Skip to main content

General Links

10 Recent Adventures From McKay Faculty and Administrators

With the leaves changing color and fall semester in full swing, the faculty and administrators at the McKay School of Education pause to reflect on their adventures from this summer:

Barbara Culatta (right) enjoying Rhode Island

Barbara Culatta takes nostalgic trip to Rhode Island

Professor, Communication Disorders

I took a trip to Rhode Island because I used to live there.  It was a marvelous place to live and now is a grand place to visit. On this trip we visited Newport with its famous mansions, walked on the rocks along the ocean, collected sea shells and crabs, went on nature walks, strolled along the shore from one beach to the next, explored cute little beach towns, ate excellent sea food, and drove through thick, forested roads. My husband went with me, and he got a chance to see into a part of life that is very important to me.

The trip influenced my role as a faculty member because I reconnected with members of the communication disorders faculty from the University of Rhode Island where I used to work. We visited, but we also talked shop, which was energizing.

Mary Anne Prater creates database of children's books

Dean, McKay School of Education

I’ve been developing a database of about 100 children’s books that include characters with disabilities for The IRIS Center—an online national center, housed at Vanderbilt University, dedicated to improving education outcomes for all children, especially those with disabilities from birth through age 21.

Two years ago, I listed many books I had already read, but this year I challenged myself to read more recently published books. The IRIS database is particularly meaningful because many professors, teachers, and students preparing to be teachers access the IRIS webpage and thus will have easy access to lists of books they can use with K–12 students.

Cally Fox (left) attended the Americans For The Arts conference

Cally Flox attends an arts conference

Director of Arts Education, Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling 

I attended the Americans for the Arts Conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The research presented on the importance of arts education was impressive.  There were projects showing remarkable benefits of the arts on trauma recovery, community development, and revival of severely impacted inner-city schools.

The theme of the conference was “All the Arts for All the People,” which is similar in spirit to "Every Child, Every Art,” the motto of the BYU ARTS Partnership jointly run by the McKay School of Education and the College of Fine Arts and Communications.

Steven Baugh reunites his family in Zion

Emeritus Executive Director, BYU–Public School Partnership; Emeritus Director, Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling 

This summer we held our first ever Steven and Cathy Baugh family reunion. We rented a home (eight bedrooms, six bathrooms) two miles outside of the east entrance to Zion National Park. For three nights and four days, the 40 of us enjoyed good food, games, movies, hot tubbing, and lots of hiking in Zion. Best news—we are still a family.

Allen pic 2

G. E. Kawika Allen conducts research in Hawaii

Assistant Professor, Counseling Psychology

I spent the summer doing research among Polynesians and Polynesian Americans in Laie, Hawaii, related to mental health, counseling perceptions, mental health stigma, and psychological adjustment. I also studied cultural coping strategies for a variety of psychological difficulties, including depression, anxiety, and stress.

I have grown personally and professionally from working with Polynesian people in my teaching and research. The time here has been memorable and very meaningful. I hope to travel to other Polynesian islands and continue to learn from these beautiful and bright individuals.

Tina Dyches (third from left) smiles with  Romanian orphanage workers and BYU students and faculty.

Tina Dyches celebrates internship program in Romania

Associate Dean, McKay School of Education

I went to Iasi, Romania with my colleagues Ellie Young, Dave Nelson, and Larry Nelson. We went to provide training and support to our interns there and to hold a banquet celebrating the collaboration we have had with Sf. Andrei Orphanage since approximately 1998. The BYU Romanian Internship Program is closing, and we wanted to celebrate our partnership and accomplishments with our Romanian friends who have made the program so successful.

I have too many favorite memories from this trip. But this experience taught me the importance of BYU's motto “Enter to learn. Go forth to serve.”


Gary Seastrand road trips down the Oregon coast

Executive Director, BYU–Public School Partnership; Director, Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling 

My trip down the Oregon coast was extraordinary.  I have done it several times, and it is always renewing.  I have come to build some specific traditions with the trip, like climbing the Lewis and Clark tower in Astoria and eating cheese and ice cream in Tillamook.  My wife and I love revisiting the coastal vistas and touring the lighthouses. One of my favorite memories is stopping at Lincoln Beach to eat at Moe's and then strolling along the beach with Haystack rock. I returned to work with renewed dedication and appreciation.

Rick West attends conference in Colorado

Assistant Professor, Instructional Psychology & Technology

I participated in the researcher/practitioner workshop at the International Conference of the Learning Sciences at UC Boulder. ICLS is a major conference. I was accepted into the researcher/practitioner workshop, which taught us strategies for developing relationships with practitioners. I was able to hear a keynote by Jean Lave, a social anthropologist who pioneered the theory of situated learning and communities of practice.


Ellie Young goes to Lithuania for her first international conference

School Psychology Graduate Coordinator

I attended and presented at the International School Psychology Conference in Kaunas, Lithuania. I had never attended an international conference and was hoping to gain an international perspective on the field of school psychology. The conference was definitely one of the best that I have attended; learning with and among leaders in the field was a joy.

The conference was much smaller than the National Association of School Psychology Conventions that I have attended for the past 13 years. The 300 attendees came from all over the world:  India, Peru, Ireland, United Kingdom, Greece, Germany, Russia, and many other countries.  Just listening to the presentations by scholars from around the world was fascinating and highly enriching.  I learned that many of the challenges we face in the U.S. are not at all distinct to our area.  The challenge of identifying and meeting the needs of children is probably more similar than it is different across the world.

Ryan Kellems makes fishing pilgrimage to Alaska

Assistant Professor, Special Education

I went to Gustavus, Alaska, which is located next to Glacier Bay National Park. I was able to do one of my favorite hobbies (fishing) in one of the best locations in the world (Alaska).  I went on the trip so I could fulfill a dream of mine to catch a salmon fly-fishing. Catching a salmon is considered by many to be the pinnacle of fly-fishing, and I have to say my experience catching a Sockeye Salmon in Alaska was amazing.

My trip to Alaska allowed me to decompress from the past school year and recharge my batteries for the coming year.  There is something to be said about being able to unplug from our chaotic world and spend time enjoying nature.

Writer: Andrew Williamson

Contact: Cynthia Glad (801) 422-1922