Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

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Beverly Belton

Beverly Belton

Matthew Lebowitz

Matthew Lebowitz

Cecelia Watson

Cecelia Watson

Beverly Belton (Nursing) is co-author of “Universal Glove and Gown Use and Acquisition of Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria in the ICUA Randomized Trial,” published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (online October 04, 2013). The article describes a study that was conducted to assess whether wearing gloves and gowns during all patient contact in the Intensive Care Unit decreases the spread of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) or vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE), two antibiotic-resistant bacteria, as compared to the usual procedures. The study found that the use of gloves and gowns for all patient contact compared with the usual standard of care did not result in a difference in the primary outcome of acquisition of MRSA or VRE among patients in medical and surgical ICUs.

Beverly decided to pursue a PhD after many years of practice in clinical nursing and nursing leadership. Her involvement in the study, while not part of her dissertation, was driven by her “interest in helping to identify easily translatable solutions to the growing problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in clinical settings. The BUGG study (Benefits of Universal Glove and Gowning) was an important part of my job prior to starting the PhD program, and I participated in writing the manuscript afterwards.” Her own research interests span nursing, health policies, and the disparities of health care for vulnerable populations, and her adviser is Barbara Guthrie.

In addition to her studies, Beverly is a mentor to several aspiring nurses and “nurse leaders,” who hold titles such as Patient Services Manager and Director of Inpatient Surgical Care. She is involved in community activities through the Southern Connecticut Black Nurses Association and the National Association of Healthcare Executives-Connecticut Chapter.

Beverly earned her BS degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Science in Nursing from Yale in 2010. Before starting on her doctoral degree, she worked for the Yale New Haven Health System – Center for Healthcare Solutions, a nonprofit consulting organization dedicated to making national and international healthcare organizations and systems more effective, safe, and secure.

 

Matthew Lebowitz (Psychology) has won the 2013 American Psychological Foundation’s Violet and Cyril Franks Scholarship, an award that supports graduate students whose research helps mitigate the stigma of mental illness. In recent years, mental disorders have increasingly been seen as biomedical illnesses, amenable to pharmacological treatment. Matt studies the influence this view has on both patients and clinicians and how it may be affecting their attitudes and beliefs about psychopathology. His dissertation, “Effects of Biological Explanations of Psychopathology among Mental Health Clinicians and Consumers,” is advised by Woo-kyoung Ahn. In it, Matt focuses on the ways that biological explanations of mental illness affect mental-health clinicians’ view of potential patients, with the goal of countering a decrease in clinician empathy that can accompany biological explanations of a patient’s symptoms. He also studies how people react to learning about their own genetic risk for a particular mental disorder. Based on his research, he has determined that the more a person with depressive symptoms attributes his or her symptoms to biochemistry and genetics, the more pessimistic the individual becomes regarding his or her own prognosis. He will present some of these findings at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology conference in Austin in February, 2014.

Matt earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard.

 

Cecelia Watson, post-doctoral fellow in Philosophy, has won an ACLS New Faculty fellowship. She is working on William James and John La Farge: The Search for Truth in Art, Science, and Philosophy, which is based on her PhD dissertation at the University of Chicago. The book will argue that “James’s influential work in psychology and philosophy was grounded in principles that he learned from the practice of visual art,” she says. “Talking about the relationship between art, science, and philosophy seems to me more relevant than ever, when many universities are trying to renegotiate the boundaries between these disciplines.”

Cecelia chose to spend her ACLS fellowship year at Yale because of the “resources of the University in general, the enthusiasm of the faculty with whom I spoke, and the opportunity to teach in Directed Studies. Yale has outstanding resources for any scholar, but for my project in particular, it's extremely helpful that John La Farge’s papers are held by the Beinecke. La Farge was the artist that most influenced William James. The faculty enthusiasm leapt out at me instantly in my initial conversation with Tamar Gendler and Bryan Garsten, and then further in my email correspondence with them and with Ken Winkler, who, like me, has an interest in American philosophy. Tamar, Bryan, and Ken were so warm, and so obviously delighted to be at Yale, that I felt like I was part of the community here from my very first contact with Yale. Finally, I chose Yale because of Directed Studies. Having done a four-year “great books” curriculum as an undergraduate at St. John’s, and then having taught classic texts at the University of Chicago and at the European College of Liberal Arts in Berlin, I have firsthand experience of the ways in which reading the texts in the DS curriculum gives students the critical tools to handle any problem that’s thrown at them either inside the classroom or outside of it. Teaching those texts, and thus getting to study them all over again, is a privilege, and I knew that when I chose Yale. What I didn’t know was how much of a privilege it would be to teach this particular group of students. I’ve been impressed by the maturity and intelligence of my section, and they’ve shown me many new things in books that I’ve read in some cases dozens of times. The other faculty, too, are top-notch, and have been very generous in sharing pedagogical insights.”