1. Service that Advances the Missions of the University, the College, and the Department

Although most of my service activities are directed towards my professional community and society, I have also been actively engaged in service at JMU. My favorite contribution was working on the ABET Self-Study, because it enabled me to use the skills I developed as a National Examiner for the Baldrige National Quality Program for the benefit of our department, in particular, for devising an effective approach for communicating how continuous improvement is an integral part of our assessment culture.

 a) Serving and participating as a valued team member on departmental and program committees, task forces, etc.

I served on the BS ISAT ABET Accreditation Committee in 2012-2013. With guidance from M. Handley, I wrote and organized much of Criterion 2 (Program Educational Objectives) and Criterion 3 (Student Outcomes) for the ABET Self-Study Report. I conducted faculty interviews to develop the learning and integration portion of Criterion 4 (Continuous Improvement), and organized and edited other portions of that chapter as well. I also led the production and editing of a whitepaper that was submitted to the Executive Advisory Committee (EAC) for early review and feedback.

As a result of my participation in the ABET process, I joined the Assessment Committee in 2013. As part of this team, I served as a senior exit interview notetaker for Assessment Day.

I participated in three hiring committees:

  • For the IA program in 2011, which resulted in the successful hiring of Tim Walton
  • For the Telecom sector in 2011, which resulted in the successful one-year appointment of Samy El-Tawab
  • For the IA program in 2012 and 2013, which led to the successful hires of Steve Marrin and Edna Reid

I served as lead for the IKM academic team during 2011-2012 and 2012-2013. I have been actively engaged in the IKM team since I started at JMU in 2009.

I have been an engaged participant in the Social Context team since 2009, and have served as a discussion leader for ISAT 131 each spring semester from 2011 through 2014

I served on the Interim Admissions Committee for the MS ISAT program in 2011-2012, making recommendations based on transcripts and cover letters.

I presented “5 Minute Scholarship” at our Departmental Faculty Meeting on February 12, 2014

In April 2014, I presented at a BS ISAT w/M. Benton on two potential elements for revised curriculum: 1) Senior Year “Experience” and 2) Cafeteria-Style Foundations Courses (pick three from a menu of 6-8 options). Leading up to this, I attended two meetings of the Curriculum Renewal team to discuss more radically innovative possibilities for revising BS ISAT.

During Spring 2014, I facilitated two sections of ISAT 181, the JMU Dual Enrollment course with Loudoun County Public Schools (15 hr/wk from late March through early May) and participated in day-long visits by the students in November and for the research symposium in April


b) Participating as a valued team member on college and university committees, task forces, etc.

New College Steering Committee (2011-2012) — I participated in exploring possible governance structures, options for the mission statement, and faculty priorities for determining which services should be managed at the college level, and which should be managed at the department level. My primary contribution was to clean and analyze the data from faculty surveys, leveraging the skills I teach in ISAT/CS 344 and ISAT 640/IES 5005. For example, I performed hierarchical clustering on surveys to determine which functions should be in CISE and which should not. [Chair: S. Frysinger; Other Members: H. Way, M. Norton, O. Pierrakos]


Girls in my Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) workshop in 2012

Jr High girls in my Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) workshop in 2012

Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) Conference (Workshop Leader: 2012 and 2013) — This event, run by the JMU Department of Math and Statistics, aims to stimulate interest in STEM among girls in grades 5 through 9. I designed and delivered a workshop entitled “Quality Tools for Problem Solving” in 2012 which was very well received. I was invited back to deliver it again in 2013.

Spirituality Dialogues Program (Facilitator in 2011-2012; Co-Chair and Facilitator in 2012-2013) — I served in this Wellness Passport program managed by the JMU Office of Judicial Affairs. Spirituality dialogues are “open discussions led by a faculty member where students express their personal views and ideas on religion and spirituality. Students share their thoughts, feelings, and beliefs, while attempting to gain understanding and respect for those around them. For faculty, this is an opportunity to collaborate with other faculty and staff on campus and serve students outside the classroom.” Since spiritual experiences are often transformational, this service opportunity directly aligns with my research agenda.

Dingledine Scholarship InterviewerI was asked to assist with application reviews and in-person interviews by this scholarship committee in 2013. I accepted the invitation and attended training, but was not asked to review any applications. I remain on the on-call list for this year and beyond.


c) Participating in public relations events and student recruiting.

  • In 2011 and 2012, I led “Tech Tours” for the Charlottesville Business Innovation Council (CBIC) to stimulate interest among regional high school students in STEM fields and careers – was a great opportunity to spread the word about JMU and ISAT to 100+ high school students while engaging them in dialogue about education and careers
  • I attended ISAT homecoming events in October 2013
  • I brought JMU Free Flow (hoop and poi spinning club) to ISAT homecoming picnic to provide “entertainment”
  • I attended ISAT 20th Anniversary weekend in April 2014
One of our JMU Free Flow club members spinning glow hoop

One of our JMU Free Flow club members spinning glow hoop


d) Participating in grant proposals for external funding for teaching and equipment support.

In May 2014, I submitted a successful 4VA proposal to do a course redesign of ISAT 252, focusing on data science and R, and using it as the basis to start an R UseR! group across the 4VA institutions in 2015-2016 (ramping up in 2014-2015). This includes funding for a student assistant to work on course redesign with me, and prepare to serve as a teaching assistant in the fall.


e) Serving as a faculty advisor to student organizations.

I became the official faculty advisor for Free Flow, the JMU fire-spinning hoop and poi club, in April 2014 after working with them unofficially throughout the 2013-2014 academic year. I also invited them to the ISAT Homecoming picnic in October 2013 to serve as “entertainment.”

Me spinning fire poi at one of our club meetings

Me spinning fire poi at one of our club meetings

f) Serving as a satisfactory student curriculum advisor.

I have not participated in student curriculum advising, with the exception of sponsoring Brad Fischer’s tailored concentration in Data Science from 2011 to 2013.


g) Initiating and carrying out a program which leads to a significant increase in ISAT or JMU resources, or in ISAT’s or JMU’s ability to perform its mission.

I obtained a SAGE grant from the Office of International Programs ($4000) to plan for teaching Gen Ed science abroad. This supports OIP’s goal of offering classes that are not language or humanities, leading to an increase in the type and variety of course offerings delivered in the study abroad setting. Although I initially envisioned that the program would be in Germany and the Netherlands, in the middle of exploring the details of the originally proposed program we realized that Iceland would be a more suitable option that would also expand the number of countries in the OIP portfolio.

ISAT graduate Mandy Jenkins and I boiling eggs in a geothermal stream (Hveragerdi, Iceland) -- May 2014

ISAT graduate Mandy Jenkins and I boiling eggs in a geothermal stream (Hveragerdi, Iceland) — May 2014

I conducted my planning trip in May 2013, taking a recent ISAT Environment graduate (Mandy Jenkins) along to help me identify interesting excursions for students, and plan to launch the program in Summer 2015.


h) A major service or office at the Department, College, or University level.



i) Service leadership, e.g., the ability to initiate and execute constructive change in ISAT.



j) Other professional service which the PAC deems to be a leadership contribution.