Occupational Therapy Program Well Represented at the Occupational Therapy of California Annual Conference

Approximately 50 occupational therapy graduate students presented research projects at the Occupational Therapy Association of California Annual Conference in Pasadena, CA. “These collaborative research projects were completed with the occupational therapy faculty and clearly demonstrates their commitment to student success,” says Winifred Schultz-Krohn, PhD, OTR/L BCP, FAOTA, Professor and Chair, Department of Occupational Therapy.


“And our faculty had many well-attended presentations on the following topics: Prevention of Falls, Play Patterns in Adults, Professional Development, Interprofessional Collaboration, and Dysphagia. Gigi Smith, associate professor, coordinated the student track during the conference so she was very busy,” says Schultz-Krohn.

Dr. Lela Llorens, former chair of the occupational therapy department provided an inspirational keynote address at the California Foundation of Occupational Therapy luncheon. She specifically recognized the important research completed by Dr. Heidi Pendleton on Friendships.




College of Applied Sciences and Arts Presents First Annual CASA Service Awards

On Wednesday, December 7, Dr. Mary Schutten, Dean, College of Applied Sciences and Arts presented the first annual CASA Service Award to six faculty and one staff member.

Approximately 20 faculty members and staff were nominated and seven were chosen by the CASA Service Award Committee which included:  Dr. Kathy Abriam-Yago, The Valley Foundation School of Nursing, Dr. Emily Wughalter, Kinesiology, Dr. Faranak Memarzadeh, Hospitality Management and Kristina Luna, Staff, School of Information.

Congratulations to the following First Annual CASA Service Award Winners!

CASA Lifetime Faculty Service Award-Tenure Track:

Lucy McProud

Lucy McProud, Department of Nutrition and Food Science


Lori Rodriguez, The Valley Foundation School of Nursing

CASA Annual Faculty Service Award: 


John Delacruz, School of Journalism and Mass Communications

CASA Lifetime Faculty Service Award Lecturer:


Billie Jo (BJ) Grosvenor, Health Science and Recreation

CASA Annual Faculty Service Award Lecturer:


Deborah Nelson, The Valley Foundation School of Nursing


Halima Kazem-Stojanovic, School of Journalism and Mass Communications

CASA Administrative and Professional Service Award:


Tabia Shawl, School of Social Work

Dr. Richard Levy, The Future of United States Health Care

Dr. Richard Levy

Dr. Richard Levy

Once the awards were given, the nearly 200 administrators, faculty, staff and students were treated to a special presentation by Dr. Dick Levy, The Future of United States Health Care.  Dr. Levy is the former chairman of the Varian Medical Systems Board of Directors from 2002-2014.  He has been a member of the Board of Sutter Health, a $10 billion healthcare system, since 2006 and was chairman of the Sutter Health Board from 2013-2014.

Dr. Levy spoke for approximately 45 minutes entertaining the audience with personal stories and vignettes that captivated the group.  His knowledge of the health care system was evident as he provided a very detailed presentation that informed the group about the many challenges of the United States health care system and what the future holds.

Immediately following the presentation, Dr. Levy met with the audience at a reception, where event goers had a chance to speak with him personally and ask questions and provide comments.

The evening turned out to be very informative for all and it was a pleasure to honor the First CASA Service Award winners.

Graduate Journalism Class Helps NBC 11 Bay Area with Election Concerns

On Tuesday, November 8, Professor Bob Rucker came up with a unique project for the graduate students in Mass Communications 210: Media & Social Issues.

As the votes were being counted and reported on Nov. 8th, graduate students from the SJSU School of Journalism & Mass Communications were part of the historic NBC 11  Bay Area extensive television coverage.

Thirteen students volunteered to help the local NBC station news staff gather and report the latest developments as they happened.

Stephanie Adrouny, Vice-President of News, NBC 11 Bay Area and Professor Bob Rucker, Journalism worked on the joint project for weeks. To prepare the students, Dan Pyryt, executive producer, NBC 11 Bay Area, visited the class and told students how they would be helping individual newsroom producers and reporters identify and share late-breaking election developments, address voter concerns, and support NBC social media reporting efforts that evening.

“Our grad students come from many academic backgrounds,” says Rucker. “This experience allowed them to have an up close, eye-opening and unique media learning experience on one of the busiest and most exciting nights in the television news business.”


Rucker, a former CNN Correspondent and NBC local news election night anchor/reporter in Philadelphia, covered the 1980 Ronald Reagan/Jimmy Carter vote count. “I will never forget how thrilling it was to be a part of that history making that evening,” Rucker said.


While on campus, Pyryt also met with Spartan Daily staff members and congratulated them on their efforts. Pryt told the student staff and Professor Rucker’s class that the NBC 11 Bay Area  news team reads the campus newspaper every day, and many times they develop SJSU stories after reading the student reporting.

“I’m proud of the education we offer students in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications,” says Rucker.  We strive to continue our long-time motto, to teach students to ‘Learn by Doing.’


Alums Making Their Mark in the Occupational Therapy Field

Dr. Gigi Smith, associate professor who obtained her bachelor of science degree in 1979 and masters of science degree in 2001 will be inducted into the Roster of Fellows and awarded Fellow of the American Occupational Therapy Association at the American Occupational Therapy Annual Conference in 2017.  This honor allows Dr. Smith to use the initials FAOTA after her name.  The award recognizes Excellence in Practice, Exemplary Service, and Mentoring. Congratulations Dr. Smith!

Beth Ching, assistant professor, Samuel Merritt University, obtained her bachelor of science degree in 1984 will receive the Interprofessional Collaboration Award at the 2017 American Occupational Therapy Annual Conference. Professor Ching’s award will acknowledge her skills in Making Space for Everyone at the Table.

Apple Sepulveda, graduate from the SJSU distance master of science occupational therapy program, received a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Grant to work with health professionals in the Philippines.

Dr. Fritz Yambrach Assists in Developing the Fritz Water Vest

Several packaging experts have joined together to develop a flexible package that will enable people in disaster areas or areas where water is not easily available to transport water. Dr. Fritz Yambrach, Professor for the Department of Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging, is the concept designer and team organizer. He is also a regular contributor to Packaging World magazine and digital edition.

Click here to read his latest article.