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Welcomes Six New Faculty Fellows


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Six new Faculty Fellows have been named by the Center for Persons with Disabilities at Utah State University. These faculty members, from various departments throughout the university, are being  recognized for conducting research and providing services that benefit people with disabilities and their families. They are: Dave Price (Animal, Dairy and Vet Science), Lillian Duran (SPER), Raymond Veon (associate dean of Arts Education), Sydney Schaefer (HPER), Ryan Bosworth (Applied Economics) and Heidi Wengreen (Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science).

The new class of Faculty Fellows join Lori Roggman (FCHD), Keith Christensen (LAEP), Bob Morgan (SPER), Gretchen Peacock (Psychology), Jared Schultz (SPER), Damon Cann (Political Science), Chris Davies (Veterinary Science), Lisa Boyce (FCHD), Tim Riesen (SPER), Christopher Gauthier (Art and Design) and Tom Higbee (SPER) in service to the state of Utah through their research, training and direct work with families of people with disabilities.

Welcome, 2014 Faculty Fellows!



Ryan C. Bosworth, a Cache Valley native, received B.S. and M.S. degrees in Economics from Utah State University and completed a Ph.D. in Economics at the University of Oregon in 2006. Bosworth specializes in environmental economics and education economics. His research in environmental economics focuses on valuing the human health benefits of environmental policy. His research in education economics has focused on understanding how teachers respond to changes in class size and composition.

“My work with the CPD has been in conjunction with the StartSmart K3+ project,” he said. “The project is designed to assess the effectiveness of early childhood intervention among low-income and at-risk students to reduce educational achievement gaps. This work is complementary to work I have done previously to assess how changes in class size affect elementary school students who struggle academically.”

After four years as an assistant professor at North Carolina State University’s School of Public and International Affairs, Bosworth returned to the Cache Valley and Utah State University in 2010. His research has been supported by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, Health Canada, and Resources for the Future.



Lillian K. Durán received a B.A. in Elementary Education from Antioch College, an M.A. in Early Childhood Special Education from The George Washington University and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Minnesota.  She joined the Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation in 2009 as an assistant professor. Her research interests include evidence-based practices with Dual Language Learners (DLLs) in Early Childhood Education; the study of the language and literacy development of Spanish-speaking children in Head Start; and the development of appropriate evaluation and intervention practices with culturally and linguistically diverse populations receiving Early Childhood Special Education services.

“My work over the last 10 years has focused on disseminating practices in Special Education to meet the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse populations with an emphasis on serving young children who speak languages other than English at home,” Durán said. “In my research, I primarily focus on the prevention of learning disabilities by developing assessments for early identification and also interventions to meet the unique learning needs of Spanish-English bilingual preschoolers. I currently have an Institute of Educational Sciences funded project to develop a Spanish version of the Individual Growth and Development Indicators (S-IGDIs) which are a preschool language and literacy screening tool. I am also currently developing a Spanish-English early language and literacy curriculum that can be used to build important early literacy skills in Spanish and English to promote school readiness and hopefully a foundation for higher academic achievement in this population.”



Sydney Y. Schaefer received a B.S. in Sports Medicine from Pepperdine University and an M. S. and Ph.D. from the department of kinesiology at Pennsylvania State University. She joined the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation in 2012 as an assistant professor. Her research interests include neural basis of human movement, focusing on upper extremity motor control and motor learning in healthy, elderly, and clinical populations.

"Millions of older adults are seeking costly physical rehabilitative treatments to minimize disability and improve activities of daily living,” she said. “Using inexpensive tools and real-world tasks, we are studying whether cognitive and other neural f.actors influence the recovery of motor function in older adults. My research aims to help maximize the benefits of geriatric physical rehabilitation to improve the health and well-being of older adults, and extend the number of quality, active years of life for more people."

She is a member of the Society for Neuroscience, the Society for the Neural Control of Movement and  the International Society of Motor Control



Raymond Veon is the Assistant Dean for Arts Education in the Caine College of the Arts at Utah State University, and the Founding Director for the Beverley Taylor Sorenson Arts Access Program serving students with special needs through the arts. In addition to his administrative duties, Veon also teaches in the undergraduate art education program.

As Assistant Dean for Arts Education, he hopes to serve as a catalyst for developing world-class arts education programs within the University, throughout Cache Valley, and throughout the state. 

“In my role as Founding Director of the Beverly Taylor Sorenson Arts Access Program, which is devoted to serving students with disabilities through the arts and through integrated, inclusive arts instruction in the public schools, I will develop new programs, cultivate best instructional practices, and find ways of providing individualized adaptive technology to ensure students of all abilities can engage in arts learning and experiences,” he said.

His work in arts education includes leading the creation and implementation of new arts curricula, rigorous arts assessments, innovative and inclusive K-12 arts programs serving students of diverse backgrounds and abilities, the development of the Creativity Infusion Curriculum, and development of large scale professional development programs. His scholarly interests include authentic assessment in the arts and creativity. He majored in art education and philosophy at Kent State University, received a National Fellowship in art education and completed his MFA in Painting at the Maryland Institute, College of Art.



Heidi Wengreen is an Assistant Professor of Nutrition at Utah State University. She completed her Ph.D. in Nutrition and Food Sciences with an emphasis in nutritional epidemiology from USU in 2002 and joined the faculty in 2003. She is a new faculty mentor for the Utah Regional Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (URLEND) program.  

“My role with URLEND is to provide expertise in the area of maternal and child nutrition, especially as it relates to children with special health care needs,” she said. “I am interested in the dietary behaviors of children and have worked in schools to implement programs aimed at helping children to choose to eat healthy foods.  I am currently working on expanding my projects to include children with special health care needs.”

Wengreen has received funding from the Department of Education to improve the nutritional education and environment for children attending school in the Cache County School District. Her research interests include examining associations between nutrition and health and disease across the lifespan. She is a co-investigator of the Cache County Study on Memory, Health and Aging, a large prospective study of genetic and environmental factors associated with risk of Alzheimer’s Disease and other dementias. Wengreen is a member of the American Dietetic Association, the Society for Epidemiologic Research and the American Society of Nutrition. 


Dave Price

Dave Price has been the Equine Extension Specialist and Director of Equine Center at Utah State University since August 2011. He is also an equine veterinarian with Summit Creek Equine Practice in Smithfied. Price received his B.S. and D.V.M from Colorado State University, and completed post-doctoral fellow experience in surgery at the University of Utah. He has practiced in Louisiana, Arizona, Wyoming and Utah, and is currently licensed in Utah and Idaho.

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