Mission Inclusion promotes curriculum that examines inclusion, equity, representation

To equip students with skills to change our dynamic world, faculty and staff must infuse their programs and curriculum to examine inclusivity, equity, and representation. In the first yearlong “Mission Inclusion” seminar in 2017-18, scholars addressed diversity and social responsibility in their teaching, research, and outreach. They learned more about cultural humility, self-reflection — and building a civil, inclusive, and safe learning environment. Here’s a succinct medley of their approaches and observations.

Adjusting to minimize implicit biasGinny

We all have unconscious and implicit biases — sometimes shown in our subtle behaviors, body language, and facial expressions. Ginny Wangerin encourages students to consider the impact of bias on their interactions, and to intentionally make adjustments to minimize its impact. This is especially important in the field of nursing, which is dominated by white females.

“Being more culturally competent is more than understanding dietary variations,” she said. “It’s also about understanding how our communication can either enhance or block the patients’ reception to what we have to say.” — Ginny Wangerin, certified nurse educator who launched Iowa State’s bachelor of science in nursing degree

Leaving bias at the door

Tera JordanTera Jordan has grown in her understanding of things that might affect people of different ability levels. She’s revamping her HDFS 270 Family Communications and Relationships class to reflect her learning — providing two or three examples of a concept, rather than just one.

“I really am thinking much more critically about how to deliver the curriculum in a more inclusive way,” she said. “People come to the table with a set of experiences that we may know nothing about. This has really sensitized me to stop; get to know people on an individual level; allow them to define who they are; and leave our judgments, our biases, our prejudices, and stereotypes at the door.” — Tera Jordan, associate professor in human development and family studies

Fostering sensitivity to needs of othersChristina Campbell

Diversity and inclusion are about so much more than race and culture. Christina Campbell is helping her students see that it’s also about being intentional and sensitive to the needs of others when it comes to nutrition and disease.

“Seventy percent of the adults in our country are overweight or obese, and at risk for chronic diseases such as diabetes and cancer and heart disease,” she said. “All of those are lifestyle-related. The norm isn’t health. The norm is disease. We need to acknowledge that there is all this disease and that creates some diversity.” — Christina Campbell, Sandra S. and Roy W. Uelner Professor in food science and human nutrition

Adapting clothing to the wearer

Ellen McKinneyEllen McKinney tackles areas not well-addressed in the fashion industry — from breastfeeding apparel to women’s firefighting uniforms. This spring, she challenged her students to come up with a creative design solution for a person with a disability. They found the experience eye-opening. Getting to know people one-on-one helped them realize their own assumptions and biases.

“They really got a grasp of how important clothing is by working with individual clients,” McKinney said. “Even small changes in how a garment is made makes great improvements in their quality of life.” — Ellen McKinney, associate professor in apparel, events, and hospitality management

Appreciating the beauty in diversityEJ Bahng

Mission Inclusion gave E.J. Bahng more confidence to notice and articulate the subtleties of social justice. She observed a student from Asia choosing to consistently come to class late after classmates called him “ninja” and laughed at him. She gained a deeper understanding of friends’ and colleagues’ feelings when asked where they’re from and how well they speak English. She reflected about the difference between having and not having the “burden of representation.” She plans to use what she’s learned to make the teaching of science by future teachers more equitable.

“Everyone has a unique story and that makes us beautiful.” — E.J. Bahng, associate professor in the School of Education

Initiating courageous conversations

RaderMalisa Rader finds herself more willing to initiate courageous conversations that encourage people to look inward and examine their implicit biases. She co-facilitates “Navigating Difference” workshops and is pursuing further education to enhance how she leads smaller discussions.

“We can have differences but we can talk about those differences and try to see each other’s perspective a little more, so we can all grow together,” Rader said. “Let’s have some civil dialogue instead of polarizing ourselves.” — Malisa Rader, human sciences specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach

2018-19 cohort

Participants in the 2018-19 cohort of Mission Inclusion include faculty members Laura Ellingson-Sayen, Elena Karpova, Kevin Schalinske, and Chunhui Xiang.

Jane and Chuck Olsen champion inclusion through giving

As a freshman coming to Iowa State University in 1956, Jane Fulton Olsen (’61 child development) moved cross-country from California to connect with adventurous people.

“I didn’t know a soul when I came to Iowa except my ‘big sister’ in the dorm. Just getting to know the Midwest farm country was a new experience for me. Being from southern California, I had also been exposed to more diversity in the community,” Olsen said.

The background of Jane’s husband, Chuck Olsen (’60 agricultural engineering), was more homogeneous.

“Coming from a rural Iowa community, a farm community, the only diversity I can remember is the country kids and the townies,” Chuck said. “Diversity wasn’t even a term I had ever heard of or experienced.”

Jane didn’t only win Chuck’s heart. She introduced him to a world of diversity.

Now married for 57 years, the Olsens have embraced diversity in many ways, including hosting an exchange student from Spain. Jane credits her mother, who had several friends from different cultural backgrounds and socio-economic levels, with nurturing her receptiveness to a variety of people and an interest in how they live their lives.

“Stepping out of your comfort zone is not always easy to do but it’s very rewarding and enriching to meet people from different walks of life,” Jane said. “When you make that effort, you may also be a model for your friends and neighbors.”

Chuck agrees.

“As we share the experiences that have exposed us to diversity in society with others, we have had great discussions,” Chuck said. “It becomes quite contagious.” 

Where inclusion starts

Today, the Olsens are creating a new scholarship at Iowa State for undergraduate students who are preparing to teach and work with children from birth to kindergarten and with their families. The scholarship will be available to students who represent diversity and inclusivity in the college community.

“For students who are learning to be teachers, it’s ever so important that they are sensitive to children with families who may have different cultural traditions,” Jane said. “It may start with the teacher who works with young preschool children and their families.”

Both Olsens think having opportunities in college to know and respect people who come from different backgrounds, including faculty, are important for students and their development.

“Their educators need to be from different groups,” Jane said.

What happens at Iowa State sets off a ripple effect, Chuck said.

“As these students move into life and relate to professionals, they are influencing people who work as clients or others who report to them,” Chuck said. “What an opportunity to influence! It’s a very, very broad impact.”

The Olsens’ dedication to diversity is a perfect example of why it is so important for alumni to give back to their alma mater. The ripple effect of the Olsens’ generosity will be felt for generations to come. Their legacy will be everlasting, something not many people can claim.

But you could.

As an Iowa State alumni, there are countless opportunities for you to make an impact that will last for generations. Find out how you can establish your own legacy here at Iowa State University by visiting hs.iastate.edu/alumni/giving or calling Molly Parrott, senior development director at 515-294-4607.


Iowa State events planned to shed light on body image issues, eating disorders

Sarah Thompson, a writer, eating disorder recovery coach and consultant, will deliver the keynote lecture, “But You Don’t Look Like You Have an Eating Disorder…,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, in the Memorial Union Sun Room. This lecture is free and open to the public.

The lecture is the keynote address for Body Image and Eating Disorder Awareness Week at Iowa State University. BIEDA Week is part of a national effort to encourage a positive, sustainable lifestyle through awareness of body image issues and eating disorders and to identify resources on campus and locally.

Read the complete story here.

‘White Fragility’ author will discuss racism, social justice while at Iowa State

A scholar on race issues, particularly how white Americans deal with race and privilege, is coming to Iowa State University.

Robin DiAngelo will present “White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26, at Stephens Auditorium. This event is free and open to the public.

DiAngelo wrote a book of the same name, as well as “Is Everyone Really Equal?”

Read the complete story here

Three College of Human Sciences students earn 2019 Wallace E. Barron All-University Senior Award

Three College of Human Sciences students — Benjamin Dralle, Jennifer Junker, and Zoe Lambert — are among the seven honorees the Iowa State University Alumni Association will recognize this spring with the 2019 Wallace E. Barron All-University Senior Award. 

The award recognizes exceptional achievements in academics and community activities, display of high character, and promise for continuing these exemplary qualities as alumni. 

The achievements of the three highly-deserving students highlight the exceptional opportunities made available to them by Iowa State and the College of Human Sciences.

Benjamin Dralle, who is pursuing a double major in nutritional science and genetics, has put in the time to become an active leader at Iowa State. Dralle is president of the Iowa State Pre-Medical Club, an organization that helps  prepare pre-medical students to enter the medical field. He was also a community adviser in university residential living communities for over three years.

Dralle also leads by example as a researcher. In 2018, Dralle was the only student selected to represent the state of Iowa at the Posters on the Hill undergraduate research event in Washington, D.C.

He has also been a Cyclone Scholar Summer Research Experience participant, a College of Human Sciences Louise Rosenfeld undergraduate research intern, and a Geisinger Health System Summer Undergraduate Research Program participant.

2018 - April - CHS - Student Sensations-80-Edit
Jennifer Junker will receive the Wallace E. Barron All-University Senior Award this spring.

Jennifer Junker is an apparel, merchandising, and design student who has made the most of her time at Iowa State with a 3.81 GPA and seven semesters on the dean’s list. She is the co-founder and vice president of the National Retail Federation Student Association chapter on campus and is currently an assistant buyer at the Iowa State Univeristy Bookstore.

Junker took her bright spirit and creativity to New York City where she worked as a planning intern at Haddad Brands and Fall River, Massachusetts, where she served as a development and operations intern with the Good Clothing Company. Recently, Junker was awarded a $35,000 scholarship from the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund for her case study.

Zoe Lambert is a driven kinesiology and health student focused on improving the lives of those around her. During her tenure as the president of Be the Match, an organization focused on getting people to register as bone marrow donors, over 750 new donors were added to the registry.

Lambert continues to help people as an undergraduate research assistant in assistant professor Elizabeth Stegemöller’s neurophysiology research lab, where she studies Parkinson’s disease and participates in a weekly boxing session with people who have Parkinson’s to help alleviate their symptoms.

As a communications consultant at the Writing and Media Center, Lambert completed 327 consultations, including about 30 graduate students. She was constantly in high demand, especially for at-risk students, because of her constructive feedback and enthusiasm to help each person who visited her.

All seven recipients of the 2019 Wallace E. Barron All-University Senior Award can be found at the following link: https://www.isualum.org/s/565/17/interior.aspx?sid=565&gid=1&pgid=2548.

Established in 1968, the award is named for Wallace E. "Red" Barron (Class of '28), who served as director of alumni affairs at Iowa State from 1937 to 1968.

Giving high school students the tools to question classic literature

AMES, Iowa – Generations of students have read Shakespeare and Hemingway for high school literature class and Jeanne Dyches, assistant professor in Iowa State University’s School of Education, would like students to question that tradition.

“As a field, we need to think about how our disciplines are advancing certain stories, silencing certain stories and socializing our students to think that what we’re teaching them is neutral,” Dyches said. “We need to have a conversation around why certain texts are taught year after year."

See the full ISU News Service story.


Fulbright Specialist from Iowa State evaluates drug prevention education in Malaysia

AMES, Iowa -- Cultures may be different, but families face similar problems. Cathy Hockaday says this is her greatest takeaway from serving as a Fulbright Specialist in Malaysia in fall 2018.

Hockaday coordinates the “Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14,” an evidence-based and family-based prevention program from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. She spent a month in Bandar Baru Bangi, Malaysia, reviewing family and school-based prevention programs and developing a plan for monitoring and evaluating the country’s preventative drug education. She was hosted by the National Anti-Drugs Agency in Malaysia’s Ministry of Home Affairs.

The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs established the Fulbright Specialist Program in 2001. U.S. academics and professionals are paired with host institutions abroad to share their expertise. They gain international experience and learn about other cultures while building capacity at their overseas host institutions.

Malaysia has several drug prevention education programs designed for age groups ranging from young children to adults, but hadn’t confirmed whether the programs really work. Hockaday’s task was to study drug prevention education activities in Malaysia and teach National Anti-Drugs Agency prevention coordinators and workers how to assess whether their programs were effective. She also taught them how to develop tools and techniques for collecting data, as well as systematic monitoring to measure program effectiveness. The end goal was to ensure accountability and support evidence-based decision-making.

In addition, she provided intensive training in the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14. SFP 10-14 has been implemented in more than 25 countries since 1993. Following a 2002 Cochrane Review of 6,000 prevention programs, the World Health Organization named SFP 10-14 the number one prevention program for long-term effects on substance use and misuse.

Cathy Hockaday poses with Malaysian drug prevention officials
Cathy Hockaday (front row, third from right) worked with members of the National Anti-Drugs Agency while serving as a Fulbright Specialist in Malaysia. Photo courtesy of Malaysia's National Anti-Drugs Agency.

"SFP 10-14 has been taught in South Africa, Peru and now Malaysia. The message is the same. Families around this world are all dealing with similar problems. Their families are like our families,” Hockaday said .

“My role as SFP 10-14 coordinator includes working with nonprofits, schools, faith-based and statewide agencies, military installations and universities worldwide. My position has evolved from simply coordinating the program, to exploring creative partnerships everywhere to help at-risk youth,” Hockaday said.

Hockaday also serves as a national expert on two opioid panels focused on drug prevention. They are working to make sure universities and agencies that serve families are aware of gold-standard practices for implementing research- and evidence-based programs.

Hockaday applied for the Fulbright Specialist Program for the opportunity to be immersed in another culture and learn the traditions, values, beliefs and customs.

“Listening is the most important skill a person can have when working with other cultures. I do not believe I am the expert in any situation, especially when other cultures are involved. I talk about what works best in my culture, but then ask how their culture’s traditions and values could be integrated into the activities to honor local families,” Hockaday said.

“We have found this to be useful even with different cultures within the United States, as we have collaborated with other organizations to adapt SFP 10-14 for use with the military and with Native Americans,” she added.

“We have worked with several countries to adapt the curriculum to be more culturally relevant. People do not need to speak the same language to come to a mutual understanding of how to improve the lives of families,” Hockaday said.

Hockaday plans to share the process undertaken in Malaysia with others who are developing program evaluation plans. She is serving a three-year tenure in the Fulbright Specialist Program.

Leadership scholar to direct Iowa State University School of Education

AMES, Iowa — A former Iowa State University faculty member who studies effective leadership will return to Ames to lead the Iowa State University School of Education. Donald Hackmann, a professor of educational leadership at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign has been named director of the School of Education and the inaugural Frances S. and Arthur L. Wallace Professor in the College of Human Sciences. The appointment is effective July 1, 2019. 

“Dr. Hackmann’s deep understanding of educational issues positions him well for the director role,” said Laura Dunn Jolly, dean and Dean’s Chair of the College of Human Sciences. “School administrators, teachers, and school board members across the U.S. look to his research-based findings to help them establish equitable learning environments. He will provide excellent leadership for the School of Education.”

Hackmann holds a doctorate and an educational specialist degree in educational administration from the University of Missouri in Columbia. He also has a master’s degree in secondary school administration and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and mathematics education from Truman State University in Kirksville, MO.

Since joining the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2004, he has served as a tenured faculty member and led as interim department head of educational organization and leadership from 2007-2009. He was promoted to professor in 2013. Hackmann has been recognized consistently on the university’s list of teachers ranked as “excellent” and courses rated as “outstanding” by their students.

At Iowa State University, Hackmann began as an assistant professor of educational administration in 1998. He was promoted to associate professor with tenure in 2001 and served on the faculty until July 2004.

Earlier in his career, he was a faculty member at Illinois State University and Eastern Michigan University.  He also taught mathematics and was a principal at several public schools in Missouri.

Hackmann said he is eager to return to Iowa State, reconnect with Iowans, and advance education.

“The School of Education, with its commitment to social justice, is uniquely positioned within the state of Iowa to prepare outstanding educators and researchers, advocate for equitable learning opportunities, and build supportive relationships and research partnerships across the P-20 continuum,” Hackmann said. “I look forward to working with School of Education students, faculty, staff, and other colleagues as we strive to make a difference through our teaching, research, and outreach.”

Hackmann has served in leadership roles for several professional associations, including the American Educational Research Association and the University Council for Educational Administration.

He received the Article of the Year award from the Journal of Career and Technical Education in 2017. He was named the Reviewer of the Year by the Journal of Research on Educational Leadership Education in 2006 and again in 2013. In 2012, he received a Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award from the American Educational Research Association.

“Dr. Hackmann brings a tremendous breadth of experience across the P-20 spectrum as a teacher, school leader, faculty member, and department head,” said Anne Foegen, a professor and director of graduate education in the School of Education.

Foegen shared co-leadership of the search committee for the director position with Carl Weems, professor and chair of human development and family studies.

“Human development and family studies and the school share the early childhood education program — and we work closely together on the family and consumer sciences education major,” Weems said. “I am impressed with Dr. Hackmann’s knowledge of the education landscape in Iowa and the nation but also his incredibly collaborative and inclusive nature.”

Hackmann will succeed Marlene Strathe, who has directed the School of Education since January 2015.

“We are grateful for Dr. Strathe’s superb guidance,” Jolly said. “The School of Education is making great strides to meet the big challenges of the 21st century.”

One of five academic units in the College of Human Sciences, the School of Education is committed to engaging in rigorous and socially meaningful research, preparing leaders and practitioners across the P-20 continuum that promote rich and equitable learning opportunities for all students, and supporting public education as a cornerstone of a healthy, vibrant, and just society. 

New endowed professorship supports high-priority efforts

The Frances S. and Arthur L. Wallace Professor in the College of Human Sciences is named at the dean’s discretion to support high-priority activities. The professorship is made possible by an endowment from the late Frances and Arthur Wallace who both graduated from Iowa State University in 1941.

Ashley Jones pursues her passion for entrepreneurship

As an undecided freshmen at Iowa State, Ashley Jones didn’t know exactly where she wanted her adventure to take her. She did know that she wanted to launch her own business.

“I’ve always wanted to start my own business,” said Jones. “My parents have a business together and that’s encouraging. My grandma had her own art studio, so she’s a role model too.”

 The “creative aspects, the planning, of the event and being organized” elements of the event management major drew her to pursue the profession of planning important events and gatherings.

Now a senior, Jones has a double major in event management and marketing with a minor in entrepreneurial studies. Jones will graduate this spring, but instead of sending out resumes, Jones will continue to build the start-up business plans she initiated while here at Iowa State.

Swoon Event Studio will be an online platform. Anyone planning an event can use the online features to design their own personal tablescapes and rent those items all in one location.

Jones credits Linda Niehm, a professor in apparel, events, and hospitality management, and Niehm’s AESHM 474: Entrepreneurship in Human Sciences course for helping her take the first steps in starting Swoon Event Studio. 

“That class was the first time I had ever made a business plan," she said. "That was also the first time I ever did a pitch.”

Niehm will be the first to tell you that AESHM 474 is a unique class that gives students like Jones more opportunities to build on their business ideas.

“Some of the others [classes] certainly give you pieces of very solid information, and maybe help you to initially see, ‘Well, what would it take for a minimally viable idea,’” said Niehm. “But here [AESHM 474] we’re saying, ‘Let’s take that and really map it out and research it deeply’ — and it’s focused on human sciences related businesses.”

Niehm said the course complimented Jones’s desire to start her own business.

“Her work ethic is incredible," Niehm said. "She’s very mature, she’s open to giving advice to other students, and she has passion. She’s kind of like the perfect package.”

AESHM 474 was one of many resources Jones utilized while at Iowa State. She worked with CyStarters, a competitive 10-week summer accelerator where Iowa State students can work with expert mentors to develop their own business ideas. She also won the 2018 ISU Innovation Pitch Competition.

“She doesn’t miss an opportunity to share and pitch about her idea,” said Niehm.

Running a business while still in college isn’t a perfect formula. Time is a constant challenge that Jones runs into while juggling her responsibilities.

“Prioritizing my time [between] classes, working on Swoon — I also co-founded a food publication called Cardinal Eats at Iowa State,” said Jones. “That pretty much takes up my time.”

Despite the time crunch, Jones wouldn’t want her senior year any other way.

“I’ll be way more ahead than if I’m starting from scratch when I graduate,” Jones said.

“I just have a clearer path.”

Jones is putting the finishing touches on the website, but anyone can join the mailing list for updates and event planning tips at the following link: https://www.swooneventstudio.com/.


Embracing diversity to shape distinctive career trajectories

To thrive in a fast-changing world, students must understand the many facets of diversity, which stem from a wide range of life circumstances and experiences. Catch a glimpse of just a few of the thousands of students who are embracing various aspects of diversity to develop their own unique and promising career paths.

Preparing students for a global workforce

“Research shows that most recent college graduates who have studied abroad believe their international experience contributed to a job offer,” said Erin French, director of the college’s international programs. “Students also report increases in skill sets, from intercultural competence and curiosity to self-awareness and flexibility.”

Studying abroad in Ireland, “opened my eyes to how other people live, and showed me that what is normal to me, isn’t necessarily someone else’s normal,” said Natalie Nelson, a senior in kinesiology and health. “I was forced to be independent, which helped me grow as a person.”

In the five years since 2012-13, the number of human sciences students participating in study abroad has more than doubled, from 60 to 146, thanks in part to generous alumni.

“Scholarships help make these opportunities more affordable — and therefore more accessible — to students,” French said. “They really make a difference.”

Accommodating diverse dietary needs530417790

Alumna Kallen Anderson learned how to meet the dietary needs of people with diverse food allergies and other medical conditions when double-majoring in family and consumer sciences education and studies and dietetics. Knowing how to modify food ingredients to protect and improve the health of each unique individual opened doors for her after graduation in 2014. Now, as a registered dietitian in the Special Diet Kitchen at ISU Dining, she serves more than 40 students with distinctly different nutritional needs.

Supporting veterans and military families

956729762Denise Williams-Klotz, Iowa State’s assistant director of multicultural student affairs who received her doctorate from the School of Education in 2015, is an advocate for student success. She’s focused her research on the experiences and academic success of student veterans, military personnel, and their family members who face unique challenges transitioning to a university setting. Many of the 957 Iowa State students receiving military education benefits find 360-degree support at the Veterans Center in the Memorial Union.

Helping older adults stay wellhelping older adults

Age diversity is a key consideration when promoting health. From birth to life’s end, our wellness needs constantly change. Ryan True, a senior in kinesiology and health, is preparing to start a business called “Full Circle Wellness,” to provide health services for older adults focusing on eight dimensions of wellness: physical, emotional, social, spiritual, occupational, intellectual, financial and environmental. True spent his summer in CYstarters, Iowa State’s 10-week accelerator to help him grow his startup.

Opening opportunities for underrepresented groups

Kennesha Woods3Iowa State’s 2018 NSCORE-ISCORE Brenda Jones Change Agent Award went to Kennesha Woods for improving understanding of race and ethnicity and creating positive change in the community as a parole officer, a youth residential officer, and a special education teacher. The first-generation college student graduated from Iowa State in 2011 in child, adult, and family services. She is now working toward a doctorate in the School of Education and preparing to further influence systems and policies in ways that open up opportunities for underrepresented groups.