Dr. Piazza honored by ABAI for mentorship

by John Keenan, UNMC public relations | July 16, 2018

Image with caption: Faculty and staff of the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders and the Pediatric Feeding Program gather with Cathleen Piazza, Ph.D., front row fifth from left, to celebrate her achievement.

Faculty and staff of the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders and the Pediatric Feeding Program gather with Cathleen Piazza, Ph.D., front row fifth from left, to celebrate her achievement.

The Munroe-Meyer Institute's Cathleen Piazza, Ph.D., was selected for the Student Committee Mentorship Award from the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABIA) Executive Council and its Student Committee.

MMI's Kathryn Peterson, Ph.D., one of Dr. Piazza's nominators, called her "thoughtful in her mentorship" and "encouraging, supportive and helpful." "Dr. Piazza has mentored countless other researchers, clinicians, and trainees in the field," Dr. Peterson said. "She is world-renowned. Individuals come from all over to train with her given that she has led the field in producing innovative research on the successful assessment and treatment of severe pediatric feeding disorders."

Another nominator, Caitlin Kirkwood, noted that Dr. Piazza revolutionized the role that behavior analysts play in the assessment and treatment of children with feeding disorders.

"From her early work on the functional analyses of inappropriate mealtime behavior and her invited presentations and trainings around the world to teach others about feeding disorders, to her collaborations with nurses, nutritionists, allergists, and pediatric gastroenterologists at UNMC, Dr. Piazza has single-handedly carved a role for behavior analysts in all areas associated with feeding," Kirkwood said.

MMI Director Karoly Mirnics, M.D., Ph.D., applauded Dr. Piazza's selection for the award.

"Beyond being a great researcher and an outstanding clinician, Dr. Piazza is also an amazing, caring mentor," he said. "It is nice to see that all her hard work with her trainees is recognized at a national level."

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