Dr. Cohen Completes Fulbright Scholar Activities

Dr. Ed Cohen, School of Social Work, spent the Spring 2016 semester in Vietnam on a Fulbright Scholar grant. Dr. Cohen developed and taught a course on mental health for undergraduate students majoring in social work at Dalat University, located in the country’s Central Highlands.

The course is the first of its kind in Vietnam for the new profession of social work. Since Vietnam does not have a recent textbook about mental illness, Dr. Cohen developed a course textbook on the prevalence, etiology, assessment, and treatment of mental illnesses specifically geared towards Vietnam and translated into Vietnamese. The course was an elective for a class of 36 final-year students from many surrounding provinces.

“In Vietnam, there is a very powerful stigma about mental illness which is similar to other regions in Asia – made even worse by the intense shame of having a mental illness or being in the family.”

Due to the stigma regarding mental illness, Dr. Cohen said that there is a lack of general knowledge about common problems such as depression and anxiety. However, people want to talk about these problems since the majority of people are suffering from these problems, has a family member, or knows someone with emotional problems. Enter social workers and it provides the people with someone to start the conversation.

During a reception by the U.S. Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission in Vietnam, Dr. Cohen received recognition of his contributions to the curriculum, which will be used by the faculty at Dalat University starting Fall 2016, as well as disseminated to other universities offering social work degrees in Vietnam. During his stay in Vietnam, Dr. Cohen also provided conference presentations, workshops on social work in healthcare settings, and faculty seminars on research methods in the social sciences.

Dr. Cohen said that the Vietnamese students show more outward affection to their professors because educators are held in very high esteem. However, the Vietnamese students are much more similar than different to SJSU students. Even though most students told Dr. Cohen that their parents would rather have them study engineering or business, they were proud to major in social work.

“Even though there aren’t enough social work jobs for graduates, they have a lot of class spirit and identify strongly as social work majors.”

The Fulbright Scholar grant gave Dr. Cohen the opportunity to live abroad for the first time, but it wasn’t hard to make friends. He said people are very warm and his university colleagues invited him to many family gatherings. He enjoyed the food while eating at small family-run kitchens and adjusted well even though the communication was difficult at times as the general public did not speak much English.

“I feel like I have just scratched the surface learning about the culture!”

Click here to see a photo journal of Dr. Cohen’s experience in Vietnam.

Committee to Enhance Equity and Diversity Awards

The 2015-16 CEED Award winners were recognized on April 26, 2016, for their excellence in promoting and fostering a deeper understanding of equity and diversity.

The 2015-16 CEED Award winners were recognized on April 26, 2016, for their excellence in promoting and fostering a deeper understanding of equity and diversity.

The College of Applied Sciences and Arts’ Committee to Enhance Equity and Diversity (CEED) reception was held on Tuesday, April 26, honoring six recipients whose combined effort and activities have made an important contribution to enhance equity and diversity at San José State University (SJSU) and/or in the community. CEED Award categories consist of an Undergraduate Student Award, Graduate Student Award, Faculty Award, Staff Award, and Student Organization Award.

The purpose of the CEED Awards is to recognize those individuals and groups that have demonstrated excellence in promoting and fostering a deeper understanding of equity and diversity as they relate to issues of age, class, disability, ethnicity, gender, race, religion and/or sexual orientation.

The recipients for the CEED Distinguished Service Award are:

Undergraduate Student Award – Navpreet Kaur, the Valley Foundation School of Nursing

Navpreet has led or been involved in several projects that promote equity and diversity on campus. In 2015, she led the Peace Pole Monument project that helped to place an official monument on campus. The Peace Pole is a hand-crafted wooden monument that has the message “May Peace Prevail On Earth” in the 12 most frequently used languages in Santa Clara County.

Navpreet also serves on the President’s Commission on Diversity which provides “input, recommendations, and advice to the President on effective ways to create a campus environment that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive.” She initiated this project in an effort to counteract negative publicity related to diversity issues that were occurring on campus.

Graduate Student Award – Essraa Nawar, School of Information

Essraa Nawar is pursuing her passion to be a librarian focusing on programming and outreach in bringing diverse programming to the life of the libraries and the academic institutions she serves. One of Essraa’s strengths is her ability to create an atmosphere of awareness regarding ethnicity, gender, and religious diversity across campus.

She serves on the Chancellor’s Diversity Advisory Committee and developed a program on empowering Muslim women. Essraa coordinated the support of the Sikh American Community through Vaisakhi programming, an exhibition on demystifying the turban. She also spoke at a TED Talk in Munich, Germany, to further her diversity message to change the narrative of how people see Muslim women specifically and Muslim people in general.

Graduate Student Award – Cotton Stevenson, School of Journalism and Mass Communications

Cotton conceived the slogan “Diversity University” as part of a class project to make a difference at SJSU. He didn’t stop there. Cotton decided to make issues surrounding diversity and acceptance on the SJSU campus the focus of his second master’s degree. Because of him, we now have an annual Diversity Day at SJSU.

As a graphic artist, Stevenson created the logo for the event as well. He is now in the final stages of a documentary about the history and importance of diversity on this campus. He’s already completed several impressive interviews for this project which include Jeanne Wakatsuki, the author of Farewell to Manzanar, Erik Grotz, the student who suggested the Tommie Smith-John Carlos sculptures as well as with the artist who created it.

He was also awarded a proclamation by Rep. Zoe Lofgren for his commitment to “Diversity University.”

Faculty Award – Dr. William Armaline, Justice Studies

Dr. Armaline established and serves as coordinator of the Human Rights Program at SJSU. As a part of that initiative, he implemented the  popular Human Rights Minor, a program through which students gain an understanding of various human rights problems that affect their community, including racism, discrimination, and inequality. He is committed to raising awareness on campus to issues of equity and diversity.  As a part of this effort, he founded and continues to coordinate the annual human rights event.

He chairs the Human Rights Working Group, which serves as a platform for faculty to engage in issues of equity and diversity. Throughout his work, Dr. Armaline single handedly serves as a hub for students who are interested in increasing equity on campus.  He informally advises students on activism both on and off campus.

Dr. Armaline is also involved in numerous activities in the community.  He authored reports on social justice issues, served as a National Board Member in Save the Kids, a grass-roots organization dedicated to alternatives to end of the incarceration of youth, is a Council Member in the Santa Clara County Child Abuse Council. He most recently initiated a partnership with DeBug, a San José media, community organizing, and entrepreneurial collective that leads successful social justice campaigns to advance the rights of youth, workers, immigrants and those impacted by the criminal justice system.

Staff Award – Silvia La Rosa, School of Journalism and Mass Communications

In addition to providing extensive administrative support for more than 500 School of Journalism and Mass Communications (JMC) students and 22 faculty, Silvia is a committed advocate for SJSU diversity students.

Silvia offers extraordinary time and effort to advising and mentoring all students. She connects on a powerful level with JMC School Spanish speaking students. Her translation skills combined with her knowledge of university procedures and her deep passion for helping students find their voice and express their creativity has resulted in numerous success stories that are greatly admired and appreciated in our program.

In Fall 2015, she was a leading advocate for fundraising of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts international learning initiative. She played a significant role in helping persuade a special JMC guest, CNN Correspondent Sara Sidner from Los Angeles, to donate her William Randolph Hearst honorarium to start a newly created fund and campaign to raise scholarship money to help SJSU students from poor and under-represented communities to participate. She plays an instrumental role in helping the school director create Spanish community messages and promotions that invite Bay Area business and schools to partner with JMC.

Silvia always finds the time to encourage students and faculty.

Student Organization Award – Alpha Phi Sigma Iota Chapter, Justice Studies

A team of Iota Chapter members and alumni volunteered at the Center with the Prison Education Project (PEP), teaching the 7 week Academic Orientation Course.  They met every Friday with a group of formerly incarcerated individuals currently on parole.  They created presentations about college as well as give mini-lectures based on topics in Justice Studies majors (e.g. consequences of mass incarceration and juvenile justice).  A big component of this program is engaging the program participants in discussions about the topics presented as well as their interests and needs.  In addition, Iota chapter collected and donated 100 backpacks with everyday necessities and held a clothing drive on campus for the Santa Clara County Resource Reentry Center to give to their clients.

Congratulations to all 2015-16 CEED Award winners!

CEED Logo

CASA Faculty Recognized for Years of Service

San José State University held its 17th Annual Faculty Service Recognition and Awards Luncheon on March 15, 2016, to celebrate faculty who have reached a significant milestone year. Honorees were given a special gift with the years of service engraved.

The College of Applied Sciences and Arts (CASA) is very grateful for its wonderful faculty and is proud to acknowledge our faculty who were recognized for 15, 20, 25, 30 and 40 years of service.

15 Years of Service

  • Antoinette Bloom, Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging
  • Richard Craig, Journalism and Mass Communications
  • Ziming Liu, School of Information
  • Jennifer Schachner, Kinesiology

20 Years of Service

  • Lisa Arieta Hayes, Social Work
  • Christine Di Salvo, Journalism and Mass Communications
  • Alice Hines, Social Work
  • Clarie Hollenbeck, Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging
  • Geoffrey Liu, School of Information
  • Lee Pate, Kinesiology
  • Diane Stuenkel, Nursing
  • Gilbert Villagran, Social Work

25 Years of Service

  • Yoko Baba, Justice Studies
  • Elizabeth Cara, Occupational Therapy
  • Gong Chen, Kinesiology
  • Buddy Gerstman, Health Science and Recreation
  • Nancy Megginson, Kinesiology
  • Fred Prochaska, Social Work
  • Bob Rucker, Journalism and Mass Communications

30 Years of Service

  • Kathy Abriam-Yago, Nursing
  • Christine Hooper, Nursing
  • Linda Main, School of Information
  • Jacquelyn McClure, Justice Studies
  • Judi Morrill, Nutrition, Food Science and Packaging
  • Kathleen Roe, Health Science and Recreation

40 Years of Service

  • William Tillinghast, Journalism and Mass Communications

Congratulations to all on reaching this service milestone with SJSU and thank you for your hard work and much dedication to the success of our students. We look forward to your ongoing contributions and a successful future!

SWEEP Launches Sustainability Phase of Work in Vietnam

SWEEP team members and leaders from the VVTA and USAID come together for a group photo during the convening in Hoi An, Vietnam.

SWEEP team members and leaders from the VVTA and USAID come together for a group photo during the convening in Hoi An, Vietnam.

The Social Work Education Enhancement Project (SWEEP) successfully implemented a third Leadership Academy and on January 6th-8th, in Hoi An, Vietnam. The purpose of the event was to support effective leadership and preparation for collaboration among Rectors and Deans of key universities with social work programs in Vietnam. The leadership training was followed by a convening of 24 leaders across eight SWEEP partner universities as well as leaders from the Vietnam Association of Schools of Social Work and Vietnam Vocational Training Association and Vocational Social Work (VVTA) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the project’s funder. National leaders in social work agreed to form a consortium to continue notable advances in social work that have taken place over three-years of the SWEEP project. Toward the end of the convening, participants commented publicly about how the SWEEP project profoundly impacted progress in the development of social work education in Vietnam and help to launch leaders on a path for ongoing collaboration. SWEEP team members included: Alice Hines, Principal Investigator and Director; Ed Cohen, Co-Principal Investigator; Laurie Drabble, Faculty Expert Leadership Academy; Tuan Tran, Vietnam SWEEP Coordinator, Hoa Nguyen, and Thao Nguyen, Vietnam SWEEP staff.

The 3rd Leadership Academy pose for a group photo during the leadership training in Hoi An, Vietnam.

The 3rd Leadership Academy pause for a group photo during the leadership training in Hoi An, Vietnam.

During the final day of the national convening of leaders in social work education, Tuan Tran received an award from the Vietnam Vocational Training Association and Vocational Social Work. He was lauded for his commitment and tireless work to further the development of social work education in Vietnam.

Tuan Tran receives an award from the Vietnam Vocational Training Association and Vocational Social Work.

Tuan Tran receives an award from the Vietnam Vocational Training Association and Vocational Social Work.

Annual Emeritus and Retired Faculty Luncheon Hosted by The College of Applied Sciences and Arts

Dean Mary Schutten welcomes former faculty to the Emeritus and Retired Faculty Luncheon held at Flames Eatery Banquet Room in San José, California.

Dean Mary Schutten welcomes former faculty to the Emeritus and Retired Faculty Luncheon held at Flames Eatery Banquet Room in San José, California.

Dean Mary Schutten of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts (CASA) hosted a luncheon for emeritus and retired faculty on November 20, 2015. The annual event brought together former faculty from CASA’s departments and schools including one former dean, Robert Moore. The luncheon provided an opportunity for college updates from Dean Schutten as well as the college’s department chairs and directors.

Robert Moore, former Dean, congratulates CASA on the wonderful work the college is doing.

Robert Moore, former Dean, congratulates CASA on the wonderful work the college is doing.

Peggy Plato, a Kinesiology professor, guided a tour of the newly renovated Spartan Complex to former faculty prior to lunch. They were able to see new classroom spaces, the gymnastics room and more. The group also toured the new department space for Kinesiology and Health Science and Recreation. Some of the group members visited offices they once worked in and reminisced about their meetings with students. Lee Walton, a former professor of Kinesiology, said he really liked the design of the building and the open space in the lobby for students to use during downtime.

Two students who attended the summer study abroad program led by current CASA faculty were invited to speak about their experience and the impact it has made in their life. Student speakers included Jesse Ruezga, a Master’s student in the School of Social Work and Chelle Tateishi, a Master’s student in Occupational Therapy.

Jesse Ruezga, Master's student in Social Work, talked about studying abroad in Madrid, Spain.

Jesse Ruezga, Master’s student in Social Work, talked about studying abroad in Madrid, Spain.

Chelle Tateishi, a Master's student in Occupational Therapy, spoke about her experience studying abroad in Jyvalska, Finland.

Chelle Tateishi, a Master’s student in Occupational Therapy, spoke about her experience studying abroad in Jyvalska, Finland.

Ruezga spoke about his trip to Spain where he studied the country’s current social justice, human rights and social history with Social Work Professor, Mike Gorman. Tateishi studied the universal health care system on community wellness and prevention in Finland with Occupational Therapy Professor, Lynne Andonian.

The highlight of the luncheon came when former faculty shared a few words about what they have been up to since retirement. Many shared stories of traveling and spending time with grandchildren. Others shared how they are still involved on campus by way of the Emeritus and Retired Faculty Association at San José State University. Emeritus and retired faculty enjoyed catching up with former colleagues and meeting new faces in leadership roles for CASA.

Jill Cody, retired professor from Health Science and Recreation, shared her story of moving near the beach with her husband and writing a book that she plans to finish soon.

Jill Cody, retired professor from Health Science and Recreation, shared her story of moving near the beach with her husband and writing a book that she plans to finish soon.

Daniel Glines, retired Kinesiology professor, shared his story of retirement by staying active outdoors and fishing in Montana.

Daniel Glines, retired Kinesiology professor, shared his story of retirement by staying active outdoors and fishing in Montana.

Former faculty from The Valley Foundation of Nursing and The School of Social Work shared a table with current Social Work Director, Jack Wall and Nursing Director, Kathy Abriam-Yago at the annual luncheon.

Former faculty from The Valley Foundation of Nursing and The School of Social Work shared a table with current Social Work Director, Jack Wall and Nursing Director, Kathy Abriam-Yago at the annual luncheon.