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Inside WFU

Wake Forest news for faculty and staff

Provost: Announcement regarding Innovation Quarter

Message from Provost Rogan Kersh sent by e-mail to faculty and staff:

For the better part of a year now, many groups across campus — University leaders, faculty, staff and students — have been engaged in conversations about plans for an undergraduate academic presence in Wake Forest Innovation Quarter.

While we had not planned to make a public announcement until January 2016, we have learned there could be a local media story as early as this afternoon. We are committed to the faculty governance process to consider proposed academic programs and plan to continue conversations throughout the academic year to refine program delivery. The University will share the statement below today (not included on Inside WFU), and it will also be posted at


Rogan Kersh

Proposals funded: Kim-Shapiro, Masicampo, Mewhinney

Congratulations to Daniel Kim-Shapiro, professor of physics, whose proposal entitled “Storage lesion in banked blood due to disruption of nitric oxide homeostasis” has been funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) under award number 5R01HL098032-07 and by [subaward/subcontract from] University of Pittsburgh (WFU funding agency).

Congratulations to E.J. Masicampo, assistant professor of psychology, whose proposal “Complementary Benefits of First- and Third-Person Perspective for Self-Control” has been funded by the Templeton Foundation and by [subaward/subcontract from] FSU Research Foundation, Inc. (WFU funding agency).

Congratulations to Kate Mewhinney, clinical professor at the School of Law: Elder Clinic, whose proposal entitled “Health Rights of LBGT Patients” has been funded by the NC Society of Health Care Attorneys.

Messier receives $6 million research grant

A $6 million federal grant, the largest ever awarded to Wake Forest, will enable health and exercise science researchers to further study knee osteoarthritis and successful treatment measures in community-based settings.

Wake Forest Heath and Exercise Science faculty involved in the IDEA study, Steve Messier (in white), Gary Miller, and Shannon Mihalko, in the Biomechanics laboratory in Reynolds Gym on Tuesday, September 24, 2013.

Wake Forest Heath and Exercise Science faculty involved in the IDEA study, Steve Messier (in white), Gary Miller, and Shannon Mihalko, in the Biomechanics laboratory in Reynolds Gym on Tuesday, September 24, 2013.

Health and exercise science professor Steve Messier and colleagues have spent 26 of the last 34 years at Wake Forest studying the effects of exercise and dietary restriction related to knee osteoarthritis (OA) through clinical trials research. This new grant will fund a study known as WE-CAN – Weight Loss and Exercise for Communities with Arthritis in North Carolina – that will put these years of highly-controlled clinical study results to the test in a real-world setting.

“Knee osteoarthritis is a leading cause of disability in older adults and there are over 250 million people in the world affected,” Messier said. “Our work has looked at effects of walking, strength training and weight loss on function and pain in OA under very controlled settings. We’ve decided to take what we’ve learned before and move it out in the community.”

Armed with the grant from the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), Messier and his team, which includes professor Gary Miller, a nutrition expert, and associate professor and health psychologist Shannon Mihalko, both of the Health and Exercise Science department, are conducting what’s known as a pragmatic clinical trial in which there are very few controls in order to simulate normal clinical conditions.

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Morosini presented award in Italy


Roberta Morosini, professor of Romance languages, received the Luigi De Lise Culture Award for 2015 in a Sept. 6 ceremony in Italy.  She is in Italy this fall for a sabbatical.

The award is named in honor of a playwright from Sarno, Italy, Morosini’s hometown.



Wait Chapel open Sept. 11 for all to remember 9/11

Message from Campus Life:

The events of September 11, 2001 significantly impacted individuals and communities on a local and global scale.  Members of the Wake Forest community who wish to mark the fourteenth anniversary of September 11 are invited to visit Wait Chapel between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

The Office of the Chaplain recognizes the extent of loss and grief experienced by many in our campus community, each form of loss bringing its own pain.  For some, that loss is especially poignant and challenging at this time of the year.  In offering a safe place where all spiritual and religious traditions are welcomed, Wait Chapel can provide solace to those who lost loved ones on 9/11, and those experiencing loss in many different forms.  The carillon will play at 5 p.m. with a special arrangement of songs as we remember the tragic events of 9/11.

Counseling and pastoral care is available to assist students, faculty, and staff experiencing grief and/or distress, or for those who might simply be in need of a place to talk.  For students, the Counseling Center (118 Reynolda Hall) may be reached at 758-5273 and Chaplain’s Office (Suite 22 Reynolda Hall) at 758-5210.  For faculty and staff, there is also the Employee Assistance Program at 716-5493.

Barbee Oakes named University’s first chief diversity officer

Dr. Barbee Oakes, Director, Wake Forest Office of Multicultural Affairs.

Barbee Oakes, chief diversity officer

Barbee Oakes, one of the most recognized leaders in Wake Forest diversity and inclusion initiatives, has been promoted to a new position expanding her opportunities to advance those efforts.

Recently, Oakes was appointed as Wake Forest’s first chief diversity officer. She retains her assistant provost title and responsibilities, developed over her six years in that role.

“As our first chief diversity officer, Barbee is beautifully positioned to advance strategic planning and execution of Wake Forest’s diversity and inclusion initiatives,” said Provost Rogan Kersh. “She will confer regularly with the president’s cabinet, deans, governance boards and the larger campus community on issues involving the University’s progress on inclusive excellence initiatives.”

Oakes has her sights set on several high-priority goals for this year and beyond.

“Continuing to proactively address campus climate issues remains a very high University priority this year,” Oakes said. “With increased diversity, the challenges we face in establishing policies, programs and practices to ensure everyone feels included become more complex and nuanced.”

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Faculty offer workshops on preparing for tests

Science faculty and the Learning Assistance Center (LAC) are collaborating this fall to help first-year students deal with exam panic through a three-part workshop, “How to prevent a panic attack on your first college science exam.”

Michael Shuman, interim director, and Shelly Cardi, staff psychologist, of LAC, as well as Pat Lord, director of Health Professions Program and associate teaching professor of biology, and David Wren, assistant teaching professor and director of the Chemistry Center, have planned the workshops to help first-year students prepare for their first college science exam.

Wren described the LAC as the “emergency department” for students where triage takes place to help deal with test anxiety. He and his colleagues believe a pre-emptive strike like these workshops will be more effective in the long run.

“All of us have had experience with students not knowing how to study, how to prepare, how to take the exam – and not panic – or how to analyze how they performed,” said Lord. “We’ve got some amazing things planned to help our students learn and do their best and we guarantee they will learn at least one technique that will help them improve their study skills.”

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Join us: Community Forum on campus climate Sept. 9

A message from Provost Rogan Kersh:

Greetings Wake Foresters!  I hope to see many of you at the Community Forum tomorrow evening, intended to continue shaping a shared WFU culture of inclusivity and meaningful intellectual exchange.  The Forum builds on last year’s ‘Deliberative Dialogue’ and related campus-climate conversations and proposals.  After a brief introduction, students, faculty, and staff will gather in small groups to engage around the thematic opportunities and challenges central to the Dialogue, with particular focus on the commitments emerging from last academic year and summer’s collective efforts.  Thematic areas (such as curricular revisions, campus policing, and student engagement) along with many of our initial commitments are summarized at the ‘Community in Progress’ website, found at

I thank so many of you for affirming through your engagement to date the shared effort to make Wake Forest a place that embraces all who call it home.  This Forum represents another such opportunity for collective involvement.  We will gather tomorrow (Sept. 9) at 7 p.m. in Benson University Center 401.  I look forward to the conversation.

Professors Kelton and Yang recognized for accounting research


Andrea Kelton, left, Ya-wen Yang

School of Business accounting faculty Andrea Kelton and Ya-wen Yang received the 2015 Accounting Information Systems Notable Contributions to the Literature Award.

The award was presented Aug. 11 during the American Accounting Association annual meeting in Chicago. The award recognizes a paper published prior to Dec. 31, 2013 ,that has had a significant impact on accounting information systems research, theory, or practice.

Kelton and Yang’s paper, “The Impact of Corporate Governance on Internet Financial Reporting,” was published in the Journal of Accounting and Public Policy in 2008. The research examined why firms make the choice to take the extra steps to engage in Internet Financial Reporting (IFR) – a voluntary disclosure.

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President’s Ball to be held Sept. 25 at the Coliseum

The President’s Ball will be held Sept. 25 from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. at the Coliseum.

The 2013 Wake Forest President's Ball, at Joel Coliseum, on Friday, October 18, 2013.

The 2013 President’s Ball

The biennial event, which began 10 years ago to celebrate the inauguration of President Nathan O. Hatch, is open to students, faculty, staff and alumni. They may bring guests. Current Wake Forest community members are encouraged to bring their Wake Forest ID.

The semi-formal celebration of the University has a history of attracting thousands of Wake Forest community members.  Free hors d’ oeuvres will be served; a cash bar will be open. The ball also features live music.

One of the most popular traditions associated with the ball is the president’s spectacular entrance, which has varied greatly through the years and has always been kept a secret until the last moment.  At one ball, for instance, he entered on the back of the famous Demon Deacon motorcycle associated with the start of football and basketball games.

There will be free shuttles for all attendees running from the Reynolda Campus every 15 minutes. Riders may catch the shuttles at Benson University Center (Parking Lot C) and behind Poteat Residence Hall (Parking Lot P).

Parking will be free at the Coliseum.

The ball’s web site is