MFRI’s Focus Forward Fellowship 2019 cohort selected

The Military Family Research Institute (MFRI) at Purdue University is proud to announce the selection of the 2019 Focus Forward Fellowship cohort. The program will be held July 17-20 at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

After completing the residency, Fellows will engage with their cohort in an online community during the 2019–2020 academic year. MFRI covers the cost of travel, food, lodging, activities and materials.

MFRI received applications from 129 eligible candidates for this year’s Fellowship. After undergoing a competitive selection process, 20 women were accepted to participate from 16 different colleges and universities. The women represent four branches of service and many areas of academic study.

Fellows must hold an honorable, medical or general discharge from the U.S. military or currently be serving. They must be sophomores, juniors or seniors; or they may be, pursuing a master’s degree. All accepted Fellows are maintaining a 2.75 GPA or better.

Since 2016, the Fellowship has been a highlight for women student veterans and service members across the nation. Like the women who came before them, the 2019 cohort will build leadership skills, connect with career mentors, develop skills that foster their academic and professional goals, understand and maximize their individual strengths, and build a supportive community of peers.

Jeni Brett, a 2018 Fellow, remembers her acceptance into the program. “I had so much joy and apprehension all at once. I was excited for the opportunity to better myself with the help of other women who had been in the same situations, and a little nervous because I’m not used to connecting with other veterans. At the end of day one I had 19 new sisters, incredible mentors and a much better understanding of my self-worth. I am so glad that I allowed myself to be vulnerable and accept this gift of fellowship.”

Betty Moseley Brown, U.S. Marine Corps veteran, will serve as the Fellowship’s opening keynote speaker on Wednesday evening and Tracy Crow, author of “It’s My Country Too: Women’s Military Stories from the American Revolution to Afghanistan” will lead sessions on the Saturday of the program.

For more information about the program visit bit.ly/fwdfellows. Contact Keara Ludiker at kludiker@purdue.edu or call 765-494-0048. Connect with MFRI on Twitter at @MFRIPurdue and use #FWDFellows to join the conversation.

2019 Focus Forward Fellowship Cohort

  • Carine Bray, Regent University, divinity, Navy
  • Katie Bresnan, Gonzaga University, environmental studies, Navy
  • Regina Campbell, Oklahoma State University, natural resource ecology and management, Army
  • Jessica Candelo, Troy University, clinical mental health counseling, Marine Corps
  • Rita Case, Regis University, organizational leadership, Navy
  • Sheila Desinat, Broward College, supervision and management, Army
  • Sandra Farbrother, The University of Toledo, accounting, Marine Corps
  • Kori Flores, Regent University, paralegal studies, Navy
  • Deloris Hope Giger, Wayland Baptist University, psychology, Air Force
  • Vonda Hopkins, University of South Florida, personal finance, Navy
  • Joni Hughes, Northeast State Community College, business, Army
  • Earma Jean Lovett, Purdue University, human services, Army
  • Venette Melo, Gonzaga University, clinical mental health counseling, Marine Corps
  • Amanda Nicks, Clemson University, criminal justice, Navy
  • Jennifer Puentes, Florida International University, public administration, Navy
  • Brittany Shapiro, Johns Hopkins University, population, family and reproductive health, Navy
  • Morgan Torres, Purdue University, law and society and political science, Army
  • Sheena Van Ornum, University of Nebraska Omaha, public management, Air Force
  • Rontach Washington, Florida International University, business administration, Army
  • Nicole Wise-Pruitt, University of Central Arkansas, accounting, Navy

Operation ME logo contest submission now open

If you are a youth in sixth to 12th grade, the Military Family Research Institute at Purdue University invites you to compete in a logo contest for its latest research study, which focuses on military adolescents. Parental permission is required. You don’t have to be a military child to submit a design, and your parent does not need to still be serving.

Best of all, if you are the winner, you and your parent or guardian will receive a trip to Washington, D.C., among other prizes.

The winning logo will be used on materials for Operation Military Experience (Operation ME), a study focused on learning more about adolescents whose parent(s) deployed while they were ages six or younger. 

All logo submissions must be 600 DPI (dots per inch) and include the color purple. Purple represents all branches of the military.

The top four runners up will each receive a $50 Amazon gift card. The winner and one parent or guardian will receive transportation and lodging* for a 4-day, 3-night trip to Washington, D.C. in time for the July 24, 2019 award presentation at the Military Child Education Coalition’s National Training Seminar. The winner will also receive a $100 Amazon gift card. The award will be presented July 24 at a distinguished lecture given by MFRI Director Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth, Ph.D.

Submissions are due June 17 at midnight. For details and to submit a design, visit bit.ly/operation_ME

*Renaissance Washington, D.C. Downtown Hotel

MFRI director recognized with mentoring award

The National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) awarded Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth, Ph.D., a national award to recognize her career of outstanding mentorship to junior colleagues, graduate students and undergraduates.

MadDermid Wadsworth, who directs Purdue University’s Center for Families and Military Family Research Institute, received the Felix Berardo Scholarship Award for Mentoring on Nov. 10 at NCFR’s national conference.

The award is given in honor of Dr. Felix Berardo, a well-known and beloved professor from the University of Florida, who went above and beyond expectations in mentoring many students to become outstanding leaders in the family field. According to NCFR, “Outstanding mentoring goes beyond classroom teaching and includes the provision of support, guidance and opportunities for professional development.”

“It is an honor to receive this award,” MacDermid Wadsworth said. “Throughout my career I’ve had the privilege to mentor and interact with many students. It is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.”

MacDermid Wadsworth’s primary research interest is in the relationship between work conditions and family life. During her tenure she has studied differences between small and large workplaces, how adults grow and develop as a result of their work experiences, and how different kinds of organizational policies make it easier or more difficult for works to be successful at work and home.

As the director of MFRI and the Center for Families, she encourages student engagement, graduate and undergraduate research and offers student growth opportunities.

Christine McCall is one of MacDermid Wadsworth’s current graduate students, and focuses her doctoral research on military and veteran families. She admires MacDermid Wadsworth’s ability to think about the big picture and mentor each student according to their previous experiences and future goals.

“Shelley facilitates an environment where her students can become independent researchers,” McCall said. “Her focus on strong theoretical arguments and methodologies continually pushes her students to develop work that has clear implications for both academic and military communities. She encourages us to develop a variety of professional skills such as data collection in community samples and leadership and mentoring development through work with undergraduate students.”

About MFRI

The Military Family Research Institute (MFRI) at Purdue University conducts research on issues that affect military and veteran families and works to shape policies, programs and practices that improve their well-being. Founded in 2000, MFRI envisions a diverse support community that understands the most pressing needs of military and veteran families. To achieve this, MFRI collaborates to create meaningful solutions for them. This internationally-recognized organization is located at Purdue University’s College of Health and Human Sciences, in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies.

About NCFR

The National Council on Family Relations, founded in 1938, is the oldest nonprofit, nonpartisan, multidisciplinary professional association focused solely on family research, practice, and education.

MFRI summer internship opportunity

The Military Family Research Institute at Purdue University is seeking an undergraduate communication intern to join their external relations team during the summer of 2018. The purpose of this two- or three-credit hour internship is to assist students in gaining career-building experiences while becoming more informed about military and veteran families.

Internship overview

MFRI student communication interns will:

  • Perform communication-related job assignments focused on producing content for MFRI’s lay publications, website and social media platforms.
  • Learn about military culture and the unique characteristics of military families through assigned reading materials.
  • Assist in planning and executing MFRI events.

Upon completion of the internship, students will have been exposed to applicable real-world situations, be able to incorporate knowledge gained from coursework in an employment setting and apply knowledge of military culture in their chosen career path.

Interested? Please send your resume to Sayde Uerkwitz at suerkwit@purdue.edu by April 23.

 

MFRI’s Focus Forward Fellowship 2018 cohort selected

The Military Family Research Institute (MFRI) at Purdue University is proud to announce the selection of the 2018 Focus Forward Fellowship program to be held July 25-28 at the West Lafayette campus.

MFRI received 250 overwhelmingly qualified applicants for this year’s Fellowship. After a very competitive selection process, 20 women in total were accepted to participate from 18 different colleges and universities, representing all five branches of service, and countless areas of academic study.

To be selected, Fellows must hold an honorable discharge from the U.S. military; are sophomores, juniors, seniors, or pursing a master’s degree; and maintain a 2.75 GPA or better. The Fellowship covers the cost of travel, food, lodging, activities and materials. After completing the residency, Fellows will engage with their cohort in an online community during the 2018–2019 academic year.

The Focus Forward Fellowship has been a highlight for women student veterans across the nation. The 2018 cohort will build leadership skills, connect with corporate mentors, develop skills that foster their academic and career goals, understand and maximize their individual strengths, and build a supportive community of peers.

Betty Moseley Brown, U.S. Marine Corps veteran, will serve as the Fellowship’s opening keynote speaker on Wednesday evening and Tracy Crow, author of “It’s My Country Too: Women’s Military Stories from the American Revolution to Afghanistan” will lead sessions on the Saturday of the program.

For more information about the program visit bit.ly/fwdfellows. Contact Runco at lrunco@purdue.edu or call 765-496-3403. Connect with MFRI on Twitter at @MFRIPurdue and use #FWDFellows to join the conversation.

2018 Focus Forward Fellowship Cohort

  • Gabrielle Bernard, Columbia University, Computer Science, Army
  • Jennifer Brett, University of Texas-San Antonio, Multidisciplinary Studies, Navy
  • Chelsea Clarkson, Washington State University, Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Army
  • Katharine Cobean, Adler University, Counseling, Air Force
  • Chesney Fix, University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Applied Health Science, Navy
  • Megan Gordon, Arizona State University, Mathematics, Navy
  • Myra Hallman, Humboldt State University, Business Marketing, Air Force
  • Anjuli Holmes, University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Psychology, Goast Guard
  • Sharice Lewis, Arizona State University, Engineering Management, Air Force
  • Sandra Manning, Regent University, Leadership Studies, Navy
  • Christina Ramirez, University of Arizona, Public Health, Army
  • Tracy Ruegsegger, Ferris State University, Allied Health and Dental Hygiene, Army
  • Marie Russell, Colorado State University, Psychology, Army
  • Frances Salazar, Anne Arundel Community College, International Affairs, Navy
  • Elizabeth Sampson, Clemson University, Psychology, Air Force
  • Janiah Sandles, Eastfield Community College, Music, Army
  • Keishla Santiago Ortiz, Florida International University, Psychology & Women and Gender Studies, Marine Corps
  • Jordan Smith, University of Washington, Social Work, Marine Corps
  • Juana Thomas, El Paso Community College, Engineering, Navy
  • Skylar Winter, Purdue University, Mass Communication, Marine Corps