Blog Archive

Archive for: April

Library Information Science Program Alumna (MLS ’78), Janet Lee has been named a Fulbright Scholar and will use the opportunity to take her expertise in open access publishing to the University of Aksum in Ethiopia.

I plan to explore avenues of scholarly publishing in Ethiopia that ensure that faculty are provided an opportunity to share their knowledge, perspectives and values and that students and colleagues have unfettered access to their collective scholarship,” Lee said.

In a country where there are only 35 open access journals, the cost of academic publishing and databases make robust research challenging for many university faculty. Lee’s work seeks to change that, and in doing, enhance the economic development opportunities that accompany such scholarly publishing.

Lee is no stranger to the country of Ethiopia, nor to developing innovative solutions.

Her original introduction to the country was as a Peace Corp volunteer from 1974-76, during which time she helped create a small school library. Follow up trips solidified her commitment to the region and led to her establishing a library in northern Ethiopia during her sabbatical there in 2010.

Lee currently serves as Dean of the Regis University Dayton Memorial Library and works closely with DU librarians on a variety of initiatives. She serves as editor of Colorado Libraries, is on the founding board of Collaborative Librarianship Journal at the Anderson Academic Commons, and is co-edits the Jesuit Education Journal at Regis University.

Lee credits her University of Denver education with providing the foundation for a successful career and offers words of advice to current MCE students, “Take advantage of opportunities and stretch beyond your conventional limits. Explore, take chances, what is the worst that could happen?”  


Morgridge College recognized the innovative service of community partners and adjunct faculty at this year’s Appreciation Breakfast held in the MCE Commons. This annual event seeks to honor this group commonly referred to as MCE’s Power Bank.

Honorary recipients include:

  • Dr. Heather Bean – Counseling Psychology

Bean has taught 15 different courses to M.A. and Ph.D. students in the Counseling Psychology department since 2014. She is recognized as an exemplary educator, colleague, and psychologist. As a Lifespan Development course teacher, Bean interacts with the entire Clinical Psychology community, helping identify strong students who deserve recognition, as well as struggling students who need extra support. She consistently receives high ratings on instructor evaluations, with students strongly agreeing that she is fair, enthusiastic, available, and a highly effective and knowledgeable instructor. The CP department honors her hard work and contributions to the department, college and university.

  • Dr. Sarah Melvoin-Bridich – Educational Leadership & Policy Studies

Dr. Bridich is a 2013 graduate of the ELPS Ph.D. program, having received her B.A. from Harvard University, and her M.A. from Columbia University. Bridich has taught several courses for doctoral cohorts, including ADMN 4821 School Reform & Current Issues, during which she brought educational innovators from across the region into class to share their very current struggles and victories with new doctoral students. She is currently serving as a faculty committee member on a dissertation committee and is an active researcher and consultant in the field. She serves as the Board President of The New Legacy Charter School in Aurora.

  • Education Commission of the States – Higher Education Department

The Education Commission of the States (ECS) is a non-profit intermediary public policy organization serving as the operating arm of an interstate compact focused on education policy. Through its Postsecondary Education and Workforce Development Institute, ECS is a leading voice in public policy, sharing resources and expertise to more effectively serve students across US higher education. The partnership between ECS and the Higher Education Department has benefited students through service-learning opportunities related to higher education policy, as well as internships in policy analysis. ECS has hired HED alumni and current students into full-time policy positions, strengthening the partnership across our organizations.

  • Tara Bannon – Research Methods & Information Science Department

Bannon received her undergraduate degree from Purdue University and  her masters in Library & Information Science from Morgridge College in 2007. Bannon enthusiastically commits to every opportunity, including writing for the database NoveList, chairing the Colorado Association of Libraries’ Readers Advisory Interest Group and becoming an adjunct at the University of Denver. Since she started teaching Adult Materials and Services in 2010, Bannon has been a Field Mentor nearly a dozen times. Bannon currently works at the Park Hill Branch Library, where she has been the Senior Librarian since 2011. Awarded the Nell I. Scott Employee of the Year Award in 2013, Bannon continues to innovate and inspire. Bannon’s current pursuits include intentional community building through deliberative dialogue and civic engagement.

  • Dr. Richard Charles – Teaching and Learning Science Department 

Charles holds a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Colorado, Boulder and is the STEM Coordinator for Cherry Creek Schools. Charles has taught the secondary and elementary mathematics courses for the Teacher Education Program for the past two years. He is currently teaching Diversity, Equity and Social Justice in Mathematics Education. In addition to teaching courses for the Morgridge College of Education, Charles’ partnership with Dr. Richard Kitchen and others on an NSF Noyce Capacity Building project resulted in a number of TEP students gaining valuable experience as a student teacher at Overland High School, one of the most diverse high schools in Colorado. Recently, Charles partnered with Drs. Alvaro Arias (Mathematics) and Richard Kitchen on a new NSF grant proposal that would fund digital, mathematics-based games and puzzles.

This year’s Appreciation Breakfast was chaired by Clara Sitter; committee members include William Cross, Nick Heckart, Karen LaVelle, Maria Riva, Mary Stanbury, Tamera Trueblood, and Paul Worrell.

Morgridge College Admissions Office hosted their spring Interview Day for prospective graduate and doctoral students. Each year MCE admission counselors host ten Interview Days, during which prospective students are interviewed for acceptance into their chosen program, and are introduced to the Morgridge College culture and mission.

This is the first year that the Admission Office has held an Interview Day this late in the year. According to Director of Admissions, Jodi Dye, this additional interview event was added to serve two key purposes.

“We added this later Interview Day so we could offer in-person interviews, as opposed to a rolling remote interview process. It also allowed us to bring applicants to campus to demonstrate, in a meaningful way, the value and impact of Morgridge.” Dye said.

The abbreviated Interview Day exposed students to a campus tour, faculty interaction, a current student panel, and the Morgridge commitment to inclusive excellence. MCE Interview Days are the final step in the student journey to becoming a part of the Morgridge family of change agents.



Kim Hunter Reed, Ph.D, executive director of the Colorado Department of Higher Education, has joined the University of Denver’s Higher Education Department (HED) as an affiliate faculty member.

Dr. Reed has a substantial background in higher education and served as deputy undersecretary for the U.S. Department of Education during President Obama’s administration. There, she led the department’s work on diversity and inclusion and directed the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). Her work with the initiative focused on building the capacity for the nation’s 105 HBCUs through promotion of best practices that increased student success, improved competitiveness in federal grants and contracts, and expanded corporate partnerships to advance faculty and student engagement.

Prior to her work with the U.S. Department of Education, Dr. Reed held numerous higher education positions in Louisiana, including chief of staff for the Louisiana Board of Regents and executive vice president of the University of Louisiana system.

“Dr. Reed’s experience in state and national policy related to diversity, inclusion, and student success is a perfect fit with our programs,” stated Ryan Evely Gildersleeve, Ph.D., Department Chair for the Higher Education Department. Dr. Reed will bring her talent, leadership, and national stature to the Morgridge College of Education this spring where she will teach a course on Public Policy in Higher Education. She will also co-coordinate a national policy symposium, hosted by HED, tentatively scheduled for spring 2018.

“Developing our future higher education policy leaders provides both a special opportunity and tremendous responsibility,” said Reed. “I look forward to joining this collaborative community, engaging with students and the outstanding faculty.”

This year several students from the Counseling and Psychology program at Morgridge have been selected as fellows for this year’s NAADAC Fellowship.

The fellowship is dedicated to increasing the number of culturally-competent Master’s Level addiction counselors available to serve underserved and minority populations, and transition age youth (ages 16-25) by providing tuition stipends, training, professional guidance, and mentoring to students enrolled either in an addictions counseling Master’s program or a Master’s program with a concentration in addictions counseling from an accredited institution.

Cochran Riley

Riley Cochran

Riley Cochran is a 27 year old male from Denver, Colorado. He enjoys exploring the Rocky Mountains, attending any local sporting event, many different forms of physical activity, and connecting with others, both professionally and socially. A graduate from the University of Colorado Denver’s Undergraduate program, Riley majored in Psychology and minored in Sociology. He is currently anticipating graduation in June of 2017 from the University of Denver’s Counseling Psychology program with a Masters in Clinical Mental Health. After an adolescent experience full of challenges and character growth Riley developed a passion for wanting to help others facing the many different challenges and intersections of life. He has a specific interest in helping transitional aged youth involved with the judicial system and struggling with the many different facets of addiction. Riley currently holds a position as an Addiction Counselor at Arapahoe House, an organization providing multiple levels of ASAM care to a diverse population of clientele within the state of Colorado.

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Christelle Cook

My name is Christelle Cook. I have lived in Colorado most of my life, and hope to stay in state as I begin my career in the mental health field in the coming months. I completed my undergraduate degrees in Psychology and Sociology through the University of Colorado at Boulder, and I am currently finishing the second and final year of a Master’s program at the University of Denver in Counseling Psychology. Throughout this program I have worked in practicum and internship sites that focus on substance use treatment with adults and crisis stabilization with adolescents and have very much valued these experiences. I have been interested in substance use and addiction counseling as well as working with adolescents for many years, and I am looking forward to having the opportunity to begin this journey in the coming months.

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Demi Folds

Demi Folds is a second year Master’s student at University of Denver in the Clinical Mental Health program with an Addictions specialization. She earned her B.S. in Psychology from University of Georgia. Before starting graduate school, Demi tutored student-athletes, worked at a Methadone clinic for a year, and traveled abroad. Demi is currently a student intern at a private practice center, providing psychotherapy and brief substance abuse interventions. In her first year of her Master’s program, she worked at a local Denver high school, with unserved youth. Demi is passionate about working with those struggling with and affected by substance use disorders and enjoys conducting research on addictions and underserved populations. Demi has hopes to eventually obtain her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, to continue counseling and serving disenfranchised populations.

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Megan Kenney

My name is Megan Kenney and I am from Maple Grove, Minnesota. I obtained my Bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University in 2015 with a double major in Psychology and Child Adult and Family Services. Following graduation, I moved to Denver, Colorado where I am currently in my second year in the Counseling Psychology program in the Clinical Mental Health track working towards an addictions specialization at the University of Denver. Aside from school, I enjoy all Colorado has to offer. I love going to the mountains, snowboarding, hiking, running, and doing yoga. I also enjoy spending time with friends and family. Following graduation in June 2017, I am excited to pursue my passion of working with adolescents and underserved populations.

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Elizabeth Kidd

I am a second-year master’s student at the University of Denver and will be graduating with a degree in Counseling Psychology in June 2017. My concentration is in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a specialization in addictions. I am an intern at Progressive Therapy Systems, which is a sex offender treatment provider. During treatment, I focus on the dysfunctional response cycle, anger management, and emotional regulation. I tend to utilize Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and Psychodynamic Therapy with clients. Prior to my internship, I was a practicum student at Dakota Ridge High School. I worked with adolescents who had substance abuse issues, social anxiety, and difficulties in school. I have also had experience in the Counseling and Educational Services Clinic at the University of Denver working with clients who identify as LGBTQ as well as couples counseling. I plan to continue seeking minority populations throughout my counseling career.

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Kathleen (Katie) Larkin

I am originally from Pittsburgh, but I am currently finishing up my Master’s at the University of Denver in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with an Addictions Specialization. My goal is to obtain a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Certified Addictions Counselor (CAC) Level III licensure in Colorado. I have personal experience with the foster care system as my parents were foster parents. I saw first-hand the impact that addictions can have on both youth and families. It was through this experience growing up that pushed me towards a career in this field. I have clinical experience working in community mental health with the Salvation Army as a counselor for homeless men with addictions. I am currently working in a hospital setting in Denver on an acute psychiatric unit. It is an honor to have received this fellowship and I am excited for where it will take me in my career.

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Stephanie Nisle

Stephanie Nisle is pursuing her Master’s in Counseling Psychology with a specialization in Addictions at the University of Denver. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois in 2012 where she participated in a semester abroad French language immersion program in Aix-en-Provence, France. Previously, she has worked as a research assistant analyzing residential substance abuse treatment facilities. Stephanie has also worked in the addictions field providing group and individual counseling to adults and adolescents with co-morbid disorders. Additionally, she has spent the past eight years working and volunteering with at-risk and special needs students. The combination of her teaching and work experiences, have led to the formation of her research interests related to personal, environmental, and behavioral factors that contribute to adolescent development and substance abuse. In the future she aims to develop programs and interventions in hopes to create greater empowerment within these communities.

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Jessica Thompson

Born and raised in Colorado, I graduated with a BA in Psychology from Metropolitan State University of Denver. I am a 2nd year Masters student at the University of Denver in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling with an Addictions Specialization program. I worked four years for the State of Colorado caring for clients who are mentally or physically disabled, severely mentally ill, and disabled sex offenders. I completed my practicum at Creative Treatment Options as an outpatient addiction counselor. I am currently working at Arapahoe House, working with clients who suffer from addictions in withdrawal management and adult and adolescent inpatient units. Also, I am an intern at Jefferson Center of Mental Health, working as an outpatient clinician for adults and children. I am greatly passionate in the addictions field due to coming from a family that struggles with addiction and seeing the great need for treatment and prevention.

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