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CSU Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program Selects 7 Candidates From CSULB

Published: July 15, 2013

Seven candidates from CSULB have been selected as 2013-14 participants in the Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program (CDIP), a loan program aimed at increasing the number of individuals completing doctoral programs, especially those interested in applying and competing for future California State University (CSU) faculty positions.

The largest program of its kind in the nation, CDIP had 78 applications submitted for consideration to its selection committee, and based on the committee’s deliberations, the chancellor approved the names of 54 candidates for 2013-14 funding.

This year’s selections from CSULB (as well as their chosen doctoral discipline of study) include Lisa Brown (English literature with an emphasis in literary theory and media studies), Nancy Dayne (education with a focus on teacher education in multicultural societies), Melawhy Garcia (public health with an emphasis in health behavior research), Mark Katayama (higher education administration and policy), Michael Park (communications), Debra Rannalli (nurse practitioner, DNP), and Teresa Zimmerman-Liu (sociology with an emphasis in Chinese culture and religion).

“Having seven of the eight applications we forwarded receive the award testifies to the excellent qualifications of the candidates. We also have a robust campus selection process in which a small committee of faculty who were themselves CDIP recipients provides suggestions for highlighting the applicant’s strengths,” said Cecile Lindsay, vice provost and dean for graduate studies. “For these students, this program represents an opportunity for them to realize their dreams of earning their Ph.D.s and becoming a college professor.”

Celebrating its 25th anniversary, CDIP provides loans to graduates, lecturers and others with a strong interest in teaching at the CSU to support their doctoral study. The program works by lowering initial financial barriers, forging connections to current CSU faculty and offering loan forgiveness to those who obtain teaching positions in the CSU.

Individuals selected to participate may borrow up to $10,000 annually to a limit of $30,000 over a five-year period while enrolled in full-time doctoral study. If a participant obtains a full-time instructional faculty position in the CSU, the loan principal and interest are forgiven at the rate of 20 percent for each year of service. After five years of full-time CSU faculty service, the entire loan amount can be forgiven.

“Once I found out I had been selected, I was so excited,” said Katayama, who will be studying for a doctoral degree in higher education administration and policy at UC Riverside. “I have experienced all three levels of California’s higher education system—community college, the University of California and now the CSU as an employee, and this feels like home. That was important to me when I was applying to the CDIP program because I knew that my experience at CSULB has made me love the CSU system and the students who are a part of this system.”

For the last four years, Katayama has worked in CSULB’s Jensen Student Access to Sciences and Math Center as a program coordinator for the Minority Access to Research Careers and Bridges to the Baccalaureate programs. The center helps underrepresented and under-served student populations gain experience in research. The MARC program is aimed at getting students into Ph.D. programs in the biomedical sciences and the Bridges program is aimed at providing students with a nine-week research experience at CSULB with a faculty member.

“This system of universities is one of the most diverse in the country, serving ethnically underrepresented, first-generation, academically under-prepared students, and still, these institutions seek new ways to improve their performance,” Katayama added. “This is also a personal goal for me. I always am looking for ways to become better at what I do.”

Rannalli, who has been teaching in CSULB’s School of Nursing for the last 10 years, said she, too, was excited to find out she had been selected for the CDIP. She said the name of the program “really embodies what it is aimed at—incentive to complete the doctoral program.” In addition to helping her teaching, she believes the research by nursing practitioners will have a very positive effect in the industry.

“The (doctor of nursing practice) research is very important in health care currently because it will impact patient outcomes in a positive manner,” Rannalli pointed out. “Those outcomes will (shorten) patient hospital stays and improve patient care significantly.

“I plan to continue teaching in the School of Nursing here at CSULB. I have been teaching both the pediatric lecture, and I also bring students to the pediatric hospitals for their clinical component of the nursing program,” she explained. “Media, teaching and universities are changing at a rapid pace, but at the end of the semester, it is the students who learn, grow and tell me they made the right choice of the career of nursing that keeps me focused. I am especially touched when they tell me they enjoyed their pediatric rotation it has helped them acquire the basic foundation they need to continue in the field of nursing.”

CSULB has approximately 30 current faculty members who were CDIP recipients, Lindsay pointed out, a clear sign that the program is achieving its goal of preparing future CSU faculty. Among them are Jennifer Ostergren in the College of Health and Human Services, Linda Maram in the College of Liberal Arts, Kelly Young in the College of Natural Science and Mathematics, Ray Briggs in the College of the Arts and Huong Tran Nguyen in the College of Education.

Overall, CDIP has awarded loans to 1,965 recipients since 1987, 1,154 of whom have completed their doctorates to date. The CSU has hired 646 CDIP participants as faculty and another 42 in different campus roles. Of academic hires from the CDIP program, 62 percent are faculty of color—reflecting the diversity of California.

The CSU Doctoral Incentive Program gives primary consideration to candidates in fields where CSU campuses anticipate the greatest difficulty in filling potential instructional faculty positions. Applicants are not required to have attended the CSU, but all must have a CSU faculty advisor who supports them in their doctoral program and help understand the workings of higher education institutions and the faculty labor market specific to particular disciplines.

This year’s CDIP representatives from CSULB, including their doctoral institution, the focus of their doctoral studies, and their CSULB faculty mentors are:

Lisa Brown will seek a Ph.D. in English literature with an emphasis in literary theory and media studies at UC Riverside. Brown’s CSULB faculty mentor is George Hart from the English Department. Having just completed her master’s degree in English literature at CSULB, Brown expects to complete doctoral studies in June 2017.

Nancy Dayne will be studying toward a doctorate in education with a focus on teacher education in multicultural societies at USC’s Rossier School of Education. Her CSULB faculty mentor is Richard Tuveson from CSULB’s Family and Consumer Sciences Department. Dayne earned her bachelor’s degree in child development and family studies in 2001 and her master’s degree in 2003, both from CSULB. She expects to complete her Ed.D. in spring 2015.

Melawhy Garcia will work toward a Ph.D. in public health with an emphasis in health behavior research through the joint doctoral program at UC San Diego and San Diego State University. Britt Rios-Ellis, professor of health science and director of the NCLR/CSULB Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation and Leadership Training, will serve as her CSULB faculty mentor. Garcia has a bachelor’s degree in psychology (2007) and a master’s of public health (2011) from CSULB, and the expected completion date of her doctoral studies is 2018.

Mark Katayama will seek a doctoral degree in higher education administration and policy at UC Riverside and expects to complete the degree in spring 2015. His CSULB faculty mentor is Dustin Thoman from the campus’ Psychology Department. Katayama earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from UCLA in 2006, and has been working in CSULB’s College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics for the last four years.

Michael Park, a lecturer in CSULB’s Journalism Department, will study toward a Ph.D. in communications at USC. His faculty mentor is Chris Burnett, chair of the journalism program. Park expects to complete his doctoral degree in spring 2014.

Debra Rannalli will be working toward a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree through the Southern California CSU Doctorate of Nursing Practice Program, a consortium of CSU campuses that includes CSULB, Cal State Fullerton and Cal State L.A. Her faculty mentor will be the Nursing Department’s Margaret Brady. Rannalli earned her master’s degree in nursing and her pediatric nurse practitioner’s certification from CSULB in 2002, and she has been teaching in the campus’ nursing program for 10 years. She expects to finish her DNP next May.

Teresa Zimmerman-Liu will seek a Ph.D. in sociology with an emphasis in Chinese culture and religion at UC San Diego. Her faculty mentor will be Teresa Wright, chair of the Political Science Department. Zimmerman-Liu earned a master’s degree in Asian studies at CSULB in 2012 and expects to complete her doctoral studies in 2018.