The Graduate School at Hood College

Graduate Alumni Highlight — Tara Scibelli

This year’s recipient of the Lisa Ann Sullivan Outstanding Humanities Student is Tara Scibelli. Tara’s three years at Hood have been exciting and varied. She traveled internationally to view works of art and historical sites she learned about in the program, and her thesis, a series of poems on contemporary topics entitled The Fact of Whiteness: Female, showcased her creative writing. With graduation, Tara plans to enjoy her grandson – who inspired some of her poetry – and to continue with her writing.

Read More

Working Towards the Right Career

Posted by | Clinical Counseling, Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

ACAHood College likes to celebrate the life experiences that our graduate students bring to the table, whether in a program that follows their undergraduate degree, or applying their undergraduate skills to expand in an entirely different area. One such student is Addie Roop, who earned her B.A. in English from Hood and explored other options and interests after graduation. She worked as an IT recruiter, began a career as a personal trainer, and was an assistant volleyball coach at Hood. Addie explains “what I learned from all of these occupations was that I really wanted to help people, whether it was with their jobs or relationships or just finding themselves and helping them build confidence.”


When Addie got the opportunity to be a graduate assistant coach and pursue her M. S. in Counseling, it was a “no brainer.” She remembered all her great experiences as an undergraduate and coach, where “the staff and community are so helpful and make you feel at home…They make it clear that they want you to be your best and it’s exciting to learn from people who love what they do.” With her realization about wanting to help people, Addie knew that the recently started school counseling program would be a great fit. She entered into the program “excited to make an impact on all the kids and families that I’ll be working with. A lot of times kids don’t think they have an adult that accepts or understands them or takes them seriously, so I really wanted to get into school counseling because I believe everyone is worth knowing and worth my time, especially kids who might not have their own voice yet.”


As a graduate student, Addie is excelling. She recently received recognition at an American Counseling Association conference in Atlanta, where she put her English degree to use, entering an essay competition for future school counselor graduate students. Outside of the classroom, Addie calls herself “an avid dabbler,” trying anything sport and outdoor related, the guitar, singing, drawing, and writing poems. She explains that “I’m not exceptionally great at any of them but that’s not always the point.”


Understanding Psychology in Sports

Posted by | Graduate School Highlights, Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior (Previously Human Sciences) | No Comments

MSEA HeadshotHood College graduate students make contributions to their fields even before they graduate! Casey Rudzinski, a student in the M. A. in Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Behavior (ISHB) program, recently worked on a fact sheet for the American Psychological Association (APA) called ‘Fostering Resilience Through Athletics.’ As the publication explains; “while it is not possible to protect youth athletes from the ups and downs inherent in sport (and in life), it is possible to provide them with the tools they need to respond to challenges.”


 Casey is working on his second graduate degree. He has a B.S. from Temple University in Sport and Recreation Management and an M.A. in Sports Management from Mount Saint Mary’s University. Through his background in sports, he began to realize that “coaching is all about psychology…mental wellness needs to be part of the overall health concerns for athletes.” He eventually plans to go for his PhD in Psychology and decided to come to Hood to get more background in psychology. As part of the newly re-designed ISHB program, Casey thinks that its strengths are the wide variety of class choice. It is also “tailored to fit the needs of the students, not to one career or viewpoint.” Outside of graduate school, Casey is already working in the community. He coaches girls’ basketball at Tuscarora High, where he is an Instructional Assistant. He is on the Board of Directors of the Frederick Association for School Staff Employees and is also on the board of the Maryland Basketball Coaches Association.


With his background in sports and psychology, Casey was happy to work with the APA on this project. He explains that it was an overlap between sports and psychology, and writers were trying to make the sports aspect more approachable to people with a psychology background. Most of the people working on the project had the background in psychology, and Casey brought insight from his time in sports. All worked together to create a fact sheet with ideas for parents, coaches, and sports psychology professionals to help youth athletes develop resilience. With practical ideas and theory, Casey and his colleagues created a document that people can really use.

Kelli Green Receives the Outstanding Educational Leadership Award

Posted by | Educational Leadership, Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

 GreenHood College takes pride in preparing new leaders. Kelli Green, this year’s Outstanding Educational Leadership Award recipient, started her Hood career in 2008, studying as an undergraduate student. She graduated in 2011 with her certification in Secondary Education with a concentration in English. Since then, she has been teaching for Frederick County Public Schools at Frederick High School.


Kelli is a teacher leader and is a member of the FCPS Vanguard program, a partnership between FCPS and Hood that includes classes promoting leadership, and focusing on mindset, instructional technology, teaching practices, and professional learning and networking. As a teacher, she excels at integrating technology in a way that benefits students., including being as early adopter of 1:1 classroom technology and blended learning. She is also working at the forefront of FCPS’ Competency Based Education Initiative.

Special thanks to Dr. Keith Harris, M.S. ’99, who funds the Outstanding Educational Leadership award.


Chevalier Named Outstanding Curriculum and Instruction Student

Posted by | Curriculum and Instruction, Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

ChavalierHood College’s Outstanding Graduate Student in Curriculum and Instruction for 2018 is Jaime Chevalier. Jamie not only graduated with a 4.0 GPA, she did it while being an exceptional teacher and growing her family, having a baby shortly before graduating!


Jaime started her teaching path by earning her B.A. in Early Childhood Education from Hood in 2011. As a senior, she received the Park-Dorff Award, given to the senior who appears most promising in the field of early childhood education. She taught Kindergarten for six years before moving to 3rd grade, which she currently teaches at Frederick County Public School’s Whittier Elementary. At Whittier, she has served as a mentor for new hires as well as a grade-level team leader. For the 2015-2016 school year, she was a Teacher of the Year nominee and named an ‘All Star’ employee.


As a graduate student, she showed skills with both academic concepts and application of those concepts to students. Jamie completed an action research study on how varied writing conferences impact student performance for Kindergarten and 3rd grade students. She shared the study’s success with the school community, providing strategies to assist students.


Hood would like to thank Janet Nunn, who provided the award in honor of her daughter
Jenny E. Nunn (M.S. ’06, C ’00).


The Outstanding Computer Science Student Award

Posted by | Computer Science, Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

anwar 1Hood College presented The Outstanding Computer Science Student Award Anwar Husain at this year’s Graduate Degree Recipient Reception on May 16th.

Anwar, who already has an M.D./Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Toxicology, graduated with an M.S. in Computer Science from Hood. His interest and goals are to use his advanced work in computer science to complement his prior background, as he ventures towards a career in Bioinformatics. Anwar decided on the Bioinformatics field as it melds together the areas of medicine and computer science, his previous background and his current degree. Anwar has worked on developing an efficient machine learning-based model to best assess network intrusion data in predicting attack types. Currently, Anwar is a post-doctoral research fellow in bioinformatics at The Johns Hopkins University.

The Outstanding Computer Science Award is funded anonymously in memory of Bryce Blackwell Beecham, whose husband David Blackwell was present at the Award Recipient Reception. Mr. Blackwell along with Dr. George Dimitoglou, Director of the Center for Computer Security and Information Assurance, congratulated Anwar on his accomplishments and presented him with the award. We wish Anwar all the best in his future endeavors!

Outstanding Humanities Student Tara Scibelli

Posted by | Graduate School Highlights, Humanities | No Comments

ScibelliEvery year, faculty in each of Hood College’s graduate programs honor a particularly outstanding student to honor. This year’s recipient of the Lisa Ann Sullivan Outstanding Humanities Student is Tara Scibelli. Thanks to Lisa Ann Sullivan for funding this award.

Tara’s three years at Hood have been exciting and varied. She traveled internationally to view works of art and historical sites she learned about in the program, and her thesis, a series of poems on contemporary topics entitled The Fact of Whiteness: Female, showcased her creative writing. With graduation, Tara plans to enjoy her grandson – who inspired some of her poetry – and to continue with her writing.

Before coming to Hood, Tara worked for a conservation non-profit as well as an organization which advocated for keeping the arts in Maryland’s public school systems. Her daughter, Ariel Grove, graduated from Hood in 2012, making Tara a ‘reverse legacy.’ For Tara, the best part of being in the Humanities program was “discussing the readings in class, and especially hearing the points of view of the international students.” While she thought that all the professors were ‘excellent,’ her favorite was Dr. Corey Campion, who “showed genuine concern for all the students in the program and was also an excellent lecturer.” We congratulate her on her outstanding work and wish all the best in her future endeavors!

Megan Lamm awarded Biomedical Science Achievement Award

Posted by | Biomedical Science, Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

Megan Lamm was presented with Hood College’s Biomedical Science Student Achievement Award at the 2018 Graduate Degree Recipient Reception on May 16th.

Megan LammMegan works for In Vitro Sciences, a non-profit laboratory focusing on advancing animal welfare through alternative assays to replace animal testing. Megan and her colleagues develop, validate, and commercialize in vitro toxicology assays and promote these methods through education and outreach. She is a study director and toxicologist focusing on in vitro and in chemico skin allergy and ocular irritation assessments. Megan has presented her thesis project at the Society of Toxicology, the Pan American Conference for Alternative Methods, and the American Society for Cellular and Computational Toxicology. Megan’s project was shortlisted for the Lush Prize for Supporting Animal Free Testing in the Young Researcher category and has been turned into a commercial testing program.

Megan started at In Vitro Sciences 4.5 years ago as a laboratory biologist. She was soon promoted to a laboratory team leader and last October, to Study Director/ Toxicologist I. Megan has led assay R&D, instrument validation, and worked with regulators from many different countries to teach in vitro methods. She was recently an invited speaker at the annual Society of Toxicology Meeting to present on flow cytometry in a regulatory setting.

Congratulations to Megan on all her accomplishments and we wish her lots of success in the future endeavors!

Shauwney Anderson – Excellence in All She Does

Posted by | Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

AndersonHood College prides itself on a strong sense of community with not just students and faculty, but all who work behind the scenes. This year, the Graduate School recognized Shauwney Anderson as the recipient of the Staff Excellence Award. Shauwney, Student Accounts Manager in Hood’s Accounting Department, works with third-party billing and is the liaison for many groups, including the Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission (SACM), various corporate and government partners, Veterans Benefit Students, Doctoral Program Students and Educational Leadership Programs in Montgomery, Carroll, Berkeley and Washington County Public Schools. She has helped many students navigate the financial maze of graduate school and is always available for students and staff.


Although Shauwney has worked in accounting for 24 years, she has her Bachelor’s Degree in Automotive Technology. She met her husband working at an automotive dealership, and, after starting a family, decided to change career paths. She worked in accounting for several different companies before coming to Hood in 2011. The entire accounting team was impressed with her knowledge and work ethic, and was she was promoted to her current position in 2015. We are thrilled to have her at Hood!

Hood Community Celebrates Holi

Posted by | Graduate School Highlights, International Students | No Comments

One of the strengths of Hood College’s Graduate School is the diversity and inclusiveness of its community. People from many and varied backgrounds come together to celebrate a wide range of cultures and traditions. One such celebration was the recent Holi and Nepali New Year Celebration. Elyas Abubakr, Hood’s Primary Designated School Official and the staff member who coordinates such events, explains that “the recent Holi and Nepali New Year was a celebration of cross-cultures showcasing beautiful colors, food and exotic music and dance from India and Nepal.” Nepali New Year is based on a solar calendar, and the year 2075 coincides with the month of April with the coming of spring, bringing families, friends and the community together in thankful celebration. Holi is a global event celebrated on the Indian subcontinent, and brings alive a festival of colors to welcome spring.


Hood student leaders organized the event, and their heart is clearly in recognizing some of the unique cultures represented on campus. For Rinka Chatterjee this was the first event she helped organize and she looks forward to helping organize others. “By celebrating our own country’s event, international students don’t miss their family and friends who are miles away.” Chiranjibi Ghimire, a Hood student who has been involved with previous events, explains that “We, the Nepali students and community, are very happy and thankful to Hood College for sponsoring the Nepali New Year and Holi celebration event. All International students, think of Hood as a second home. We were missing the moments of celebrations back home, but Hood helps us remember.”


009For both Rinka and Chiranjibi, the event was about more than traditional celebrations, but also about sharing their cultures and getting to celebrate with other members of the Hood community. Rinka believes that “the fun and the acceptance around this event not only came from our own Indian community friends, but the participation of friends from different countries too.” Chiranjibi agrees, saying “It is the opportunity to exchange the culture and promote the Nepali tourism among our American colleagues. Lots of Americans participated and enjoyed the Nepalese and Indian food. This is the one of the great takeaways after the events”

Elyas, Rinka, and Chiranjibi want to thank Hood College and Graduate School Dean April Boulton for hosting the celebration. As Elyas states, “Hood College is the proud sponsor of such events and will continue to be the privileged host for international students, and support and celebrate diversity. For Hood College international students, home is where they are.”

Graduate School Honors Outstanding Faculty

Posted by | Biomedical Science, Clinical Counseling, Graduate School Highlights | No Comments

BoydIf you ask Hood College Graduate students what their favorite thing is about Hood, many speak of their professors. Faculty who understand both the academic background and practical application of their content area form the backbone of the college. Each year the Graduate School asks students for nominations of outstanding professors. This year’s recipient of the Teaching Excellence Award is Dr. Ann Boyd while Dr. Laura Jones was honored with the Adjunct Teaching Excellence Award.

Dr. Ann Boyd is a professor of Biology, who came to Hood in 1982. She was the Program Director for Biomedical Science from 1982-1993 and was the Dean of the Graduate School from 1993-2002. Prior to Hood, she was a research scientist for the National Cancer Institute and has worked as a consultant for Glaxo, BioFisher, and SAIC. She is on the ethics review boards for several organizations and serves as a grant reviewer for others.


Student nominations said that Dr. Boyd “creates meetings to solve educational issues. She gives advice to me like my closest relative and gives me more ways to improve my weaknesses. She found a place to do my internship to improve my skills.” She also “keeps the class entertaining, yet very informative. She gives one on one help during office hours, is always available for questions, and teaches life lessons in addition to teaching to course.”


JonesDr. Laura Jones is no stranger to awards. In 2016 she was invited to a celebration at the White House after being named the Maryland School Counselor Association’s “Counselor of the Year” and was recognized as their 2018 Counselor Educator of the Year for her work with Hood students. Dr. Jones just completed her 23rd year as an Elementary School Counselor, and with a doctoral dissertation on the psychological benefits of laughter, she works to incorporate joy in the lives of both her elementary and graduate students.


When nominating Dr. Jones, students said that she is a “role model for us in the counseling programs.” One student said that “after an extremely disheartening and challenging semester, Dr. Jones has re-instilled my conviction to keep moving forward to reach the goal of clinical mental health counselor. She taps into her student’s strengths and encourages them despite their feelings of trepidation.”  Others said that “Dr. Jones mentors us by showing examples of how she handles difficult situations,” and that “Hood is so lucky to have Dr. Jones on staff. She is a terrific mentor to her students.”