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​Dr. Catherine E. Gordon-Seifert

Faculty to Share $81,458 in Research Grants

For six weeks this summer, Dr. Catherine E. Gordon-Seifert, professor of music and department chair at Providence College, will be at the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris to research 17th century music for a book she is writing and for a Development of Western Civilization colloquium she will lead.

Gordon-Seifert was one of 15 professors awarded a total of $81,458 in grants by the College's Committee on Aid to Faculty Research (CAFR) for the next academic year. Through the competitive program, she received $6,701 for her project, “The Spirit Transformed: Converting Women Through French Sacred Song.”

Gordon-Seifert’s research involves spiritual airs and religious parodies composed specifically for French youths and women during the second half of the 17th century. The songs replaced popular secular airs, which moralists and theologians considered “immoral,” with the potential to cause “impious, even lascivious, behavior,” Gordon-Seifert said.

“I need to read, study, and copy several musical sources and theological treatises that are not available in facsimile or modern editions, but only through consultation in the various libraries connected to the Bibliothèque Nationale,” said Gordon-Seifert. “I will also be using this material in a fourth-semester DWC colloquium entitled Music, Beauty, Eros, and God.”

Dr. Comfort M. Ateh, assistant professor of secondary education, was awarded a $7,681 CAFR grant for her research project, “Pre-Service Teachers’ Evolving Knowledge and Practice of Formative Assessment.”

Ateh will assess how student-teachers implement the methods of effective classroom assessment that she taught them in a course, Educational Measurement. She will examine the assessment techniques the students use in their pre-service teaching at local high schools during the fall semester and during their student teaching in the spring semester.

“Sources of evidence of their knowledge and practice will include lesson plans, observations during student-teaching, reflections on teaching, interviews, and focus groups,” Ateh said. “In addition to sharing the findings from this project with the educational community, I intend to use the findings to enhance instruction in educational measurement.”

Other CAFR recipients are:

• Dr. Arthur P. Urbano, Jr., associate professor of theology, $6,200 for “Wisdom Made Visible: Iconography and the Fashioning of Philosophical Culture in Late Antiquity.”

• Dr. Raymond L. Sickinger ’71, professor of public and community service studies and of history, $6,000 for “Frederic Ozanam: Life, Legacy, and Lessons.”

• Dr. D. Colin Jaundrill, assistant professor of history, $6,000 for “Reappraising the Modern Japanese Military.”

• Dr. Su-Jeong Kang, assistant professor of mathematics, $5,920 for “Strict Compatibility of the Coniveau Filtration.”

• Dr. Stephen J. Mecca ’64 & ’66G, professor of physics, $5,852 for “Field Tests for a Prototype Solar Water Purification System for Development.” 

• Dr. Todd J. Harper, assistant professor of music, $5,835 for “The Heart of the People – The Legacy of Korean Folk Music in Modern-Day South Korea Since the Establishment of the Demilitarized Zone.”

• Dr. Shannon M. Rauch, assistant professor of psychology, $5,468 for “The Persuasive Power of Victim-Based Racial Messages: The Effects of Collective Guilt and Racial Ambivalence.”

Dr. Jay D. Pike, assistant professor of chemistry, $5,150 for “Developing Potential Inhibitors of DNA Polymerase and Studying the Mechanism of Base Excision Repair as it Relates to Huntington’s Disease.”

• Dr. Jeffrey A. Johnson, associate professor of history, $5,000 for “Free from Every Thrall: A History of Labor Day in Progressive Era America.”

• Dr. Charles R. Toth, associate professor of biology, $4,773 for “Regulation of Regulatory Gene Expression During Blood Cell Differentiation in Human Pluripotent Stem Cells.” 

• Dr. Sang Woo Kang, associate professor of music, $3,807 for “A Cultural Exchange: The Music of Isang Yun in Performance and Pedagogy.”

• Dr. Richard M. Battistoni, professor of political science and of public and community service studies, $3,705 for “Civic Identity in the Real World: How Multi-Term Cohort-Based Undergraduate Civic Engagement Programs Impact Civic Action After College.”

• Dr. Thomas F. Strasser, associate professor of art history, $3,366 for “Optical Stimulated Luminescence Dating of a Palaeolithic Site in Southwest Crete.” 

The recipients were chosen by the committee, which is chaired by Dr. Susan K. McCarthy, professor of political science. Members are Dr. Christine E. Earley, professor of accountancy; Dr. Patrick W. Ewanchuk, associate professor of biology; Rev. Kenneth R. Gumbert, O.P., professor of film studies in theatre arts; and Dr. Robert G. LaMontagne, assistant professor of physics.

The competitive awards program was established to support faculty in scholarly activities that enhance academic quality and enrich the academic life of the College. Since its inception almost 40 years ago, CAFR has awarded more than $1.8 million in grants.  

— Vicki-Ann Downing

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