Spalding University is highlighting graduates from a range of academic programs during Commencement season. Ahead of our last day of ceremonies (Business, Communication, Psychology, Social Work), we wrap up our Commencement Countdown with 2021 Master of Science in Business Communication (Organizational Leadership concentration) grad Jillian Boehmann, who came back to get her master’s to supplement her professional retail, sales and marketing experience.

How do you feel about your accomplishment of completing your degree and graduating?

It definitely felt odd at first to return to school at 37, after so many years away. However, it wasn’t long before I realized how much I really enjoyed writing and presenting, especially when the topics were so applicable to my career. It went by so quickly, but I feel that I learned and accomplished a lot during my time at Spalding and feel proud to be graduating.

What was it like to finish your degree during the pandemic?

Certainly strange, as I was only able to have one course in the classroom before the pandemic hit. However, it just shows how adaptable and resilient both the faculty and students were.

COMMENCEMENT 2021 | Schedules, livestream links and more info

What is something specifically about your academic program that you liked or that stands out about Spalding’s program/system that may not be the case at another school?

I liked the practical approach of the MSBC program. It was not driven by test scores or regurgitating information, but rather on how the materials in each course could be applied in real-life business situations. It helped me to hone both my written and oral communication skills, especially in a time when in-person interactions were very limited, both academically and professionally.

MS IN BUSINESS COMMUNICATION | Overview  | Why an MSBC vs. MBA? | Faculty 

Describe something you have done or accomplished at Spalding that you are proud of.

I am proud that a professor chose to use my presentation as an example for future students, and that I finished with a 4.0 and was invited to be a member of the Sigma Beta Delta Honor Society.

What does it mean to you to become a graduate of Spalding University? What do you think you will take with you from your time at Spalding that will serve you well in your career or life?

It means an opportunity for advancement in my career and more confidence in my ability to advance. It means connection to a wonderful network of faculty and students that will exist for years to come.

What are your next steps with this degree?

My hope is to expand into a different role with my employer, and I also plan to continue with Spalding by pursuing my Human Resources certification in the fall.

As a longtime member of the Board of Trustees and a former board Chair, Paul M. Ratterman has for years been one of the most influential leaders of Spalding University, and the institution has become an important part of his life.

Now, when he advocates for Spalding in the community or when he votes on a board action, he’ll have the additional sense of purpose and pride that comes with being an alumnus of the university.

Ratterman earned the degree of Doctor of Education (EdD) in Leadership from Spalding’s College of Education and celebrated Thursday, June 3 on the first day of Commencement. Ratterman’s wife, Kim, a Spalding nursing alumna, performed the ceremonial hooding of her husband.

“It’s amazing,” said Paul Ratterman, who joined the Spalding board in 2007 and served as chair from 2014-18. “I never thought I would be a Spalding alum, but here I am. Doing the program changes a lot of how you look at life. It’s a lot of work, but it’s definitely worth it.”

COMMENCEMENT | Schedule, livestream links and more information
PHOTOS | See hundreds of images and tag yourself and your loved ones in Spalding’s Facebook album

Spalding President Tori Murden McClure and trustees Paul Ratterman and John Malloy at Commencement
Spalding President Tori Murden McClure and trustees Dr. Paul Ratterman, left, and Dr. John P. Malloy at Commencement on June 3, 2021. Ratterman and Malloy both celebrated earning their EdD in Leadership.

Ratterman, who serves as Managing Director of Fixed Income Capital Markets for Stifel Financial, is one of three Spalding trustees who have recently earned their EdD from the College Education, along with Dr. John P. Malloy, who also participated in Thursday’s Commencement as part of the Class of 2020, and Dr. Rick Blackwell (2018).

As a veteran of banking and investment for more than 30 years as well as an instructor of the American Bankers Association’s Stonier Graduate School of Banking and the ABA International School of Banking, Ratterman was already well-equipped with professional and teaching experience before he sought his doctorate.

SPALDING’s DOCTORATE IN LEADERSHIP | EdD overview | Faculty bios | Videos and testimonials

But he was intrigued by the opportunity of the EdD program to build on his MBA and professional experience by conducting in-depth research and taking on the challenge of academic rigor.

Ratterman was part of an eight-person cohort for the 2021 EdD, and he said the small size of the cohort was valuable in offering a supportive network for the students. Making those friendships will be his favorite memory of the EdD process, he said.

“We all became very, very close, and that interaction was really where the learning takes place,” Ratterman said. “The faculty was also awesome and did a great job.”

He said the EdD program’s guest speakers and panel discussions on leadership topics – including those of the Abramson Leadership Exchange, which are moderated by Spalding Executive in Residence and former Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson – were an enriching addition to the standard curriculum.

“I’d have to rate the quality (of the program) very highly,” Ratterman said. “The Spalding EdD program gave me the opportunity to go much deeper into a topic than I ever would have been able to. And the diversity of the program, diversity of the class allowed me to see things from many different perspectives that I would not have been able to before.”

The doctorate will help expand his opportunities to teach in higher education, said Ratterman, who plans to contribute to the Spalding EdD in the future and be an active alumnus.

Ratterman’s doctoral capstone project was titled, “An Exploration of Ethics Education in U.S. Graduate Banking Schools.”

He interviewed curriculum directors of banking schools around the country about how they teach ethics to students, and he said those banking schools are now eager to read his research conclusions in order to consider ways potentially to improve their programs. Ratterman hopes to publish his findings in a scholarly journal.

Ratterman said serving on the board and studying at Spalding have been rewarding and meaningful.

“It’s exciting to see the growth of the campus from when I started on the board,” he said.
We were much different back then. We’ve more than doubled the campus. We have exciting initiatives in healthcare and physical therapy. Talking to the outside community about Spalding and what it’s doing and how it’s changing lives and the diversity of the school is really powerful. It’s neat to be a part of that.”

Spalding 2021 EdD Cohort at Commencment
The entire 2021 EdD Cohort after Commencement Thursday, June 3, on the steps of Columbia Gym.

 

Spalding will celebrate graduates from the classes of 2020 and 2021 during Commencement this week, June 3-5, 2021. In the leadup, Spalding is featuring graduates from a range of academic programs. Today’s featured graduate is Dr. Sara Story, Associate Professor in Spalding’s Auerbach School of Occupational Therapy, who has earned the degree of Doctor of Education: Leadership from the College of Education. Dr. Story is now a three-time alumna of Spalding, where she also earned her bachelor’s in health science and master’s in OT. She also has a doctorate in OT. 

What was it like to finish your degree during the pandemic? 

I remember being in class the weekend the world shut down. With the unknown looming over us, my cohort and I spent our last “normal” weekend pushing through to learn the best methods for setting up our research studies. Little did we know that weekend would be our last in-person event and we would be tasked with additional obstacles as we began our capstones. The unknown of the world and the unknowns of research were stressful. However, my cohort, “The Great 8” (our group nickname) stayed connected and pushed through. In a time where stress and worry could’ve overtaken us, we linked arms (virtually) and continued to hold each other up. We agreed we to cross the finish line together, and that is exactly what we will do on June 3.

MORE | Learn about Spalding’s Doctor of Education (EdD) in Leadership

Describe something you have done or accomplished at Spalding that you are proud of:

I’ve been able to make lasting friendships and strong community connections with agencies that I knew nothing about before the EdD program. My new connections to community members, agencies, and even my cohort mates have helped me become a stronger educator and influence the students I’m privileged to teach with amazing ways to help serve and access community resources.

What is something personal about your journey to graduating from Spalding that people may not know but that you’d like to share and that you are proud of? 

After accepting my seat in the EdD program, I found out I was expecting my third child. My daughter was born during the launch week of EdD 902. I was proud to have this moment and show my children that no matter your goals in life, you can accomplish anything you set your mind to. I was able to virtually participate in class and continued to progress through the curriculum. Regardless of the circumstances, my family was always there to help see me through. I’m proud my children were able to see me accomplish something for myself, even when it required a lot of hard work. It was great for them to see how a family bonds together to help support someone they love. So this degree is for me, but it wouldn’t be possible without my husband, three kids (A,E & I), and my parents.

What are your next steps with this degree – job, pursuit of another degree, etc.?

Celebrate with a trip to a Disney World! My parents’ 50th wedding anniversary and my EdD degree completion occurred in the same week. So we are going as one big happy family to Disney.

 

Spalding will celebrate graduates from the classes of 2020 and 2021 during Commencement, June 3-5, 2021. In the leadup, Spalding is featuring graduates from a range of academic programs. Today’s featured graduate is Felicia Graham, who is earning the degree of Master of Education in Instructional Leadership as part of the first cohort of Spalding’s Aspiring Leaders principal preparation program with Jefferson County Public Schools. Graham is a third-grade teacher at JCPS’s Dunn Elementary School. 

How do you feel about your accomplishment of completing your degree and graduating?

There are not enough words to accurately describe how I feel about completing my program and graduating, especially during a pandemic. I feel so much pride and joy in my dedication to finish this commitment. Spalding certainly prepared me for my next step in my career.  I am excited to know what my future holds after completing this milestone!

What was it like to finish your degree during the pandemic? 

It was extremely difficult to balance work, school and other commitments. Truly, I contemplated stopping and pursuing this opportunity at another time. However, I was able to prioritize my responsibilities to make it easier to embrace all of my roles that I maintain on a daily basis. In addition, my cohort members and instructors were a great support system that helped me along my journey. I found out what I was truly made of. I pushed myself to new limits and accomplished my goal of completing my degree and graduating.

SPALDING COLLEGE OF EDUCATION | Overview of all bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral programs
JCPS ASPIRING LEADERS PRINCIPAL PREP | Spring 2020 press release | Fall 2020 update

What is something specifically about your academic program that you liked or that stands out about Spalding’s program/system that may not be the case at another school? 

I liked the hybrid format offered by Spalding because of the flexibility we had in attending both online and in-person classes. I also loved how personable my instructors were. If I needed any assistance, they were readily available at any time. Most importantly, my academic program was an established partnership with the local school system, Jefferson County Public Schools. It was amazing and so powerful to have guest speakers from the district because it made the work that I will be doing very realistic! It was so powerful to hear and learn from local leaders who are experts at their positions for the district I work for. The commitment of Spalding to the community is evident as they are preparing future leaders to lead and improve issues faced in schools. I feel these reasons support why Spalding was the perfect fit for me.

SPALDING COMMENCEMENT | 2021 schedule and information

Describe something you have done or accomplished at Spalding that you are proud of:

Receiving my degree is the best accomplishment that I am most proud of at Spalding. I am a proud alumna and look forward to supporting the school in any way possible in the future. I would like to continue to see Spalding work more with the schools in the community.

What does it mean to you to become a graduate of Spalding University? What do you think you will take with you from your time at Spalding that will serve you well in your career or life?

Being a graduate of Spalding is one accomplishment that I am very proud of! Out of all of my degrees, this one feels different because it was very relatable to the career I am pursuing currently. I grew more as an individual and enjoyed learning so much from people who are acutely aware of what it takes to be an effective administrator. By Spalding incorporating local guest speakers along with readings help make the learning so personable for me. With my degree from Spalding, I know that I will be able to take what I have learned and apply to become a leader of change in Jefferson County Public Schools and also positively affect our communities.

What are some of your favorite aspects and favorite memories bout attending Spalding? 

My favorite memories will be all of my instructors that I had this year:  Dr. Glenn Baete, Mr. Kirk Lattimore, and Dr. Tracy Barber. They were all very passionate about educating aspiring leaders and sharing valuable lessons that they learned from their experiences. They are still active and aware of the needs of the district, and they truly take pride in sharing their knowledge and helping to prepare others to continue the necessary work to create equitable, high-performing schools. In addition, it was an honor to have my principal, Dr. Barber, to encourage and support me throughout my graduate education and also apply my learning experience at our school. She is a great leader who is dedicated to helping others thrive and succeed!

What is something personal about your journey to graduating from Spalding that people may not know but that you’d like to share and that you are proud of? 

In graduating from Spalding, I was able to overcome my negative experiences that I have had relating to racism and equity and actually pursue a career in which I can attempt to change this for others. Students need a school leader who believes in the potential for all students to be successful while doing whatever it takes to provide equitable opportunities to guide and assist them throughout their education. I am so passionate about this work that is needed to make our communities better while creating influential and successful citizens. I am so grateful that Spalding believes and supports making the necessary changes to make the world a better place for all people to be accepted and live in.

Share some information about academic work and capstone project.

My group and I were so honored to present our Capstone project to Dr. Barber and Mr. Lattimore. It was a great culminating activity that encompassed everything we learned. We were able to apply our knowledge while analyzing a Comprehensive School Improvement Plan (CSIP), which is actually the work of a school leader. It was very relatable and a great experience to actually lead the work as if we were administrators. This opportunity also provided ways for us to prioritize, collaborate, guide and lead others, just as we would have to do if we were a principal. Presenting this project allowed for us to work on our public speaking skills while creating an engaging presentation to accommodate the research we conducted. It was a great and useful learning experience!

What are your next steps with this degree?

My next step is to pursue a job as an assistant principal or seek other leadership opportunities within the district. Eventually, I can see myself attending Spalding to seek a Doctorate of Education in Leadership.

Spalding University is set to build on its proud tradition of healthcare education in downtown Louisville with the launch of a Doctor of Physical Therapy program in the fall of 2022, along with the full-scale renovation of the campus building that will house it.

The entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program will be delivered in a hybrid, low-residency format of online lecture courses and in-person laboratory experiences, which will be held one week each month in the state-of-the-art facility that is currently being transformed on South Third Street.

The purchase and renovation of the 21,500-square-foot building at 961 S. Third – which was acquired by Spalding in 2019 and is well-known in Louisville as the former longtime home of the V.V. Cooke Chevrolet dealership – represent one of the largest capital projects in Spalding history, totaling about $7 million, while demonstrating the university’s commitment to investing in projects and activity downtown.

Construction is scheduled for completion in late 2021, enhancing a prominent section of Third Street and helping expand a Spalding health science corridor along Third that includes the Republic Bank Academic Center (home of nursing and social work programs) and the Kosair Charities College of Health and Natural Sciences Building (occupational therapy, athletic training, natural sciences).

The new Spalding School of Physical Therapy will offer an entry-level DPT track for aspiring physical therapists as well as an online post-professional track for practicing PTs who want to earn a doctorate.

The application period for Spalding’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program will open June 15, 2021, but students may learn about the program and request more information now at spalding.edu/doctor-of-physical-therapy.

In addition, to help fill a regional need for physical therapists with specialty training and board certification in pediatric physical therapy, the new Spalding School of Physical Therapy plans to create a post-doctoral residency and fellowship in pediatric PT. The School of Physical Therapy is planning partnerships with pediatric clinicians to provide mentoring opportunities for practitioners who want to teach in a DPT program.

View of 961 S. Third St., future home of the Spalding School of Physical Therapy
View from 2020 of 961 S. Third St., future home of the Spalding School of Physical Therapy

“Spalding’s mission is to meet the needs of the times, and for decades Spalding has been meeting a critical need in our community by preparing compassionate, skilled healthcare professionals and front-line workers,” Spalding President Tori Murden McClure said. “Spalding has pondered creating a physical therapy program for a decade, and over that time, the need and demand for physical therapists, including those skilled in working with children, have only increased. Our physical therapy program will help meet that need, and seeing this program become a reality is a proud achievement in the century-long history of our downtown campus.

“The transformed building on Third Street will be a beautiful addition to the south end of campus, a tremendous resource to our students and the latest example of our unwavering commitment to a thriving downtown Louisville.”

SPALDING UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF PHYSICAL THERAPY
*Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) overview
*Entry-level DPT track info
*Post-professional online DPT track info
*Request more information

The DPT program has already been approved by the university’s regional accrediting body – the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) – and is seeking to become only the fourth DPT program in Kentucky to be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE).

Spalding has appointed Dr. Elisa Zuber, who has more than 35 years of experience in physical therapy education with an expertise in developing new programs, to be the inaugural Chair of the new School of Physical Therapy as well as Director of the DPT program.

Zuber has been a faculty member, director of clinical education and program director at several PT and PT assistant programs. She also spent 11 years as Associate Director of the Department of Accreditation for the American Physical Therapy Association. She is a 2021 Fellow of Louisville’s Healthcare Enterprises Network.

“This program has been designed with the student in mind and caters both to students coming straight from college and nontraditional students who are already in PT practice,” Zuber said. “We have assembled a veteran faculty, and we are excited to begin forging partnerships with clinical sites regionally and nationally that will provide rich learning experiences for our students.”

Other program highlights:

  • The low-residency format of the entry-level track, in which students participate in online lecture courses for the majority of the semester and come to campus monthly for in-person lab experiences, means that out-of-town students will not need to move to Louisville to attend PT school. Students can continue to live anywhere in the country while traveling to Louisville each month for in-person labs.
  • The post-professional track of the DPT is fully online.
  • A bachelor’s degree is not required to enter the Spalding DPT program. Undergraduate students without a bachelor’s will spend their first year in the program working toward credits that will be applied to earning the degree of Bachelor of Science in Health Science from Spalding.
  • Spalding expects to enroll about 40 students each fall in the entry-level track of the DPT and about 10 per year for the post-professional track.

“Physical therapy continues to be a growing field, and Spalding’s DPT program will be an appealing option for students locally, including our own undergraduates, and nationally, given our campus’ ideal location in the heart of Louisville and near all the city’s major healthcare centers,” Spalding Provost Dr. John Burden said. “We continue to add excellent, experienced faculty, including multiple instructors who are board-certified in pediatric physical therapy. The positive impact this program will have on our community will be significant.”

Rendering of one of the labs in the School of Physical Theraphy building
The renovated building will feature a variety of lab spaces. // Courtesy of Schmidt Associates

More building details:

The renovated, two-story building at 961 S. Third St. will be the home of the School of Physical Therapy and its faculty. The building will feature three skills labs for on-site laboratory instruction as well as an anatomy education center with an anatomy wet lab and accompanying dry lab featuring models and technology for virtual anatomy instruction.

An atrium with natural light coming through the tall windows along Third Street will provide collaborative and lounge space for students. Another student lounge will be upstairs.

Schaefer Construction is the general contractor for the project. Schmidt Associates is the architecture partner.

Spalding is currently fundraising to cover the costs of work on the building, which has not been named. The Gheens Foundation has contributed a lead gift of $200,000. Those interested in supporting Spalding may contact [email protected] or visit https://alumni.spalding.edu/give/.

“This forward-thinking, technology-rich facility will be a gem for physical therapy and overall healthcare education in downtown Louisville for years to come, and this project is evidence of how committed Spalding is to helping prepare compassionate, skilled therapists and healthcare professionals to go out in the world and help those in need,” Chief Advancement Officer Caroline Heine said. “We are grateful for those who are providing financial support for this project, and we welcome others to come forward and support this important work.”

Added Spalding Dean of Graduate Education Dr. Kurt Jefferson: “This learning space will foster interdisciplinary and interprofessional collaboration among students and faculty across our health science and health professions programs and will be a site of innovation and inspiration. Consistent with the Spalding mission, we will instill in our students a commitment to diversity, justice and equity and the need to care for underserved populations.”

Rendering of atrium of Spalding School of Physical Therapy building
An atrium will offer student lounge and study spaces and lots of natural light along Third Street. // Courtesy of Schmidt Associates

Faculty Focus Friday is a Q&A series that highlights individual faculty members in various academic programs around Spalding University. In recognition of Athletic Training Month having just concluded in March and Occupational Therapy Month having just started in April, this week’s featured faculty member is Dr. Lisa Potts, Assistant Professor, who teaches anatomy and neuroscience courses in both the Master of Science in Athletic Training (MSAT) program and the Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) programs.

What do you like about working and teaching at Spalding?

​I like that Spalding values compassion and understanding. As far as teaching, I like that class sizes are relatively small, which gives me the opportunity to get to know my students.

What is your academic specialty, areas of expertise or research?

My background is in neuroscience. My doctoral and postdoctoral work focused on Parkinson’s disease and related disorders.

Why are the programs you teach in a good option for students to consider?

​I am in a unique position in that I teach for both the MSAT and OTD programs. Since starting at Spalding, I have learned a lot about both of these professions and have grown to better understand and appreciate the value that each has in terms of client-centered care. Both of these are great programs with faculty who are invested in students’ success.

Though athletic training doesn’t have to be limited to sports, if you enjoy being around sports and want a career that will be challenging and rewarding at the same time, this would be a great option for you. The small cohorts, supportive faculty and variety of hands-on classes are specific things that make this program special.

Much of the same can be said about the OTD program. I have enjoyed seeing students’ passions to help others really be fostered in this program. Faculty are dedicated to providing meaningful experiences for students both in and out of the classroom. I love that OT includes a client-centered, empathetic approach. Again, if you want a career that will be both challenging and rewarding and enjoy helping people do what they love, this would be a great program for you.

ATHLETIC TRAINING | Overview of Spalding’s MSAT
MSAT FACULTY | Bios on all our professors
OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY | Overview of Spalding’s OTD program and tracks
OTD FACULTY | Bios on all our professors

What is an example of a discussion topic, lecture, assignment, project, etc. in your class that you enjoy presenting or working with students on and that they have found engaging?

​I like to incorporate different ways of delivering and reviewing content. One thing I use often in my classes is Kahoot. Students always have fun playing this game, and I sometimes use challenging questions to spark further discussion. In the neurosciences classes I teach, I typically incorporate some kind of journal club type of assignment when myself or students will present a relevant journal article and lead discussion on it and how it relates to the current lecture topics. I find these are usually the most engaging and rich conversations because it really gets us thinking and talking about practical applications for what they are learning about.

What is an interesting thing you have in your office?

​Right now the most interesting things I have in my office are probably the oversized model of the human eye and brain. I also have a Lego minifigure my son made to look like me, coffee cup and all. 🙂

Spalding’s mission is to meet the needs of the times, to emphasize service and to promote peace and justice. What is an example of how your teaching style, your research, your class or your curriculum is supporting the mission of Spalding?

​I think I incorporate this mission the most through my teaching style. Currently, I have found various ways to utilize collaborative tools and apps to keep students engaged while learning in an online environment, which is necessary right now during COVID. I also try to incorporate these values in our class discussions. I like to take time at the beginning of each term to hear a little bit about each student and why they chose the AT or OT path. I remind students to be mindful that we all come from different backgrounds and may therefore have different perspectives and opinions. I encourage them to be open to working with people that have different opinions and perspectives as this is how new and innovative ideas are developed. I believe these considerations are also important for both of the professions these students are working to join.

FACULTY FOCUS FRIDAY ARCHIVE | Read all our professor Q&As

Faculty Focus Friday is a Q&A series that highlights individual faculty members in various academic programs around Spalding University. In recognition of March as Social Work Month, this week’s featured faculty member is Glynita Bell, Assistant Professor in Spalding’s School of Social Work. Professor Bell has been on the fulltime faculty at Spalding for three years and teaches in the Bachelor of Science in Social Work and Master of Social Work programs. Professor Bell is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) who earned a master’s from the University of Louisville and a bachelor’s from Ball State University and who is currently pursuing a doctorate from Ashford University. Professor Bell is co-chair for Louisville’s Office of Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods. Outside of Spalding, she is the founder/owner of Heart 2 Heart Wellness Center in New Albany, which provides quality mental health therapy in a holistic approach with the center offering yoga and massage amongst other services.

What do you like about working and teaching at Spalding?

The best part of working and teaching at Spalding is being able to collaborate with my colleagues in the School of Social Work. The commonality of being committed to being, teaching and creating – all geared towards radical changes to improve the world around us – is inspiring. The enthusiasm of our students is motivating to keep working toward our connected goals as social workers.

What is your academic specialty, areas of expertise or research?

My academic specialty is mental health and clinical social work. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Indiana and Kentucky. My research interest currently surrounds educators’ own mental health and how that impacts classrooms.

SPALDING SCHOOL OF SOCIAL WORK
*Program Overviews | BSSW | MSW | DSW
*Faculty Bios | Info on all our professors
*Chair Q&A | Faculty Focus Friday with Dr. Shannon Cambron

Why is social work a good option for students to consider?

For any student that is dissatisfied with the current state of the world, social work as a discipline equips students with a skill set to create change at the micro, mezzo and macro levels. Understanding how each of those elements impact one another, allows students to genuinely target where changes are needed strategically. Even students wht are interested in other careers would benefit from at least a social work minor to be able to better understand the world around them and be a change agent within their profession.

What is an example of a discussion topic, lecture, assignment, project, etc. in your class that you enjoy presenting or working with students on and that they have found engaging?

My favorite course to teach is SW 630, Integrative Practice, which is a course that is all about mental health. In this course, my students have the opportunity to do a practice clinical intake evaluation with their mock client being a licensed therapist from our community, so the students get invaluable feedback into their clinical assessment skills.

What is an interesting thing you have in your office?

I have a full-size red, old-school popcorn machine with glass doors on wheels in my office that I used during the first week of classes for students.

Tell us more about your work outside of Spalding and the Heart 2 Heart Wellness Center

At Heart 2 Heart Wellness Center, we believe that a holistic approach to self-care is the key to living your best life. Self-care comes in many forms, and we specialize in mental health therapy, therapeutic yoga, healing touch massage and holistic healthcare services.  Heart 2 Heart was cultivated to exude a warm energy that is inviting and refined. Our wellness center has a comfortable, spa-like atmosphere rather than a sterile office setting that is uplifting for working professionals and community members alike.

Spalding’s mission is to meet the needs of the times, to emphasize service and to promote peace and justice. What is an example of how your teaching style, your research, your class or your curriculum is supporting the mission of Spalding?

Because I’m an active practicing clinician, I directly infuse the trends of practice into my course. For example, telehealth very quickly became the infrastructure of mental health, and that was quickly incorporated into my courses ranging from ethics of telehealth to best practices to engage with clients virtually.

FACULTY FOCUS FRIDAY ARCHIVE | Read all our previous professor Q&As

 

Spalding University Chief Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Officer Dr. Steven Kniffley, a faculty member in the School of Professional Psychology and the leader of Spalding’s Collective Care Center behavioral health specialty clinic for racial trauma, was recently honored by Louisville Business First as a 2021 Health Care Hero.

Dr. Kniffley, a clinical psychologist, was honored in the category of Health Equity Champion following a year in which he helped Collective Care Center fill a key role as the only behavioral health clinic in Louisville to specialize in treating race-based trauma and stress. The Collective Care Center is a division of Spalding’s Center for Behavioral Health, which is a training clinic for clinical psychology doctoral (PsyD) students in the School of Professional Psychology.

Kniffley is a scholar and frequent public speaker on matters of race and racial trauma and has given dozens of presentations, interviews and seminars on those topics.

Dr. Kniffley, who is a graduate of the Spalding PsyD that he now teaches in, was also recognized last year as a member of Louisville Business First’s Forty Under 40 list of outstanding young professionals in Louisville and received a MediStar Award from the Medical News for his work in treating and raising awareness for racial trauma.

He was appointed to the role of Chief Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Officer in December. A member of President Tori Murden McClure’s senior leadership cabinet – known as the Operational Council – Kniffley plays a broad role in promoting diversity and inclusion in programs across campus. He is also the President-Elect of the Kentucky Psychological Association.

A list of all 2021 Louisville Business First Health Care Heroes can be found here (subscription link), and the honorees will profiled in the April 9 issue of the publication.

Faculty Focus Friday is a Q&A series that highlights individual faculty members in various academic programs around Spalding University. In recognition of March as National Athletic Training Month, this week’s featured faculty member is Daniel “Danny” Cobble, Assistant Professor and Clinical Education Coordinator in Spalding’s Master of Science in Athletic Training program. Professor Cobble, who joined the Spalding faculty in August 2020, is a Louisville native who has been a certified athletic trainer (ATC) since 2003 and who has broad clinical experience at the highest levels of athletics, including serving as the head athletic trainer for the Western Kentucky University football team and an assistant athletic trainer for the University of South Carolina football team. He also interned for the Philadelphia Eagles. He most recently served as an athletic trainer at Providence High School in Indiana. Professor Cobble holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kentucky and a master’s from South Carolina, and he is currently pursuing a doctorate in Health Professions Education from Bellarmine University. Professor Cobble can be contacted at [email protected] 

What do you like about working and teaching at Spalding?

Being that I have been an athletic trainer for 20-plus years, I’ve always had students or interns who I’ve worked with in some fashion to help develop. When (MSAT Program Director Dr. John Nyland) called me about the position, I thought this would be a great opportunity to get some practical teaching experience while I completed my PhD. Then you look at the program, it was the first entry-level athletic training program in the state. The program and the students are already established, and people in the community know about Spalding, so I felt it would be a good opportunity to help mold and build the next generation of athletic trainers who are going to be coming up.

I liked the fact that it’s small class sizes, and it’s in downtown Louisville, and the program and university already has connections with a lot of high schools in the city that I was familiar with. That appealed to me. I felt the staff were quality people and thought it would be a good fit.

MASTER OF SCIENCE IN ATHLETIC TRAINING
Overview | Learn about Spalding’s master’s program
Entry points | Info on how to begin work in the program as an undergrad
Faculty | Bios of our MSAT faculty

What is your academic specialty or areas of expertise or research?

My responsibility here at Spalding is teaching the foundational classes – the intro to athletic training classes – and I also teach emergency care and management. Being that I was a clinician for 25 years, emergency care and management is something that we reviewed and practiced yearly, so I guess I have a special qualification for that. I am teach the clinical education courses. After the student completes their first, the clinical education courses are designed to teach the book knowledge they’ve learned and transfer it into clinical practice. Again, being that I was a clinician for so long, I think that qualifies me to help make (students) make transition. … I help the students find clinical rotations around the city or around the country. I also advise the students on scholarships.

As far as my academic research area, my doctoral dissertation is centered around low minority representation in athletic training. Only about 5 percent of certified athletic trainers in the country are minorities, so that is a big disproportion in the profession, like a lot of health professions.

Do you think that for students to see you as an African-American athletic trainer and professor could have an impact on helping people gain interest in the profession?

I think it does. I don’t know that I saw my first Black athletic trainer until I was almost 30 years old. With anything representation is important because it allows you to aspire to something. Kind of like, “If he did it, I can do it.” Also, it just gives someone somebody you can relate to. … So I think it’s very important especially for, say, Black males to see that there is a Black male professor in their profession.

RELATED | Faculty Focus Q&A with MSAT Professor Sabrina Pletz

Why is athletic training a good option for students to consider as a graduate program and as a career?

There are a lot of kids who play sports and are athletes all their lives until they get to a point where when high school sports ends, they’re not sure what they want to do. For those who still want to stay around sports and have interest in some type of medical field, I think athletic training is a great career option. I was a high school athlete, but I was 5-10 and too short to play college basketball. So I discovered athletic training, and it was a way to keep me close to the sport. Some people choose to go the physical therapy route, and that is fine, but PT and occupational therapy tend to work with the general population. I knew that I wanted to stay with sports and with athletes and with people who competed on a high level. For those people, I think athletic training for those students is a good profession to consider. With it, you get the opportunity to branch out with your experiences. I’ve got several classmates who are working in the NFL. A couple of my former students are working in Major League Baseball. I have a friend who works with the US Tennis Association, and she gets contracted to travel to Wimbledon and the US Open and work on rehab with the athletes. She’s worked with Serena Williams and some big stars. I know people who have been athletic trainers who have gone on later to work in hospital settings or as ER assistants. Some work in industrial settings like Ford or Toyota. It’s an opportunity that allows you to be as creative as you want as far as the field and the specialty that you want to pursue.

What is an example of a discussion topic, lecture, assignment, project, etc. in your class that you enjoy presenting or working with students on and that they have found engaging?

The class that I think is one of the most engaging for students is when we do emergency care and we start doing the spine-boarding process or the assessment of a spine-injured athlete. When I get into the details of everything we have to consider from c-spine and mobilization, to checking nerves and pulse and breath rates, to cutting off football helmet facemasks and shoulder pads and showing how to do it and where to cut, and how to log-roll and how to life and strap them to the spineboard, the students find that really engaging. It’s a high-stress situation that they know they could encounter one day in practice, so while we’re teaching and practicing it, we make it kind of high-stress. We often sit when we finish and debrief, and I make sure to take that time to make sure (the students’) nerves are back down, heart rates back down.

What is an interesting thing you have in your office?

I started Aug. 15, and the first day of class was Aug. 20, so I really had to hit the ground running. I haven’t put stuff up in my office yet. I have box in the trunk of my car with trinkets from the Eagles and South Carolina and Western Kentucky, and I just haven’t put it up yet. But the the most interesting thing that I have that I want to put in my office is when I was at the Eagles, (Pro Football Hall of Fame player) Brian Dawkins signed a jersey for me, and I have that in a frame. That will go up at some point.

Spalding’s mission is to meet the needs of the times, to emphasize service and to promote peace and justice. What is an example of how your teaching style, your research, your class or your curriculum is supporting the mission of Spalding?

The diversity within our program is big, and that is apparent in the racial diversity of the students in our cohorts.

Also, as I am doing my clinical assignments, I make sure our students get a rotation at the area high schools that are underserved and that have different resources and budgets than more affluent schools.

Obviously, we also encourage our students to provide help to those who need help, those who are less fortunate, and we make sure we give them rotations working with non-athletic populations as well so that they can see this is how your skills can help anyone in the community who needs help. As health professionals, we’re really big on helping those who need help.

FACULTY FOCUS ARCHIVE | Read all our professor Q&As

Faculty Focus Friday is a Q&A series that highlights individual faculty members in various academic programs around Spalding University. In honor of Black History Month in February, this week’s Q&A features a Black faculty leader – Dr. Teah Moore,  Associate Professor and Director of the Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program, which launched its first cohort in Fall 2020.

Tell us more about yourself and your educational and professional background.

I am a former Midwesterner from Illinois. I hold three degrees – each from a different state that starts with “I” –  a Bachelor of Arts in Administration of Criminal Justice from Anderson University in Indiana; a Master of Arts in School Counseling from Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois; and a PhD in Counselor Education and Counseling from Idaho State University in Pocatello.

Previously, I owned a private counseling practice in Georgia as well. I saw patients of different ages, genders and mental health issues. I also provided supervision to postgraduates and field experiences opportunities for students enrolled in master’s and doctoral programs.  I also taught at a historically black university, Fort Valley State University, for about 11 years in school counseling and mental health counseling programs.

What do you like about working and teaching at Spalding?

​I have always loved teaching and meeting new students. One of the highlights of my being at Spalding has been meeting new people. I feel supported and among people who are interested in my success here at Spalding. I have met some really great people. I have thoroughly enjoyed staff and faculty. I am looking forward to the new normal and really building relationships here at Spalding.

MASTER OF ARTS IN CLINICAL MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING
Program Overview | Dr. Moore’s bio | Program of Study 

What is your academic specialty, areas of expertise or research?

​My passion at this time is working with women. I have been on a journey that included discovery more about me as a woman. I love spaces that allow for me to explore safety in terms of psychological, spiritual, emotional and intellectual. I think women really need to experience safety. We have been taught to stuff our emotions and various aspects of ourselves. I have begun moving in that direction in terms of research. Additionally, I enjoy work related to accreditation and evaluation.

Why is Clinical Mental Health Counseling a good option for students to consider as a graduate program?

I think students will love the fact that they can build a business and become their own employer. This degree is designed to lead to becoming a licensed professional counselor in Kentucky. This is a practitioner’s degree. In addition, our graduates can elect to pursue terminal degrees in the field because of the alignment with accreditation standards. With a terminal degree, a person has the ability to teach and/or practice.

What is an example of a discussion topic, lecture, assignment, project, etc. in your class that you enjoy presenting or working with students on and that they have found engaging?

​Of course, teaching students how to counsel. This course provides them with the clinical skills they will use regardless of the client. Students are enjoying conducting counseling sessions with their peers. It’s self-discovery for them. I enjoy watching them take risks and seeing their expressions when it pays off.

What is an interesting thing you have in your office? 

​Ha! I just moved here, so there is nothing in my office right now except furniture. I’ve always kept play therapy toys, such as doll house sand trays, and what we call miniatures. I love using books, music and movies. So, you will likely find these in my office when I get settled.

Who is a Black leader who has inspired you, and for what reason?

Shirley Chisholm is someone I have admired and respected. She became the first American of African descent to be elected to the United Sates Congress. She became the first American of African descent to run for presidency from a major political party and the first woman to run for the Democratic party nomination. She has not always been given the acknowledgement that she is due. When Barack Obama won the election as president, she was left out of the discussion as someone who opened the door for that reality. Similar to Obama’s run, many did not support her run. They tried to deter and discourage her from running. Unfortunately, she did not live to see Obama take the oath of high office. I believe she is proud knowing she contributed to the dream. Shirley was a woman who lived up to her motto, unbought and unbossed.

How would you describe the importance of racial diversity in your field – clinical mental health counseling?

The need to address the stigma about counseling among people of color and persons from lower social economic means is very important. Mental health is sometimes observed as a “rich white female” disorder. However, there are staggering statistics that suggest the severe need of mental health services among diverse persons. It is alarming. Having more racially diverse persons in the field of clinical mental health counseling will certainly serve to educate people about mental health. The racial disparities in mental health can be better addressed from the inside through advocacy and the provision of services by people who look like the racial population they serve. There is a better understanding when you are from a group that has experienced a lack of services or supportive measures in clinical mental health.

Spalding’s mission is to meet the needs of the times, to emphasize service and to promote peace and justice. What is an example of how your teaching style, your research, your class or your curriculum is supporting the mission of Spalding?

​Advancing the whole notion of what is compassion. Compassion is more than a word or feeling. We emphasize the importance of empathy in the program. Compassion is empathy in action. Infused in every class is the issue of diversity, cultural awareness and fair practice. Students must meet professional counseling dispositions that are aligned with the promotion of social justice and awareness of beliefs, values, etc.