Faculty Focus: Dr. Patricia D’Urso
Title: Faculty, chair and methodologist, College of Doctoral Studies
Years at GCU: 10
- Post-doctorate: Black Belt and Green Belt Six Sigma from American Society of Quality and Villanova University, respectively
- Ph.D. in Adult Education with a cognate in Research and Measurement from The University of South Florida
- MBA from Pennsylvania State University
- M.S. in Psychology from the University of Phoenix
- Bachelor of Science from State University of New York
- Supervision Certificate and Industrial and Labor Relations coursework, Cornell University
What is your most notable accomplishment in your field, and why was it important?
My most notable accomplishment at GCU is chairing Dr. Richard Henderson’s doctoral committee. Dr. Henderson and I met in RES 861, the lit review course. I was his faculty, and then I was assigned as his chair. He graduated in 2018 with a DBA after so many life challenges (California fires and home evacuations, throat cancer, a very serious car accident, memory loss, job change …), and there were times when we both weren’t sure if he would make it to that doctoral finish line. But with constant prayers, encouragement and much hard work on his part, Dr. Henderson is a tribute today to his profession as a project engineer at Boeing. He is the ultimate professional.
What are you most passionate about in your field and why?
I get so much gratification from graduating doctors, and I rather enjoy talking numbers. I often say, “If you have collected valid and reliable data, it is hard to argue with the numbers.”
What is a memorable moment you had in class, and what does that reveal about your teaching style?
Many learners would like to do a quantitative study but do not trust their ability with the statistics, so they choose a qualitative method. I have been able to show several learners over time how to have the best of both worlds — they can do a qualitative study and collect and analyze descriptive data to satisfy their need or desire to have some numerical analysis in their study.
What do you like to do for fun in your spare time?
I am an avid walker and biker and a constant student of weight training. Exercising clears my head.
What is something interesting about you that most people don’t know?
I began learning to play classical piano music when I was 4 years old, and I continue to play occasionally. I am an only child, but I have been blessed to have met and cultivated deep relationships with my emotional, psychological, spiritual and intellectual sisters (and brothers) at GCU. I want to learn to speak Italian before I die. Ciao!