East Tennessee State University’s Women’s Studies Program has announced Dr. Martha Michieka and Dr. Judy McCook as 2020 recipients of the Notable Women of ETSU award.
The two award recipients will be honored during the 19th annual Notable Women of ETSU Colloquium, which will be held virtually on Wednesday, Nov. 18, at 5 p.m. The awards and colloquium highlight the expertise and accomplishments of women at ETSU; provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, research and projects generated by women faculty; and identify women faculty whose work advances understanding of women and their lives.
The public is invited to attend this free event via Zoom (etsu.zoom.us/j/91786445125). Current and former students of the honorees are especially welcome.
Dr. Martha Michieka is associate dean for Student Affairs in the College of Arts and Sciences and professor in the Department of Literature and Language. As a professor, she brings more than 15 years of teaching, research and service to her department, including directing the English Honors-in-Discipline program and mentoring minority students in the College of Arts and Sciences.
Michieka’s research on African English and indigenous languages has appeared in numerous peer-reviewed journals, as well as a book she co-edited with ETSU’s Dr. Yousif A. Elhindi, “Changing Roles of English in Eastern Africa. Her grant-funded linguistics research includes a 2019 Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship to travel to Kenya and collect spoken data of the Kisii language. She has also received funding that impacts the ETSU community, including the three-phase “Recruiting Minority Faculty to ETSU” project funded by the Tennessee Board of Regents.
Michieka, who holds a Ph.D. in English language and linguistics from Purdue University, has served as a member of the Fulbright U.S. Student Program’s national Screening Committee. She is also a community instructor and tutor for adults in English as a second language. She received ETSU’s Distinguished Faculty Award in Service in 2014, and this year, she was presented the Tri-Cities African Women Empowerment Network Achievement Award.
“While she is very modest about her philanthropy,” one of her nominators wrote, “anyone who spends a significant amount of time with her is bound to find out about some of the many ways in which she helps the university and the community.”
Dr. Judy McCook is a professor in ETSU’s College of Nursing and a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) certified by the Academy of Forensic Nursing for adults, adolescents and pediatrics. She has over 35 years of teaching experience and research focused on women’s health, ranging from women living with polycystic ovarian syndrome to the health of pregnant women in rural Appalachia, and her research appears in numerous peer-reviewed journals
McCook, who holds a Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, aims to improve conditions for women in Northeast Tennessee through her research. She is the project director of a $1.2 million grant from the Health Resources and Service Administration for a program designed to train new SANEs in Northeast Tennessee. She is also co-investigator on a Tennessee Department of Children’s Services grant to create a trauma-informed campus at ETSU through research on adverse childhood experiences and resilience. In addition, she is a founding trustee of ETSU’s new Strong BRAIN Institute, an interdisciplinary team of faculty working with Ballad Health to create a culture of resilience in the region.
Among her awards and honors are a Nurse Researcher of the Year award from the Epsilon Sigma Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International and a Nurse of the Year award for service at the university level. She also received the 2012 American Public Health Administration Maternal and Child Health Section Effective Practice Award.
“Dr. McCook’s enthusiasm for community health is noted in her volunteer self-engagement in learning about adverse childhood experiences and trauma-informed care,” a nominator wrote. “She has been instrumental in educating students, health professionals and community members about adverse childhood experiences and their impact on adulthood.”