News and updates from the FMI.
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Greetings from the Frances McClelland Institute, 

We have several updates to share with you including recent events, student and faculty accomplishments, and new research from the Institute.
NIH Grant Awarded to Dr. Barnett and Colleagues

Dr. Melissa Barnett, FMI Interim Director, and her colleagues UA Alumna Dr. Katie Paschall at Child Trends, and Dr. Ann Mastergeorge at Texas Tech University were recently awarded a two year grant from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, a National Institutes of Health agency!

The title of the project is, “Independent and Interactive Links between Individual and Classroom-level Teacher-Child Relationship Quality and Children’s Academic School Readiness Skills”. This secondary data analysis project will fill gaps in our understanding of how teacher-child relationship quality and teacher instructional and emotional support in the classroom impact economically disadvantaged children’s school readiness across three domains of development: math, reading, and executive function skills. Results will inform the development of future practices and interventions to close school readiness achievement gaps.

Congratulations to our FSHD Students

We have several accomplishments to highlight from our FSHD students and student affiliates. 

To begin, FMI would like to congratulate our student employee, Ashlee Irving, for graduating from the University of Arizona! Ashlee received her bachelor's degree in Family Studies and Human Development with a focus on education and health.

We are so proud of you, Ashlee! We can't wait to see what the future has in store for you.
We would also like to congratulate FSHD doctoral student, Selena Carbajal, who was selected as a CAL State Chancellor Doctoral Incentive Program Scholar. This is a prestigious program that supports scholars completing their PhD in other programs with the hope of returning to the Cal State system some day.

Congratulations, Selena, on this tremendous accomplishment!
Congratulations to FSHD doctoral student, Sei Eun Kim, for successfully passing her written and oral comprehensive doctoral exam! The title of her major exam is "Ethnic Socialization of Asian American Immigrant Families Contributes to a Sense of Gratitude" and the title of her minor exam in the College of Education is "Educational Policy and Academic Experiences of Asian Americans."

We are so proud of you, Sei!
Congratulations to FSHD doctoral student, Alexandria Pech, for successfully passing her major and minor written and oral comprehensive exam! The title of her major comps is "Situating Adolescents of Color in Positive Youth Development Programming and Youth Participatory Action Research: A Relational Developmental Systems Theoretical Approach." The title of her minor comps is "Towards a Critical Race Analysis of Positive Youth Development for Adolescents of Color Experiencing Parental Incarceration."

Congratulations on this accomplishment, Alexandria!
FMI would like to congratulate FSHD doctoral student Xiaomin Li for being selected as the Lang Summer Fellow for Summer 2019! This inaugural fellowship is intended to support an FSHD graduate student to write a first-author manuscript that will advance our understanding of children, youth or families. Xiaomin will be pursuing a manuscript titled, Gender Ideology, Work-Family Conflict, and Marital Quality among Chinese Dual-Earner Couples: A Mediated Moderation Model.

Congratulations, Xiaomin!
Lastly, congratulations to FSHD affiliated doctoral student, Britt Singletary, for successfully defending her dissertation entitled "Who Cares? How Caregivers Influence Communicative and Cognitive Development During Early Childhood." Britt collected all of her data for her dissertation in the Lang Lab for Child and Family Observation. 

Congratulations, Dr. Singletary! We wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.
Faculty Researcher Accomplishments

FMI would like to congratulate Dr. Katharine Zeiders, co-chair of the Latinx Families Research Consortium, on her promotion to Associate Professor with tenure! 

We are so lucky to have you with us here at the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences, Dr. Zeiders. Congratulations on all of your hard work!
FMI would also like to congratulate Dr. Melissa Curran for being chosen to be the next Editor for the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships (JSPR), a leading journal for research on close relationships.Becoming the Editor is a very prestigious and well-earned recognition of Melissa's high standing in the field, and we are so proud of her!
Pamela J. Turbeville: Eugene G. Sander Lifetime Achievement Award

FMI would like to congratulate Pamela J. Turbeville for receiving the University of Arizona College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Eugene G. Sander Lifetime Achievement award. This award recognizes outstanding accomplishments and activities of individuals directly affecting Arizona agriculture, renewable resources, the marketplace, families and consumers in a superior and sustained manner.

Congratulations on this well deserved accomplishment! We are so grateful for your support and commitment to the Norton School and FMI.
Youth Vision Award Recipient Updates

FMI is excited to share that Yazmín Almazán, one of four recipients of the 2018 Frances McClelland Youth Vision Award, was one of twelve recipients selected to receive the prestigious Dorrance Scholarship!

Yazmín will be attending the University of Arizona in the fall and will be studying molecular and cellular biology, and she plans to pursue a minor physiology.

You can read more about her accomplishment here.
We are also excited to share that Vishakk Rajendran, another one of our 2018 Frances McClelland Youth Vision Award Recipients, Founder and President of the e-NABLE Tucson Chapter, received a scholarship to the University of Arizona from the the International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF)!

We are so proud of Vishakk for all of his hard work. We can't wait to see what the future has in store for him!
Quality and Access: A Community Conversation on Early Childhood Education

Last month we had our community conversation on “Quality and Access in Early Childhood Education” with early childhood expert, Jordana Saletan, LMSW, who presented on expulsion in preschool. It was a great opportunity to learn more about this important topic and how we can better support our children and communities through Early Childhood Education.

Thank you to our community partners at the Child and Family Resources and Easterseals Blake Foundation for co-hosting this Community Conversation with us. We look forward to our next community conversation in the future!
Once again, thank you for your continuous support of the Institute. Stay in touch with us by following FMI on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn for updates about the Institute.
In Partnership,

   Melissa A. Barnett, Ph.D.
  Associate Professor, Family Studies and Human Development 
   Interim Director, 

   Frances McClelland Institute for Children, Youth and Families
Current Research from the Institute

FSHD graduate student, Ashley LeBaron, was recently featured in UA News about her research that was published in the Journal of Family and Economic Issues.

"When you think about money and what kids learn about money from their parents, most of us wouldn't think about giving as one of the basic principles of finance," said LeBaron, a doctoral student in the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences in the UA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. "We tend to think more in terms of budgeting and saving and things like that, so it was surprising, but really cool, to see that giving was so prevalent."

You can read the full article here.


Dr. Russell Toomey, chair of the Youth Development and Resilience Initiative, recently had an article published in Applied Development Science titled "Developmental Assets framework revisited: Confirmatory analysis and invariance testing to create a new generation of assets measures for applied research."

ABSTRACT: Over five million young people have taken surveys, based on the Developmental Assets framework, aimed at understanding the internal strengths and external supports they have in their lives. These data have been effectively used to mobilize schools and community coalitions around the world to integrate a positive youth development lens into their applied work. The purpose of this article is to subject these asset measures to rigorous confirmatory factor analysis and multiple group measurement invariance testing, and share them for broader use. The analyses yielded measures of eight asset categories (and 18 individual assets) that are robust and parsimonious. Substantial evidence emerged for the measurement invariance of these new assets measures across grades, gender identity, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, and parent education diversities. With the addition of these measures, applied developmental researchers and practitioners now have a more comprehensive and empirically robust measurement toolkit for studying and enhancing youth and their contexts in order to promote positive youth development.

You can access the article here. If you are unable to access the article but would like to read it, please contact Dr. Toomey at

Copyright 2019 Frances McClelland Institute, All rights reserved.
Questions? Contact FMI Program Coordinator, Feliz Baca, at 520.621.8067 or email

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