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In Brief


Solar cars and robots swarmed around the COE building for a week in August during the fourth annual InSTEMsummer program run by Nell Cobb, associate professor of elementary math and associate chair of teacher education, and her team of volunteer mentors. More than 80 Chicago sixth-, seventh-and eighth-graders participated in the free, hands-on program designed to inspire middle-school girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Students programmed robots, studied molecular structures and learned about computer coding and game development logic. Mentors included several high school students who previously participated in the program.


Melissa Ockerman, associate professor of counseling, was honored by the Illinois School Counselor Association (ISCA) with a 2017 Friends of ISCA award in April at its annual conference. She was cited for furthering the profession of school counseling, demonstrating leadership and participation in school counseling associations in the state, and supporting and advocating for school counseling using ISCA standards and the national model of the American School Counselor Association.


Marie Donovan, associate professor of early childhood education, was re-elected to a third one-year term as chair of the faculty advisory council (FAC) of the Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE). She has served as DePaul’s representative since 2006. A standing advisory council to the IBHE, the 36-member FAC researches and deliberates on issues related to all types of postsecondary institutions. It influences how institutions are evaluated, how academic programs are approved and measured, and how the legislature and state agencies should interpret new laws. Illinois is the only state with an elected body representing all types of faculty, from tenured to adjunct.“She’s been a terrific leader who has made a lasting impact for the better,” says Peter Coffey, DePaul’s associate vice president for community and government relations. “All faculty in Illinois owe her a debt of gratitude.”


Beverly Trezek and Amy Feiker Hollenbeck, both associate professors of special education, were named to the inaugural cohort of Ozanam Faculty Fellows, named for Frédéric Ozanam, a 19th-century Vincentian scholar and academic. Designed to help tenured faculty members develop an ongoing plan for their career, the cross-disciplinary program will help them explore new pedagogies and new avenues of research and scholarship.


Professional basketball player Allie Quigley (EDU ’08) of the Chicago Sky won the 2017 3-point contest held by the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). The former Blue Demon standout is now in her ninth season as a professional player. She won the WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year award for her outstanding performance as a substitute in 2014.


Educators who attended the three-day DePaul University and Facing History and Ourselves Collaboration Summer Institute in June learned about the historical and ethical issues of the late 19th and early 20th centuries that still face society today. Timothy Gilfoyle, an expert on the era and former president of the Urban History Association, told an overflow crowd of more than 100 people that a century ago, educated, middle-class Americans who termed themselves progressives tried to bring order to what they perceived as an increasingly chaotic society. Drawing on the science of the day, they laid the groundwork for many initiatives now perceived as positive, such as the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906 that led to further consumer protection laws and the establishment of the Food and Drug Administration. However, they also pursued immigration bans, forced sterilization, and separation of the races. Gilfoyle shared strategies that teachers could use to examine those movements and issues being faced today.


The liberating power and creativity of hip-hop have the ability to unite youth worldwide, said Awad Ibrahim, who gave the 2017 Ikeda Lecture, titled “Re-mixing Borders: Education and the Global Solidarity of Hip-Hop.” Speaking to about 400 DePaul students, faculty and community members, including about 40 in-service teachers, Ibrahim identified intersections with Makiguchi and Ikeda’s value-creating pedagogy and with the bodhisattva spirit of compassion. Ibrahim, a professor at the University of Ottawa in Canada, specializes in cultural studies, youth and black popular culture, applied linguistics and African identities. Born in Sudan, he has taught and conducted research in North America and the Middle East and has written several award-winning books. For information on the 2018 Ikeda Lecture, visit


Six K-12 educators were honored at the fifth annual Celebrating Teachers Reception in June. Juniors and seniors from every DePaul college and school were invited to nominate K-12 educators who made an impact on their lives. This year’s honorees were: 

  • Timothy DeBoer from Joliet (Ill.) West High School, nominated by Matthew Verive (College of Computing and Digital Media)
  • Rick Foerster from Crystal Lake (Ill.) Central High School, nominated by Christine Mei (BUS ’17)
  • Kathy Poulopoulos from Greenbrook Elementary School, Hanover Park, Ill., nominated by Isolda Gargano (COE)
  • Lynn Love from Byron (Ill.) High School, nominated by Mirlinda Isai (CSH ’17)
  • Aubrey Smith from the Sarah E. Goode STEM Academy, Chicago, nominated by Kevin Horwitz (School for New Learning)
  • Jaimee Stephens from Our Lady of Tepeyac High School, Chicago, nominated by Ana Cortes (COE)