EOQA Grant Awardees 2014-15


Ge Gao's picture

Fun Fact: "I enjoy cooking and traveling"






Alejandro Garcia Picture

Fun Fact: "I host the Green Ninja Show on YouTube"




Patricia Backer Picture

Fun Fact: "I am the leader of a girl scout troop"









Laura Guardino

Fun Fact: "I have taught grades; Kindergarten to college in my teaching career"




Alejandro Garcia Picture

Fun Fact: "The past two summers I have gone on month long bike tours through Germany with a family I lived with as an exchange student during my junior year in high school"









Jason Kaltenbacher

Fun Fact: "I am learning to play the guitar."











 Fun Fact: "I have spent time traveling overseas:  Kazakhstan, Peru, Russia, China. All trips were 1-3 months."







Fun Fact: "I just got married - on 4/4/14 at Fogarty Winery in Woodside, CA!"



Mary Poffenroth

Fun Fact: "I am the youngest of 5 children and the only one in my entire family to go to college" 












Debbie Weissman

Fun Fact: "I love to learn. I am spending this summer learning to code in Python with Java on deck"





 Erin Woodhead

Fun Fact: "Two of my favorite hobbies are sewing and making and canning my own jams and jellies"









Ge Gao, Ph.D.

Professor, Communication Studies

Email:  Ge.Gao@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: Nonverbal Communication

Ge Gao, is a professor in the Department of Communication Studies at San Jose State University, San Jose, CA. Her research interests are in cross-cultural and intercultural communication. Her publications have appeared in academic journals and book chapters. 



Alejandro Garcia

Professor, Physics & Astronomy

Email: alejandro.garcia@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: Physics 123 (Physics of Animation)

Professor Garcia teaches physics to animation students at San Jose State and to professionals at DreamWorks Animation. His scientific research in the field of computational fluid mechanics is funded by the Department of Energy through Berkeley Lab. Dr. Garcia was named SJSU's President's Scholar for 2000/2001 and Outstanding Professor for 2013/2014



Patricia Backer

Professor, Aviation & Technology

Email: patricia.backer@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: Tech 198

Dr. Backer received her PhD in an interdisciplinary major, Neuroscience and Learning Theory, from the Ohio State University. She joined SJSU in 1990 as an Assistant Professor. She has served as chair of the Department of Aviation and Technology (for six years) and as Director of General Engineering (for six years).

She has been active in curriculum-based and planning committees at the College and University levels, including the Improvement of Instruction Committee, Undergraduate Studies Committee, Program Planning Committee, Investment in Faculty Panel, University Planning Council, and Academic Senate. In addition to her curricular experience, Dr. Backer has been a member of the SJSU Academic Senate for eight years and has served as chair of three Senate policy committees.


Laura Guardino

Professor, History

Email:  Laura.Guardino@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: History 99: History Fundamentals

Laura Guardino has been teaching history at the secondary and post-secondary level for 14 years.  She has been involved in numerous grants and local history projects to promote history in the Bay Area.



Veronica Herrera, Ph.D.

Visiting Faculty, Justice Studies

Email:  veronica.herrera@sjsu.edu

Courses for Grant: JS 132 Gender, Race, Inequality, and the Law

Veronica Herrera received her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Arizona in 2001. She completed a two year Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship at the Wellesley Centers for Women in 2003. Her first academic position was in the Department of Criminal Justice at Indiana University. She has been teaching in the Justice Studies Department at SJSU since 2010. Her research has focused on the long term effects of exposure to family violence on youth risk behavior and violence against girls and women. While at SJSU, she has been involved in the Institute for Collaborative Response for Victims of Family Violence (ICR). She is the faculty advisor of the San Jose State Iota Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma, The National Criminal Justice Honors Society. She is also currently collaborating with Snell Community School in San Jose to develop a mentoring program that would connect San Jose State University students and students at Snell, with a specific focus on pathways to college.



Jason Kaltenbacher

School of Library & Information Science

Email: jason.kaltenbacher@sjsu.edu

Courses for Grant: MARA 284 - Developing an Information Governance 

Jason Kaltenbacher is an adjunct lecturer at San Jose State University's School of Library and Information Science. He lectures on topics related to records and information management, information assurance, information governance, electronic records, and general management principles to students in SJSU's Master of Archives and Records Administration (MARA) and Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) programs. His professional practice specializes in records policy development, general and electronic records management, and workflow improvement for organizational records and information management programs.



Carol-Lynn Perez, M.A.

Lecturer, Communication Studies Department 

Email: erin.woodhead@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: 131P - New Media/You Media

Carol Lynn-Perez has been instructing Communication classes for a number of years at San Jose State and other colleges around California. She has taught at quite a few community colleges, and currently she is teaching at Sierra College and San Jose State. Her scholarly interests include Small Group Comm, Intercultural Comm, Interpersonal Comm, Argumentation and Debate, Media Studies and Public Speaking. She is currently instructing 2 classes at Sierra College, and 4 classes at SJSU, all of which are online classes. The classes she instructs are Comm 105P - Communication, Self and Society, Comm 141P - Small Group Communication, Comm 20 - Public Speaking, Comm 41 - Critical Decision Making and Comm 131P - New Media/You Media.


Eileen O'Halloran

Geography Instructor, Geography and Global Studies

Email: eileen.ohalloran@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: Cultural Geography

Eileen O'Halloran teaches Geography at SJSU and De Anza College. She loves to travel and has been to over 30 countries so far - the most recent being Singapore in June 2014. Her favorite country is Iceland as she loves the geologic features of the island country!


Mary Poffenroth

Instructor, Biological Sciences 

Email: mary.poffenroth@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: Biology 10

During her over seven years of teaching at SJSU, she has made innovation in science education a priority. Partnering with Wiley & Sons, she created original visual media and became a contributing author to the Visualizing Human Biology textbook and the Wiley iWonder Series (2010-2012). Mary specializes in large lecture formats (125 to 400 students), leads a team of 14 instructional student assistants, and is course coordinator for two general education courses. Leveraging her enormous class population, Mary created an outdoor, environmental student volunteer program in 2009. To date, over 2,500 students have volunteered nearly 10,000 work hours to local, environmental non-profit organizations. In 2012, she was awarded a DRC Outstanding Faculty Award and an IES-eCampus Grant. Her newest endeavor, Global Citizenship, is an integrative, team taught GE course that will help expand the horizons of interdisciplinary courses at SJSU. In 2013, she became one of 15 faculty members to receive a Salzburg Global Fellowship and will be working on globalizing the SJSU campus through Spring 2014.



Debbie Weissmann

Lecturer, School of Library and Information Science (SLIS)

Email: debbie.weissmann@gmail.com

Course for Grant: LIBR 267 Children and Information Technology

I am a researcher.  My research interests focus on children and their use of technology and the closely related topics of information literacy and information privacy.  I bring my findings from the field to the courses that I teach for SLIS. I have an agenda in my research and teaching:  I would like to empower kids everywhere with the excitement of programming animated objects.



Erin Woodhead

Assistant Professor, Psychology

Email: erin.woodhead@sjsu.edu

Course for Grant: Psyc/Gero 114: Psychology of Aging

Erin is trained as a clinical psychologist with a specialty in geropsychology. She teaches undergraduate courses in clinical psychology and aging, and graduate courses in ethics, lifespan development, and addictions.