COLA Notes for January 2015

News and notes from around the College of Liberal Arts…

ART & ART HISTORY: Associate Professor Darryl Lauster was named last month the winner of The Meadows Museum at Southern Methodist University’s Moss/Chumley Artist Award, The Dallas Morning News reported. … Associate Professor Ya’Ke Smith‘s latest film, dawn., was recognized as one of the best short films of 2014 by D Magazine. Film senior Christian Vasquez, who wrote and shot last year the Department of Education-commissioned film “50 Years” about the Civil Rights era, wrote the article. Last month, HuffPost Live interviewed Smith, the Morgan Woodward Distinguished Professor of Film/Video at UT Arlington, about Hollywood and race. … “Sedrick Huckaby: Everyday Glory,” an exhibit at Valley House Gallery by Assistant Professor Sedrick Huckaby, was named as a top five exhibition at Dallas-Fort Worth museum, according to The Dallas Morning News. … Letha Clair Robertson (’99), an assistant professor of art history at UT Tyler, served as a guest curator for an exhibition that commemorates the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War at the Tyler Museum of Art, according to The Dallas Morning News. … The Waco Tribune featured Richard Skurla (’08) in an article on his solo Art Center show in Waco. … Michael Mazurek (MFA, ’11), a Dallas-based artist and teacher, has joined the Goss-Michael Foundation.

COMMUNICATION: Longtime KTVT/CBS 11 anchor Karen Borta (’87) is moving to the anchor chair at CBS 11 News This Morning, after several years of co-anchoring afternoon and evening newscasts, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram said. … Assistant Professor Erika Pribanic-Smith spent her winter break designing a new website for the American Journalism Historians Association. Founded in 1981, AJHA seeks to advance education and research in mass communication history. Pribanic-Smith serves as president for the organization. … While cleaning a supply closet, broadcast engineer Joe Carter discovered dozens of VHS tapes that included university and student programming previous aired on local cable. With the help of the university archivist and UTA Library personnel, class videos from the late 1980s, including a special media production of the 1988 homecoming festivities, have been archived for the University. … LaDonna Aiken (’14) traveled to Okinawa, Japan, Dec. 29-Jan. 13, for a research project. Aiken, who serves as a part-time broadcast lecturer at UTA, was awarded a Dean’s Award for Research Travel for $1,000 to make the trip. … Kevan Gerabagi (’14) was hired as a QA Analyst at Santander Consumer USA. … Chris Thipavong (’14) is now an Inside Software Service Specialist at Omnitracs, a mobile technology company. … Allie Woldtvedt (’13) is in a new position as morning anchor at KMTR NewsSource 16 in Eugene, Ore. Allie Warren, as she is known on camera, started her new anchor gig on Dec. 23. … Journalism major Noelle Jabal will spend the spring semester as an intern for D Magazine in Dallas. … A student chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists is in the process of being reactivated at UTA. Founded in 1975, the NABJ is an organization committed to strengthening ties among, expanding job opportunities for, and fostering excellence for black media-professionals, according to the organization’s national website. The organization awards nearly $100,000 in scholarships and provides professional development and technical training across the country. For more information, contact Reginald Adetula at

CRIMINOLOGY & CRIMINAL JUSTICE: KXAS/NBC 5 noted a program by UT Arlington that focuses on the study of family violence, which was started in honor of Arlington Police Officer Jillian Smith (’09), who died in the line of duty four years ago.

ENGLISH: A new volume of the Early Modern Studies Journal, published through the Department of English, is available now online. The title is ”Women’s Writing | Women’s Work in Early Modernity.” … Professor and Department Chair Bruce Krajewski will lecture on “Business as Usual: Theory at the University” at noon Wednesday, Feb. 4, in University Hall, Room 432, part of the Center for Theory’s Spring 2015 Colloquia. … Experts are divided about the impact of absent, father-themed college admission essays, Diverse Education reported. Associate Professor Jim Warren was quoted in the article.

HISTORY: Associate Professor and Department Chair W. Marvin Dulaney will be a panelist at the Texas Congressional Community Policing Summit on Thursday, Jan 15., at the Mavericks Activity Center. The event, which begins at 10 a.m., will include members of local law enforcement, area church leaders and federal and state elected officials. … Assistant Professor David LaFevor‘s “Cuba: Histories of the Present,” a collection of photographs looking at contemporary street life in Cuba, was featured in FW Weekly. … Associate Professor Alusine Jalloh, founding director of the Africa Program, has been selected to serve on the 2015 Mandela Washington Fellowship reader committee, which evaluates program applications. … Associate Professor Stephanie Cole is one of three editors with a newly released book, “Texas Women: Their Histories, Their Lives,” part of the “Southern Women: Their Lives and Times” series from University of Georgia Press.

LINGUISTICS & TESOL: Associate Professor and Department Chair Laurel Smith Stvan and Vice-Provost for Faculty Affairs David Silva presented a paper, “Engaged Etymologies: Active Learning in the Teaching of Word Formation and Etymology,” at the Teaching with the OED roundtable at the Modern Language Association in Vancouver, British Columbia, earlier this month. … Professor Colleen Fitzgerald, director of the 2014 Institute on Collaborative Language Research, wrote a guest column about the Enduring Voices project to revitalize indigenous languages in Humanitarian News and Global Voices Online. … Doctoral student Samantha Cornelius presented a paper “Multisyllabic Rhyme in Contemporary American Hip Hop” at the Linguistic Society of America in Portland, Ore., on Jan. 9, 2015. … Two Native American Languages Lab projects were presented at SSILA (the Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas), held in conjunction with the 2015 annual meeting of the Linguistic Society of America. Fitzgerald and Joshua Hinson (Chickasaw Language Revitalization Program) presented the paper “Narrative genres and language documentation in Chickasaw.” Fitzgerald, Jonelle Battise (Alabama-Coushatta Tribe), Hali Dardar (Houma Tribe/Louisiana State University) and doctoral student Daniel Amy presented “Community-based language projects for Alabama.” … Alumna Tracy Rundstrom Williams (Ph.D., ’07) wrote a chapter in the book Teacher, Scholar, Mother: (Re)Envisioning Motherhood in the Academy that will be published in early 2015. … Doctoral student Juyoung Lee was recognized in Who’s Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities.

POLITICAL SCIENCE: Professor Jose Angel Guiterrez received last month a 2014 Lifetime Achievement award from the Dallas Peace Center. … A Fort Worth Star-Telegram story on a state law that allows expressions such as Merry Christmas quoted Associate Professor Allan Saxe, who said the law fills a need “to bolster those who want our traditions to thrive in the face of ‘political correctness.’” … Saxe was a featured guest on WTKS/NewRadio 1290AM (Savannah) in a report on a controversy involving federal appropriations to the United Nations fund to fight climate change. … One of the concerns of upcoming Israeli elections is the possible breakup of the Shas Party and who those voters will support, said Associate Professor Brent Sasley in an International Business Times story.

SOCIOLOGY & ANTHROPOLOGY: Professor Ben Agger (Sociology) has added a new chapter on privacy for the second edition of his book, “Oversharing: Presentations of Self in the Internet Age.” … Agger, with Timothy Luke (Virginia Tech), co-authored an article “Blockbuster Marxism” for a recent issue of Critical Sociology. … Dallas NPR station, KERA 90.1 FM, broadcast a PRI/The World interview with Associate Professor Ritu Gairola Khanduri (Anthropology) about R. K. Laxman, the famed Times of India cartoonist who created the iconic character, The Common Man. Khanduri interviewed Laxman at length for her new book, “Caricaturing Culture in India: Cartoons and History in the Modern World,” which was featured last month in the blog Anthropologist in the Attic.

THEATRE ARTS: Theatre Arts faculty member Eric Wilder and Senior Lecturer Julienne Greer were highlighted by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in the newspaper’s “Best of Tarrant County Theatre” report. Wilder’s work was seen in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” at Jubilee Theatre and Greer starred in “The Other Place” at Circle Theatre. … Senior Lecturer Seraphina Nova was awarded Outstanding New Playwriting for “Dogwood” at the Candid Theatre by Lavender Magazine’s Arts Spotlight 2014 Theatre in Review. … Senior Lecture Felicia Bertch traveled to Chicago to direct students in an original play at Wheaton College. The working title is “KJV.” Performances are Jan 16-18, 2015. … Scenic Designer Michelle Harvey designed the Turtle Creek Chorale Christmas concert titled “Jangled.” UTA students Ethan Bomyea served as light board operator, and Raul Luna and Jailene Torres worked on the run crew. … Stephen Tyler Howell (’11) was featured in a Matt Simons music video.

WOMEN’S STUDIES: On Jan. 31, the Women’s and Gender Studies program will host a group of young girls (9-14) from the Delta Academy and showcase career paths in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). … The program’s 29th Women’s History Month Lecture series is themed “Futuristic Females: Women in Science and Science Fiction” and will culminate March 24 with guest speaker Charlaine Harris, a science fiction writer whose novels inspired the HBO series, “True Blood.” … Women’s and Gender Studies is co-sponsoring the April 3 performance of “The Vagina Monologues.”


(Compiled and edited by James Dunning/COLA Communications,

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