2016 National Teacher of the Year
2016 Merit Finalists
Megan Whitworth Palmer, CFCS was nominated by the Georgia Affiliate for her program, Family & Consumer Sciences at Thomas County Upper Elementary/Thomas County Middle School (TCUE/TCMS).
"Tasked with the responsibility of opening a new FCS program, in-depth research, design, and organization was executed to ensure a proper facility, equipment, and curriculum are available to middle school students. Program organization allows students a comprehensive view of FCS and encourages continued involvement at the high school level. FCS at TCUE/TCMS seeks to bridge conventional skills and knowledge of traditional Home Economics with current FCS curricula, meeting the needs of families, communities, and careers."
Kristie Kuhse was nominated by the Iowa Affiliate of AAFCS for her program, "Family and Community Connections."
"Family and community partnerships built around networking and collaboration with various community entities attract positive attention, validity, strength and visible connections to the Family and Consumer Sciences program at Waverly-Shell Rock Middle School. Alignment of standards and assessments builds prosperity for the program and brings positive recognition. Infusing service learning enables students to make connections to their worlds. These relationships proclaim our ongoing story and the public value of Family and Consumer Sciences."
Karen Phair was nominated by the Maine Affiliate of AAFCS for her program, "Future Perspectives."
"Future Perspectives is designed to prepare students for many of the challenges to be faced in adulthood. Choices regarding post-secondary goals, responsibilities, resource management, and consumer practices are examined and evaluated. Financial literacy, nutrition, legal issues, career preparation and CPR/First Aid certification are included. Good communication skills are stressed. The course is designed to help prepare students for a productive and fulfilling life after high school.
Graduate Fellowship Recipients
Jewell L. Taylor National Graduate Fellowship
The Taylor Fellowship was established through a generous bequest from Jewell L. Taylor, a dedicated family and consumer sciences professional for more than 50 years. She held positions as a county home demonstration agent and utility home economist, continuing her interest in AAFCS until her death. A $5,000 fellowship and up to $1,000 of support for one year of AAFCS membership and participation in the AAFCS Annual Conference will be awarded to no more than one (1) qualified graduate students pursuing a degree in family and consumer sciences.
Crum-Koehler National Graduate Fellowship
This fellowship was created with a bequest from Jeanette H. Crum and a gift in honor of Naomi and Freeman Koehler. Jeanette Crum served as a consumer consultant with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. A $5,000 fellowship and up to $1,000 of support for one year of AAFCS membership and participation in the AAFCS Annual Conference will be awarded to no more than one (1) qualified graduate student pursuing a degree in family and consumer sciences.
Ethel L. Parker International Graduate Fellowship
Ethel L. Parker, an active member of AAFCS and head of Home Economics Education at the University of Kentucky, established the Parker International Fellowship. A $5,000 fellowship and up to $1,000 of support for one year of AAFCS membership and participation in the AAFCS Annual Conference will be awarded to no more than one (1) FCS graduate student from the U.S. who participates in international study or an international graduate student who studies family and consumer sciences in the U.S.
Inez Eleanor Radell National Graduate Fellowship
The Radell Fellowship is supported by a fund initiated in 1979 by Inez Eleanor Radell, a family and consumers sciences professor at New York University, with annual gifts and through a subsequent bequest from her estate. A $5,000 fellowship and up to $1,000 of support for one year of AAFCS membership and participation in the AAFCS Annual Conference will be awarded to no more than one (1) graduate student pursuing the completion of a graduate degree in the design, construction, and/or marketing of apparel for aging or handicapped adults. The fellowship recipient must have earned a baccalaureate degree in clothing, art, merchandising, business or a related field.
Mia Baytop Russell, University of Maryland Eastern Shore
One in four Americans experience financial distress and two-thirds cite trouble paying bills and money worries (Federal Reserve, 2010; 2013). Financial worries and concerns emerge in all aspects of daily life; including work where personal and family issues spillover to impact productivity. Research suggests financial worries at work are associated with increases in absenteeism and presenteeism as well as decreases in productivity and job satisfaction (Kim, 2008). Drawing from social exchange theory (Cropanzano, 2005; Morris et al., 1997) and generational theory (Strauss & Howe, 1991) - both of which are useful in clarifying the organizational role in employee well-being - the aim of this study is to understand how personal financial wellness impacts individuals, their families and employing organizations.
This study is designed to understand perceptions of financial wellness among employees in the workplace and which socio-demographic differences help to describe these perceptions. Because wellness is an abstract concept, this qualitative study will use focus groups to describe common experiences and perceptions of employee financial wellness (Creswell, 2013; Welman & Kruger, 1999). Data from six 90-minute focus groups will be collected, transcribed, and analyzed (Lichtman, 2014; Miles, Huberman, & Saldana, 2013).
Carmen Pedersen, Texas Tech University
The research questions considered by Carmen include:
1. How do a teacher's passion, attitude, and content knowledge impact students' financial knowledge and skills?
a. What professional development do FCS teachers need to better teach financial literacy and money management?
2. Do students with a low socio-economic status and students with a higher socioeconomic status interpret and use the content knowledge and skills differently?
3. Do students who take FCS classes have more financial knowledge and skills and better financial behaviors than students who do not take FCS classes?
Yang Hou, University of Texas at Austin
In family studies, a strong research design often involves the use of multiple informants; yet, significant discrepancies between different reports have been widely demonstrated (Achenbach, McConaughy, & Howell, 1987; De Los Reyes et al., 2015).
Informant discrepancy can be meaningful (De Los Reyes, Thomas, Goodman, & Kundey, 2013). For example, a growing body of literature has shown that parent-child discrepancies on parenting can have significant implications for adolescent adjustment (Abar, Jackson, Colby, & Barnett, 2015; Guion, Mrug, & Windle, 2009; Reidler & Swenson, 2012). However, relatively little is known about why parents' and adolescents' ratings on parenting are often discrepant. In ethnic minority families, one potential predictor of parent-child discrepancies on parenting may be parent-child acculturation discrepancy. Parent-child acculturation discrepancy has been associated with various aspect of parenting (Kim, Chen, Li, Huang, & Moon, 2009; Kim, Chen, Wang, Shen, & Orozco-Lapray, 2013). Thus, the current study examines how parent-child discrepancies in their levels of acculturation (ethnic and American orientations) relate to their discrepant reports on parenting (i.e., parental warmth and hostility, parental monitoring, and inductive reasoning). Parent-child discrepancies will be defined in three ways: absolute and directional difference scores (Ehrlich, Cassidy, & Dykas, 2011) and a categorical variable grouping parents and adolescents into high and low groups (Abar et al., 2015).
Elise Brooks, University of Georgia
Since beginning research of possible topics for a thesis, I noticed a serious lack in designs and research related with clothing and the disabled. While there is some historical information and possible ideas for adaptive clothing designs for the wheelchair and from the caregiver perspective, there is an absence of research associated to dressing and independence for the disabled. I have also noticed a shortage of research for designs for people going through dialysis and chemotherapy treatments that have ports and fistulas in their arms, necks, and legs. These ports are usually difficult to access without altering clothing or wearing short sleeves all year long. My idea is to interview people that are on dialysis, chemotherapy, etc. to find their problem
areas with clothing and issues they may have in the clinics related to their ports and the climate, create a prototype product, and then bring back to them to test as a focus group. The idea is in the earliest stage at this point. I am currently working on the background and literature review portion of my thesis and my proposal for this spring 2016 semester.
Undergraduate Scholarship Recipient
Jewell L. Taylor National Undergraduate Scholarship
The Taylor Scholarship was established through a generous bequest from Jewell L. Taylor, a dedicated family and consumer sciences professional for more than 50 years. She held positions as a county home demonstration agent and utility home economist, continuing her interest in AAFCS until her death. A $5,000 scholarship and up to $1,000 of support for one year of AAFCS membership and participation in the AAFCS Annual Conference will be awarded to no more than one (1) qualified undergraduate student pursuing a degree in family and consumer sciences.
Taylor Stewart, Western Kentucky University
Taylor Stewart is currently enrolled as a sophomore in the Honors College at Western Kentucky University. She will graduate in December 2017 with a Family and Consumer Sciences degree, with a focus in education. Taylor serves as an intern for the Kentucky State Supervisor for Family and Consumer Sciences Education and the Kentucky State Adviser for Family, Career and Community Leaders of America. Throughout this internship, she has gained experience working directly with students and future colleagues.
Ms. Stewart is a member of numerous professional and student organizations including the Kentucky Association of Teachers for Family and Consumer Sciences; the National Association of Teachers for Family and Consumer Sciences; the Kentucky Association of Career and Technical Education; the Association of Career and Technical Education; the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences; Family, Career and Community Leaders of America Alumni and Associates; Phi Upsilon Omicron; and the Western Kentucky University Family and Consumer Sciences Education Club, of which she is the President. These organizations have provided Taylor with opportunities for developing as a professional, networking, and giving service.
Additionally, Taylor is a member of Eastside church of Christ. She teaches Bible classes to children and is involved in the planning and implementation of a WKU campus study. She also participates in numerous activities to recognize, report, and reduce cyberbullying. Taylor plans to teach Family and Consumer Sciences in a high school setting and advise a FCCLA chapter. Her goal is to one day serve as the Kentucky FCCLA State Adviser.