What attracts new faculty to the College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions at the University of Hartford? When this question was posed to three new faculty in fall 2011, they responded:
Beth Parker (Health Sciences) - ENHP places an emphasis on preparing undergraduates for demanding careers in fields such as health sciences and education. Consequently, the student curriculum focuses on learning subject matter, critically evaluating current research and practice, and gaining experience and training relevant to future positions. This unique and innovative approach requires instructors to focus on multiple areas—research, teaching and community engagement—which means that I will be fully challenged and engaged as a U Hart faculty member.
Michelle Kunsman (Physical Therapy) - I began at ENHP by chance. Several years ago, I was offered the opportunity to do some work as an adjunct instructor while a professor was on sabbatical. The reason I have stayed at this college is the support and encouragement of the faculty in the department of physical therapy, as well as the relationships with faculty from other departments. I have found this environment to encourage growth of the individual as well as the whole. In addition, the students are facilitated to be autonomous, interactive participants in their own learning, while also learning to work collaboratively with others. I believe the combination of these two separate yet integrated characteristics gives the students the tools to promote lifelong learning, and the skills of an effective team member, necessary in the practice of physical therapy.
Lisa Zawilinski (Elementary Education) - The answer is simple. I was attracted to ENHP for three important reasons. First, ENHP focuses on research that is relevant to the surrounding, urban community. Conducting research that could benefit students in nearby K-12 schools is important to me. The partnership that has been established between ENHP and Hartford Public Schools clearly demonstrated that I would have the opportunity to conduct research that matters to urban school districts. Second, the small class sizes in ENHP were a testament to the importance of students and teaching. My previous experience with large class sizes confirmed for me that I could not effectively get to know each of my students. My students need to know I care to know them. Smaller class sizes, like those in ENHP, make this possible. Finally, the diverse set of colleagues I would have the pleasure of working with was also important. I firmly believe that diversity among us will allow us to solve more complex issues and problems- we each bring something different to the table. We are better prepared to tackle important issues as a result. I feel fortunate to be part of the ENHP team for these reasons.