Faculty/Staff Accomplishments and News Briefs 2/21/18

In this issue, we celebrate the accomplishments of faculty and staff in art, English, institutional advancement, religious and ethical studies, and political science. We also share news from the Undergraduate Research Program and Accessibility tips from Disability Services.

Associate Professor of Religious and Ethical Studies Steven Benko was recently quoted in “Meet the Philosophers Who Give ‘The Good Place’ Its Scholarly Bona Fides,” an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education, about how he is using the TV show The Good Place in his Religious Ethics and Social Issues course this semester. Read the article

Adjunct Instructor of Studio Art Holly Fischer has a sculpture included in the 2018 Raleigh Fine Arts Society North Carolina Artists Exhibition.  Juror Jennifer Dasal, Associate Curator of Contemporary Art at the North Carolina Museum of Art, selected 78 works from more than 900 submissions to be included in the exhibition.  The opening reception is March 4 from 5-6:30 p.m. at the Duke Center for Performing Arts Betty Ray McCain Gallery.

Associate Professor of Art Shannon Johnstone presented “From Landfill Dogs to Stardust and Ashes” at the 4th Triennial Minding Animals International Conference at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in Mexico City in January. She received a Scholarly Productivity Grant to facilitate her travel and participation this conference. Johnstone also had an exhibition of “Landfill Dogs” at the Cary Arts Center, with an opening reception on January 26. The exhibition ran from January 26–February 19, 2018.

Assistant Professor of Political Science Whitney Ross Manzo was a guest on WUNC radio’s The State of Things on Tuesday, Feb. 13. She discussed the results of the latest edition of The Meredith College Poll. Listen to the episode on

Associate Professor of English Kelly Morris Roberts presented with alumna Alex Herel Storey at the N.C. Elementary Education Association regional conference on January 27. Their presentation was on “Critical Thinking in the Everyday Classroom.”

Members of the Institutional Advancement staff presented at the 2018 CASE District III Annual Conference in Atlanta, Ga., February 11-14. Vice President for Institutional Advancement Lennie Barton presented “Characteristics and Habits of an Underperforming Major Gift Officer.” Erin Cleghorn, Director of The Meredith Fund, presented “Giving Day: Tips and Tools.” Jean Gambrill, Associate Director of The Meredith Fund, presented “Faculty and Staff Giving Strategies.” And Alexis Trell Assistant Director of The Meredith Fund presented “Zero to 500: Building a Student-Alumnae Association from the Ground Up.” Hilary Allen Director of the Alumnae Relations and Astra Ball Director of Advancement Services also attended the tradeshow and conference which held sessions on all facets of advancement including giving strategies, alumni relations, major gift campaigns, marketing and communications, annual giving, and the importance of data and donors.

News Briefs

Undergraduate Research Program Launches Facebook Page
Meredith’s Undergraduate Research Program has started a Facebook page to help promote research opportunities. The URP office is planning to use the Facebook page as a means to inform students (and research faculty mentors) about upcoming application deadlines for Meredith-based research events; deadlines for travel grant, research grant, and summer research applications; research conference opportunities both locally and around the U.S. to which students can apply to present their research; internship and research opportunities outside of Meredith that are available to undergraduate students; as well as links and information on how to keep connected in research.  Faculty and staff are asked to encourage students who are interested in research to follow URP at –Submitted by the Undergraduate Research Program

Easy Access – Accessibility Resources for Faculty and Staff
By fostering a culture of diversity—the capacity to appreciate and value individual differences—we all benefit. By embracing disability as a natural part of diversity, we enhance the educational experience for all Meredith students. Therefore, we are working together to create a fully accessible learning environment.

Fortunately, we have excellent training resources available to us through Atomic Learning, available through For example, “Creating an Accessible Syllabus” is a 22-minute training that teaches the basics of document structure and format, alt text for images, and converting the Word doc into a properly tagged PDF.

Surely, you have 22 minutes to learn something new today. Visit, scroll down to select “Launch Atomic Learning,” and then find to get started.  –Submitted by Carolyn C. Koning, Assistant Director for Disability Services

Melyssa Allen

News Director
316 Johnson Hall
(919) 760-8087
Fax: (919) 760-8330