Comments: Possible faculty videos, All photos of all faculty
Renee AxiotisAssistant Professor 118 Nixson Hall
Area: HS - HEDPiaxiotis@kent.edu
Following graduation with a B.A. in psychology from Kent State University, I began an assistantship in health education at Kent State. Two years later, I graduated with a master's degree in community health education and, in 1996, earned a doctorate in curriculum and instruction (health education emphasis) from Kent State as well. From 1988 until 1997, I was the director of the Office of Student Health Promotion for KSU Health Services. In 1997, I joined the faculty at Ashland University, where I stayed for five years. In order to better accommodate other life responsibilities, relocation closer to the north coast of Ohio was necessary and I resigned from Ashland in 2002. I spent one year as a visiting professor at the University of Akron and have been on a non-tenure track line in health education at KSU since 2004. I am a licensed teacher in Ohio in K-12 health and was a substitute teacher at all grade levels in the Nordonia Hills school district. In addition, I served on Nordonia's district-wide wellness committee and was co-chair of the committee for one year. Recently, I completed a 16 month project directorship on a $370,000 state-wide, college-based tobacco prevention and cessation grant, in which KSU participated as a pilot site. I have published articles in journals ranging from Developmental Psychobiology to the Journal of American College Health.
Dr. Angela BackusAssistant Professor 116 Nixson Hall
Area: HS - HEDPabackus1@kent.edu
Currently, I am a Non-Tenure Track Assistant Professor of Health Education and Promotion at Kent State University. In 2003 I graduated from SUNY Fredonia with a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education and a minor in Athletic Coaching. To continue this focus on school-age youth, I earned a Master's Degree in School Health Education from Kent State University in 2005. From there, I pursued a Ph.D. in Health Education and Promotion, and graduated from Kent State University in 2010. I am licencsed to teach Elementary Education in New York State and K-12 Health Education in Ohio. I have presented at numerous local, national, and international conferences about various health issues, including bullying risk-reduction, coordinated school health programming, and brain-based teaching and learning strategies. In addition, I have taught a number of health education courses, including Health Education for Early Childhood Educators, Administration of School Health Programs, Drug Abuse and Violence Prevention, and Human Sexuality.
Dr. Donna BernertAssistant Professor 145 Nixson Hall
Area: HS - HEDPdbernert@kent.edu
Dr. Bernert received her PhD from Southern Illinois University. Prior to joining the HEDP faculty at Kent State University, she held various teaching and administrative positions for 10 years in the public schools. She is licensed in Ohio to teach special education, early childhood education, elementary education, and health education. As a former special education teacher, she has a passion for health education and promotion for youth and adults with disabilities. She also has a particular interest in sexuality education and has both taught sexuality education and worked as a sexuality educator. Dr. Bernert has conducted research, published, and presented her work involving sexual health and disability. She also has a passion for Kent State University, receiving her BS (1986) and MA (1997) degrees from here. To return to the university once again as faculty has been a wonderful professional opportunity and privelege, and she looks forward to giving back quality educational experiences as a faculty member she received here as a student.
Dr. Kele DingAssociate Professor 142 Nixson Hall
Area: HS - HEDPkding@kent.edu
Kele Ding, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Health Education and Promotion at Kent State University in Ohio. Dr. Ding received his bachelor’s degree in Western Medicine from Wenzhou Medical College, China in 1982. He practiced general surgery in Hangzhou City Hospital of Chinese Traditional Medicine between 1982 and 1992. In fall 1992 he came to the United States to pursue further education. In US he received his master’s degrees in Community Health Education from Western Illinois University and his doctorate in Health Behavior from Indiana University Bloomington. Since his coming to the United States, he has authored or co-authored 18 professional journal articles, and seven technical reports, mostly in the areas of research methods, quantitative data analysis in youth health behaviors, substance use, and trend analysis.
Dr. Ding has extensive knowledge and experience in research method and statistical data analysis. His working experiences in the United States include Research Associate and Statistician with the Indiana Prevention Resource Center where his responsibilities included coordinating the largest statewide youth drug use survey in the nation, the Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drug Use by Indiana Children and Adolescents. He also conducted its survey data processing, analysis, and reporting, which often involving nearly one million samples. Dr. Ding has conducted several published secondary data analysis studies using national youth behavior surveillance survey data from CDC and National Institute on Drug Abuse, including one founded by the Consortium of Eastern Ohio Master of Public Health Intra-Partner Research Program Award. His research areas also include the effect of skip pattern in questionnaire design on responses in drug use survey; statutory rape and law enforcement system’s responses; and youth drug initiation and peer pressures.
Dr. Ding has worked in the academic setting since 2000. He was an assistant professor of health education at Idaho State University from 2000 to 2005, before he joined Kent State University. He has extensive vast experience at undergraduate, masters, and doctorate levels. Subjects taught include Drug use and Misuse, Epidemiology, Biostatistics, Research Method and Data Analysis, Social and Behavioral Theories, instrument development, and program evaluation.
Dr. Dianne KerrAssociate Professor 134 Nixson Hall
Area: HS - HEDPdkerr@kent.edu
I graduated from Slippery Rock State University in 1976, taught in private schools for 3 years, and went to Bowling Green State University for a Master's Degree which was awarded in 1981. I taught in Colleges and Universities for a number of years and received my PhD in Health Education from The Ohio State University in 1992. I have been at Kent State University for 20 years. During my career, I spent 25 years working on the HIV/AIDS epidemic conducting AIDS Education teacher training in National and State venues. Some of that time was spent as the AIDS Education Project Director for the American School Health Association. My research encompasses HIV education, sexual minority health, and women's health issues. To "give back" to the community, I co-facilitate a breast cancer support group on campus, serve on the Portage County Reentry Coalition, and support two AIDS orphans in Africa. I am a strong believer in the statement "Give to the world the best that you have, and the best will come back to you." I am fortunate to love my career and be able to transfer my passion to others.
Cynthia SymonsProfessor 140 Nixson Hall
Area: HS - HEDPcsymons@kent.edu