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University Gazette

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Focus Carolina

Every day, faculty members at UNC-Chapel Hill engage in groundbreaking research, innovative teaching and public service that makes an impact in our community and the state, nation and the world.

Tune in to Focus Carolina during morning, noon and evening drive times and on the weekends to hear their stories and find out what ignites their passion for their work. Focus Carolina is an exclusive program on WCHL, sponsored by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. You can listen to WCHL at 97.9 FM or 1360 AM.

Current Focus Carolina episodes

Dr. Amelia Gibson is an assistant professor in the School of Information and Library Science. Her work looks at how members of marginalized communities access health information. She is currently focused on identifying the ways that people with Autism and their families seek and exchange information in their local communities and how public libraries can support this information sharing.


Focus Carolina Archive

Penny Abernathy studies areas of the country that are at risk of becoming news deserts and finding sustainable business strategies to keep local news organizations in business so they provide news that educates and informs citizens in a democracy.

Allison Aiello studies how diseases like the flu are spread and what social factors might determine who gets a disease, how often it might recur and how it is spread.

Frank R. Baumgartner is known for his work on racial dynamics in the criminal justice system, among other topics.

Dr. Cedric Bright runs the Medical Education Development program, a joint effort between Carolina’s Schools of Medicine and Dentistry.

Anita Brown-Graham, director of ncIMPACT, focuses on creating opportunities and removing barriers to work-based economic opportunities, particularly for residents in distressed communities.

Katrijn Gielens is an internationally recognized expert in international retailing and product innovation. She studies the effects of store closings on communities and on consumers.

Amy Gladfelter is interested in how cells are organized in time and space, studying how cytoplasm is spatially patterned and how cells sense their own shape.

Jeffrey A. Greene focuses on digital literacy, specifically he studies self-regulated learning, or how students can actively and thoughtfully achieve their academic goals via building knowledge, learning effective skills, and adopting positive dispositions toward learning.

Carissa Byrne Hessick is the director of the Prosecutors and Politics Project at Carolina’s School of Law. The project was started to bring scholarly attention to the accountability of elected prosecutors, to understand the relationship between prosecutors and politics, and to give voters better access to information about campaign contributions they receive.

Shawn Hingtgen is a scientist specializing in cell and gene therapy.

Melina Kibbe is a renowned researcher of novel therapies for patients with vascular disease and is a passionate advocate for gender equality in biomedical research.

Dr. Lewis Lampiris is the director of the UNC School of Dentistry’s Dentistry in Service to the Community program, which sends rising fourth-year dental students to underserved areas to provide dental care.

Rebecca Macy is passionate about ending family violence and helping victims of human trafficking live safe, independent lives.

Ed Maydew is the director of the UNC Tax Center, which brings together tax scholars, policymakers and practitioners.

Richard E. Myers II served as both a defense attorney and later a federal prosecutor before returning to his alma mater to join the UNC School of Law faculty in 2004.

Mitch Prinstein uses a developmental psychopathology framework to understand how adolescents’ interpersonal experiences, particularly among peers, are associated with depression, self-injury, and health risk behaviors.

Dr. Rocio Quinonez is known for her work in children’s oral health, including her signature collaborations: the Baby Oral Health Program (bOHP); its sister initiative, Prenatal Oral Health Program (pOHP); and Into the Mouths of Babes.

Kelly Ryoo is focused on creating ways to design and use technology to help English learners with science.

Brian Sturm is a professional storyteller who has dedicated his career to exploring the experience of immersion and the various influences that help us become completely engrossed in whatever we are doing, whether that is reading, listening to a story or playing video games.

Will Vizuete’s research focuses on atmospheric chemistry and the formation of air pollution.

Jeff Welty is an expert in criminal law and procedure in the School of Government. He founded  the North Carolina Criminal Law Blog and serves as  director of the North Carolina Judicial College, which provides training and education to the state’s judicial officials.

Sheryl Zimmerman co-directs the research program on aging, disability, and long-term care in the UNC Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research.