CEHD News Faculty & Staff

CEHD News Faculty & Staff

Kane, LaVoi publish on intercollegiate athletic director viewpoints on female coaches

Mary Jo Kane, Ph.D., director of the Tucker Center and professor in the School of Kinesiology, and  Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D., Tucker Center co-director and School of Kinesiology senior lecturer, have published an article in the Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal. “An Examination of Intercollegiate Athletic Directors’ Attributions Regarding the Underrepresentation of Female Coaches in Women’s Sports” surveyed a nationwide sample of college athletic administrators to determine current-day perceptions regarding the underrepresentation of female head coaches with significant gender differences emerging.


Gao named to editorial board of Journal of Sport and Health Science

Zan Gao, Ph.D., School of Kinesiology associate professor and director of the Physical Activity Epidemiology Laboratory (PAEL), was recently appointed Editorial Board member by the Journal of Sport and Health Science (JSHS). JSHS is an international peer-reviewed journal founded by the Shanghai University of Sport, and co-published by Elsevier Publishing Group. JSHS is dedicated to the advancement of sport/exercise/health sciences including sport medicine, sport and exercise physiology, public health promotion, biomechanics, sport and exercise biochemistry and nutrition, sport and exercise psychology, motor behavior, coaching, physical education, traditional Chinese sports and wellbeing, and growth and maturation. JSHS has a current impact factor at 2.531.

Ohrtman elected president-elect of MSCA Board

Marguerite Ohrtman

Marguerite Ohrtman, director of school counseling and M.A. clinical training in the counseling and student personnel psychology (CSPP) program, recently was elected president-elect of the Minnesota School Counselor Association (MSCA) Board. The MSCA Board represents school counselors across the state to promote, educate, and advance the school counseling profession. Ohrtman’s term as president will begin in the 2019-2020 school year.

For the past four years, Ohrtman has served on the MSCA Board as vice president of post secondary institutions, representing the school counseling training programs in the state. This year, she served in a dual role as vice president of post secondary and president of the Lakes Area Counseling Association, the regional association representing school counselors in the west and south metro.

Please join us in thanking Dr. Ohrtman for her continued leadership of school counselors here at the U and across the state!

LaVoi to serve three-year term on Faculty Senate

Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D., senior lecturer in the School of Kinesiology and co-director of the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport was chosen to serve as representative to the University Faculty Senate for a three-year term beginning July 1, 2018.  

The Faculty Senate at the University of Minnesota is comprised of faculty and faculty-like academic professional representatives from the all University of Minnesota campuses and concerns itself with faculty welfare, educational, and research matters.


Barr-Anderson featured on School of Public Health and ASPPH websites

Daheia Barr-Anderson, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Kinesiology, is featured on the websites of the School of Public Health and the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health.

Her research project, “Physical activity and sociodemographic correlates of adolescent exergamers,” was recently published in the Journal of Adolescent Health. The study was a collaboration between the School of Public Health’s program Project EAT and Barr-Anderson, and revealed that exergaming may have an influence on physical activity for girls. Barr-Anderson said the positive relationship between girls who are vigorously active and those who play exergames shows that gaming may play a role in increasing vigorous activity or help lead to such activity.


Inoue publishes on sporting event attendance and health

Yuhei Inoue, Ph.D., associate professor of sport management in the School of Kinesiology, has published a multi-year study with two colleagues examining the extent to which sporting event attendance is associated with self-rated health in Global Health Research and Policy.

“Association between sporting event attendance and self-rated health: an analysis of multiyear cross-sectional national data in Japan” draws from an economic model of health production and psychological research on the health benefits of psychosocial resources in which sporting event attendance was hypothesized to have a positive relationship with self-rated health.

The results of the study demonstrate that, controlling for the effects of personal and environmental characteristics, sporting event attendance positively correlates with self-rated health over a 12-year period. Specifically, when compared to individuals who did not attend any sporting event during the past year, those who attended a sporting event were 33% more likely to indicate a higher level of self-rated health. These findings provide evidence for a positive association between sport spectatorship and the perception of general health and contribute to the literature examining the relationship between sport spectatorship and health outcomes.


Seashore receives AERA Excellence in Research to Practice Award

Karen Seashore, Regents Professor in the Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD), has received a 2018 Excellence in Research to Practice Award from the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Special Interest Group on Research Utilization.

Gao and colleagues publish study on effect of preschoolers’ physical activity in BioMed Research International

Dr. Zan Gao

Zan Gao, Ph.D., School of Kinesiology associate professor, has published an article with colleagues in BioMedResearch International. The study, “Effect of Mini-Trampoline Physical Activity on Executive Functions in Preschool Children,” investigated the effect of mini-trampoline physical activity on the development of executive functions in Chinese preschool children. A sample of 57 children aged 3–5 enrolled in preschool was randomly assigned to an intervention group and control group for 10 weeks. All children had the same classes and care service, but children in the intervention group had an extra 20 minutes of trampoline training after school.

Findings indicated that a 10-week trampoline physical activity training may not be sufficient to trigger the improvement of preschool children’s executive functions, and future research with larger representative samples is warranted to discern the dose-response evidence in enhancing young children’s executive functions through physical activity.

BioMed Research International is a peer-reviewed, Open Access journal with a current Impact Factor of 2.476.

DeJaeghere gives presentation on Reframing Life Skills for Girls

Joan DeJaeghere, professor in the Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD), gave an invited presentation on “Reframing Life Skills for Girls” at a workshop sponsored by the Innovations for Youth at UC Berkeley and Echidna Giving on May 3-4th. Her presentation was based on research conducted on life skills programs in East Africa and India.

Barr-Anderson publishes with colleagues in two journals

Daheia Barr-Anderson, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Kinesiology, has published a manuscript with colleagues titled “Worksite physical activity breaks: perspectives on feasibility of implementation” in Work: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment and Rehabilitation. The first author, Dr. Carolyn Bramante, completed this study as a part of her MPH/PhD program, and Barr-Anderson served as Dr. Bramante’s MPH thesis adviser.

In addition, Barr-Anderson, along with colleagues from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, has published an article titled “Effect of a culturally-tailored mother-daughter physical activity intervention on pre-adolescent African-American girls’ physical activity levels” in Preventive Medicine Reports. The results determined that this pilot study was an important first step in designing culturally-tailored interventions to impact the physical activity of pre-adolescent African-American girls that includes the direct involvement of the girls’ mothers.



Barr-Anderson presents at Board of Regents’ May meeting

Daheia Barr-Anderson, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Kinesiology, has been invited to give a presentation at the Board of Regents’ May meeting. She is one of four newly promoted University of Minnesota faculty members invited to the meeting to give a short presentation and answer questions about their work.

Each year at their May meeting, the Board of Regents invite several recently promoted faculty from across the University who represent excellence in a variety of ways to participate in a panel. Barr-Anderson will discuss her scholarship and creative activities related to her research and community involvement.

Gao establishes Brain Gym Lab at LoveWorks Academy in Golden Valley

Dr. Zan Gao

Thanks to support from the administrators of the University of Minnesota and the principal and teachers at LoveWorks Academy in Golden Valley, Zan Gao, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Kinesiology and director of the Physical Activity Epidemiology Laboratory (PAEL), recently established a Brain Gym Lab in the fitness room of LoveWorks Academy. Specifically, four Wii U exercise stations and four Xbox One Kinect exercise stations have been set up in the Brain Gym Lab, which promotes learning through movement.

Loveworks Academy is a public charter school located in a diverse neighborhood and works with a large number of low-income, underserved children ages 4 through 14. The school focuses on a strong academic program that personalizes learning for all students, helping develop independent, cooperative, responsible, and creative adults.

Thus far, the novel exercise program has been well received by teachers and students in the school. This is the third school-based lab Dr. Gao has established in the public schools in the state of Minnesota. Below are photos from the program.


Peter invited to be Artist in Residence for writers’ retreat

Gary Peter, lecturer in the Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD), has been invited to be an Artist in Residence in June at Write On, Door County, a retreat for writers providing time and space for focused work on creative projects. He will also lead a workshop, “Writing from Life,” while in residence.

Barr-Anderson, Konczak, Nielsen receive CEHD awards

Award recipients Nielsen, Konczak, Barr-Anderson (left to right)
Nielsen, Konczak, Barr-Anderson (left to right)

At the 2018 CEHD Spring Assembly on April 30, three outstanding members of the School of Kinesiology, received College awards. Congratulations to Daheia Barr-Anderson, Ph.D., Jürgen Konczak, Ph.D., and Carol Nielsen.

Daheia Barr-Anderson, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Kinesiology, was honored with the Multicultural Recognition Award for Faculty. This award recognizes significant professional or extracurricular contributions to and promotion of multicultural relations and perspectives. Barr-Anderson’s research centers on increasing physical activity behavior and decreasing sedentary behavior among children, particularly African-American females. Her professionally and personally involvement in the community fuel her passion. These services, such as volunteering for two African-American female organizations committed to the empowerment and education of our youth, Barr-Anderson states, have influenced her research and most importantly allow her to use her privilege as an African-American academic researcher to share the voices from her community.

Jürgen Konczak, Ph.D., professor in the School of Kinesiology, received the Marty and Jack Rossmann Faculty Development Award. The Rossmann Award recognizes a tenured faculty member who has demonstrated a truly exceptional level of creativity and productivity in scholarship, teaching and service, and who shows great promise of continuing such achievement. Konzak has instituted and directs the Human Sensorimotor Control Laboratory (HSCL) as well as the Center for Clinical Movement Science (CCMS), an interdisciplinary unit across the University. His research, currently supported by grants from NIH and the NSF, focuses on the study of neurological movement disorders, motor learning after brain injury, and motor development in infancy and childhood and collaborates with, among others, the School of Nursing, School of Veterinary Medicine, College of Engineering as well as with international research centers, primarily in Italy and Singapore. Since joining the faculty in 1999 he has served in leading roles on several Graduate School and College committees and has been the Director of Graduate Studies for the School.

Carol Nielsen is the recipient of the Jeanne T. Lupton Civil Service/Bargaining Unit Outstanding Service Award. Named in honor of Jeanne T. Lupton, Dean of General College (1979-86), this award recognizes outstanding service to CEHD and to the University of Minnesota by a CEHD Civil Service/Bargaining Unit staff. Although Nielsen’s primary responsibilities focus on all aspects of course management, she also has been heavily involved in building management and securing a safe workplace for others. She has built an excellent relationship with Facilities Management (FM) and takes a proactive approach to find solutions that are financially in our best interests. Nielsen is a passionate advocate for students and works directly with advisors and instructors to ensure high 4-year graduation rates in the School. What truly sets her apart, however, is Carol’s positive impact on her staff and colleagues. Her kindness, consideration, and inspired leadership style makes people feel welcome and appreciated, causing very high morale and productivity among the department staff.

Congratulations to all!


Barr-Anderson publishes in Journal of Adolescent Health

Daheia Barr-Anderson, Ph.D., assistant professor in the School of Kinesiology and director of the Behavioral Physical Activity Laboratory, published along with colleagues from the School of Public Health a manuscript brief in the Journal of Adolescent Health (impact factor of 3.612).

The publication titled “Physical Activity and Sociodemographic Correlates of Adolescent Exergamers” examines demographic and behavioral characteristics of adolescents who engage in active video games, or exergamers.



Kinesiology’s adviser nominated U of M advisory board co-chair

School of Kinesiology adviser Katie Koopmeiners has been nominated the co-chair of the U of M’s Academic Advisory Network (AAN) board for the 2018-19 academic year. The AAN fosters opportunities for professional growth, personal development, and community building for advisors and student services professionals from across the Twin Cities campus. It also provides a forum for discussion and the exchange of ideas and information regarding academic advising within the University community.

Koopmeiners advises undergraduate major students in recreation education and sport management, as well as minor students in coaching, health & wellness promotion, outdoor & recreation education, and sport management.

Kristin Farrell, the School’s honors program academic adviser, will be a member on the AAN board during the 2018-19 academic year.

Grad student Michelle Harbin lead author of research publication

Michelle Harbin, M.S. and doctoral student in the School of Kinesiology and member of the Laboratory of Integrative Human Physiology (LIHP), is the lead author of a peer-reviewed article, entitled “Associations of sex, age and adiposity in endothelium-independent dilation in children“. The article is published in the journal Physiological Measurement and examines the association of age, sex and obesity on vascular smooth muscle function. It was observed that vascular smooth muscle function was significantly lower in male children and adolescents suggesting that impaired vascular smooth muscle function and increased cardiovascular disease risk among males may begin in childhood.

Co-authors of this publication in the School of Kinesiology are Hanan Zavala, a current graduate student and Donald R. Dengel, Ph.D., professor and LIHP director.

Michelle Harbin
Hanan Zavala
Donald R. Dengel, Ph.D.

Weiss’s work with innovative program, Girls on the Run, featured in Connect

Maureen Weiss, Ph.D., professor in the School of Kinesiology, was featured along with her research in the Spring issue of Connect, the magazine of the College of Education and Human Development.

The article, Girls on the Run, focuses on Weiss’s work in determining the success of an innovative youth development program that uses running and other physical activities as a platform for teaching life skills and healthy habits. Girls on the Run was started in 1996 in Charlotte, NC, with a small group of 13 girls, and has grown to over 200 councils in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Weiss’ study was designed to evaluate whether the organization was effective in achieving its goals. Her study results revealed that girls participating in the program compared favorably to a control group in their ability to manage emotions, resolve conflict, help others, and make intentional decisions. In addition, girls who started the program below the group average made
dramatic and lasting improvement in physical activity level, confidence, and connection to others.


Dual degree M.Ed. student Yue Xue publishes in International Review of Sociology of Sport

Yue Xue

Yue Xue, Sport Management M.Ed. student, has published a paper in the journal, International Review of Sociology of Sport. She is the lead author on the article, “Media portrayal of sportswomen in East Asia: A systematic review.”

Xue is in the dual degree program for the M.Ed. in Sport Management, a collaboration between Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) and the School of Kinesiology. She and fellow student Shulin Li began the program last fall.  Xue was a student in KIN5511 Sport and Gender taught by Jo Ann Buysse, Ph.D., and Buysse encouraged her to publish the project/paper that she wrote for the class. “I really appreciate Dr. Buysse’s encouragement and help,” says Xue. “I also appreciate that the Kinesiology department provides such an amazing class.”

Xue and Li were highlighted in an article last fall in All Things Kinsidered.

Instructor profile: Marguerite Ohrtman, CSPP, director of school counseling and M.A. clinical training

Marguerite Ohrtman didn’t always want to pursue teaching and counseling.

“My original plan was to major in history to then attend law school, but my mom encouraged me to also get my teaching license,” she recalls.

As a student teacher, Ohrtman taught eighth graders and loved it which led her to pursue a career in teaching. Her first permanent position was as a middle school and high school history teacher in a small, rural town in Iowa where she also coached volleyball, basketball, and cheerleading.

After teaching for two years, Ohrtman discovered she enjoyed working with students on a more personal level and decided to pursue a career in school counseling. She earned both a master’s degree and a doctoral degree from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Ohrtman worked as a school counselor at Shakopee High School while earning her doctoral degree and was also an adjunct professor during her doctoral program.

Today, Ohrtman is the director of school counseling and M.A. clinical training in the Department of Educational Psychology, specifically within the counseling and student personnel psychology (CSPP) program. When asked about her position here Ohrtman says, “I feel fortunate that I get to combine my two passions—teaching and counseling—in my current job.”

Ohrtman is a leader in the field of school counseling. In 2016, she was awarded the College of Education and Human Development’s New Career Excellence Award. She is the Lakes Area Counselors Association (LACA) president and treasurer. For the last four years, she’s been the vice president of post-secondary institutions for the Minnesota School Counselor Association Board. And she was recently elected President-Elect of the Minnesota School Counselor Association for 2018-2019.

“The most exciting part of my job is definitely working with our students.” Ohrtman says.

“I love mentoring and advising students as they progress through our program.”

Ohrtman’s advice to students: “‘Don’t stew, just do.’ Often times we get in our own way of our dreams and goals. I encourage students to do more and to challenge themselves each day. I also tell them, ‘Ask your advisors and mentors for help when you need it.’ We all want to help if we can!”

Outside of work, when not chasing her two toddlers, Orhtman loves traveling with her husband and mom, especially to California and Europe. She also enjoys going to Twins and Gopher games, shopping, taking her children to the zoo, photography, and wine.

“I am proud to say that I work for the University of Minnesota and the Department of Educational Psychology,” Ohrtman says. “I have amazing colleagues in the CSPP M.A. program.”

“I look forward to continuing to connect with others here at the U!”