Penn State Harrisburg

Behavioral sciences and education faculty receive major grants

Dr. Karin M. Sprow

Dr. Karin M. Sprow


Dr. Denise Meister

Dr. Denise Meister


Dr. Chiara Sabina

Dr. Chiara Sabina


Three members of Penn State Harrisburg’s School of Behavioral Sciences and Education have received research grants from federal agencies.

Denise G. Meister, associate professor of education, and Karin Millard Sprow, project director for the English as a Second Language (ESL) Certificate Program, received a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of English Language Acquisition National Professional Development Program. This five-year grant supports tuition scholarships for teachers pursuing an ESL certificate and research. "Improving Practice through Teacher Action Research," will examine ways to improve teaching performance through internal evaluation in existing ESL certificate programs. With a focus on instructors in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines, the research is intended to increase knowledge of, and improve, ESL educational practices in Pennsylvania.

Chiara Sabina, assistant professor of social sciences, and Carlos Cuevas, Northeastern University assistant professor, received a $555,896 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice National Institute of Justice. Their project, “Dating violence among Latino adolescents-II,” will build on previous research they have conducted on the topic.

Sabina will research Latino dating violence patterns over time, focusing on physical assault, sexual violence, stalking, threatened and witnessed violence, and predictors of victimization. She will also study support and help-seeking following victimization, including formal (courts, social services) and informal (family and friends) sources. Scheduled to take place through 2013, the project is expected to reveal psychological and social impact of dating violence.