Norton School faculty present Big Ideas

Friday, February 28, 2020
Dr. Darin Knapp, Assistant Professor in the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences Family Studies and Human Development department, presents at the Big Ideas Summit Feb. 27 at McClelland Park.

The Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences held its inaugural Big Ideas Summit, a TED Talks-inspired series of 5-minute presentations by Norton School faculty, on Friday, Feb. 27 at McClelland Park.

The event featured transformational ideas designed to have major impact on the community, state, and world. More than 100 people attended the event, both in person and via live stream, and rated the 11 presentations.

Dr. Darin Knapp, Assistant Professor of Practice in Family Studies and Human Development, gave the winning presentation. His idea focused on establishing a Marriage and Family Therapy (MFT) master’s degree program and a training clinic. Making the MFT program truly distinctive and aligned with the UArizona strategic plan, Dr. Knapp proposed two truly innovative features of the MFT program.

First, in line with UArizona’s Hispanic Serving Institution status, we will hire bilingual faculty who could provide supervised training for students in Spanish. Students in the MFT program would be able to work in the MFT clinic, providing low cost therapy to Latinx members of the Tucson community in Spanish.

Second, in partnership with our Personal & Family Financial Planning degree program, all students enrolled in the MFT program will take classes in financial planning to better understand the financial challenges facing families.

“At the Norton School, our mission is to create a world in which Every Family Thrives,” Norton School Director Dr. Laura Scaramella said. “Dr. Knapp’s proposal provides such an obvious solution to improving the quality of families’ lives in the Tucson area and the world. Currently, our graduates have to travel out of state to attend an accredited MFT program. Once students leave, they’re unlikely to return. In Arizona, we have a tremendous need for trained therapists. This need is even more pronounced among Spanish-speaking and Latinx families. We seek to train the next generation of therapists who are equipped to serve the needs of all Arizonans.”

Here is a full list of the presentations:

Student support and education

  • “Norton Student Services”: Liz Collins, FSHD Academic Advisor/Andrea Gomez, RCSC Academic Advisor/Tiffany Ortega, PFFP Academic Advisor
  • “Summer Youth Program”: Ali Tsosie-Harvey, Frances McClelland Institute for Children, Youth and Families Program Coordinator
  • “Instructional Training & Undergraduate Inclusion Program”: Savannah Boyd, FSHD Graduate Student
  • “Social Services Certificate Program”: Ric Wood, Ph.D., FCSC Associate Professor of Practice/ Linda Pallock, Ph.D., FSHD Assistant Professor of Practice
  • “Retail Enterprise Lab”: Scott Hessell, Director, Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing
  • “Fashion Science Lab”: Charlette Padilla, RCSC Assistant Professor of Practice/Laurie Sheldon, RCSC Adjunct Lecturer/Elizabeth Heuisler, RCSC Adjunct Lecturer

Evaluation and research

  • “Center for Community Research, Evaluation & Development”: Michele Walsh, Ph.D., Community Research, Evaluation & Development (CRED), Associate Professor
  • “Center for Sustainable Consumption”: Sabrina Helm, Ph.D. RCSC Associate Professor/Kathleen Kennedy, RCSC Associate Professor of Practice
  • “Marriage & Family Therapy Degree/MFT Clinic”: Darin Knapp, Ph.D., FSHD Assistant Professor of Practice
  • “Financial Parenting”: Torey Ligon, RCSC Assistant Professor of Practice
  • “Center for the Family/Center for Independence and Success”: Rick Rosen, J.D., Interim Director, Take Charge America Institute for Consumer Financial Education and Research

The Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences, part of the College and Agriculture and Life Sciences, provides instructional, research, extension and outreach programs that enable families, individual family members and consumers to achieve an optimum quality of life throughout the life span. Instructional programs prepare professionals for careers serving families and consumers in a culturally diverse and rapidly changing society.

Joel Badzinski
External Communications Coordinator, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences