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Illinois College of Applied Health Sciences

Dear AHS faculty and staff:

Hi, everyone. We are about a month away from the start of the Fall semster, and I am very excited to soon see everyone back on campus. However, I am cognizant that July is Burnout Month, so I want to advise everyone to take some time to rest. There are several links on that website on how to alleviate stress, spot burnout and stop it, and more. I urge you to take a look.

I love seeing all the updates about media coverage, grants, and publications, so I encourage you to continue sharing your accomplishments to publish in The Dean’s List. To ensure inclusion in Monday's email, we ask that you send information by 5 p.m. the previous Friday to Items will be reviewed and edited for style and grammar.

Cheryl Hanley-Maxwell
Dean, College of Applied Health Sciences


In the latest edition of Experts Q&A, we asked Laura Rice, Interim Director of the Master of Public Health Program; Interim Director, Master of Science in Health Administration Program, and KCH Associate Professor about COVID-19, vaccinations and returning to campus.

SHS rising senior Jenna Pryor discussed her internship at The Autism Program.


KCH Associate Professor Sandraluz Lara-Cinisomo is the Co-Principal Investigator of a project to evaluate the benefits of the Freedom School Program summer reading program in Charlotte, N.C. Racial and ethnic minority children are at increased risk of experiencing reading loss during summer break. The Principal Investigator is Dr. Bruce Taylor, Professor in Reading and Elementary Education at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte.

RST graduate student John Strauser has secured a competitive USDA SARE grant (sustainable agriculture research and education) related to his research with RST Professor Bill Stewart on barriers to grass-based agriculture in the driftless region of Illinois-Wisconsin. The goal of the project is to facilitate an increase in acreage for grassland bird habitat. Strauser is the son of KCH Professor David Strauser.


RST Assistant Professor Sharon Zou presented a research paper entitled, “Allocations of Government Funding for Public-owned Tourist Attractions in China: An Empirical Examination,” at the Travel & Tourism Research Association’s International Annual Conference. Zou and her collaborators found that for public attractions in China, attraction attributes played an influential role in the amount of government appropriations, but they were less impactful on the attractions’ likelihood of receiving government funding.


Eric McClarey, who received his bachelor's degree from RST and a master's degree and K-12 teaching certificate in physical education teaching from KCH, has a new book available entitled, TL;DR: Financial Literacy for Illinois Teachers’ Retirement System Members: Optimizing Financial Decisions Based on Your TRS Benefits. McClarey is now an instructor in physical education and health at Illinois College.


Congratulations to Sarah Jones and Melissa Bruce, rising seniors in SHS, who have been awarded the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s 2021 Students Preparing for Academic-Research Careers (SPARC) Award. The SPARC Award aims to cultivate student interest in pursuing a research doctorate (PhD) in communication sciences and disorders (CSD) and a career as a faculty-researcher in CSD. Both students will receive $1,000 to complete research under the guidance of their mentors. Sara is an undergraduate research assistant in the Aging and Neurocognition Lab. Her SPARC award will allow her to study social engagement in the caregivers of persons with dementia under the guidance of SHS Associate Professor Raksha Mudar and KCH Assistant Professor Mina Raj. Melissa is an undergraduate research assistant in the Intellectual DisAbilities Communication Lab. Her SPARC award will allow her to study how typically developing preschoolers talk about people’s thoughts, feelings, and other mental states during narrative storytelling under the guidance of SHS Assistant Professor Marie Channell. Congratulations, Sarah and Melissa!


You are consistently using the Internet for your research needs, but did you know AHS has an Intranet? Using the AHS Intranet, you can get answers to questions such "Who do I talk to about undergraduate student issues?"


The Audiology and Speech Language Pathology Clinic is offering group and individual therapy this summer. Illinois residents can receive telepractice services over Zoom from June 14 to Aug. 6. For more information, visit, email, or call 217-333-2205.


The Wellness Research Collaborative in Multiple Sclerosis (Well-MS) is seeking to recruit faculty, staff and students to join our working group. The mission of the collaborative is to support the health and well-being of individuals living with Multiple Sclerosis in Central Illinois and beyond through research and outreach activities. Our group collaborates on grant submissions, publications, and other scholarly activities. We have developed a research registry and database to facilitate data collection and recruitment of participants. We also engage in community outreach activities to support the MS community and foster collaborations with other researchers outside of UIUC. The working groups meets on a monthly basis, and all are welcome to join. If you are interested in being involved with the MS collaborative, please contact Laura Rice for additional details.

The Human Factors and Aging Laboratory is seeking research participants for a study titled “Understanding Older Adults’ Willingness to Adopt a Health Application.” The goal of this study is to learn about older adults' perception towards adopting digital health systems. Furthermore, we would like to understand motivators or barriers to adopting new technology. This study will last 2 hours and take place on zoom. Potential participants must be 60 years old or older, currently have a smart phone, be willing to use zoom, have a device or computer that is zoom compatible, and have internet access. Participants will be compensated with a $25 Amazon Gift Card. For more information, please contact Mimi Trinh.

We are looking for adults aged 21-55 years with high weight for height to participate in a study into prolonged sitting and how adults think. The study involves three visits to Freer Hall, three Zoom calls, wearing activity monitors, and screening procedures. Measures include cognitive tests, electroencephalography, a body scan, maximal exercise test, and blood draws. Compensation up to $250. For more information, email Dominika Pindus.

Investigators of the VetCareMind study are seeking a graduate hourly student certified to lead mindfulness-based training classes to help modify the curriculum from in-person to live stream. Investigators of the VetCareMind study will interview caregivers of veterans with neurocognitive disorders and/or posttraumatic stress disorder to ensure the modified training is responsive to caregivers’ technological needs. Please contact Dr. Sandraluz Lara-Cinisomo if you are interested in learning more about this exciting opportunity.

Are you/were you a caregiver to a veteran with brain-related disorders, including traumatic brain injury (TBI), post-traumatic epilepsy, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and/or any other neurocognitive disorders? Are you 60 years of age or older? If the answer is yes, now is your chance to be part of the first-ever study that is trying to understand the needs and experiences of older caregivers of veterans with brain-related disorders to provide recommendations for new programs and services.  If you are interested in participating, please use any of the following options to complete the brief online screener to determine if you are eligible. The online screener can be found here.

Are you interested in learning martial arts techniques? Participants (aged 18-45), who are low-active will be asked to complete a brief martial arts training plan, exercise plan or educational videos plan as part of our study into the effects of exercise on brain health. For more information, please visit or call 217-300-7484.

We are recruiting mothers and their children (8 to 12 years old) for a study about benefits of familiar voices in noisy places. Requires two, one-hour lab visits. Mothers record a list of sentences. Then children are tested on their ability to recognize the sentences in noise. Participants are paid $15 an hour. Daytime/evening/weekend availability. Free parking. Email: or call 217-300-8336.


The Dean's List is delivered on Monday. To ensure inclusion of your announcement, submit information by 5 pm the previous Friday. Please submit your announcements or calendar items to Items will be reviewed and edited for style and grammar.

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
110 Huff Hall  |  1206 South Fourth St., Champaign, IL 61820 MC-586
Phone: (217) 333-2131 FAX: (217) 333-0404

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