Department Chair Welcome

Jim Landry 600x840 214x300 - Department Chair Welcome
Jim Landry, Health and Human Sciences Department Chair

Happy Spring!  It is hard to believe we’re completing the Spring Semester already.  It has been a great semester for the Department with lots of news to share!  The first news is the hiring of another Tenure-track Faculty member.  With great work from our search committee led by Dr. Sarah Strand and with tremendous support from Danielle Good, we hired Dr. Jennifer Roper who brings a background of Biomechanics and Exercise Physiology to the Department.  She will be with us beginning the second summer session.  You can look forward to a complete biography and her research interests in the fall newsletter.  Big congratulations go to Drs. Todd Shoepe and Heather Tarleton on being promoted to Associate Professor and gaining tenure, significant milestones that are well deserved for these two great members of the LMU community!  Additional congratulations go to Heather who was awarded the Elizabeth and Michael Rudinica Prize for Student-Faculty Research at the year-end Seaver College meeting.

We were well represented at the Undergraduate Research Symposium in March (read more).  We had 3 students present oral presentations and another 18 students present 13 posters.  This group of 21 students represents all four classes.  I highly recommend putting this on your calendar for next year to see the quality of students we have in the department, you will be impressed!  The symposium is the third weekend in March and our sessions have historically been on that Saturday.

During Spring Break, Dr. Strand led a group of 7 students to San Victor Village, Belize as part of HHSC-344, Global & Community Health course.  The trip was aimed at creating awareness of health issues among the local students and also informing them about local Health Services.  Our dynamic group of students conducted physical examinations for 170 students, referring 6 students to other specialties, conducted workshops on topic such as nutrition, personal hygiene, and communicable diseases, and of course, had a blast playing sports with the local students, visiting with the people in San Victor Village, eating the local cuisine, and even helping them plan what to plant in local gardens.  Another great example of the quality of students we have at LMU and especially within the Department.

Dr. Hawley Almstedt will head to Bonn, Germany to teach a summer study abroad class.  With her extensive nutrition background she will be teaching “Global Nutrition” to the students.  I’m sure the students going to Bonn will come back with many memories and a much better understanding of the nutritional concerns that the world faces today.

We will graduate 45 seniors on May 6th, 43 receiving Health and Human Science degrees and 2 receiving Athletic Training degrees.  This has been an exemplary group of students which included the student body president and Fulbright Scholar, LaShyra Nolen, and vice president, Marina Marmolejo.

The class of 2017 represents our last class of Athletic Training majors.  Our last two graduates, Connor Smith and Lizet Pacheco are excellent representatives of the hard work it takes to complete the major.  Both recently learned they passed their Board of Certification (BOC) exams!  We wish them all the success in the world as they graduate.  With the end of the major, Dr. Strand has put together a party on Saturday, June 17 from noon to 4:00 to celebrate the major and those folks that completed the course of study.  You do not have to be an Athletic Training major to attend the party.  If you want to stop by and reminisce with friends from your time here at LMU, RSVP to Dr. Strand at so we know how many people will be attending.

We hope you have a great summer!  Please stop by the campus if you are in the area.  For those that have not seen our new home, the Life Sciences Building, please stop by! We love to show off all the great things happening in the Department.  As always keep sending us your updates on what is happening in your lives.  Should you be interested to learn of ways to financially support the Department of Health and Human Sciences, please contact Lynn Witherspoon, Director of Development (; 310-338-7856).  If you have any questions or want further information about the department, please do not hesitate to contact us at (310) 338-7885 or via email at

Jim Landry

Department Chair