News Archive 2020

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Nutrition and Dietetics faculty and students lead virtual culinary nutrition classes

December 19, 2020

Bridge Builders Culinary ClassBridge Builders Culinary Class

Clinical associate professor Mary Catherine Schallert with Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics students lead culinary nutrition classes for members of the Bridge Builders program. The curriculum is developed by Angelika Briones and Sara-Grace Long for their senior project. The above Zoom photos are from the second of the six-class series featuring Maggie Herin (Clinical Nutrition graduate student and CHS Dietetics alumna '19), Ayden Hayes (Dietetics senior), Christian Hill (Dietetics junior) and Sarah Guthrie (Dietetics senior). Other participants include Caroline Duncan, Karen Navarro and Katherine Waits.

Bridge Builders programs (part of Bridges USA) transform young people in countless ways, and the result is a growing community of young leaders poised to reach across, lead the way and build our community. The virtual culinary nutrition classes are made up of students from grades 7 through 12.

CHS student, alumna and faculty recognized by MAND

December 11, 2020

Maggie HerinLaura CantrellSara Foley

Every year, the Memphis Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (MAND) recognizes outstanding dietetic students and dietitians. We'd like to recognize this year's recipients from the College of Health Sciences.

Outstanding Dietetics Student of the Year: Maggie Herin ’21 - graduate student in our Clinical Nutrition Master's and Dietetic Internship program 
Demonstrates academic achievement as documented by letters from program faculty or preceptors, and demonstrate leadership and professional potential.

Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year: Laura Cantrell, CHS Alumna ’18 – Master of Science in Nutrition
Demonstrates concern for the promotion of optimal health and nutritional status of the population. Demonstrates leadership, e.g., legislation, research, education, clinical dietetics, food service management, public relations, career guidance, etc., in the association or employment.

Outstanding Dietitian of the Year: Sara Foley, MS, RDN, LDN, FAND; CHS Clinical Assistant Professor
Demonstrates concern for the promotion of optimal health and nutrition status of the population, and demonstrate leadership in the association or employment, minimum of 35 years old AND has worked a minimum of 10 years as RDN.

College faculty awarded CoRS grant

December 2, 2020

Brandt PenceCOrS Co-PIs

College of Health Sciences faculty were awarded one of 18 Community of Research Scholars (CoRS) grants from the University of Memphis Division of Research and Innovation. Dr. Brandt Pence is Principal Investigator for the grant that will support the creation of a regional interest group: "Metabolism, Immunity, and Inflammation Mid-South" (MIIMS). College of Health Sciences co-investigators include Dr. Melissa Puppa, Dr. Marie van der Merwe and Dr. Yufeng Zhang. The group will hold a regular academic conference for investigators with broad interests in this research area. The interest group is intended to facilitate research collaborations between investigators in the Mid-South region. The group will be co-directed by Dr. Liza Makowski from UTHSC.

The CoRS Program is designed to cultivate interdisciplinary discourse and nurture the growth of research affinity groups across campus. Each 'community' includes faculty representing multiple disciplinary perspectives and research approaches with shared interests in exploring a common research theme.

College faculty awarded CoRS grant

December 1, 2020

Fedoria RuglessCOrS grant Co-PIs

College of Health Sciences faculty were awarded one of 18 Community of Research Scholars (CoRS) grants from the University of Memphis Division of Research and Innovation. Dr. Fedoria Rugless is Principal Investigator (PI) on the project “Capacity Building for Broader Impacts” along with Dr. Barbara McClanahan, Dr. Jebose Okwumabua and Dr. Shelly Stockton as Co-PIs and part of the research team as faculty experts.

This project seeks to engage our faculty in capacity building for broader impacts via grantsmanship workshops to foster their knowledge base and skills in community-based research.  This will be a pilot study that will start with training faculty in the College of Health Studies. It will be a series of workshops that will focus on building individual capacity for broader impacts with an emphasis on community competence and relationships, on building partnerships for broader impacts, connecting for meaningful research and community outcomes, communicating broader impacts and research dissemination. 

The CoRS Program is designed to cultivate interdisciplinary discourse and nurture the growth of research affinity groups across campus. Each 'community' includes faculty representing multiple disciplinary perspectives and research approaches with shared interests in exploring a common research theme.

Graduate Student Spotlight

November 19, 2020

Jenny Gee

Jennifer Gee will be receiving her Master of Science in Health Studies with a concentration in Health Promotion.⁣ She was a graduate assistant with our Health Promotion unit and led the UofM Step It Up walking program. She has already landed a job at FedEx as a health fitness professional through HealthFitness. In her position, she will be teaching group fitness classes, personal training, and planning and implementing health and wellness programs for members.⁣ Jennifer is originally from Houston, Texas and received her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology with a minor in wellness from the University of Texas at San Antonio.⁣

Faculty Spotlight - "Why runners should end their obsession with weekly mileage"

November 2, 2020

Max Paquette

Runners obsess over weekly mileage. Weekly mileage has long been king when it comes to endurance sport, but new research is suggesting that when you’re planning training, it shouldn’t be the only marker of your workload. Dr. Max Paquette recently published a paper on the topic, urging runners to stop obsessing over their mileage, but to look at it alongside several other factors in their training. He wants it to be one measure of training, not the whole equation. “When you start thinking about it, you realize that distance and minutes run don’t mean the same thing for every person. We’re not saying you should throw out distance entirely, we’re saying that when it comes to monitoring the response to training, relying on mileage only can be misleading.”

Inside the Immune Response - UofM Fall 2020 Magazine

October 18, 2020

Dr. Brandt Pence

The UofM College of Health Sciences was featured in the latest issue of the University of Memphis magazine. “Inside the Immune Response”, featuring assistant professor Dr. Brandt Pence, dives into how the research he is conducting could help identify effective therapies for COVID-19 patients.

UofM Fall 2020 Magazine >

Faculty and student served at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics House of Delegates

October 16, 2020

Ashley RedmondMary Catherine Schallert

Dietetics senior Ashlyn Redmond was selected as one of 12 Dietetics students nationally to serve as a scribe for the 105th meeting of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics House of Delegates (HOD). In this role, Ashlyn was responsible for capturing key thoughts from delegate discussions in order for them to be reported out to the body at large and used in impacting policy and direction for the Academy.

Clinical associate professor Mary Catherine Schallert was elected to serve as the Tennessee Delegate for the Academy’s House of Delegates. The topic of this session of the House was “How Can the Academy and its Members Accelerate Nutrition and Health Equity”.

As a forum of leadership development, the HOD positions and educates members for leadership opportunities within the Academy. Leadership from the House of Delegates aims to empower the profession by embracing its values, developing a progressive culture and reflecting on the diversity for the future of the organization. The Academy implements strategic planning and changes through policies, actions and composition to embody the vision and voice of its members.

CHS scientists evaluate hydration product

October 15, 2020

Dr. Jackie PenceNuun

Dr. Jackie Pence is lead author on a recent study published in the journal, Nutrients that evaluated the effects of Nuun electrolyte tablets on fluid balance in men and women. The study was conducted in the Center for Nutraceutical and Dietary Supplement Research, within the College of Health Sciences. A follow up study is now planned using the Nuun Instant powder sticks. Dr. Richard Bloomer is the principal investigator and recipient of this research funding, which was provided by Nuun & Company, Inc. 

Clinical assistant professor selected as MIT Catalyst Fellow

October 13, 2020

Dr. Tracy Bruen

Dr. Tracy Bruen, clinical assistant professor and director of our M.S. Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program, was selected as a 2020 MIT Catalyst Fellowship recipient. She is one of 12 fellows who were selected from three cities across the U.S. Dr. Bruen will be working with the Memphis VA Medical Center and VHA Innovation leaders to help research and find solutions for problems related to disparities in healthcare access, technology, health management improvement and health system resilience in the Memphis area. 

Catalyst Fellows collaborate with one another and with practicing professionals in areas relevant to healthcare to identify and develop new biomedical research projects. Working together and with the guidance of Catalyst faculty and mentors, they identify medical needs that can be met with innovative technologies, build multiprofessional teams to design these new technologies, and launch projects that show strong potential for healthcare impact. This program is designed to expedite solutions into action and sustain them over time.

Inside the UofM Sports Science Lab: ‘Prehab’ Instead of Rehab

October 8, 2020

By Danielle Lerner, Daily Memphian - 

“Let’s go, Danielle! Push!” 

As the small crowd urged me on, I ignored the burning in my quads and focused on extending my leg upward, combating the machine’s resistance. The seat belt tightened across my chest as I leaned forward in my seat and gripped the padded handles at my sides, determined to fight through fatigue.

Eight, nine, 10 times — and then it was over, my effort quantified in a line graph on a computer screen. 

I wasn’t expecting to work out in a lab in front of a cheering squad of grad students, but then again, I guess most people wouldn’t know what to expect when being analyzed by sports scientists. Unless you’re a Memphis basketball player. 

College players spend huge chunks of their lives hunting for a competitive edge — how to jump higher, run faster, rehab quicker, eat better. For the Tigers, help is in their own backyard.



CHS associate professor awarded Science Educator of the Year

October 7, 2020

Max Paquette in LabMax Paquette

Dr. Max Paquette was named 2020 Tennessee's Science Educator of the Year for Higher Education. Each year educators across Tennessee are nominated by their peers to be chosen as an outstanding Science Educator. There are four levels of awards recognized by the Tennessee Science Teacher's Association: K-4, 5-8, high school and higher education.

In addition to teaching, Dr. Paquette is the director of the Musculoskeletal Analysis Laboratory and biomechanist within the Human Performance Center. He advises undergraduate internship students, master's students and serves on multiple doctoral dissertation committees. Dr. Paquette actively collaborates with researchers from other institutions within the U.S. and around the world and is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine, American Society for Biomechanics and International Society of Biomechanics.

Alumni Spotlight

October 6, 2020

Matt Butawan

It’s National Physician Assistant Week! We’d like to recognize CHS alumnus, Matt Butawan, who is currently in the Physician Assistant program at Christian Brothers University. Matt earned his Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Master of Science in Nutrition Science from the University of Memphis. He also worked as a research associate for our Human Performance Center and Center for Nutraceutical and Dietary Supplement Research and co-authored dozens of research journal articles while pursuing his graduate degree in the College of Health Sciences.

Student Spotlight

October 1, 2020

Lauren Fischer

Congratulations to Lauren Fischer for being awarded the Patsy Jane O’Malley Memorial Scholarship from the Academy of Nutrition Dietetics Foundation. Lauren is in our Clinical Nutrition Master’s and Dietetic Internship program and led our Healthy Teaching Kitchen last year as a graduate assistant. 

She is originally from Johannesburg, South Africa, but has lived in Memphis since 2003. After graduating in December, her goal is to become a registered dietitian. She is drawn to the connection and impact that food has on our overall health and would like to work in an area of dietetics with that concept in mind.

Student Spotlight

September 21, 2020

Martín Del Real

Congratulations to Clinical Nutrition graduate student, Martín Del Real, on being awarded the Commission on Dietetic Registration Diversity Scholarship from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation.

Martín was born and raised in Panama and moved to United States in 2012. He graduated from California State University Sacramento with a bachelor’s in food and nutrition with an emphasis in dietetics. Martín served on the UofM Human Performance Center's 2019-2020 Tiger Bites Nutrition team. He is currently working towards a Master of Science in Nutrition with a concentration in clinical and completing his dietetic internship in the UofM College of Health Sciences.

Faculty Spotlight

August 29, 2020

Max Paquette

Congratulations to associate professor Dr. Max Paquette on being named an American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Fellow. ACSM Fellowship is an elite member status to recognize commendable service, to encourage continued service to the College in a leadership role with ongoing dedication, and to recognize distinguished achievement in sports medicine and related disciplines.

CHS research study featured on local news

August 24, 2020

Local 24 News featured College of Health Sciences and our Fortnite research study on their nightly news program. Dean Richard Bloomer is conducting the gaming study and is looking for gamers to play along. Participants will get paid $300 to play the game Fortnite, three separate times in a lab at the University. The study is evaluating whether caffeine or a proprietary herbal supplement will improve the gamer's mental ability and performance.

"A lot of the individuals involved in gaming activities are interested in using supplements because some of these individuals will play for 8, 10 hours, 12 at a time," said Bloomer. "A lot of times I think gaming gets a bad rap. People think if you're playing hours, playing these things, you are wasting your mind away. But we do know there is some value performing certain tasks competitively and very rapidly."

Student Spotlight

August 22, 2020

Brianna JamesBCBSTN

Photo by: Chris Chip Heard

The BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Foundation has awarded $10,000 scholarships to minority students pursuing degrees in healthcare to help reduce health disparities by improving workforce diversity.  College of Health Sciences exercise, sport & movement sciences major, Brianna James, was named as one of the six recipients.

“In my time as an athlete and a college student, I’ve seen schools with great athletic programs that still have insufficient access to quality physical therapy,” she says. “I want to bring that access to underserved areas because I know how important rehab can be.”


Student Scholarship Winners

August 19, 2020

Teren ParteeShawn Glasscock

Congratulations to Teren Partee and Shawn Glasscock, winners of our $200 book scholarships sponsored in part by the University of Memphis Campus Community Fund. They participated in this summer's College of Health Sciences student success initiative, the Virtual Student Summer Institute, founded by Dr. Niki Bray.

UofM faculty receive Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services grant

August 10, 2020

Jebose Okwumabua

College of Health Sciences faculty, Dr. Theresa Okwumabua and Dr. Onyejebose Okwumabua, received $102,000 from the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services to continue implementing the “Substance Use Prevention Among Vulnerable Youth” project. The aim of this work is three-fold: 1) to deter substance use and the associated disciplinary problems among youth participating in a local job training program; 2) to reduce negative separations from the program, due to, for example, violation of the program’s substance use policies; and 3) to foster positive youth development, as measured by successful program completion, positive health and life-enhancing conflict resolution and decision-making skills, substance use risk perceptions and enhanced protective factors.

Summer 2020 Graduates

August 8, 2020

Congratulations to our Summer 2020 graduates! We awarded 113 bachelor's and four master's degrees to the last class graduating under the School of Health Studies name. Our Tigers fought hard and finished strong and we are SO PROUD!

Watch the Summer 2020 University of Memphis online commencement:


Faculty Spotlight

August 6, 2020

Running during the Pandemic - Washington Post

In a survey of around 1,100 people across the United States conducted by researchers at Auburn University and the University of Memphis, 40 percent of respondents said they were running more frequently than they were pre-pandemic, with 27 percent reporting increased distance and 34 percent saying they had upped their minutes running. Exercise, Sport & Movement Sciences associate professor, Dr. Max Paquette, contributed his expertise to Washington Post article, "Running more than ever before? Here are tips for doing it safer and better."


Brandt Pence co-principal investigator on pilot project

August 5, 2020

cytokine stormBrandt PenceYufend Zhang

Brandt Pence (UofM, Health Sciences) and Ted Cory (UTHSC, College of Pharmacy) are joint principal investigators on a pilot project that will examine how cellular senescence affects inflammatory cytokine storm in COVID-19. Cellular senescence is increased during aging and contributes to chronic inflammation and a host of age-related diseases, and it is speculated that lung cell senescence might exacerbate inflammation and fibrosis during COVID-19. These conditions contribute to the acute respiratory distress syndrome which is characteristic of very severe SARS-CoV-2 infections, and therefore they may be biological mechanisms for the disproportionate incidence of severe and fatal COVID-19 in older adults. Yufeng Zhang (UofM, Health Sciences) will also contribute as a co-investigator on the project, which is funded by the UofM/UTHSC Collaborative Research Network (CORNET) program.


Alumni Spotlight

July 21, 2020

Andy MartinGrahamwood Elementary Virtual Running Club
Students in the Grahamwood Elementary Virtual Running Club have virtually crossed the United States. When Andrew Martin started his virtual running club, all he wanted to do was find new ways to reach out to his students. Following school closures due to the outbreak of  COVID-19, the former Grahamwood Elementary P.E. teacher was forced to shift toward online learning, something that Martin discovered was not easy. As the weeks went on and the quarantine continued, Martin began to brainstorm ways that he could better connect with his students. He eventually landed on the idea of starting a virtual running club. (excerpt by Matthew Harris from Memphis Parent)


Clinical Nutrition graduate student receives grant for nutrition education program

July 17, 2020

Lauren Fischer

Lauren Fischer, graduate student in our Clinical Nutrition & Dietetic Internship program, received funding from the University of Memphis Green Fee proposal committee for her applied project: College Nutrition Education Program with an Emphasis on Hydroponic Gardening and Food Demonstrations. The Green Fee funding is awarded to those whose project meets the objective of building a more sustainable campus. With this funding, Lauren will host a 4-week nutrition education program focusing on fresh herbs, cooking skills and gardening for college students on campus. 

Human Performance Center looks to reduce knee injuries

July 8, 2020

Memphis Tigers Women's Basketball with HPCMemphis Tigers Women's Basketball with HPCMemphis Tigers Women's Basketball with HPC

Dr. Daniel Greenwood, director of our Human Performance Center, worked with the Memphis Tigers Women's Basketball Team to determine how to better prepare the athletes to help prevent injuries. It was among 20 projects with Memphis Tigers Athletics covering a 15-month period where the Center collaborated with coaches to improve on-field, on-court, on-course and on-track performances.


College of Health Sciences awarded grant for first-generation initiative

June 30, 2020

First-Gen Trailblazer's ClubNiki Bray

The College of Health Sciences student success initiative, the Trailblazer’s Club, was awarded over $2,000 by the University of Memphis Campus Community Fund to support the goals of the program. Founded in 2020 by Dr. Niki Bray, Director of Academic Innovation & Student Success, the Trailblazer’s Club is an organization designed to focus on the success of over 600 first-generation undergraduate students in College of Health Sciences. The Club will use these funds in part for book scholarships awarded to select participants of our Virtual Student Summer Institute.

Drowning prevention grant awarded to College of Health Sciences

June 26, 2020

Lifeguard trainingDebra WyattBlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Community Trust

The College of Health Sciences, led by the efforts of instructor/coordinator Debra Wyatt, was awarded $10,000 from BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Community Trust for our drowning prevention program. This award enables the continuation of free AHA BLS certifications and allows for the expansion of the program to provide free lifeguard training and certification, which will also provide students with a marketable skill for employment.

The award will help us address the nationwide shortage of lifeguards, which is fundamental in preventing death due to drownings. To help students with the skills test to enter into the lifeguard class, free swimming classes and workshops will be offered to help develop conditioning and improve swimming abilities.

Faculty Feature

June 20, 2020

 Cadence in Running

For runners, all mileage is not created equal. Pace and conditions are common considerations but Dr. Max Paquette, biomechanist and sports scientist at the University of Memphis College of Health Sciences, suggests that considering cadence might be just as important as those two factors.

Let's Talk: A Discussion on Racial Injustice and How We Can Help Our Students

June 15, 2020

We realize the burden that systemic racism creates for students of color, particularly Black students, and are committed to providing an environment that is both safe and supportive. We are dedicated to providing a quality education for our diverse student population, as we help develop a highly-skilled work force of health care professionals who represent and reflect the diversity of the University and our city.

The College of Health Sciences held an open forum for students, faculty and staff to exchange ideas, provide support and listen. Moving forward, we hope to improve what we do and how we do it, including continuing the conversation every semester.

Staff Spotlight

May 27, 2020

Kathy Walker

Kathy Walker, our assistant director of student services, was selected as the recipient of the University of Memphis Academic Advising Leadership Award.

The inaugural Academic Advising Awards Committee reviewed credentials and over 100 nominations from faculty, staff and students to identify her as the winner.

This award recognizes an academic advisor working at the UofM for three or more years, who contributes to the growth and development of other academic advisors, and serves in roles across the University that demonstrate leadership in advising. 

Her favorite quote is from Confucius: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life." This shines through in everything she does as she works tirelessly to assist and guide our students. We’re so fortunate to have her on our team!

Faculty Spotlight

May 20, 2020

Mary Catherine Schallert and Family

Mary Catherine Schallert, dietetics and nutrition clinical associate professor, was featured as a guest writer for Wholly Mother. This is a great read for anyone who is currently pregnant, freshly postpartum or just looking for solid nutrition advice in general.


Graduate student awarded 'Women in Sports Tech' summer fellowship

May 19, 2020

WiST Fellows 2020; Image by WiSTAdriana Miltko

Exercise, Sport & Movement Sciences graduate student, Adriana Miltko, was awarded one of 15 summer fellowships from Women in Sports Tech, Inc. (WiST). These fellowships are in the form of $5,000 grants for students to pursue summer projects in sports technology. WiST Fellowships provide exceptional opportunities for female students to participate in summer internships, an integral part of resume building, networking and building career skills that can help propel these women into exciting roles in the sports tech industry. This year’s winning students will gain real-world experience at companies such as iMeasureU, Sports Innovation Lab, Zoomph, Learn to Win and U.S. Ski & Snowboard and their work will span the array of what’s possible in sports technology – from data analytics to sports science to product design and development and more. 

Student/Alumni Spotlight

May 18, 2020

Raed AgeeliHannah Peters

Congratulations to two of our own recognized at this year's Tennessee Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (TAND) awards. Dietetics student, Raed Ageeli, was awarded a scholarship and is continuing his education in our Clinical Nutrition Master of Science/Dietetics Internship (MS/DI) program. Alumna Hannah Peters, M.S., R.D. won Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year for Memphis. Hannah graduated from our clinical nutrition MS/DI program in 2018 and currently works as a clinical registered dietitian at Baptist Memorial Hospital-Desoto.

FLEXING ITS MUSCLE: Softball makes power a priority

May 16, 2020

Softball in the HPC lab

Encompassing biomechanical analysis and skill acquisition science, our Human Performance Center team helps the Memphis Softball team through detailed analysis and movement understanding.

"It (study) was helpful. Even though our coaches see certain things with our swings, we don't get actual data and analytics from our swings like we did with Dr. Greenwood. It was good seeing the 'facts' of our swings. It was good to get a perspective from someone who's not looking at a swing every single day."


Student Spotlight

May 15, 2020

Alexis NelsonHailey Fong

Exercise, Sport & Movement Sciences graduate students Alexis Nelson and Hailey Fong each won a Force and Motion Foundation travel scholarship worth $1,000 for their research accepted at the American College of Sports Medicine conference.

Alexis's research abstract: “The relationship between Parkinsonian rigidity and gait characteristics”

Hailey’s research abstract: “Interaction of bra support and anterior cruciate ligament stress during landing and cutting tasks”

Student Spotlight

May 13, 2020

Adriana MiltkoRichard Beltran

Exercise, Sport & Movement Sciences graduate students Adriana Miltko and Richard Beltran each received American College of Sport Medicine (ACSM) Biomechanics Interest Group Student Research Awards for the scientific merit of their abstracts submitted to the 2020 ACSM meeting.

Adriana’s research abstract titled “Validity of Peak Tibial Acceleration Using Wearable Accelerometers during Running” was sponsored by IMeasureU/VICON.

Richard’s research abstract titled “Effects of minimal, traditional and highly cushioned shoes on lower limb mechanics in rear and non-rearfoot strike runners” was sponsored by Optitrack.

Congratulations to the Class of 2020!

May 9, 2020

Today, we awarded 200 bachelor’s and 10 master’s degrees to the largest graduating class in the history of the College of Health Sciences.

* Our apologies to our Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition graduates’ names missing from the video: Martina Faietti, Calla Ziegler, Montana Grace Bryan

Student Spotlight - 2020 Outstanding Student Award Recipients

May 4, 2020

These students were selected by our faculty as exhibiting strong leadership, character and scholarship, and who play an active role in departmental activities.

Aareon CarterAareon Demarien Carter - Junior, Physical Education Teacher Education
Aareon Carter arrived in Memphis about three years ago from Fort Wayne, Indiana. While obtaining his master’s degree is an educational goal, teaching children about the benefits and enjoyment of physical education is where his passion lies. Aareon has been on the Dean’s List several times during his academic career and has been the recipient of academic awards both in high school and college. Outside of the classroom, he is a mentor for the First Generation Student Success at the University of Memphis and also assists with a neighbor's community service. In his free time, he loves to solve puzzles, read non-fiction books, do yoga, swim, play basketball and listen to music.


Alli AldoushAli Aldosh - Junior, Physical Education Teacher Education
Ali Aldosh was born and raised in Memphis. Ali entered the physical education field because he’s passionate about sports and assisting people, and would love to share his love of sports and physical activity with his future students.  After earning his bachelor's degree, he plans to return to the University of Memphis for his master's degree in physical education teacher education. Ali has earned a spot on the Dean’s List consecutively since his arrival to the UofM. Ali spent his spring semester as a junior doing field experience at Madonna Learning Center, of which he appreciated every minute. Outside of the classroom, Ali gets involved with sports around his family and friends every chance he gets.


Adria CarterAdria Butler - Senior, Dietetics
Adria Butler is a Memphis native and a post-baccalaureate senior majoring in dietetics. She also earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise science from the University of Dayton, where she was a member of their women’s track and field team. Upon graduating from the University of Memphis, Adria will go on to further her education by obtaining a master’s degree and work towards her career goal of becoming a sports dietitian. During her brief academic career at the UofM, Adria has received academic recognition multiple times, including earning a spot on the Dean’s List. Outside of the classroom, she is currently the dietetic assistant for the Memphis Grizzlies and a store athlete for Nike. In her free time, she enjoys running and spending time with her loved ones.


Sara DavidsonSara Ann Davidson - Senior; Exercise, Sport & Movement Sciences
Sara Ann Davidson, from Ripley, Tenn., is a four-year Helen Hardin honors scholar and Dean’s List member. Sara Ann placed first at the Works in Progress Symposium for the College of Health Sciences this past November, by presenting a research project she worked on during a summer research fellowship with Max Paquette, Ph.D. In addition to her academic work, Sara Ann is also a student-athlete that has competed with Memphis Tigers Softball over the last four years. Because of her dedication and commitment to athletics and academics, she was nominated for the Elma Roane Award this spring. Combining her passion for both school and sport, she has decided to continue her education by pursuing a master’s degree in exercise science at the University of Memphis. Through her degree and future career, Sara Ann plans to become a sport scientist and hopes to give back to the game in a way that can help athletes improve their performance through scientific research and technology.


Jacob MullinsJacob Mullins - Graduate Student, Physical Education Teacher Education
Jacob Mullins is from Kingsport, Tenn. and has been working as a teacher for the last 15 years. He has taught a range of grade levels, mostly in the pre-k and primary grades. Jacob also coaches high school football and wrestling and one of his primary roles, which he is passionate about, is developing strength and conditioning programs for his athletes. One of Jacob’s goals is to promote physical literacy to his students and athletes. Upon his graduating this spring, he plans to continue his career in education and coaching, hopefully in a physical education position. Jacob enjoys spending his free time with his family.

Answering Questions with Inertial Sensors: Insights Across a Division 1 Athletics Program

April 30, 2020

Our Human Performance Center director, Dr. Daniel Greenwood, hosted a webinar with iMeasureU about our approach to integrating sports science into college athletics, sharing insights from completed projects with key practical lessons based on experiences of coaches, strength staff, athletic trainers and sports scientists.

Alumni Spotlight: 2020 Outstanding Alumni Award Recipients

April 29, 2020

Erica PerkinsErica Perkins - '07 Bachelor of Science in Health and Human Performance with a concentration in Exercise and Sport Science
Erica completed her Master of Public Health from Benedictine University in 2014 and is also a Certified Health Education Specialist through the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing. As part of her graduate internship, Erica spent time working in a physical rehabilitation center in Haiti where she helped with clinical data management and statistical analysis. Currently, Erica is the Health Promotion Coordinator at Church Health, a non-profit organization in Memphis that provides affordable health services to individuals who are uninsured or underserved in Shelby County.
She manages the worksite wellness program for Church Health staff and serves as the onsite health coach for their 250 employees. Erica’s time at the University of Memphis provided the educational foundation and technical skills that she continues to utilize regularly in her career. A lifelong Memphian (except for a few years spent moving around as a Marine Corps spouse), she enjoys running in the woods, fancy cheeses, Memphis Football (Go Tigers!) and spending time with her husband and two children.


Andrew MartinAndrew Martin - '13 Bachelor of Science in Health and Physical Education
During his time at the University of Memphis, Andrew received the Ralph Hatley Sr. Award for Most Outstanding Physical Education Student. After graduating, Andrew accepted the Physical Education position at Grahamwood Elementary School and has been working there ever since. Andrew Martin has worked diligently to create a unique and student centric approach to education at Grahamwood by creating a variety of activities and programs for the students to participate in. The programs are: AMPED morning exercise groups, basketball team,  cross country teams for 3rd-5th grades, Fuel Up to Play 60 club, run club that has 130 participants, roller skating club, parkour and yoga club.
The work that Andrew has contributed over the years has resulted in awards and recognitions to showcase his dedication and commitment to the field of Physical Education. Andrew Martin was named Shelby County Schools PE Teacher of the Year (2016, 2017, 2019), Memphis Parent Magazine Outstanding Teacher of the Month (October 2019), Let’s Move Active Schools National Award (2015-2018), Alliance for Healthier Generation Bronze Award (2019-2020), WREG TV Educator of the Week (April 2019), Marathon Kids National Ambassador (2016-Present) Mayoral Proclamation from Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris (March 2020), and grants from American Heart Association, Fuel up to Play 60, Action for Healthy Kids, Presidential Youth Fitness Program, Target Corporation and Coordinated School Health Commit to Fit Grant winner (2019). Andrew Martin just finished his master’s degree from Arkansas State University in educational leadership and has goals to take on leadership roles in the field of health and physical education. Andrew was recently named as the Lifetime Wellness Chair for the TAHPERD board.


Brooks GautBrooks Gaut - '19 Master of Science in Health Promotion
Prior to her time in Memphis, Brooks received her bachelor’s degree from East Tennessee State University in human services with a concentration in health studies and child development. Brooks currently works at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital as a Certified Child Life Specialist (CCLS) in the emergency department where she provides psychosocial support to children and their families to promote coping and normalization of the hospital environment. Prior to beginning her career as a CCLS, Brooks worked at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt in their Trauma Injury Prevention Department which sparked her passion for providing safety education to children and their families. She also holds certifications as a Child Passenger Safety Technician and Certified Infant Massage Instructor.
Throughout her master’s program, Brooks focused many of her projects on proper car seat safety and investigated barriers to proper usage amongst lower SES populations. In reference to her time at the University of Memphis, Brooks stated, “I was continuously blown away at how genuinely invested the professors were at seeing me succeed. They encouraged me to apply the theories and concepts from each course to my personal interests and passions which really helped the material I was learning make sense!" Brooks hopes to continue to grow her experience in community health by educating vulnerable populations on how to prevent injuries amongst the pediatric population.

Sports science at UofM takes a swing at boosting men's golf program

April 18, 2020

Memphis Men's Golf

Our Memphis Men's Golf team uses a scientific approach to up their game, one of the collaborative efforts between Memphis Tigers Athletics and our Human Performance Center.⁣ Director Dr. Daniel Greenwood was an integral part of the team's success, lending expertise as beneficial as a perfectly struck approach to a well-bunkered green.


Student Spotlight

April 15, 2020

Some of our students were recognized at the President's Leadership Awards this week. Congratulations to Eunicea Clark (health sciences), MaKayla Carr (health sciences) and Brianna James (exercise, sport & movement sciences) for being selected as winners of the 20 Under 30 Award and Anthony Nguyen (exercise, sport & movement sciences) for the Outstanding Service Award. 

Eunicea Clark MaKayla Carr  Brianna James  Anthony Nguyen

Alumni Research Spotlight

April 13, 2020

Research study

College of Health Sciences alumni Dr. Trint Gunnels and John Henry Schriefer, in collaboration with Dr. Richard Bloomer and Matt Butawan, published a dietary manipulation study in the Journal of Alternative, Complementary & Integrative Medicine. The work highlights the benefits of a purified vegan diet with regards to metabolic health outcomes.


Tiger Bites sports nutrition program receives AAC grant

April 1, 2020

Tiger Bites with Memphis Volleyball

The Tiger Bites nutrition program from our Human Performance Center received $15,000 in research funding from the American Athletic Conference (AAC) which will allow the College of Heath Sciences, Memphis Tigers Athletics and Campus Recreation to expand an already successful hands-on cooking course and nutrition education program. Building confidence in the kitchen and an understanding of the importance of healthy eating, this 6-week program, which has already been delivered to Memphis Volleyball and Softball, will now be available to other teams across campus.

Despite the availability of healthy eating information, our campus survey and student-athlete behavior results from across campus highlight that a significant gap in food knowledge and best-practice eating habits still exists. This project uses applied education to improve body composition, student-athlete health and overall nutrition knowledge, providing student-athletes with the confidence to make nutritious food choices based on the impact those choices have on health and athletic performance. This research funding will fund food and cooking costs allowing this program to reach more student-athletes on campus, as well as fund more detailed physical testing to measure the internal benefits of healthy eating.

Staying active during COVID-19

March 19, 2020

Exercising During COVID-19

The current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic presents some challenges to maintaining a physically active lifestyle. Dr. Brandt Pence,  University of Memphis College of Health Sciences assistant professor and resident immunophysiologist, consulted on these recommendations from Exercise is Medicine.


Student Spotlight

March 14, 2020

Daniel Chizhikov, a junior at White Station High School, won first place in the high school division at the Alabama State Research Symposium for his research. Since last summer, he has volunteered in our lab with assistant professor, Dr. Melissa Puppa, working on his project which uses drosophila (fruit flies) to understand the effects of different plant based fats on obesity-related health outcomes.

Daniel Chizhikov

Associate professor honored by Tennessee Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics

March 10, 2020

Dr. Marie van der Merwe, associate professor of clinical nutrition and nutrition science, was awarded the prestigious IRIS Award from the Tennessee Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics (TAND) based on her work within or related to the field of dietetics and letters of recommendation.  TAND honors individuals who support the field of nutrition and elevate the role of nutrition and dietitians.

Marie van der Merwe

Researchers awarded grant from American Athletic Conference (AAC)

February 26, 2020

Dr. Douglas Powell and colleagues, with co-investigator Paul DeVita, Ph.D., of East Carolina University, were awarded $11,960 from the AAC to conduct the research study "Sports Bra Alters Anterior Cruciate Ligament Stress and Knee Joint Biomechanics during Cutting and Landing Movements". The purpose of this grant is to sponsor research in college athletics designed to promote student-athlete welfare, and to assist AAC member institutions and intercollegiate athletic programs in evidence-based practice for student-athletes.

Douglas Powell  American Athletic Conference Logo

Faculty honored as Principal Investigators

February 25, 2020

The University of Memphis Division of Research & Innovation recently held its annual Research Celebration to highlight research achievements, honor first-time Principal Investigators (PI) and new PI Millionaires, and to recognize fiscal year 2019 PIs, faculty authors and editors. The honor of PI signifies the attainment of a position of research leadership on an externally supported sponsored project, with PI Millionaires obtaining $1 million or more. Sara Foley, Brandt PenceNiki Bray, (first-time PI) and Richard Bloomer (PI Millionaire) were FY19 honored faculty from the College of Health Sciences.

Sara Foley Brandt Pence Niki Bray Richard Bloomer

College of Health Sciences hosts Mid-South Biomechanics Conference

February 22, 2020

The University of Memphis College of Health Sciences recently hosted the third annual Mid-South Biomechanics Conference. We welcomed over 100 people from all over the nation which included invited speakers, student presenters and corporate sponsors. The conference had a large student research focus with podium sessions, digital poster sessions and roundtable discussions. This event was a great networking opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students who hope to continue their studies or careers in biomechanics and movement sciences.

Mid-South Biomechanics Conference Mid-South Biomechanics Conference Mid-South Biomechanics Conference

Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics students present at International Paper

February 17, 2020

University of Memphis registered dietitians, Sara Foley and Deidra Nelson, along with graduate students in the clinical nutrition master's and dietetic internship program, Lauren Fischer and Tara Toll, presented heart healthy cooking and nutrition tips to employees at International Paper. February is American Heart Month which aims to bring awareness to the risks of heart disease and steps needed to take to support a healthy heart. Employees sampled a green power blend smoothie and a Mediterranean chicken quinoa salad, both highlighting key nutrients for eating heart healthfully.

Dietetics Students Dietetics Students at International Paper

Alumni Spotlight

February 8, 2020

Lizzy Simonin, a College of Health Sciences physical education teacher education alumna, was recently inducted into the University of Memphis M Club Hall of Fame.

From Tammy Degroff at GoTigersGo.com - A native of Lee's Summit, Mo., Lizzy arrived at the University of Memphis in the fall of 2008 and made an immediate impact on women's soccer in Conference USA. She appeared in 22 straight matches during her inaugural season, 18 as a starter, and led the team in points, goals and shots. She led the Tiger women's squad to an NCAA bid and played a season-high 103 minutes against Illinois. Her play in 2008 was so outstanding that Simonin was selected the Conference USA Freshman of the Year and was named to the C-USA All-Conference second team. Hampered by an ankle injury in 2009, Simonin appeared in just 16 of the team's 22 matches but still managed to tally 12 points and help her teammates return to the NCAA postseason. With her aggressive style of play, Simonin was moved to defender in 2010 and started every match, which included shutouts in 11 of the Tigers' 22 contests. For her outstanding play in 2010, she was named the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Year and led her squad to their third consecutive NCAA appearance. Entering her senior season, Simonin continued to excel. She started all 24 contests and helped her team to a 22-1-1 record and a fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament invitation. An outstanding student-athlete, Simonin was named the 2011 recipient of the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, which is given annually to the most-outstanding senior student-athlete in NCAA Division I women's soccer. She also became the first player in C-USA history to be named the Defensive Player of the Year twice. Following graduation, Simonin returned to the Kansas City area to pursue her master's degree. She served as a graduate assistant coach at UMKC before returning to Memphis. Lizzy is currently an assistant coach for our Memphis Tigers women's soccer team.

Lizzy Simonin inducted into University of Memphis M Club Hall of Fame

Max Paquette featured on "Art & Science of Running" podcast

February 3, 2020

In this episode of the Art and Science of Running podcast, they speak with our own Dr. Max Paquette about injury prevention, strength training, footwear, aging, adapting and quantifying training. Max is an accomplished runner as well as associate professor in the College of Health Sciences at the University of Memphis, director of the Musculoskeletal Analysis Laboratory, and biomechanist within the Human Performance Center.


 Max Paquette

Are Minutes and Mileage All Runners Need? – Investigating Training Load in Runners

January 21, 2020

IMeasureU spoke to researchers at the College of Health Sciences and UofM Human Performance Center about objective ways of training load monitoring in distance runners. Dr. Max Paquette and master's student, Megan Ryan, who is a competitive runner and was a member of the UofM cross-country and track teams, have started to question whether there are key aspects of training that mileage alone is not telling the coaches and athletes. Max and Megan began to speak to other local coaches who were working with runners. They found a common, question ‘how can we quantify training in a way that reflects the loads athletes are enduring in training more accurately?’


Megan Ryan with the UofM College of Health Sciences  iMeasureU

Human Performance Center director presents at Sports Biometrics Conference

January 6, 2020

Human Performance Center director, Dr. Daniel Greenwood, recently presented on collaborating with coaches to improve human performance through applied sport science at the Sports Biometrics Conference in San Francisco. As a featured speaker, he was able to highlight our applied sport science program at the University of Memphis, the very unique collaborative approach, delivery of information, and the breadth of research completed.

A case study of 20 projects over 15 months with Tigers Athletics highlighted the HPC’s collaboration with coaches, combining their experience with scientific data to create useful and applied projects which directly improve athlete performance. The applied questions and practical answers make the approach very unique and targeted for each coach. The presentation then focused on information and the science behind the translation of scientific information into athlete behavior. This specifically uses knowledge from skill acquisition science and learning research, and applies that to the way the HPC shares, presents and uses data with trainers, coaches and athletes. Looking toward the future, coach collaboration will evolve using athlete collaboration to increase the effectiveness of our interventions and our recent school-wide coach interviews will combine research areas across sports.

Daniel Greenwood at Sports Biometrics Conference Daniel Greenwood at Sports Biometrics Conference