Photo of the exterior of Bernard Bommel Hall with the "Serenity" sculpture in the foreground.

Northeastern awards tenure and promotions to nine faculty members

Friday, July 23, 2021

Northeastern Illinois University has awarded tenure and promotions to associate professor to nine members of the faculty, who were introduced during the April 15 Board of Trustees meeting.

Here is the list of awards of tenure and promotion to associate professor:

Jorge Cantú, Biology
Cantú earned a Ph.D. from Northwestern University. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology. Currently, he serves as graduate program advisor for the Master of Science in Biology. Cantú’s research studies involve a category of diseases called lysosomal storage disorders with current focus on establishing novel methods to study lysosomal storage disorders in zebrafish. He has developed in-class research projects that incorporate his research studying yolk metabolism in the zebrafish. His work has been in peer-reviewed publications and conferences. In Spring 2021, he will submit a grant proposal titled “Understanding the role of mTOR signaling in yolk digestion” to the National Institutes of Health.

Sung Doo Kim, Management and Marketing
Kim earned a Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Management and Marketing. He has contributed to the development of Human Resource Management programming in the College of Business and Management, including the minor in Human Resource Management and the Human Resource concentration within the B.S. in Management. Dr. Kim’s research interests are focused in the areas of work-home boundaries, technology and well-being. He has published five peer-reviewed academic articles and presented at 11 highly respected conferences. 

Anne Le, Accounting, Business Law and Finance 
Le earned a Ph.D. from Louisiana State University. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Accounting, Business Law and Finance. Through her research in finance, she has six papers published in peer-reviewed journals as well as manuscripts under review at reputable finance journals. She has also served as an ad-hoc referee for high-quality journals. Le has presented several research studies at local, regional and national conferences such as the Financial Management Association Annual Meeting. She will soon complete the Certified Financial Analyst program at the CFA Institute.

Kimberly Maljak, Health Sciences and Physical Education 
Maljak earned a Ph.D. from Wayne State University. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Physical Education. For the department’s elementary methods class, she has built relationships with nearby schools (specifically Chicago Public Schools) so that teacher candidates can attain authentic experiences working with children. Maljak focuses on Culturally Relevant Pedagogy and Self-Determination Theory for research in after-school programs in high needs areas, adults’ barriers to exercise, culturally relevant curriculum, physical activity motivation and technology, and PE teachers’ motivation. Her work has been in five peer-reviewed publications, and presented at local, state and regional conferences. Currently, she is working with a group of colleagues on the Routledge book “Before and After School Physical Activity Programs: Frameworks, Critical Issues and Underserved Populations,” which is accepted for publication. 

Hector Morales Jr., Teacher Education 
Morales earned a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Teacher Education. His research involves the intersection of Latinx bilingual learners and mathematics teaching and learning. His work with colleagues has been published in several peer-reviewed publications and presented at local, national and international conferences. Morales currently serves as the Goodwin College of Education Faculty Liaison for the Math, Science and Technology for Quality Education program as well as the Special Assistant to the President for Hispanic Serving Institutional Affairs with an explicit mission to serve Latinx students.

Ulugbek Nurmukhamedov, Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages 
Nurmukhamedov earned a Ph.D. from Northern Arizona University. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. He has co-authored one book, six manuscripts in high-profile peer-reviewed journals and five book chapters in peer-reviewed edited volumes. Nurmukhamedov’s first edited volume, co-authored and titled “New Ways in Teaching with Games” with TESOL Press, offers at-a-glance activities that involve play and games that can enrich classrooms in both English as a foreign language and English as a second language contexts for both adult and young English language learners worldwide. He has presented his work at seven state conferences and organized international workshops. He is currently working on a proposal for an edited volume on foreign language teaching and technology (University of Michigan Press). 

Ryan Poll, English
Poll earned a Ph.D. from the University of California-Davis. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English. His research focuses on the growing field of the public humanities. Poll has three peer-reviewed articles in print and one peer-reviewed article slated for publication in 2021. He has published 14 additional articles in the public humanities (popular journals) and presented 25 papers at international, national, regional and local conferences. His work centers on progressive work occurring in popular culture and situates popular culture within wider theoretical debates. Poll’s work in popular culture has resulted in a book titled “Aquaman and the War Against Oceans: Comics Activism, Allegories, and Authorship in the Anthropocene” (University of Nebraska Press, Fall 2021). It will analyze the interlocking ecological allegories that unfold both verbally and visually in 21st century Aquaman comics, and argues that these allegories function as an important form of comics activism.

Brian Vivona, Literacy, Leadership and Development 
Vivona earned an Ed.D. from Northern Illinois University. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Literacy, Leadership and Development. Vivona is currently the graduate coordinator for the Human Resource Development program. His research is within the field of Human Resource Development and learning in the workplace from the lens of interns to senior status workers. He has published articles in peer-reviewed journals and presented at regional and national conferences. He has been named a research affiliate at the Center for College-Workforce Transitions housed within the Wisconsin Center for Education Research at the School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison and has worked with the University of Wisconsin Center for Research on College Workforce Transitions on “The Internship Study,” a grant project funded by the National Science Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Xiwei Wang, Computer Science 
Wang earned a Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science. His collaborative research efforts focus on wireless sensor networks, secure vehicular network communication, and privacy-preserving recommender systems. His work has been published in 13 peer-reviewed international journals and conferences. Beginning Fall 2020, he and NEIU colleagues have been in collaboration with the Computer Science Department at Northwestern University on a grant proposal for the National Science Foundation Innovations in Graduate Education program. Currently, he is continuing work on a privacy-preserving recommender system project, funded by the NEIU Committee on Organized Research grant.