Bold initiatives and forward-thinking leadership are in no short supply at the University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences (SHRS). In a school that isn’t afraid to challenge the status quo, our faculty and staff enthusiastically use the resources available to them to effect transformation and change in the classroom, in the community and beyond. Their efforts advance our mission and improve outcomes, earning them recognition from the highest levels of the University.
Concepts of diversity and inclusion are an integral part of the academic experience at SHRS, as Pitt Occupational Therapy Assistant Professor Jennifer White demonstrates - embedding these principles into her classes. Her commitment to equity and justice has earned her the Provost's Award for Diversity in the Curriculum, for “for challenging students across five courses to be inclusive of the diverse spectrum of people they will be serving in the future.” Her classes incorporate case studies considerate of varying cultural and socioeconomic factors; guest speakers who share a depth of lived experiences; use of technology to create animated case studies tailored to DEI concepts; and application, analysis and evaluation of her students’ high-level learning of DEI concepts.
Dr. Channing Moreland, inaugural director of the Pitt SHRS Wellness Pavilion at the Community Engagement Center in Homewood, was celebrated with the Staff Black Excellence Service Award for making significant contributions to Pitt and our surrounding communities through her time, actions, talents and dedication. The Wellness Pavilion officially opened in 2020 and successfully led remote programming for the Homewood community throughout the pandemic. In recent months, she has spearheaded the transition to in-person programming that incorporates numerous disciplines in SHRS and collaborates with other Pitt schools. In SHRS, Moreland is also the senior director of Strategic Programs and Services in our Office of Equity, Inclusion & Community Engagement, where she helps steer initiatives and coordinate intentional spaces for students, faculty and staff to discuss important themes around DEI.
Physical Therapy Associate Professor Andrea Hergenroeder is leading the way in interprofessional collaboration at Pitt as the director of the Pre-Health Resource Center which is one reason she has earned the Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award. This honor is one of just 15 Chancellor’s Distinguished Awards for University faculty and comes with a $2,000 cash prize and a $3,000 grant to support future work. She also serves as the director of the residential Doctor of Physical Therapy program and has received the Innovation in Teaching Award from the University of Pittsburgh, the American Physical Therapy Association Academy of Acute Care Educator Award and the SHRS Dean's Distinguished Teaching Award.