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Applied behavioral science professor finalist for community outreach award

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

LAWRENCE — Jomella Watson-Thompson, assistant professor in applied behavioral science and associate director for the KU Work Group for Community Health and Development, has been selected as one of 10 finalists for the national 2014 Ernest A. Lynton Award for the Scholarship of Engagement for Early Career Faculty.

The Lynton Award, given by the New England Resource Center for Higher Education, annually recognizes one pre-tenure or early-career faculty member who connects teaching, research and service to community outreach such that the public, campus and scholarly community benefit.

The KU Center for Civic and Social Responsibility nominated Watson-Thompson based on her inclusion of community partners as key collaborators in her research and teaching.

Watson-Thompson’s research focuses on the areas of substance abuse prevention, violence prevention and positive youth development. She uses participatory research to explore how community efforts lead to change and improvement. Watson-Thompson also incorporates service learning and community-based research into the courses she teaches, and her funded research projects support student research teams.

Watson-Thompson described the importance of community-engaged scholarship as a way to “reduce barriers by making academia accessible to the community and ensuring that communities immediately benefit from the wealth of knowledge and resources available through university partnerships.”

The recipient of the Lynton Award will be announced in August 2014 and will be presented at the 3rd Annual Lynton Colloquium on the Scholarship of Engagement in September at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. The recipient will also be recognized at the 20th annual Conference of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities, held in October at Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York. CUMU is a co-sponsor of the award.

To learn more about the finalists, visit the NERCHE website.