UCR Psychology Professor Recognized by the American Psychological Association

Kate Sweeny

Kate Sweeny

Kate Sweeny, associate professor of psychology, is the 2016 recipient of the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Distinguished Scientific Award for an Early Career Contribution to Psychology. The award is divided up into 10 areas of psychology, and Sweeny was recognized in the area of health psychology. The awards are given to scientists within 9 years of receiving their Ph.D., and one award is given every other year in each of 10 areas of psychology. Sweeny focuses her research in two areas: how people cope with uncertain waiting periods and how doctors should talk to their patients.

Online Book Review Created by UCR Professor Tom Lutz Awarded $100,000 Grant

Tom Lutz

Tom Lutz

The Los Angeles Review of Books has been awarded a $100,000 grant by LA2050, a grant program of the Goldhirsh Foundation. The journal is one of 10 organizations the foundation funded “to make Los Angeles the best place to learn, create, connect, play, and live.”

LARB was founded at UCR by creative writing professor Tom Lutz, with the help of former CHASS Dean Steve Cullenberg and former Provost Ellen Wartella. It has featured the work of many UCR faculty, including Reza Aslan, Juan Felipe Herrera, Laila Lalami, Mike Davis, Rob Latham, Andrew Winer, Nalo Hopkinson, Josh Emmons, Steven Brint, Jane Smiley, Robin Russin, Erica Edwards, Toby Miller, Perry Link, Sonja Lyubomirsky, Susan Straight, Mark Haskell Smith, Susan Ossman, Tod Goldberg, Deanne Stillman, Fariba Zarinebaf, Georgia Warnke, Stephanie Hammer, Mariam Lam, Vorris Nunley, Sherryl Vint, Jayna Brown, David Lloyd, Marlene Zuk, Ben Ehrenreich, Pawel Frelik, Gayle Brandeis, Steven Hackel, Chris Buckley, and Mary Otis, and some two dozen alumni and graduate students, including Alex Espinoza, Jerome Winter, Minda Honey, Rory Moore, Keenan Norris, Michael Datcher, Alan Lovegreen, Tatyana Kagamas, Sean Matharoo, Gabriela Juaregui, Joshua Hardina, Matthew Snyder, Simon Lee, John Dixon Mirasola, Michael Jarvis, Amy Hough, Deborah Dunham, and Eric Shonkwiler, among others.

The journal was the subject of a lengthy article in the Chronicle of Higher Education on Jan. 3 in which the author, Carnegie Mellon University English professor Jeffrey J. Williams, called LARB “a new model of a literary review, not tied to a newspaper or based in a university but creating its own autonomous space, like a nonprofit gallery or museum, supported by a mix of donors, grants, ads, and memberships, and drawing a diverse audience. It is the kind of idea that makes you wonder why no one had done it before.”

UCR Professor Invited to Present at the University of Ghana, Legon

Anthonia Kalu

Anthonia Kalu

Anthonia Kalu, professor of gender and sexuality studies and comparative literature, delivered an invited presentation at the CIHA (Critical Investigations into Humanitarianism in Africa) Workshop on Religion, Secularism, and the Nigerian Civil War held at the University of Ghana, Legon in October.

Kalu’s presentation was based on her collection of short stories about the Nigerian Civil War, “Broken Lives and Other Stories” (Ohio University Press, 2003). The book focuses on the everyday lives of people battered by the war – also known as the Biafran War – and issues ranging from the implications of self-rule and the presence of soldiers among civilians to masquerades, air raids and rape. The stories convey the vitality and joy of Africa’s women and youth, and the impact of the brain drain caused by decades of war and instability on the continent.

Her presentation was the subject of the inaugural post in a series about the Nigerian/Biafran war on the CIHA Blog and can be read here. The blog is based at four research institutions: UC Irvine, the University of Ghana, Legon, the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Africa, and the University of Rochester in the United States.

Two UCR Psychology Professors Recognized by the Association for Psychological Science

John Franchak and Rachel Wu

John Franchak and Rachel Wu

John Franchak and Rachel Wu, both professors of psychology, have been honored as 2015 Rising Stars by the Association for Psychological Science (APS). The Rising Star designation recognizes outstanding psychological scientists in the earliest stages of their research career post-Ph.D. The APS said it recognizes those whose innovative work has already advanced the field and signals great potential for their continued contributions.

Franchak developed a head-mounted eye tracking method to study mobile infants, which has led to findings about what children see and attend to during everyday situations. And, Wu’s research investigates how we learn across the lifespan, specifically comparing infant/child and adult learning approaches to mitigate cognitive decline during aging.

 

BCOE Professor Named Distinguished Scientist

Walid Najjar

Walid Najjar

The Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) has recognized Walid A. Najjar, Bourns College of Engineering’s chair of the Computer Engineering program and professor ofComputer Science and Engineering, as a Distinguished Scientist for his contributions to advance the computing and information technology industry.

Najjar has worked in various computing fields such as computer architectures and compilers for parallel and high-performance computing, embedded systems, FPGA-based code acceleration and reconfigurable computing. As part of the award, he will join a list of colleagues who provide computing guidance and leadership to ACM and its members.

Each year, ACM selects 40 to 50 Distinguished Scientists from the organization’s more than 100,000 members worldwide. Find out more about ACM and the award here.

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