Health Education.

The Power of Character Strengths: Appreciate and Ignite Your Positive Personality, a 2019 guide cowritten by Robert McGrath, psychology (Metro), was included in The New York Times list of “6 Self-Help Books That Therapists Read Themselves.” The list highlights insightful recommendations from mental health professionals.

As part of its partnership with FellowshipLIFE, an organization committed to providing innovative services and industry-best practices for active older adults, faculty members from the Maxwell Becton College of Arts and Sciences (all from the Florham Campus) will lecture on a variety of topics on select Wednesdays this spring. Among them are Daniel Cassino, government/politics and executive director, FDU Poll, “Nice Presidents Finish Last,” on March 6; Allen Cohen, music, “The Golden Age of Broadway Musical,” on March 13, “The History of Film Music,” on April 10, and “Opera: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow,” on April 17; Harald Parzer, biology, “The Scientific Method and the Development of Evolutionary Thinking” lecture series, on March 20 and March 27; Cordelia Siporin, Becton College, a film viewing of “Gold Diggers of 1933” with a discussion on “Sin on the Silver Screen,” on April 3; and Madelyn Ferrans, law, “Free Speech and the First Amendment,” on May 1, and “Religious Freedom and the Constitution,” on May 8. In January, Gary Darden, history and chair, social sciences/history, did a lecture series on “American Reform Movements from the Great Depression to the Great Society, 1932–1968,” which featured presentations on “FDR and The New Deal,” “Harry Truman and The Fair Deal” and “LBJ and The Great Society.” In February, John Schiemann, government/politics, did a series on “The China Challenge,” focusing on a variety of topics such as President Xi Jinping’s domestic/foreign policy goals, strengths and weaknesses of China and the nature of China’s challenge to the United States.

Alumnus Robert Brody, BA’75 (Metro), thanked Bernard Dick, emeritus, English/communication (Metro), in a December 2023 op-ed for northjersey.com titled “Thank you professor: What we can learn from lessons in gratitude.” Brody wrote that Dick had approached him at the Metropolitan Campus in 1973 and complimented him on an article he had written for the student newspaper, calling him [Brody] a “true writer.” “I never forgot his praise. … he was the only one who ever called me out as qualified for the profession I intended with all my heart to pursue.” In his op-ed Brody also wrote about reaching out to Dick and emailing him. They have since kept in touch.

René Steinke, creative writing (Flor), was mentioned in the article “Name ring a bell? Kristin Elliott, namesake for countless Christmas cards, will discuss her memoir, Jan. 23 in Morristown,” posted on morristowngreen.com. According to Elliott, she was able to complete her latest novel (You All Look Alike, A Family Memoir), through Steinke’s guidance, who was her writing coach.

Alliances in Benchmarking,” an article by Jonathan Schiff, accounting (Metro), was published in the February 2024 issue of Strategic Finance magazine, the monthly flagship publication of the Institute of Management Accountants.

Leonard Grob, emeritus, philosophy (Metro), was a guest at “The Project Censored Show,” where he and John Roth, coauthors of Warnings: The Holocaust, Ukraine and Endangered American Democracy, talked about what’s at stake as the U.S. enters another contentious election year, wars of aggression around the world and a deeply divided public.

Lawrence Sannicandro, Silberman College (Flor), was among the 12 individuals appointed to serve three-year terms on the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Advisory Council starting January. The newly appointed members will provide feedback, observations and recommendations to the IRS and its leadership. Sannicandro is a partner at McCarter & English, LLP, Newark, N.J.

Kara Alaimo, communication and deputy chair, communication (Metro) — in celebration of National Women’s Day — will be speaking about her forthcoming book, Over the Influence: Why Social Media Is Toxic for Women and Girls – And How We Can Take It Back, on March 7, at the Strand Bookstore in New York City. The event will be hosted by the bookstore in celebration of International Women’s Day. On March 19, she will be in a conversation with Francesca Degiuli, sociology (Flor), about “How Social Media Is Impacting Women and Girls” at the Florham Campus (see College and School Happenings for information). For information about her upcoming book-launch events go to Speaking Engagements. Alaimo’s book was also included in the December Musts list (We’re Looking Forward To) at mamabeasts.com. Two of her op-eds were also published: “A big reason so many Americans are still single,” on cnn.com; and “Mark Zuckerberg’s extraordinary apology should only be the beginning,” on cnn.com and trends.crast.net.

James Dougherty, chemistry and chair, chemistry/biochemistry/physics (Flor), has received a $10,000 grant from the New York Society of Cosmetic Chemists to provide the cosmetic science laboratory with supplies and equipment. The funding will support students in the cosmetic science classes to conduct testing of skin color and skin moisture in their laboratory experiences.

On January 23, Peter Woolley, political science and founding director, public/global affairs, was a guest on the PBS Show “Think Tank with Steven Adubato,” where he talked about the role of higher education in political and social discussions and the current state the country’s democracy.

Kathryn Spence, education, director, Sammartino School of Education and director, QUEST/BA–MAT (Metro), helped honor Miriam Singer, education (Metro), on her retirement from the University during the February 1 Knights men’s basketball game against Long Island University.

Rebecca Chace, Becton College (Flor), wrote the article “Books and Maps and Getting Lost: Doug Beube at The Argosy Bookstore,” which was posted on Two Coats of Paint, an award-winning blogazine.

Li Qin, information systems and chair, marketing/information systems/decision sciences (Metro), wrote the article “2024 FDU Best Supply Chain Management Capstone Project Contest” for the Silberman College blog.

Faculty and staff presenters at this spring semester’s LEAD NOW Workshop Series at the Metropolitan Campus include Kristin Cothran, director, Transforming College Campuses (Flor), “Missteps and/or Mistakes?”; Benjamin Freer, psychology; director, psychology/counseling; and co-founder, Center for Empathy Research and Training (Metro), “Empathy on Campus: How to Care for Others and Yourself”; Krystal Mayers-Pagan, University assistant director of student health services (Flor), “Relationships 101”; and S. Craig Mourton, assistant vice president for student affairs, “Engaging in Brave and Courageous Conversations as Leaders.”

The Ides of March,” a solo exhibit of works by Marie Roberts, fine arts (Metro), will run through Friday, March 15, at Manhattanville College’s Brownson Gallery in Purchase, N.Y. The exhibit, curated by Dr. Alkananda Mukerji, art, Manhattanville College, features two research released time projects by Roberts. The first project includes 12 charcoal and gum Arabic paper drawings of fire performers, which she started working on in fall 2021. Although it had initially called for the performers to model for Roberts in her studio, COVID restrictions meant she had to create this series from drawings and memory. The second project was a banner painting that was reworked as “Memento Mori for Indio,” in honor of Indio Magwood, the first performer Roberts ever painted who passed away in 2022.

Benjamin Rifkin, Russian and University provost/senior vice president for academic affairs, did a poetry reading on “Love, Mysticism and Protest: 220 Years of Russian Poetry” on February 1 at the Vancouver Campus. The event was also streamed via Zoom.

Florham Campus biology faculty members Elise Morton and Harald Parzer accompanied tropical ecology students to a two-week, study-abroad program in Ecuador. The program was organized by the Universidad San Francisco de Quito and included visits to Paramo, the Cloud Forest and the Yasuni Biosphere Reserve. To read more and see photos go to “FDU students discover biodiversity in Ecuador.”

In January, Janet Boyd, rhetoric/composition and interim dean, Becton College (Metro); Laila Khreisat, computer science and associate dean, Becton College (Flor); and Elizabeth Panuccio, criminal justice, deputy chair of criminology/criminal justice and interim associate dean, Becton College (Metro), attended the American Association of Colleges and Universities Conference in Washington, D.C.

In celebration of Black History Month, Frederick Engram, Jr., higher education (Metro), spoke about his first book, Black Liberation Through Action and Resistance: MOVE, at La Salle University, Philadelphia, Pa., on February 21. The book was published by Hamilton Books in October 2023.

Jordan Sarnoff was promoted to special assistant to the athletic director, athletics (Metro). To read more go to “Sarnoff Named Special Assistant to the Athletic Director.”

Christopher Shanahan, Silberman College (Metro), is one of the speakers at the Sustainability LIVE Net Zero conference that will be held from March 6 to 7 in London. He is vice president of global sustainability supply chain at Thermo Fisher Scientific, Boston, Mass. This spring, Shanahan will also be mentoring students in the MS in supply chain management’s capstone class.

Kathleen Stein-Smith, languages (Metro), was a guest in the February 1 episode of “The Point with Mindy Todd,” on WCAI, National Public Radio’s local station for the Cape, Coast and Islands, which discussed “Foreign Language Instruction.” She presented on “Language Advocacy in the Post-WVU Era: Strategies from French Studies” at the Modern Language Association 2024 Convention held in Philadelphia, Pa., in January.

Manuel Gamez-Garcia, Becton College (Metro), will speak about “Challenges in Hair Care Innovation” at the New York Society of Cosmetic Chemists (NYSCC) Symposium on February 29 at Il Villaggio in Carlstadt, N.J.

On February 29, Michael Curtin, Becton College (Metro), will discuss his book, Challenging the Misconceptions of the United Nations: Promoting a Greater Understanding One Blog at a Time, at Brookdale Community College, Middletown Township, N.J. It was published in 2023 by Dorrance Publishing Co., Inc., Pittsburgh, Pa. Curtin is a former writer and editor for the United Nations Association of the United States of America, Northern New Jersey Chapter.

In the news …

Jonathan Schiff, accounting (Metro), was quoted in the January article “The Absolute Worst Outfits Ever Worn to a Job Interview,” on finance.yahoo.com.

President Michael Avaltroni and Bradford Hurlbut, senior associate vice president/director of athletics (Metro), were quoted in the NJBIZ article “FDU, Bogota Savings Bank announce arena naming rights deal.” Hurlbut was also quoted in the article “FDU’s Rothman Center, rich in hoops history, has a new name,” (northjersey.com and msn.com).

Bruce Peabody, government/politics and director, Florham Institute for Lifelong Learning (Flor), was quoted in the January article “FellowshipLIFE Extends Lifelong Learning Program in Partnership with Fairleigh Dickinson University: Inaugural program to take place at Fellowship Village and expanding virtually to FellowshipLIFE communities,” posted on tapinto.net (Basking Ridge).

Larry Goodin, Becton College (Metro), was quoted in the February article “Dow High junior helps start app offering peer-to-peer mental health support,” posted on Midland Daily News.

James Almeida, entrepreneurship (Flor) and dean, Silberman College, was quoted in the January article “FDU Launches First-of-its-Kind Global AI Contest for Teens,” in New Jersey Business Magazine.

Kara Alaimo, communication and deputy chair, communication (Metro), was quoted in the January article “Can Anonymous Facebook Posts Save the Moms?” posted on mamabeasts.com.

Patrick Cozza, wealth management and executive-in-residence, wealth management (Flor), was quoted in the February article “How does umbrella insurance work?” posted on insurance.com.

Jason Young, senior associate athletic director/chief operating officer, athletics (Metro), was quoted in the Sports Business Journal article “Fairleigh Dickinson arena sponsorship latest deal after Cinderella run.”

Eleanor McGlinchey, psychology (Metro), was quoted in The New York Times article “How Long Is Too Long to Stay in Bed?” posted on February 17.

Daniel Cassino, government/politics and executive director, FDU Poll (Flor), was the featured guest in the January 15 episode of Steve Adubato’s State of Affairs program, which discussed “The Psychology Behind Poll Responses and Voting Results.” He was quoted in the following articles about various polls: “The new indictment in the Robert Menendez corruption case could ramp up voter disgust: How will New Jersey voters react to new corruption allegations involving Senator Robert Menendez?” (whyy.org); “FDU Poll: Kim leads Murphy, 32%–20%, with 31% undecided” (roi-nj.com); “Andy Kim leads Tammy Murphy 32% to 20% in FDU Poll” (insidernj.com); “New poll has bit of good and bad news for Andy Kim and Tammy Murphy: Kim leads Murphy 30–20, but lots of undecideds make state of race a mystery” (New Jersey Monitor); “Andy Kim leads Tammy Murphy by double digits in NJ Senate race, poll says” (Politico); “Andy Kim leads Tammy Murphy in new poll for N.J. Democratic Senate nomination” (The Bergen Record); “Phil Murphy’s job approvals remain steady, new FDU poll shows” and “Kim posts 12-point lead over Murphy in first independent poll of U.S. Senate primary” (New Jersey Globe); “Democratic Rep. Andy Kim leads N.J.’s first lady in Senate primary poll” (washingtontimes.com); “Tammy Murphy’s Senatorial Anointment Off to Rocky Start” (Shore News Network); “Tammy Murphy U.S. Senate run could hurt Gov. Murphy’s job approval rating, new poll shows” (nj.com); “Pleasantville Mayor Ward announces reelection run: Political briefs” (pressofatlanticcity.com); and “Bad News for Governor’s Wife in U.S. Senate Race in NJ” (New Jersey 101.5). Cassino also was quoted in the following articles: “After surprise upset, Assembly newcomer aims to be a voice for those who struggle” (newjerseymonitor.com); “Murphy’s chief of staff also heads NJ DOT. Can she keep doing both effectively?” (Burlington County Times and northjersey.com); “Menendez’s fundraising takes a big hit since indictment” (njspotlightnews.org); and “Baraka on Trenton Road Trip, Then Will Present ‘Vision for New Jersey’,” (tapinto.net [Newark]).

In Memoriam

Jason Amore, senior vice president for University advancement, died on February 6 at the age of 48. He joined FDU in 2021 and was set to assume the position of vice president for university advancement at St. Bonaventure University, New York. In a message to the FDU community, President Michael Avaltroni said that Amore “played a strong role at FDU during a pivotal time and led many important achievements in fund-raising. He made an even greater impression with his positive outlook, cooperative attitude and friendly demeanor.” Amore is survived by his two children, Julian and Adelynn; his mother, Rebecca Stayer Amore; siblings Tiffany and Ed; many more family members; and his children’s mother, Kara. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the Dennis J. Amore Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o Allegany County Area Foundation, 6087 State Rt. 19, Belmont, N.Y. 14813.

Wendy Hager, retired assistant to the director of student life (Metro), died on February 8 at the age of 83. She joined FDU in 1981 and retired in 2021. In 2017, she received a Pillar of FDU Award during the Academic Convocation. The award is given to staff members who make extraordinary contributions to FDU and who have been with the University for more than 10 years. During her time at the Metropolitan Campus, she served as the staff adviser to several student organizations including the Militis Yearbook and Alpha Epsilon Phi Sorority.

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