What's going on in the College of Health and Human Services? Plenty. Stay tuned to this page for highlights of both future and past events across the college.

(Pictured left to right in the photo, above, are Archana Liggins, Chief Information Officer for the Student Healthcare Management Association; Yvette McWhorter, Events Coordinator for the SHCMA; Nisha Mehta, President of the SHCMA; Isha Dhingra, Secretary of the SHCMA; and Nitika Sood, Health Administration graduate assistant.)

 Congratulations to the Student Healthcare Management Association!

The Student Healthcare Management Association (SHCMA) of the Health Administration Department was recently honored for presenting the best service award project at the annual GSU Student Leadership Awards program.

The SHCMA hosted a service project to increase awareness regarding the dangers of texting while driving. In conjunction with AT&T, the group facilitated the It Can Wait program in which students sat in the driver’s seat (simulator) and experienced the effects of texting while driving. Other University officials in attendance at the program included GSU President Dr. Elaine P. Maimon; GSU Provost, Dr. Deborah Bordelon, and key public officials — all of whom took the pledge, along with more than 300 students, to never text and drive. The fruits of SHCMA's labor did not go unnoticed. Last April the SHCMA was also nominated as the Most Improved Club at the Awards Program. But this year they took home the prize for best service learning project of the year. Congratulations, SHCMA!  

Dr. Caren Rossow, DHA, MSA, CIH, FACHE, serves as Faculty Advisor for the organization. 

 It Can Wait Award Photo

(Pictured, left to right, at the GSU Student Leadership Awards event are Health Administration student Yvette McWhorter, GSU President Elaine P. Maimon, Provost Deborah Bordelon, Health Administration student Archana Liggins and Dr. Caren Rossow, Advisor for the SHCMA.)

  • Master of Occupational Therapy Research Day: August 8, 2014


    Master of Occupational Therapy students, in partnership with the Occupational Therapy faculty at Governors State University, invite the community to join them as they present findings from their research projects during a poster presentation on Friday, August 8, 2014, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Cafeteria Annex at GSU.

    Program Outline 

    Welcome                                                                    11:30 a.m. — 11:40 a.m.
    Dr. Catherine Brady, Ed.D., OTR/L
    Interim Chair, Occupational Therapy Department 

    Keynote Address                                                        11:40 a.m. — Noon
    Dr. Beth Cada, Ed.D., OTR/L, FAOTA
    Dean, College of Health and Human Services

    Poster Presentations (Noon – 1:30 P.M.) 

    Students Perception of Occupational Therapy Through the Use of Photovoice 
    Student Presenters: Angie Bertucci, Nicole Reed, Samantha Pacyga & Monica Chhadia 
    Research Advisor: Dr. Divya Sood

    Evaluations And Interventions Related to Enabling the Occupation Of Driving
    Among Older Adults

    Student Presenters: Justin Wolak, Jillian Gray, Nicole Ficker & Chad Maatman

    Research Advisor: Dr. Catherine Brady  

    A Comparison of Classroom to International Service Learning Experiences in the Development of Cultural Competence in MOT Students
    Student Presenters: Sally Sweis, Nicole Nadrowski, Katie Young & Jessica Crafton
    Research Advisor: Dr. Melanie Ellexson 

    The Perceptions of GSU Occupational Therapy Faculty and Students on the Active Participation
    of Occupational Therapy Students
    Student Presenters: Jacqueline Ryon, Shannon Swieca & Bruno Kramarczyk
    Research Advisors: Dr. Cynthia Carr and Professor Patti Kalvelage
    Providing Family Centered Care when Working with Families & Children from Diverse Cultures —
    Perceptions of Occupational Therapy Practitioners
    Student Presenters: Breanna Foley, Hannah Verburg, Vince Casali & Kristen Kozy
    Research Advisors: Dr. Divya Sood & Dr. Caren Schranz  

                  Please contact Dr. Caren Schranz at cschranz@govst.edu with any questions.


  • Physical Therapy Students Raise Awareness for Brain Injury Association of Illinois


    Run4Rehab Volunteers (2014 Run4Rehab Volunteers)

    The day dawned sunny and beautiful for this year’s 4th Annual 2014 Run4Rehab 5k run/2-mile walk/roll, sponsored by GSU’s Physical Therapy Student Association and held May 31 on the GSU campus.

    The event served as an awareness- and fund-raiser for the Brain Injury Association of Illinois (BIA of IL).  The Executive Director of the BIA of IL, Philicia Deckard, LSW, CBIST, matched up each runner to a BIA of IL member with a brain injury, so that each participant was able to run for a specific cause. Over 40 participants ran and walked to show their support for this overlooked population.

    “With the interest generated this year and positive vibes we've already received, next year's race will only be better,” said Kelly Cooke, a third-year Doctor of Physical Therapy student. Cooke served as main organizer for this year’s event, and was assisted by fellow Physical Therapy students, including Maria Wondra, and GSU Physical Therapy staff members, including Joyce Sligar, Senior University Lecturer and Co-Director of Clinical Education, as well as faculty sponsor for the PTSA.

    The Brain Injury Association of Illinois is a not-for-profit, statewide membership organization comprised of people with brain injuries, their family members, friends and other health professionals. BIA of IL is part of a network of brain injury associations across the United States, and is a subsidiary of the 34-year-old national Brain Injury Association, Inc.  Dedicated to providing information, advocacy and support, the BIA of IL is the only organization in Illinois serving individuals with traumatic brain injury, their family members and professionals who treat them.

     Run4Rehab Start


  • CDIS Students Raise Funds for Autism Speaks


      Autism Fundraiser(Pictured, left to right, are Communication Disorders students Jill Carlson,
    Barbara Czarnik and Niveen Atieh.)

    Communication Disorders students — members of GSU’s Chapter of the National Student Speech Language and Hearing Association — recently hosted an event that raised both fun and funds for Autism Speaks, the world’s leading research and advocacy organization for autism prevention and awareness.  

    The students hosted an event for children (some of whom had autism) and their families at the Silver Ice Skate rink in Woodbridge, with all proceeds going to Autism Speaks.

    “We raised approximately $4000 — that’s a 20% increase from the money raised last year,” said Kristy Hendershott, President of NSSLHA (GSU Chapter).

    Thousands of American children have autism spectrum disorder. Children with ASD have difficulty with social communication and demonstrate repetitive behaviors. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately one in 68 children has been identified with ASD; boys are more susceptible than girls. Contemporary research suggests that no one cause can be identified. Scientists have identified more than 100 genes and mutations that can increase the risk of autism in combination with environmental factors.

    “Beliefs purported by some celebrities that vaccinations are the cause of autism are unfounded and have no scientific evidence. Early detection and intervention focusing on improving functional communication skills is extremely important,” said Dr. Ravi Nigam, Associate Professor of Communication Disorders at GSU. 

    For more information on autism, visit Autism Speaks (www.autismspeaks.org) or American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) website at http://www.asha.org/public/speech/disorders/autism/.  

  • National Stuttering Association Support Group


    National Stuttering Association logoA new chapter of the National Stuttering Association (NSA) Support Group will begin meeting under the sponsorship of GSU’s Department of Communication Disorders.

    The support group is open to adults who stutter, as well as their family members. Communication Disorders students are also welcome to attend.

    The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, June 10, 2014 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the Department of Communication Disorders conference room, located in the F wing. Several adults who have experience attending NSA meetings will be in attendance at this meeting.

    The group will continue to meet on the second Tuesday of every month. (The July meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 8, 2014.)

    For directions to the meeting or additional information, please contact Dr. Eileen Brann, Assistant Professor in GSU’s Department of Communication Disorders, at ebrann@govst.edu or 708.534.4594.

    Stuttering Support Group

  • CHHS Hosts Annual Recognition Night


    Each spring the College of Health and Human Services (CHHS) hosts a Recognition Night to honor the Outstanding Students from each of the College's seven departments, as well as the Outstanding Supervisors, Preceptors and Field Instructors who work with the CHHS students.

    This year's Outstanding Students include the following:

    Outstanding Students

    Addictions Studies & Behavioral Health — Outstanding Graduate Student:
    Sherwin Miles     

    Community Health — Outstanding Undergraduate Student:
    Sarah Jasso

    Communication Disorders — Outstanding Undergraduate Student:
    Pamela Ortiz

    Communication Disorders — Outstanding Graduate Student:
    Annmarie Altosino

    Health Administration — Outstanding Undergraduate Student:
    John M. Trobi

    Health Administration — Outstanding Graduate Student:
    Farah Ahmed

    Nursing — Outstanding Graduate Student:
    Jennifer Margaret Panning

    Nursing — Outstanding Doctoral Student:
    Liberty Erfe

    Occupational Therapy — Outstanding Graduate Student
    Mathew Medley

    Occupational Therapy — Outstanding Doctoral Student
    Gail A. LoCure, DrOT, OTR/L

    Physical Therapy — Outstanding Doctoral Student
    Erin Galligan

    Social Work — Outstanding Undergraduate Student
    Edward K. Moore

    Social Work — Outstanding Graduate Student
    Gwendolyn Renise Maxwell

    2014 CHHS Recognition Night2

     Pictured, left to right, are Sherwin Miles, Outstanding Graduate Student in the Addictions Studies and Behavioral Health Department; Dr. Cheryl Mejta, Chair of the Addictions Studies and Behavioral Health Department; and Sarah Jasso, Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Community Health.

    CHHS Recognition Night 3

     Pictured, left and right, are Dr. Gerri Outlaw, Chair of the Social Work Department, and Gwendolyn Renise Maxwell, Outstanding Graduate Student in the Social Work Department.

    Outstanding Supervisors, Preceptors and Field Instructors


     Addictions Studies and Behavioral Heath
    John F. Breslin, M.Div., ICAC-II, NCAC-II, LSW, CAC
    Communication Disorders
    Kathleen Maida-Cantone, M.S., CCC-SLP 

    Community Health
    Elizabeth Bilotta, LEHP, Master of Science 

    Health Administration
    Eric Conley, MHA 

    Omar Garcia, M.D., MPH

    Occupational Therapy
    Monika Robinson, DrOT, OTR/L

    Physical Therapy
    Amy Zoch,

    Social Work (BSW Program)
    Laura Von Borstel, MSW

    Social Work (MSW Program)
    Dawn Walker, MA

    2014 CHHS Recognition Night 
    CHHS Dean Elizabeth A. Cada and Eric Conley, MHA, Vice President for Operations at Chicago's Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Medical Center, and the 2014 Preceptor of the Year for GSU's Health Administration Department.


  • Workshop Series Offered by Addictions Studies Alumni Club


    Link to Reservation FormAddictions Workshops 2014 Addictions Workshops2 Addictions workshops3

  • Generating Hope Support Network


    Stay tuned for information regarding the next meeting of the Generating Hope Support Network.

    Sponsored by the GSU Social Work Department, the Generating Hope Support Network is designed to provide support, mentoring, networking, information and resource linkage for the formerly incarcerated, their families and friends. The group is free and open to the public, and meets in Room D34012.

    For additional information about Generating Hope, contact Dr. Lorri Glass at 708.534.4919, or lglass@govst.edu 

  • Nursing Graduate Appointed Chief Nurse Executive for Chicago Hospital


    Dr. Jacquelyn WhittenA GSU Nursing graduate has just been appointed Chief Nurse Executive for Advocate Trinity Hospital in Chicago, which is part of Advocate Health Care ─ one of the largest health care systems in metropolitan Chicago and in the United States.

    Dr. Jacquelyn Whitten earned her Master’s and Doctoral nursing degrees from GSU. She also holds a certificate in project management from the Harvard School of Public Health Project and recently completed a Nursing Executive leadership course at the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.

    Effective January 12, 2014, Whitten will assume her new position as chief nurse executive for Advocate Trinity, which serves more than 90,000 patients each year, providing a full range of services from obstetrics and emergency care to medical, surgical, cardiology, diabetes and cancer care.

    GSU Nursing Department Chair Dr. Nancy MacMullen stated that “Dr. Whitten is a wonderful example of the type of nurse we graduate from our DNP program. She’s extremely dedicated and clinically expert, as well as a fine team leader. We’re all extremely proud of her recent accomplishment.”

    In an email note to GSU Nursing professors Dr. MacMullen, Dr. Pat Martin and Dr. Catherine Tymkow, Whitten wrote: “I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank you all for your mentorship and guidance from a wonderful university. It gives me great pleasure to represent our University! This could not have been done without all of you. Thank you all and please pass it on to the other professors.”

    Incoming Advocate Trinity Hospital President and former Chief Nurse Executive Michelle Gaskill stated: “Jackie is a dynamic leader with a passionate and energetic leadership style. Her background positions her well to influence change and drive continuous improvement in nursing care and quality.”

    Whitten brings more than 15 years of nursing leadership experience to this position. She joined Trinity in 2009 and has had a variety of roles in the emergency and critical care departments, maternal/child services, admission center and the stroke program. She has led the implementation of new hospital programs and successful designation as a Level II Plus nursery.

    Prior to joining Advocate, Whitten held a number of leadership roles at Ingalls Memorial Hospital in Harvey and served in the United States Army.

    A resident of Lansing, Whitten is an active volunteer and is recognized as a leader in her church community. 

  • Health Administration Students Are Semi-finalists at National Competition


    Health Admin StudentsCongratulations to Nisha Mehta, Uzma Saleha and Josephine Anetekhai, second year Master of Health Administration students. They represented GSU and the College of Health and Human Services’ Health Administration program at the National Association of Health Services Executives’ Annual Everett V. Fox Student Case Analysis and Presentation Competition. This year’s competition was held October 15-18 in Miami, during NAHSE’s 28th Annual Educational Conference.

    Graduate students from 21 university Health Care Management programs from across the United States competed in this event.

    Our team represented GSU well, progressing in the competition all the way to the semi-final round. This meant our team was ahead of more than half of all the other teams, winning each of our team members a monetary award. Three of the Illinois teams placed in the competition: UIC finished in fifth place and Rush in first place.

    Serving as “coach” for the GSU MHA students was Dr. Rupert M. Evans, Sr., DHA, MPA, FACHE, Associate Professor, Chair and Program Director for GSU’s Department of Health Administration.

    The Case Competition is a scholarship program that utilizes the case study methodology of teaching to provide graduate students with an educational experience that enhances their problem analysis and presentation skills. Team members are given a unique case study and are charged with applying their knowledge and experience to analyze the diverse and real situations facing the healthcare organization featured in the case. The teams are given the specific facts and raw data related to the case, from which they are expected to reach decisions as outlined in the case assignment. The team then presents its case findings and recommendations before a panel of judges representing leaders in the healthcare field.

    Past cases have been modeled after organizations such as Kaiser Permanente, Mayo Clinic, Catholic Health Initiatives, Trinity Health System, University of Maryland Medical System, HCA, UnitedHealth Group and most recently, G.E. Healthcare. This year Kaiser Permanente was the sponsor of the case. 

    (Pictured, left to right, are Dr. Rupert M. Evans, Sr., and MHS students Uzma Saleha, Josephine Anetekhai and Nisha Mehta.)