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Start of the academic year brings new faces, programs across Emory

The nine schools that make up Emory have extensive plans for the 2016-17 academic year. Here's a roundup of what's new and noteworthy, as listed by each school.

Candler School of Theology

Incoming class: Candler welcomes 178 incoming students from six countries, 21 states and 33 denominations.

New faculty: Candler welcomes R. Kendall Soulen 86T, professor of systematic theology; Larry M. Goodpaster 73T 82T, bishop-in-residence; Khalia J. Williams, assistant dean of worship and music and assistant professor in the practice of worship; and David Daniel, director of chapel music and assistant professor in the practice of music ministry.

Noteworthy: Candler’s James T. and Berta R. Laney Legacy in Moral Leadership will sponsor a fall lecture series on faith and politics in the 21st century. The first lecture, on Sept. 7, will feature Robert Jones 02G, founder of the Public Religion Research Institute. World-renowned theologian Jürgen Moltmann will be on campus Oct. 19-20 for the conference “Unfinished Worlds: Jürgen Moltmann at 90,” also featuring Candler faculty and distinguished guest presenters. Candler’s Women, Theology and Ministry program will host author and food pantry founder Sara Miles for its Annual Women’s Forum on Nov. 3. Register by noon Nov. 1. Pitts Theology Library has been selected as one of three U.S. sites to host an exhibit in advance of the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s publication of the 95 theses, on display from Oct. 11 through Jan. 26.

Learn more at Candler's website.

Emory College of Arts and Sciences

Incoming class: The Class of 2020 in Emory College of Arts and Sciences includes 1,362 students. They are citizens of 36 countries; domestic students call 46 states and the District of Columbia home.

New faculty: Emory College also welcomes 27 new members of the faculty whose exceptional teaching and scholarship bring an increasingly diverse and international profile to the College across the humanities, social and natural sciences.

New leadership:Michael Elliott, Winship Distinguished Research Professor in English and American Studies, has been named interim dean of Emory College. His leadership this year will include the refinement and implementation of the College’s Strategic Plan developed during the last academic year. Emory College Dean Robin Forman, who served as dean for six years, becomes senior vice president and provost of Tulane University, effective Sept. 1.

Major initiative in the sciences: The College has kicked off a nationwide search for a cluster hire of four new faculty members in the sciences who have a proven track record of successful mentoring of first generation and underrepresented minority students. The hires are expected to be in place by fall 2017.

Learn more at

Goizueta Business School

Incoming classes: This fall, Goizueta welcomes to campus a new class of one-year, two-year and part-time MBA students. In the one-year program, a record 66 students enrolled. Sixteen countries are represented in the two-year program, including 16 military veterans. Eight full-time MBA candidates will pursue joint degrees (six JD/MBAs and two MBA/MPH). The part-time (evening) program has students from 70 companies around Atlanta.

On the board: Dean Erika James begins the school year as a new member of the East Lake Foundation Board of Directors. Founded in 1995 on the belief that everyone deserves a chance to succeed, the East Lake Foundation collaborates with public and private organizations to provide tools that enable Atlanta’s East Lake residents to build a better future.

Notable awards: The American Accounting Association (AAA) recently rewarded two Goizueta professors in recognition of their accomplishments in research and education. llia D. Dichev received the Notable Contributions to Accounting Literature Award.  Dichev’s research includes issues in equity valuation, earnings management, earnings quality, dollar-weighted returns and market efficiency. He was previously awarded the Notable Contributions to Accounting Literature Award in 2002, and the Distinguished Contributions to Accounting Literature Award in 2015. Grace Pownall received the Outstanding International Accounting Educator Award. Her research interests include corporate disclosure incentives and practices, and information in global capital markets. Pownall served as vice president of the AAA from 1999-2001 and director of the AAA 1999 Doctoral Consortium.

Learn more at

Laney Graduate School

Incoming class: The Laney Graduate School is pleased to welcome 376 new degree-seeking students. Eighty percent of the students are pursuing the PhD.

Interactive theater: This September, the Laney Graduate School will welcome back Theater Delta for two interactive theater performances on faculty-graduate student mentoring and diversity. Topics will include communication, giving critical feedback, guiding research, the impact of cultural identity, microaggressions and more.

Annual symposium: From Sept. 18-20, the Laney Graduate School will convene the annual STEM Research and Career Symposium. The STEM Symposium brings faculty advisers and nearly 100 students from diverse backgrounds to the Emory campus for two days of shared research presentations and for networking, mentoring and recruitment. The keynote speakers for this year are Chad Jackson, a foreign affairs officer in the Office of the Science and Technology Adviser in the U.S. Department of State, and Michael Lomax, president and CEO of the United Negro College Fund.

Learn more at

School of Law

Incoming class: Emory Law welcomes new students from more than 18 countries, 39 states, and 127 undergraduate institutions to its Juris Doctor (JD), Juris Master (JM), Master of Laws (LLM), and Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) degree programs.

Milestone: On the occasion of our centennial, Emory Law celebrates its role as a leading institution for legal education, as a center for innovative scholarship, and as an organizer of important conversations about the law in our world today.

New faculty: Patent law and intellectual property scholar Margo Bagley 96L returns to Emory as Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law. She was previously Hardy Cross Dillard Professor of Law at the University of Virginia. Corporate business law expert George Georgiev joins the faculty from UCLA. Kamina Pinder joins the legal writing faculty as a professor of practice. Also in the field of legal writing, Paul Koster will return as visiting professor of practice. Constitutional law expert Fred Smith, who is on the faculty of UC-Berkeley Law School, has returned as a visiting professor for the 2016-17 school year. 

Select faculty honors: Jonathan Nash and Ani Satz were elected to the American Law Institute. Martha Fineman participated in a global workshop on vulnerability and social justice at the University of Leeds. Polly Price delivered the 2016 Leon Silverman Lecture at the US. Supreme Court. Mindy Goldstein will receive GreenLaw’s Ogden Doremus Award for Excellence in Environmental Law in October. John Witte Jr. received the James W.C. Pennington Award from the Heidelberg Center for American Studies and the Department of Theology at the University of Heidelberg. CSLR Senior Fellow Rafael Domingo received an honorary doctorate from Saint Ignatius of Loyola University.

Learn more at

School of Medicine

Incoming class: The incoming class has 138 first-year students: 60 percent women and 70 percent nontraditional, meaning that they were out of college for at least a year before entering medical school. GME oriented more than 400 new residents and fellows this year.

School stats: The SOM has 562 students total and trains 1,238 residents and fellows in 100 accredited programs. The school has 91 MD/PhD students. There are 524 students in five allied health programs. The school has 2,555 full- and part-time faculty and 631 volunteer faculty.

Taking the lead: For the first time this year, financial wellness consultant Alok Deshpande presented sessions to all new residents. Ophthalmology professor Maria Aaron was appointed associate dean for graduate medical education and is the new designated institutional official for GME. The physician assistant (PA) program, under the direction of Maha Lund, is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Farmworker Health Project. Yolanda Hood, associate director of medical education and diversity outreach, has had a year on the Emory Pipeline Collaborative (EPiC) grant working with high school students from Atlanta Public Schools to prepare them for health professions. The SOM Diversity and Inclusion Committee is conducting a diversity climate survey of all faculty, staff and students. A new café, Kaldi’s Coffee, opened in the SOM building, with indoor and outdoor seating by the Lawley fountain.

Learn more at

Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing

Incoming and returning classes: The Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing welcomes 247 new BSN students and 126 returning BSN students who hail from 36 states and four countries. There are 159 new students enrolled in the school's MSN program, 39 percent of whom earned their BSN degrees from Emory. There are 34 students enrolled in the PhD program and 26 students enrolled in the DNP program.

New faculty: Rowen Elliott, PhD, RN, CNN, CNE, AGNP-C, FAAN, associate clinical professor; Jill Hamilton, PhD, RN, FAAN, acting associate professor; Melissa Owen, PhD, RN, assistant clinical professor; Kylie Smith, PhD, assistant professor; Mi-Kyung Song, PhD, RN, professor; Jeannie Weston, RN, MS, assistant clinical professor; Michelle Wright, PhD, RN, assistant research professor; Irene Yang, PhD, MSN, RN, assistant research professor.

New programs: Beginning this fall, the School of Nursing will offer its Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Program in an executive online format. Full- and part-time options are available for the acute care Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) specialty. The program prepares nurses as primary and acute-care advanced practice providers, who are skilled in performing comprehensive assessments, diagnostic evaluations, and symptom and disease management for neonates and infants up to the age of two. The School of Nursing’s popular "Nursing 101" course is now offered in the fall and the spring. The course provides nursing-interested undergraduates with an overview of the multifaceted role of nursing professionals and today’s practice environment.

Learn more at

Oxford College

Incoming class: Oxford welcomes 505 freshmen, the largest entering class in its history. The total enrollment of more than 980 students is also the largest ever, and this is the most highly credentialed student body in Oxford’s history. The entering class is drawn from 38 states and the District of Columbia and 14 countries. More than one-third of entering students applied through the Early Decision process.

New dean: The academic year begins with new dean of Oxford College and professor of religion Douglas Hicks at the helm. Hicks joins Oxford from Colgate University, where he was provost and dean of the faculty. He assumed his role in July and has already met with Oxford alumni in various cities and the Oxford Board of Counselors. On Aug. 19 he and his family welcomed the new first-year class to Oxford with an ice-cream social on the lawn of the dean’s residence.

New faculty and faculty promotions: New faculty members include Catherine Bagwell, professor of psychology; Donald Beaudette, assistant professor of political science; Bridgette Gunnels, assistant professor of Spanish; Thomas Osburn, assistant professor of physics; and David Resha, assistant professor of film studies. Faculty members who enter the academic year with promotions include Susan Ashmore, professor of history; Brenda Harmon, professor of pedagogy in chemistry; and Theodosia Wade, professor of pedagogy in biology.

Intervarsity sports: Cross-country running and golf, formerly offered as club sports, are the newest additions to the lineup of Oxford’s intervarsity sports.

Construction: Following the opening of the new Oxford Science Building this past January, construction moves forward on a new dining hall, located across the street from the current dining facility. Completion is projected for spring semester 2017.

Rollins School of Public Health

Incoming class: Rollins welcomes 566 MPH and MSPH students from 29 countries and 45 states. The incoming class is 7 percent larger than last year’s class.

New faculty:Kelli Komro, MPH, PhD, joined Rollins as professor of behavioral sciences and health education. Her primary scholarly focus is community intervention trials and policy evaluation research to promote child and adolescent health. Carmen J. Marsit, PhD, came aboard as professor of environmental health. Marsit’s primary research focus is children’s environmental health and cancer molecular epidemiology.

Faculty honors:Patrick Sullivan, professor of epidemiology, was sworn into the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS. Carlos del Rio, Hubert Professor and chair of the Hubert Department of Global Health, has been selected as the 2016 recipient of the Ohtli Award, one of the highest awards given by the Government of Mexico. Nancy Thompson received the 2016 Emory University Scholar/Teacher Award — one of the university's top honors.

Collaborations: The Center for Humanitarian Emergencies is receiving an award of over $850,000 to support capacity building efforts for Zika response.  The effort is a collaboration between the Hubert Department of Global Health and the Department of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics. Activities will include training in Geographic Information Systems to strengthen vector surveillance, control and management in 35 countries in Central and South America and the Caribbean.

Learn more at

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