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New faculty, inspiring programs across campus to highlight spring semester
Emory students

— Stephen Nowland, Emory Photo/Video

The nine schools that make up Emory University head into the new semester with innovative initiatives, achievements to celebrate and a full slate of engaging speakers and events for spring. 

Here’s a roundup of what’s new and noteworthy, as listed by each school.

Candler School of Theology

Faculty promotions: Candler opened the new semester with Spring Convocation on Jan. 16, where faculty members Jennifer Ayres and Kendall Soulen were installed in named professorships. The convocation address was given by Dean Jan Love, who will step down at the end of this academic year after 17 years of leading the school.

Upcoming events: On Thursday, Feb. 1, associate professor of church music and worship James Abbington will present an educational musical performance designed to share the rich heritage of Black sacred music composers. On Tuesday, Feb. 20, Candler’s Aquinas Center of Theology will hold its annual Major Catholic Speaker Lecture, this year featuring Cardinal Christophe Pierre, the Vatican’s diplomatic ambassador to the U.S. The school’s 2024 McDonald Lectures will take place Wednesday, Feb. 28, and Wednesday, March 20, with Hee-Soo Jung, resident bishop in the Wisconsin Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. Candler will host “No Longer Invisible,” a conference on religion and disability, on campus March 5-7; stay tuned to the school’s website for details and registration information.

Courses in the community: The Candler Foundry offers online courses and panel discussions open to all who are passionate about theological education or those who want to dive in for the first time. This semester’s courses include “Rest is Resistance,” starting in April and taught by Tricia Hersey, a Candler alumna, founder of The Nap Ministry and New York Times-bestselling author of “Rest is Resistance: A Manifesto” (Little, Brown Spark, 2022). 

Lean more at the Candler School of Theology website.

Emory College of Arts and Sciences

Ellman Lectures: Save the date for when the prestigious Ellman Lectures return March 3-5 with a series of dynamic events featuring former Emory professor and U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey and renowned Irish writer Fintan O’Toole. The Ellman Lectures, sponsored by the Rose Library and Emory College’s Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, will take place at the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts.

Job prospects: Career and Professional Development in the Pathways Center will host the Spring Career and Internship Expo on Thursday, Feb. 29,  with hundreds of recruiters seeking Emory talent on campus to meet with students from all class years. Registration for the Expo is now open (login required) and liberal arts students are highly encouraged to attend.

New destinations: Several new summer education abroad programs led by Emory College faculty will be offered this summer, including Art, Literature and Social Movements in Senegal, History, Society and Environment in Cuba and a relaunch of the Emory European Politics program, among other new offerings. Summer abroad programs are currently accepting applications. See the full list of opportunities.

Career Trek: The Pathways Center’s Career Treks will head to Washington, D.C., for the first time during spring break with 25 undergraduate students, exposing them to potential career paths in the nation’s capital. Current sophomores, juniors and seniors interested in law, policy, government and international affairs are encouraged to apply. 

Brave New Works: Emory Arts and the Playwriting Center of Theater Emory will produce Brave New Works 2024, a three-week theatrical developmental series in February. This year, Brave New Works will showcase a workshop production and two staged readings focusing on Theater for Young Audiences. Events are free and open to all. For more information, visit Emory Arts online.

Learn more at the Emory College of Arts and Sciences website.

Goizueta Business School

New programs:In 2024, Goizueta welcomes its first cohort of students to the Master in Management program, designed for recent graduates with liberal arts and sciences backgrounds, and the Master in Business for Veterans program, which supports active duty military and veterans as they transition to civilian careers in business. Goizueta is finalizing recruiting for the first cohorts which start in August and May, respectively.

Expanding global classrooms: This spring, Goizueta continues to strengthen its existing line up of innovative spaces with three additional Roberto C. Goizueta Global Classrooms, offering students an immersive, dynamic experience from anywhere in the world. Equipped with real-time polls, breakout-room options, whiteboard technology and engagement analytics, these classrooms foster participation, elevate the classroom experience and extend global reach.

New faculty: This January, Huy Huynh joins Goizueta as an associate professor in the practice of Information Systems & Operations Management. In his research, Huynh focuses on capturing and analyzing time series data sources and building predictive models to gain new insight and improve strategic decision-making.

Major events: Goizueta hosts several major events this spring, including the Learning & Leading: Goizueta Distinguished Speaker series featuring Lowe’s CEO and Goizueta alumnus Marvin Ellison 05EMBA on Tuesday, Jan. 30, and the 4th annual John R. Lewis Racial Justice Case Competition and Summit on Friday, Feb. 23. 

Learn more at the Goizueta Business School website.

Laney Graduate School

Student honorsAlexis Mayfield, a doctoral scholar in the English program, was awarded the prestigious Kharen Fulton Award for Diversity, Inclusion and Community Engagement for 2023-2024. 

English Language Support Program (ELSP): ELSP provides language support to graduate and professional students, postdoctoral fellows and scholars with diverse linguistic backgrounds. Learn about ELSP programs.

Learning About Laney: In October, LGS-EDGE hosted its fifth annual Learning About Laney visit. The fully funded visit offered prospective doctoral students from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to learn about LGS graduate programs, faculty, staff and current scholars. 

LGS-SOARLGS-SOAR hosts potential non-Emory undergraduate scholars interested in graduate research. Scholars will be matched with LGS faculty to explore, experience and conduct full-time independent and mentored research for the summer. 

LGS Three-Minute Thesis Competition (3MT®): The 3MT contest challenges LGS students to present a concise, intriguing lecture on their theses to a non-specialist judging panel. LGS will host the 3MT contest in the spring of 2024. 

Graduate Student Appreciation Week: LGS will celebrate Graduate Student Appreciation Week April 1-5, 2024. Students can expect a range of events throughout the week.

Learn more at the Laney Graduate School website.

Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing

Top ranking: U.S. News & World Report ranked the school’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing program No. 3 nationwide. The school has three top-10 programs, including the No. 1 master’s degree in nursing program.

Winter graduation: The school graduated 164 pre-licensure students and 139 post-licensure students during its December graduation ceremonies.

Nursing workforce center: To better address nursing workforce challenges and opportunities in Georgia, the school and the Georgia Nursing Leadership Coalition announced a partnership to house the Georgia Nursing Workforce Center at the school.

Multi-million dollar dementia research grants: The school received several multi-million dollar grants related to dementia research, including $3.5 million to study an online tool’s capacity to increase caregiver mastery; $1.4 million to study the informal caregiving networks of adults with dementia; and $3.9 million to study the connection between the oral microbiome and Alzheimer’s disease.

Federal service grants: The school received two highly sought-after U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration grants. One grant will provide training in mental health and substance/opioid use disorder prevention and treatment for primary care and community-based nurses and social workers in nine Georgia counties. The other grant will provide scholarships for Emory Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist students to gain clinical experience in diverse and underserved areas in the Southeast.

Carter Center collaboration: The School of Nursing and The Carter Center’s Mental Health Program have appointed psychiatric mental health nurse educator and researcher Aparna Kumar to a joint faculty position focused on enhancing global mental health nursing and workforce development.

National honors: The Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing awarded professor Lisa Thompson one of nursing science's most prestigious honors during its 47th biennial convention. Thompson received the Episteme Laureate Award for research leading to nursing knowledge breakthroughs.

Learn more at the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing website.

Oxford College

Incoming class: This semester, Oxford welcomed its third Spring Start class. These 46 talented students from 21 U.S. states and two other countries spent the fall semester expanding their academic horizons, studying abroad or gaining work experience before arriving on campus.

Public Scholarship Center: Daren Wang, former executive director of The Decatur Book Festival, has been named assistant director of a new public scholarship center based at Oxford. The center was conceived by Kenneth Carter, Charles Howard Candler Professor of Psychology and former Oxford interim dean, who will serve as director. Launching this spring, the center aims to build public trust in scholarship and research and will help Emory faculty and students effectively translate academic pursuits into the public arena.

Oxford athletics: Jonathan Bennett has been named head coach of the Oxford men's and women's tennis program. He holds several tennis certifications, including ones from the United States Professional Tennis Association (USPTA) and the International Tennis Performance Association (ITPA), and has coached high school students in the U.S. and New Zealand to Division I and Division II colleges. Read more about him.

Oxford Center for Pathways and Purpose: The Oxford Center for Pathways and Purpose has named Bridgette W. Gunnels, associate professor of Spanish and director of internships and community engaged learning, as its interim director. She will lead the development of the center and build on Oxford’s already strong programs in experiential learning, global learning, internships, undergraduate research and career services. A search for a permanent director is underway.

Martin Luther King celebration: ​​​​​​​Oxford’s 2024 Martin Luther King celebration on Wednesday, Jan. 17, will feature performances by Newton County’s MLK Interdenominational Choir as well as student groups Oxappella, the Chamber Ensemble and the Oxford Soul Collective. There will be a reading by assistant professor of English and creative writing Tameka Cage Conley, and Oxford student leaders and staff will share their thoughts on the importance of King’s legacy.

Learn more at the Oxford College website.

Rollins School of Public Health

New centers established: In recent months, Rollins and its faculty have been selected for funding to establish multiple new research centers. Funding from the NIH will help establish the Center to Advance Reproductive Justice and Behavioral Health among Black Pregnant/Postpartum Women and Birthing People (which is a partnership with Morehouse School of Medicine) and the Climate & Health Actionable Research and Translation Center. Researchers from across Emory and Atlanta will come together at the Emory Center for Infectious Disease Modeling and Analytics and Training Hub, a partner in the CDC’s new outbreak response network. Two other Rollins centers, the Southeast Mental Health Technology Transfer Center and the Emory Prevention Research Center, have renewed their funding.

Continuing education opportunities coming: This summer, Rollins will launch the Rollins Health Education Institute to offer continuing education opportunities for the public health workforce and professionals from other fields who are interested in learning about or transitioning to public health work. Included in these offerings is the Summer Institute in Statistics and Modeling in Infectious Diseases, which will now take place annually at Rollins.

MOOC now live: The Center for Reproductive Health Research in the Southeast launched its massive open online course (MOOC), Public Health Approaches to Abortion, this fall. The course is free, available on Coursera and meant to equip anyone at any level of previous expertise with foundational knowledge about abortion from a public health perspective.

Addressing maternal mortality: In November, Rollins came together with partners across the university and state to hold the inaugural Symposium to Address the Maternal Health Crisis in Georgia. The event brought together stakeholders to discuss opportunities to improve maternal health in Georgia and share results of a statewide survey on public opinion about maternal health, health equity and health care.

Learn more at the Rollins School of Public Health website.

School of Law

New facultyStacie Strong comes on board as acting professor of law. Before coming to Emory, Strong was professor of comparative and private international law at the University of Sydney, specializing in private international law, international arbitration, international mediation and comparative law. Strong previously taught at law schools in the U.S. and the U.K. and has acted as a dual-qualified (England-US) practitioner with major international law firms.

New program: This semester, Emory Public Interest Committee (EPIC) is launching a new stipend program for first- and second-year juris doctor students who accept summer volunteer jobs at legal public sector and public interest organizations. The stipends are designed to encourage students to pursue summer legal experiences, including judicial internships, that they might not consider because of financial concerns. Read more about the program.  

Upcoming events: The annual Randolph Thrower Symposium, this year titled “The Promise and Challenge of Artificial Intelligence in the Information Age,” will be held Thursday, Feb. 8, from 8 a.m.– 6 p.m. The Emory Public Interest Committee (EPIC) will host its 27th-annual Inspiration Awards honoring students, donors and alumni Tuesday, Feb. 6, at 6:30 p.m. in Tull Auditorium. Other events taking place at Emory Law this semester include:

Learn more at the School of Law website.

School of Medicine

New leadership: Sandra L. Wong, MD, MS, an accomplished surgical oncologist and researcher, has been selected as the next dean of Emory School of Medicine. She will also serve as the chief academic officer for Emory Healthcare when she joins Emory in March 2024. She is currently chair in the Department of Surgery at the Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, where she is responsible for all aspects of research, education and clinical operations. She also serves as professor of surgery in the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth. She will succeed Carlos del Rio, who was named interim dean in January 2023.

Education transformation: For the past two years, a team of School of Medicine faculty, staff and learners have been working diligently on a plan to transform education in all degree and residency programs in the SOM with the goal of ensuring that curricula and training are not only keeping up with the demands on today’s clinicians and scientists, but also empowering our learners to be change agents capable of addressing evolving health challenges. Led by co-chairs Jada Bussey-Jones (medicine) and Eric Sundberg (biochemistry), a steering committee has developed recommendations and proposed next steps to begin implementation of the plan. 

Expanding our support for entrepreneurs: The School of Medicine recently launched an Innovation Center in our second Health Sciences Research Building (HSRB II) to provide additional support for our entrepreneurial clinicians and scientists. Led by Associate Dean of Innovation Wilbur Lam, the Innovation Center offers 3D printing and 3D bioprinting, micromachining and extended reality (XR) support for investigators and clinicians. The center also hosts monthly bioentrepreneurship networking every third Thursday at HSRB II for anyone interested in building connections and ideas in biomedical innovation.

Learn more at the School of Medicine website.

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