Patrick Bahls, PhD, is a Professor of Mathematics and Director of the University Honors Program at UNC Asheville. In both of these roles he has worked on various efforts to increase diversity, inclusion, and equity at UNC Asheville, particularly through teaching community-engaged sections of the interdisciplinary senior capstone course "Cultivating Global Citizenship." He also regularly teaches the course "Introduction to Community Engagement in Honors" and serves his department as its designated Diversity Advocate, tasked with ensuring that diversity-related issues are central in all faculty hires in the Mathematics Department. He lives in East Asheville with his wife, two stepchildren, and several furry friends.
Ameena Batada, DrPH, is an associate professor in the Health and Wellness Department at the University of North Carolina Asheville. Many years ago, as a rising senior in college, she conducted research to investigate the pre-school conditions in former Bantustan areas of the Northern Transvaal, South Africa. Since then Dr. Batada has been interested in improving child health and education, particularly among disenfranchised populations.
At UNCA, Dr. Batada works with several community partners to evaluate health and education programs, to conduct research to support policy advocacy, and to implement intervention studies in schools, churches, and other settings. She also researches the content of foods marketed to children, from kids’ meals to food dyes in grocery store products, and the school foods children select and consume. Since joining UNCA in 2011, Dr. Batada enjoys working with undergraduate and MLAS students on these applied research projects.