Skip to main content

Seventh ASSERT cohort pitches transformative research ideas

Group stands on a stage
From left to right: Kevin Feris, Donna Llewellyn, Qizhen Deng, Candyce Reynolds, Raissa Miller, Amy Ulappa, Jason Herbeck, Sondra Miller, Stephanie Galla, Allison Simler-Williamson, Vinita Sharma, Courtney Hollar, Allison Wolfe, Jared Talley, Marie-Anne de Graaff

The Institute for Inclusive and Transformative Scholarship recently hosted members of the seventh ASSERT (Aligning Stakeholders and Structures to Enable Research Transformation) to share their research in three-minute pitches to members of the community. Twelve faculty members across five academic colleges participated in the ASSERT Pitch event, a culmination of the year-long cohort. The event celebrated the personal and professional development of faculty participants and their readiness to conceive transformative research ideas.

ASSERT is led by Institute for Inclusive and Transformational Scholarship (IFITS) Executive Director Donna Llewellyn, and professors Marie-Anne de Graaf and Kevin Feris. Initiated as a National Science Foundation-funded project, this past ASSERT cohort was supported by the Division of Research and Economic Development, the Office of the Provost and the College of Arts and Sciences. All colleges, in addition to the Office of the Provost and the Division of Research and Economic Development, will support this program beginning with the next cohort.

The program operates by improving academic structures, addressing the cultural issues at the university that inhibit academic risk taking, and supporting faculty growth as scholars, leaders, educators and professionals in a community-centric environment. Each year, a cohort of faculty, from various ranks and academic units, become an ASSERTive community as they work and grow together, identifying values, building leadership skills, and working towards transformational research.

The 2023 ASSERT faculty cohort

“How Do We Protect Something Before It’s Gone?”
Stephanie Galla, Department of Biological Sciences
College of Arts and Sciences

“Teaching for Skills that Matter: Transforming the Culture of General Education”
Candyce Reynolds, University Foundations/Department of Psychological Science Undergraduate Studies/College of Arts & Sciences

“Developing Word Learning Skills for English Learners”
Qizhen Deng, Department of Literacy, Language, and Culture
College of Education

“Neuroeducation: Exploring Neuroscience in Therapeutic Work”
Raissa Miller, Department of Counselor Education
College of Education

“Expanding Undergraduate Research Opportunities”
Amy Ulappa, Department of Biological Sciences
College of Arts and Sciences

“What You Don’t Know CAN Hurt You…and Your Grandchildren”
Vinita Sharma, School of Public and Population Health
College of Health Sciences

“We’re Doing Something Right”
Courtney Hollar, Engineering Plus Program/Department of Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering
College of Engineering

“Bones of the Past, Conservation for the Future”
Allison Wolfe, Department of Anthropology
College of Arts & Sciences

“Durable Skills: A Case for Active Listening”
Sondra Miller, Department of Civil Engineering
College of Engineering

“Aspirational Workforce Development: Place-Based Experiential Learning in Rural Idaho”
Jared Talley, Department of Environmental Studies
School of Public Service

“Évelyne Trouillot — History, Humanity, and the Literary Construction of Haiti”
Jason Herbeck, Department of World Languages
College of Arts and Sciences

“Scaling Up: The Ecological Impacts of Plant Pandemics”
Allison Simler-Williamson, Department of Biological Sciences
College of Arts and Sciences

Applications for the eighth cohort are currently open and close Oct. 10. Watch the recording from the ASSERT Pitch Event for the seventh cohort.