Issue 14, April 2019
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Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Al Bardi

As a member of the Associated Colleges of the South (ACS), Sewanee is eligible to apply for grants from the organization that promote institutional effectiveness, innovations in pedagogy, and enhanced inclusivity. Sewanee faculty have recently collaborated with colleagues from Furman, Davidson, Morehouse, Spelman, and other ACS schools.

Dr. Al Bardi, Associate Professor and Chair of Psychology and Dr. Elizabeth Skomp, Professor of Russian and Associate Dean of the College, are working closely with colleagues on inclusivity at ACS campuses.

“In our review of research on diversity and academia, we discovered that although much attention has been paid to the inclusiveness of the campus climate as a whole, comparatively little work has been done with university and college departments,” explains Bardi.  “Departments, however, are the day-to-day work environment of college and university faculty. [We] want to help departments become places of inclusion, where all faculty feel valued and part of a constructive process.”

These researchers are developing a tool kit that can be used by departments to assess and improve their own inclusive practices. A cornerstone of the project is a multi-faceted measure of inclusiveness which departments can have faculty complete as part of a self-study. They will be piloting the questions for the Departmental Inclusiveness Scale with randomly selected ACS faculty at the end of April.

“To create and refine questions for our measure of departmental inclusiveness, we have conducted focus groups and individual interviews with Sewanee faculty,” Bardi adds. “Through that process we have learned quite a lot already, and we haven't even asked the questions yet! We have learned that faculty have given a great deal of thought to diversity and how people of all backgrounds are included in their work together. Faculty have told us that inclusiveness appears in our informal interactions with one another, how we get our work done as departments, whether individual needs and circumstances are respected, and in a number of other ways.”

“We are still refining the questions of our measure. Colleagues have given us thorough and challenging feedback about the questions we have written so far, and we are currently revising questions and adding more. Once we settle on a final list of questions, then we will pilot those questions with faculty across the ACS member campuses. At that point, we will be able to use statistical techniques to further refine the questions and also to explore how inclusiveness is related to other important factors of faculty work life such as job satisfaction.”  


Student Spotlight: All the students at Scholarship Sewanee!

The 25th Scholarship Sewanee is just two days away. This year’s celebration of undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative activity is the largest ever, with 98 posters, 53 oral presentations and two keynote speakers. Well over 200 students will be participating as presenters this year. Most of these students are just presenting once, but a surprisingly large number of students will be involved in two or more presentations. The most prolific student is psychology major Kaylei Goodine, C’19, who will be giving two oral presentations and presenting three posters! 

There are presentations from 22 areas, including archeology, art, biology, chemistry, computer science, earth and environmental studies, economics, English, German, history, humanities, international and global studies, math, medical and health programs, medieval studies, neuroscience, physics/astronomy, politics, psychology, religious studies, statistics, and women’s and gender studies. Some of the posters and oral presentations reflect work done in a class, others are the projects of honors students, and many are the result of independent studies or work in various labs.

The events begin on late afternoon on Thursday, April 25, with a talk at 4:30 p.m. in Gailor Auditorium by Dr. Erika Milam of Princeton University entitled “The Hunt for Human Nature in Cold War America.” The oral presentations begin at 8:00 a.m. on Friday, April 26 and continue until 5:00 pm. At 1:00 p.m. in Blackman Auditorium, Dr. Ramesh Srinivasan of UCLA will speak on ”The Internet of Tomorrow Stories from Beyond the Valley.” The poster session, which will cover the first floor of Spencer Hall will begin at 2:30 p.m. and end at 5:00 pm.

For the complete schedule of Scholarship Sewanee, please see

Russell Sage Foundation

The Russell Sage Foundation, a major sponsor of research in the social sciences, is accepting letters of inquiry until May 23, 2019 for multiple programs and special initiatives, including Behavioral Economics; Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration; Social, Political, and Economic Inequality; Decision Making and Human Behavior in Context; Immigration and Immigrant Integration; and the Social, Economic, and Political Effects of the Affordable Care Act. More details about these programs can be found here. Helpful information about applying for funding can be found in the Grant Writing Guidelines.

Get Ready: NEH Summer Stipends Program 2019 Limited Submission Competition 

The National Endowment for the Humanities will release the application package for its popular Summer Stipends program on May 15.  Sewanee conducts an internal competition because tenured faculty and faculty in tenure-track positions who are teaching full-time must be nominated by the institution for the two available application slots. The 2019 internal competition calendar will be published shortly after the application package is released, with an anticipated late August deadline for concept paper submissions.

NSF Seeking Interdisciplinary Proposals
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is accepting applications for its Methodology, Measurement, and Statistics Program, an interdisciplinary initiative for the social, behavioral, and economic sciences. The NSF is particularly interested in supporting the development of “…innovative analytical and statistical methods and models” through funding mechanisms like the regular research awards and awards for conferences and community development activities. Information about recent awards made through this program, including project abstracts, can be found here. The next deadline for applications is August 29, 2019.
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