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November 17, 2011
By Rachel Sa-Onoy
The University's International Activities Committee is pleased to announce the winner of the first Global Engagement Award: Psychology Professor Linda Hayes. The award will be presented on Thursday, Nov. 17 at the annual Fulbright reception during International Education Week.
This new award was created by the University's International Activities Committee to recognize faculty and staff contributions to global education and international programs at the University. The committee recognizes activities that support the achievement of the global and international components of the University's mission and goals as described in its strategic plan. Activities that promote significant international education, institution building, and academic and global outreach programs are considerations for the award.
A selection committee of University faculty reviewed the nominations and chose the recipients.
"Hayes exemplifies the University's commitment to excellence in global education and international activities," said Yvonne Stedham, managerial sciences professor and chair of the International Activities Committee at the University.
Hayes will receive a $1,500 stipend to continue her efforts in making the University globally engaged, funded equally by the University Studies Abroad Consortium, the Office of International Students and Scholars and Stedham. Berch Berbergolu, foundation professor and director of graduate studies in the Department of Sociology at the University, and Carina Black, executive director of the Northern Nevada International Center, were chosen as the runner-ups for the award for their global engagement efforts.
"I'm very excited about this. This stipend will help fund the behavioral analysis students' trip to Spain, as well as our future project in Jordan," Hayes said.
Members of the University's International Activities Committee are optimistic about the award.
"Since this is the inaugural year, the process was rather difficult, but after going through the process, we are really happy with the outcome," Stedham said. "We were able to achieve what we conceptualized."
The breadth and depth of the international activities the faculty were engaged in are reflected in the nominations that were received from all across campus.
"Activities can range from 'inward-bound' activities such as increasing the presence of international students and scholars on campus," Stedham said, "to activities such as creating programs in other countries that have an 'outward-bound' perspective."
The International Activities Committee selected Hayes to receive the Global Engagement Award based on the worldwide impact she has made in her field, not only on a scholarly level, but also with respect to important, meaningful and practical application.
"I am very honored to be recognized as the recipient of this award," Hayes said. "It feels amazing to represent not only the University, but Nevada as a whole, for being globally engaged. I am very fortunate to work with colleagues and students who share the same interests and strive for excellence in this field."
Hayes has been a faculty member at the University since 1990, is the founder of the successful Behavioral Analysis Program, and Behavioral Analysis Research Laboratory at the University. She has received numerous research grants related to the application of behavioral analysis to help treat autism in children. Hayes has contributed to the training of practitioners for applied behavior analysis, not only in Nevada, but across the nation and the world. "I love working with students," Hayes said. "One of my goals is to prepare my students for a successful career in graduate-degree-granting institutions. The lab's purpose is to add a matter of scholarly productivity to the students' theory and philosophy."
Hayes' recent lab work has focused on issues of causality, inheritance, choice, remembering, dreaming, operant-respondent relations, theories of equivalence, operant subjectivity, self-control, audience control, rule governance and cultural behavior.
"In addition to Hayes' lab and the international diversity among her graduate students, her work has impacted the international component of our campus community and has truly made a difference," Stedham said. "All of the nominees had excellent contributions to global engagement, but what made Linda stand out was that she was far-reaching in several areas," Stedham said. "Her field of work is in Behavior Analysis, and she chooses to engage in activities to promote across countries and across continents."
She has established teaching programs in Taiwan, Canada and Jordan. She continues to engage in activities such as conferences and presentations to encourage faculty and students to develop behavior analyses research, training and services across the world. Hayes has visited Russia, China, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Jordan with the specific purpose of promoting and supporting the long-term development of higher education programs in behavior analyses in those countries.
At the University, Hayes has hosted numerous international students in her lab from a variety of countries who, upon completion of their graduate studies, moved back to their home countries to establish their own initiatives based on the training they received.
"We are learning so much about behavior analysis and autism," Hayes said. "We research and we write about it, we need to spread the word, we can't keep this to ourselves. People all over the world who have autism experience similar problems, and if we have a treatment, why not share it?"
There is a tremendous demand for treatments for autism.
"India in particular. That's probably where we will be heading next in the near future, to help them set up a training research center and get started on workshops," Hayes said.
Rachel Sa-Onoy is a student writer for the University Media Relations Department.