Six UCCS employees, split evenly between faculty and staff, will spend the academic year learning how to become more effective leaders who can successfully address the key challenges of a dynamic university as members of the 2018-19 cohort of the CU Excellence in Leadership Program.
The 2018-19 cohort includes:
- Stephen Cucchiara, director, Student Activities and Community Service. Cucchiara started at UCCS in 2012 and was the UCCS Staff Association president in 2017-18. He oversees a team of student event coordinators and graduate assistants who plan and execute more than 200 activities each year. Cucchiara also oversees the fraternity and sorority life community, and coordinates community service initiatives.
- Jacqueline Gatlin, associate director, Student Financial Services. Gatlin started in 2007, three months after she graduated from UCCS. In that time, she has implemented new refund policies for tuition and fees to make it less confusing for students and parents, created new documents for students for better education on financial responsibility and led the office through to develop a strategic plan that will improve efficiency and offer greater service.
- Margaret Harris, associate professor, Health Science. Harris started at UCCS in 2011 and is the coordinator for the master of sciences sports nutrition program. She has 28 publications and 58 abstracts or poster presentations. Harris’ research and interests are on dietary supplements, herbs and functional foods.
- Roger Martínez-Dávila, associate professor, History. Martínez started at UCCS in 2010 and is the director of the department’s graduate studies. He recently completed a three-year term as a Marie Curie Fellow with Global Citizens Scholar at the Universidad de Carlos III de Madrid and was among the first faculty members of CU to teach massive open online courses. Martínez has 14 publications and 10 presentations with a research focus in medieval global interconnections, Jewish civilization, paleography and late medieval/early modern Europe.
- Michelle Neely, director, Writing Across the Curriculum. Neely started at UCCS in 2010 and also directs the Writing Portfolio Assessment programs. She advises multiple students in her research methods course who present at the Colorado Springs Undergraduate Research Forum each year. Neely’s most recent publication explores faculty members’ beliefs about student learning and how they relate to assessment and teaching contexts.
- Sudhanshu Semwal, professor, Computer Science. Semwal started at UCCS in 1987 and is the director of the UCCS Honors Program. His research focus is in complex systems, computer graphics, wearable computing and virtual reality, computer-human interaction, medical applications, human animation and avatars, volume rendering and visualization, realistic images, ray tracing and computational geometry. Semwal served on the Provost’s Council on Undergraduate Education in 2017-18.
The program, now in its 18th year, brings together employees from each of the four CU campuses and the system office for monthly workshops on topics like communications, fiscal management and strategic thinking. UCCS members participate in additional monthly meetings with cabinet members and propose a new project for the university to undertake. Andrea Cordova, chief of staff, Chancellor’s Office, serves as the liaison for the program with CU.
UCCS Excellence in Leadership program alumni: