What is your area of expertise?
- Since I joined the Department of Kinesiology and Nutrition I have taught Counseling, Health Coaching, Business, Training and Psychology related courses. These days I am able to focus on my strengths in sport, exercise and health psychology.
What made you decide to lead a study abroad program?
- When I was growing up and in my undergraduate program in the United Kingdom, I had many opportunities to travel and play abroad because of my interest and commitment to sport and therapeutic recreation. Because of those influences, I wanted to provide AHS and non-AHS students with opportunities to experience the field of kinesiology through cultural, health and psychology lenses. I wanted to show that a high quality experiential study abroad program could be implemented. My objective was to build an academically strong and enjoyable program with input from previous students from the Dublin 2015, Barcelona 2016 and program and educational partners in Barcelona this year’s program promises to be the best yet. Leading a study abroad program for students of diverse backgrounds and capabilities is challenging, and I like challenges. I think our students do too!
What make this study abroad program special?
- We are studying the field using the Healthy Cities initiative to guide our program of study. This the program special and different in several ways. We will use an integrated approach of classroom, organized program activities and experiential projects located in neighborhoods all over Barcelona. Every member of the party (me included) has research projects they are responsible for completing. We have two Helen Barton Scholars on the program and three projects from sociology, rehabilitation sciences and cardiac rehab (by a graduate student) being completed. We are using visual and qualitative research methods emphasizing participant observation, photography, photo-elicitation, digital stroytelling, literature reviews and presentations. This is an immersive experience and is designed for everyone in the party to touch down, bed in and get started confidently shortly after we arrive. The program gives us permission to do things in ways we might not be able to during a regular semester.
At the end of the program, what memories do you want take with you?
- I want to look back at moments that made a positive impact on students and helped grow their academic capabilities and personal confidence to take on challenges when they return home. Additionally, I want to leave feeling like I did a good job and identify where I can improve when I lead the next program to Barcelona in 2018.
What are your hobbies and interests?
- I love the arts, particularly photography, going to shows of all kinds; ballet, comedy and drama. I enjoy visiting museums, galleries and reading a range of fiction and non-fiction. I love my field, I work out regularly. If something might add value to my understanding of my field or how well I teach and research, I follow my nose in that direction.
What is a fun fact not many people know about you?
- The first soccer result I look for on a Saturday is my home town club Dover Athletic FC. I played for the youth team for two seasons before I found rugby and it keeps me connected with where I came from.