LEHC alumni open their minds at 65th Anniversary event

(L-R) Alicia Washington, Dr. Ben Wellenreiter, and Christine Dittmer received outstanding alumni awards at LEHC 65th anniversary event.

March 7, 2011

The Department of Leadership in Education, Human Services, and Counseling celebrated 65 years with two days of lectures and workshops presented by University of Phoenix psychology professor Dr. Leslie Sherlin and Bradley LEHC faculty last February.

The event began on February 24, with Dr. Sherlin’s lecture “Your Brain: Implications for Healthy Living.” He focused on the brain’s structures and functions along with the basics of health, like eating right, exercising and performing mentally challenging tasks. The lecture was free and open to the public and was attended by nearly 100 students, alumni and community members.

On February 25, the event continued with a daylong series of lectures and workshops. In the morning, Dr. Sherlin spoke about methods and techniques to optimize brain performance. Later in the day, he spoke about brain waves and how they can be used to predict personality and the potential for mental disorders. In the afternoon, attendees rotated between three small-group sessions presented by LEHC faculty.

Dr. Lori Russell-Chapin presented a session on neurofeedback, a method of measuring electrical activity in the brain to assess its efficiency. Dr. Nancy Sherman offered a presentation on “heart math,” a biofeedback program used to help manage stress. Dr. Chris Rybak spoke about “mindfulness,” the idea of becoming more aware of one’s current surroundings and preventing the mind from wandering. After each lecture, the faculty members answered questions from audience members.

Three outstanding alumni were recognized over lunch. Dr. Ben Wellenreiter received a scholarship award for a dissertation on chaos in middle school cafeterias. Alicia Washington received an award for her community service work providing legal services to low-income populations. Christine Dittmer received an award for innovative practice for her work counseling returning war veterans.

The LEHC department holds similar alumni events annually. Though it has been known by different names throughout its 65-year history, the LEHC program was the first graduate-level program offered at Bradley University.