CHSE Congratulates 2017 Faculty & Staff Award Honorees



The LSU College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) will present the 2017 Faculty and Staff Awards on Monday, January 9, 2017. These awards honor outstanding individuals in the college dedicated to teaching, research, scholarship, and community engagement.

Kwame J. A. Agyemang, assistant professor in the School of Kinesiology, receives the Advocate for Diversity Award.

CHSE is proud to present Dr. Agyemang with the Advocate for Diversity award for his exceptional work that brings a lasting impact and highlights the importance of diversity at LSU.

As a researcher and educator, Dr. Agyemang’s interests broadly span the area of social change, particularly centering the role of celebrities and high-profile social actors, such as celebrity athletes and sports teams or organizations. He teaches a variety of classes within Kinesiology, including Social Issues in Sport, Sport in Society, and more.

Dr. Agyemang has published manuscripts in various journals, including the Journal of Management Inquiry, Journal of African American Studies, and International Review for the Sociology of Sport, among others. He recently assumed the position of deputy editor for Sport, Business and Management: An International Journal and serves on the editorial board for three other peer-reviewed journals.


Alex C. Garn, associate professor in the School of Kinesiology, receives the Distinguished Research Award.

For outstanding research in the motivational and emotional determinants of physical activity, motor skill performance, learning, and psychological well-being, CHSE presents Dr. Garn with the award for Distinguished Research.

His research interests lie in exploring methodological issues associated with the application of motivational theory and the use of schools as a point of intervention for children’s health and well-being. Specifically, he is interested in understanding how to promote high levels of engagement in health behaviors and learning. Dr. Garn has been a productive researcher, publishing in a diverse set of high quality journals in education, psychology, and health

Dr. Garn, who holds the Karen Wax Schmitt and Family Endowed Professorship in CHSE, is highly engaged with professional organizations such as the American Educational Research Association and serves on multiple editorial boards. He is active in mentoring graduate students with interests in pedagogy and the psychology of physical activity.


Catherine M. Lemieux, professor in the School of Social Work, receives the Distinguished Teaching Award.

CHSE presents Dr. Lemieux with the award for Distinguished Teaching in recognition for superior teaching and related activities.

With more than 10 years of accomplished teaching in the college, Dr. Lemieux continuously impacts CHSE students and beyond with her teachings in social work and addictive disorders. She serves as the Margaret Champagne Womack Professor in Addictive Disorders in the School of Social Work (SSW), where she teaches both research and practice courses, as well as electives, in the areas of addiction and co-occurring disorders. In summer 2016, Dr. Lemieux was appointed to the Addictive Disorders Regulatory Authority Board of Directors by Governor John Bel Edwards, a position that allows her to implement more policy-perspective experience into her teachings.

With a PhD in Social Welfare, Dr. Lemieux holds certifications as part of the Academy of Certified Social Workers, as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, and as a Board-Approved Clinical Supervisor.


Estanislado S. Barrera, IV, assistant professor in the School of Education, receives the Early Career Award.

CHSE presents Dr. Barrera with the Early Career award for his demonstrated extraordinary performance in teaching, research, and service during his first four years at LSU. Since joining the School of Education faculty in 2012, Dr. Barrera has worked diligently to produce scholarship expected of a research institution like LSU.

Dr. Barrera’s professional experience includes serving as a journal editor, review board member, and conference proposal reviewer, as well as 11 years as a classroom teacher and administrator prior to his tenure at LSU. Some professional projects of Dr. Barrera’s include the Carver Cubs Book Club, a two-week reading camp resulting from a partnership with Carver Library that offered LSU students experiences in assessment, planning, and designing curriculum.

Dr. Barrera is known to inspire students through his teaching methods, implementing lessons of both practical knowledge and theory. His positive impact on university students will hold an even further reaching impact on the classrooms in which his students ultimately lead.


Kenneth J. Varner, associate professor in the School of Education, receives the Engagement Award.

CHSE is proud to present Dr. Varner with the Engagement Award for his established work with international education programs. Deeply committed to international education, and specifically childhood literacy, Dr. Varner works internationally to bring opportunities to both Chilean and LSU students.

Varner serves as co-editor in chief of Taboo: The Journal of Culture and Education and is actively involved in Division K (Teaching and Teacher Education) serving as the program co-chair and previously as the section chair for Lives of Teachers. Additionally, he is actively involved in internationalization efforts through meaningful study abroad experiences, serving as the co-director for two cutting edge programs in Concepción and Santiago Chile.

Dr. Varner’s work with the PK-12 school in Chile is a fully integrated and nuanced project that forwards a multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional approach to the preparation of teachers with a global focus and the engagement of K-12 students on an international level.

In his role as the Shirley B. Barton Endowed Associate Professor, Dr. Varner does a critical job in ensuring that his students are engaged and receive opportunities to both teach and learn.


Cynthia F. DiCarlo, professor in the School of Education and Executive Director of the Early Childhood Education Laboratory Preschool, receives the Faculty Service Award.

In recognition of exceptional service to her profession, the School of Education, the College of Human Sciences & Education, and the university as a whole, CHSE presents the Faculty Service award to Dr. Cyndi DiCarlo.

On October 20, 2016 the university and community celebrated the unveiling of the renovated and newly aligned Early Childhood Education Laboratory Preschool, an endeavor in which Dr.DiCarlo, the executive director, held a momentous part.

Additional service to the university includes nearly 10 years of service-learning designated courses. Multiple school sites, including campuses in East Baton Rouge and West Baton Rouge parishes, benefit from the service Dr. DiCarlo and her students provide to their respective classrooms.

Dr. DiCarlo’s research, which focuses on interventions to improve outcomes for young children and clarification and innovations in recommended practices in early childhood, has also made a significant impact in the field. Dr. DiCarlo has incorporated her passion for research into the courses she teaches and her work in mentoring students. She currently serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Teacher Action Research, the publications committee for the Association for Childhood Education International, and serves as the Vice President for Membership for the National Association for Early Childhood Teacher Educators.


Traci Lilley, associate director of the School of Social Work and director of field education, receives the Staff Service Award.

CHSE is proud to present the Staff Service award to Traci Lilley for outstanding service to the social work profession, the School of Social Work, our college, and the University as a whole.

A few of Lilley’s accolades include the 2013 National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Social Worker of the Year, the 2014 and 2016 LSU School of Social Work Teacher of the Year, and keynote speaker for the 2015 Alabama-Mississippi Social Work Conference. Lilley was also recently invited by the Council on Social Work Education to be a guest lecturer for the Field Director Leadership Academy in 2017.

Lilley’s extraordinary commitment to social work education at LSU, as well as continuing education in the community, is most deserving of the Staff Service award. Lilley volunteers her time in the community by providing free continuing education presentations to social service agencies all throughout the state, and speaks at local schools and communities to enhance awareness of the social work profession.