Ron Miller, JMC Alum, 1961, Visits School of Journalism and Mass Communications

Left to Right:  Mary Schutten, CASA Dean, Ron Miller, Class of 1961, Elias Castillo, Class of 1961, Phylis West-Johnson, Director, School of Journalism and Mass Communications

Left to Right: Mary Schutten, CASA Dean, Ron Miller, Class of 1961, Elias Castillo, Class of 1961, Phylis West-Johnson, Director, School of Journalism and Mass Communications

The School of Journalism and Mass Communications welcomed back Ron Miller, JMC graduate 1961, and recipient of the department’s alumni award.

While at SJSU, Miller was editor of Lyke, the campus feature magazine and is best known locally as the former TV editor of the San Jose Mercury News from 1977-99, syndicated columnist for Knight Ridder Newspapers and former national president of the Television Critics Association.

Miller spoke to Professor Diane Guerrazzi’s newswriting class Monday, October 3 in JMC’s television studio. Miller shared excerpts of his current book Conversations with Classic Film Stars, that includes 34 interviews conducted by Miller and his writing partner, James Bawden, ex-Toronto Star columnist.

Miller gave students his writing and interview tips and shared many celebrity stories. He recalled flying on Elizabeth Taylor’s private jet and not being able to talk to her until the plane actually landed. “I just sat there smiling, she just sat there smiling, and after we landed she gave me a very interesting interview. Even though she was a very famous movie star, she was a very down to earth person and very funny,” recalls Miller.

Miller presently lives in Blaine, WA, near the Canadian border. He is a veteran public speaker and campus lecturer. He teaches adult education classes for Western Washington University in Bellingham, WA. He is also known as a prolific ‘master’ interviewer, having interviewed numerous Hollywood and PBS celebrities. Miller has written a second volume of his book, which is completed and awaiting publication in 2017. Meanwhile, his next book Mystery Classics on Film, will be published this fall by McFarland Publishing.

SJSU’s Center For Healthy Aging in Multicultural Populations (CHAMP) Offers San Jose’s Seniors Health Screenings and Information

On Thursday, September 29, the 24th Annual Senior Resource & Wellness Fair, presented by the County of Santa Clara Department of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS), in partnership with the City of San Jose Parks & Recreation Department, and SJSU’s Center for Healthy Aging in Multicultural Populations (CHAMP), took place at the Mexican Heritage Plaza in San Jose.

Approximately 400 people in the community came out to the Wellness Fair to receive information from 85 different programs that provide information and services to the senior population.  There were about 70 vendors from community agencies. Participants were able to receive a multitude of health screenings – flu shots, blood pressure, glucose, dental, spine alignment, skin, mood, cognitive function, falls prevention, fitness, biofeedback, and hearing tests which were provided by Walgreens, SJSU students and other agencies.  Several workshops and fitness demonstrations were also held throughout the day, including Laughter Yoga, Fair Housing Rights, Cal Medi-Connect, and Nutrition.

More than 40 students, led by faculty from six San Jose State departments, participated in offering screenings or healthy living advice to older adults at the event. Students from the following departments offered information/screenings on the following topics:

  • Social work – Mood and wellness screening
  • Nursing – Blood pressure screening
  • Kinesiology – Information on evidence-based exercise
  • Occupational Therapy – Falls and balance
  • Recreation Therapy – Biofeedback to improve breathing and managing stress
  • Communicative Disorders – Ear inspections; and Cognitive wellness screening

“The Wellness fair offers SJSU students a wonderful opportunity to practice their communications skills, learn how to engage seniors in screenings and health education, and learn about the role of multiple disciplines and the array of community services available to promote wellness and healthy aging,” says Sadhna Diwan, Ph.D.,Professor, School of Social Work, Director, Center for Healthy Aging in Multicultural Populations.

Photos by Lauren Chun, Megan Dejan and Mickie Lau, students from Dwight Bentel & Hall Student Advertising and Public Relations Agency, School of Journalism and Mass Communications:

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Dr. Lela Llorens, Past Chair of Occupational Therapy to Deliver Keynote Address at Occupational Therapy Association of California’s Annual Conference

Dr. Lela Llorens, past Chair of Occupational Therapy and former Associate Academic Vice President of Faculty Affairs at SJSU, has been chosen to deliver the keynote address at the California Foundation of Occupational Therapy luncheon at the Occupational Therapy Association of California (OTAC) Annual Conference. “Although our program is relatively small in size and exclusively a graduate program, we have well over 50 graduate students (out of a graduating class of 78) presenting their research projects during the poster session at the OTAC Annual Conference in Pasadena, says Winifred Schultz-Krohn PhD, Professor and Chair, Occupational Therapy.

Dr. Krohn says “the poster session is not designed for student presentations. It is designed for practicing occupational therapists. This represents quite an accomplishment since these presentations undergo a blind review and acceptance is quite competitive!”

In addition to all the student research projects there are four faculty members and two lecturers presenting at the OTAC conference. The presentations undergo a blinded peer review prior to acceptance. “We are excited to celebrate the 40th anniversary of OTAC and our very proud of our small department which has a very big footprint at this conference!”

At A Glance:

Here are the presenters and topics from SJSU’s Occupational Therapy Department:

Presentations at OTAC 2016: October 27-30, 2016

Dr. Lela Llorens – California Foundation of Occupational Therapy Honored Lecturer (this is the second time she has been so honored) Implementing Occupations for Health and Wellbeing: A Personal Story

Dr. Winifred Schultz-Krohn and Dr. Gigi Smith – Evidence-based Practice for Clinical Dysphagia Intervention

Dr. Deborah Bolding and Lecturer Graham Teaford – Facilitating Behavioral Changes to Prevent Falls

Dr. Winifred Schultz-Krohn and Asha Asher – Professional Development: AOTA Board and Specialty Certification

Professional Poster sessions:

Lecturer Alison George – Interprofessional Collaboration During an International Faculty-led Program

Rebecca Bobell, Christy Goulet, Lauren Hendrick (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Bolding – A Matter of Balance: Program Evaluation

Jessica Kepes, Kailey Payne, Jennifer Balich, Mollie Sepahmansour, Chelsea McMillen (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schultz-Krohn – Clinical Reasoning used by Experienced Pediatric Occupational Therapists

Clorinda LemMon, Annabelle Bewicke, Aisa Poniente, Sarah Falter (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schutlz-Krohn – Effects of Infant Massage on stress Levels of Homeless Mothers

Nancy Huang, Monique Afram, Cameren Muller, Ashley Sanches, Tiffant Tzuang (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schultz-Krohn – Efficacy of Cognitive Orientation to Daily Occupations (CO-OP)

Celeste Morgan (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schultz-Krohn – Family Mealtime Experiences with Children with ASD

Anne Elliott, Renee Demaree, Casey Millerick, Priscilla Ng (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schultz-Krohn – Fostering Imaginative Play in Homeless Preschool Children

Chelle Tateishi, Diana Fitts, Maggie Jo Green, Jennifer Scherba, Hillary Wartinger (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Glogoski – Life Skills – Transition Age Youth with Mental Illness

Carley Wade, Emma Stern, Michelle Rice, Lauren Okajima (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schultz-Krohn – Occupation-based Financial Literacy Program with Homeless Adolescents

Jazmin Arellano, Tiffant Young, Amanda Huang, Tiffany Que-Smith (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Bolding – Personal Emergency Response System Class for Older Adults

Lee Sonko (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Chang – Relating Stress Factors to Life Satisfaction in OT Graduate Students

Krista Yee, Nathan Nam, Christine Huynh, Larkin Petralli (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Chang – Relationships Between Sensory Processing Patterns and Play Experiences

Justin Lin, Brian Huynh, Inge Verschueren (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Chang – Stress Factors and Sleep Quality Among Occupational Therapy Graduate Students

Megan Moreno, Jessica Pham, Alrice Lai, Jennafer Hope, Kristine Young (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Chang – Stress Factors and Engagement Among Occupational Therapy Graduate Students

Nicole Pearlmen, Angeliki Bundros-Menig, Rebecca Huniu, Sarah Sherman, Carly Rosada (All SJSU OT Graduate Students), Faculty Adviser: Dr. Schultz-Krohn – Work Readiness Program for Transitional Age Foster Youth

The Valley Foundation School of Nursing’s Professors Colleen O’Leary-Kelley, Dr. Tamara McKinnon and Students Conduct Continuing Education Program at Faculty Led Program in Ireland this Past Summer


While preparing for a faculty led program in Ireland this past summer, Professor Colleen O’Leary-Kelley and Dr. Tamara McKinnon investigated the process of providing continuing education for nurses.

Last Spring, their contacts at the Nursing Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI) instructed the two professors to submit their proposed CE program to the board online at

SJSU Nursing students provided an interactive presentation about utilizing effective communications skills to nurses, social workers, and other health care professionals at the Markievicz House in Sligo, Ireland, during the Faculty Led Program.

“Within a few weeks we received approval from the NMBI for three category 1 Continuing Education Units for the course. The course was focused on Motivational Interviewing, and was prepared by the 12 senior nursing students as a required project for their FLP/Credit Toward Major summer course, “ says Professor O’Leary-Kelley.

“The students provided an excellent, interactive presentation that was well received by the public health nurses and social workers. The following day students provided a repeat presentation for staff nurses and administration at Sligo Regional Hospital and faculty from St. Angela’s College in Sligo, Ireland.” St. Angela’s College is an affiliate of the National University of Ireland–Galway.

School of Nursing Faculty Led Program 2016 in Ireland.

Karly Comfort, SJSU MSW Student Receives MSW Research Award

Karly Comfort

Karly Comfort, SJSU master’s student in social work was one of two students who received the MSW Research Award from the California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC) for her research entitled, “Thinking Positive, Being Connected, and Staying Active: The Impact of Mental Illness Stigma on Caregiving, Well-Being, and Self-Care’s Role as a Buffer.”

CalSWEC’s Research & Development Committee, in conjunction with the California Association of Deans and Directors, established the Research Award for MSW Students to encourage and support student research that will contribute to the evidence base for policy and practice for public human services. The research competition is open to all MSW students attending universities in CalSWEC’s consortium.

When Karly was asked why she decided to pursue this particular topic, she stated, “When you think of someone with schizophrenia living at home, what are the first five things that come to mind? Most likely you’d think about the factors that contribute to their safety and how to keep them safe. These factors probably include food, clothing, transportation, medical appointments, and activities of daily living.

In the background, beyond what you think of first, is the support person providing such items, the caregiver who is most likely a family member. That person gives so much of their time, energy, and heart to supporting, caring for, and providing for their loved one. Family caregivers are rarely thought about in the realm of mental health, which is a significant missed opportunity.

In the months leading up to my having to complete a final research project for the MSW program at SJSU, I met a few family caregivers of people with mental illness that provided me with a window into the unique demands and stressors that caregivers face. Therefore, I used my culminating research paper to examine what caregivers need in order to support their well-being.

My project showed that people with mental illness do better when their caregivers do better and have substantial support structures. I examined the well-being of family caregivers of people with severe mental illness and looked at how mental illness stigma and self-care impact their well-being. With the new knowledge and understanding I gained from my research, I am much more able to empathize with their efforts in caring for their loved ones, as well as for themselves.”

Awardees received $250 for the initial proposal and $500 as a winner. Congratulations Karly Comfort.

For more information: MSW Research Award-Winning Projects Delve into Aspects of Mental Health.