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Faculty Recognition

Kinesiology Professor Recognized with National Award

Jafra Thomas received the 2021 Hally Beth Poindexter Young Scholar Award

Jafra Thomas, a professor in the Kinesiology and Public Health Department, received the 2021 Hally Beth Poindexter Young Scholar Award from the National Association for Kinesiology in Higher Education (NAKHE). The award recognizes the contributions of an early-career faculty member whose scholarship focuses on interdisciplinary issues facing kinesiology, physical education or general higher education. A man in a blue button down shirt and glasses smiles at the camera.

“I feel a great sense of honor that our work received this distinguished award,” Thomas said. “Through partnering with Cal Poly students to study equity issues in physical activity promotion material, this project gave me the chance to build on Dr. Poindexter’s legacy and contribute to the vision she painted for the field.”

Thomas’ and his students’ award-winning research focused on how easy or difficult it is to read promotional materials for physical activity. The research team looked for common conclusions made from 24 readability studies on the issue.

“This was a very hands-on project,” said biology alumna Akuekegbe Uwadiale (’20). “We had to search out articles, learn how to use the databases, learn how to produce a manuscript, and create video presentations among other things.”

Thomas’ team’s analysis will be published in the journal Quest, giving students the full range of the research experience, from design through communication of their results to the scientific community.