Faculty Department Chairs
Eric Sauers, Ph.D., ATC, CSCS
Dr. Eric Sauers is a tenured Full Professor and Chair of the Department of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences at the A. T. Still University (ATSU) Arizona School of Health Sciences (ASHS). Dr. Sauers received his bachelor's degree in exercise science from Seattle Pacific University and his master of science degree in sports health care from ATSU. He completed his doctor of philosophy degree in sports medicine at Oregon State University (OSU).
As the founding chair of the department of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, Dr. Sauers planned and implemented the online Human Movement program and the online Doctor of Health Sciences program, which he currently oversees, in addition to overseeing the Master of Science degree program in Athletic Training, the Human Anatomy Division, and the Biostatistics and Clinical Research Division. Dr. Sauers served as the Director of the Athletic Training Program from 2000 to 2009. His primary research interests are related to the assessment of clinical outcomes and health-related quality of life in athletes following musculoskeletal injury, the examination and rehabilitation of the athletic shoulder and post-professional athletic training education.
Dr. Sauers has published numerous peer-reviewed scientific articles and given numerous state, regional, and national presentations related to his research. He is the President of the American Society of Shoulder and Elbow Therapists and Vice President of the Commission on the Accreditation of Athletic Training Education. Dr. Sauers is the Associate Editor for Clinical Outcomes for the Journal of Sport Rehabilitation and an Editorial Board member for the Journal of Athletic Training and the Athletic Training Education Journal. Currently, he serves as the Chair of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) Post-Professional Education Committee and as a member of the NATA Education Council Executive Committee. Dr. Sauers received the President’s Award from the Arizona Athletic Trainers’ Association, the Distinguished Educator Award from the Rocky Mountain Athletic Trainers’ Association, and was recognized for his dedication to the athletic training profession with the distinction as a Fellow of the NATA.
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Tabitha Parent Buck, Au.D.
Dr. Tabitha Parent Buck is a tenured Full Professor and Chair of the Department of Audiology at A.T. Still University (ATSU) Arizona School of Health Sciences (ASHS). She was appointed as the founding chair of the Department of Audiology in July 1999. Dr. Parent Buck obtained her B.S. and M.S. degrees in Audiology from Purdue University and her Doctor of Audiology degree from Baylor College of Medicine. She has practiced in a variety of clinical settings and has worked as a representative and trainer in the hearing aid industry for AVR Sonovation. She provided academic and clinical instruction as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences at the University of New Mexico, where she was recognized for teaching excellence. At ATSU, Dr. Parent Buck developed the online post-professional Doctor of Audiology Program in 1999 and established the entry level Doctor of Audiology Program on campus in 2002. In 2013, Dr. Parent Buck and the faculty of the Department of Audiology established the AFA Balance & Hearing Institute, an A.T. Still University Center of Excellence. The Institute provides a full range of audiology services to the community and serves as a clinical education site for students to gain clinical and business training.
Dr. Parent Buck has published in the areas of hearing aid technology, otoacoustic emissions, vestibular evaluation, and pharmacology. She has conducted numerous presentations on the Au.D. movement, pharmacology, the use of web-based educational tools, frequency compression hearing aids, neuroanatomy, genetics and embryology. Dr. Parent Buck is a Past-President of the Academy of Doctors of Audiology. She served on the board of the Audiology Foundation of America from 1996-2003. She is also a member of the American Academy of Audiology (since 1991) and has served on the Convention Special Events Subcommittee and the Task Force on Licensure and Payment Issues for Audiology Externship Students. In addition, she served on the Task Force for the Arizona audiology licensure revision from 2005 to 2007.
Dr. Parent Buck received the Joel Wernick Award in 2006 in recognition of outstanding accomplishments and contributions to the profession of audiology and the David P. Goldstein Outstanding Audiologist Award in 2011 for promoting audiology’s transition to the doctoral degree with the Au.D. as its distinctive designator.
Jyothi Gupta, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA
Jyothi Gupta, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA is the chair of the occupational therapy (OT) department. Dr. Gupta has extensive experience in higher education, and nearly 20 years experience in OT education. She has held national elected positions at the American Occupational Therapy Association, most recently as the chair of the Commission on Education. She is also the elected chair of the Executive Board for the Society of Study of Occupation:USA. Dr. Gupta’s scholarship explores contextual influences on occupational engagement and participation. She collaborates with underrepresented groups to understand the challenges in their context to access and opportunities for experiencing occupational potential, well-being and social inclusion. As an educator she is committed to helping students realize their social responsibility in building communities with optimal living conditions that promote health development and enhanced well-being across the lifespan for all members of our society.
Albert Simon, DHSc, MEd, PA-C
Dr. Simon is a PA graduate of the Alderson Broaddus PA program in West Virginia. Prior to ATSU, he served as chair of the St. Francis University PA Program in Pennsylvania. His clinical practice experience includes internal medicine and occupational medicine. In addition to administrative duties, he teaches in the History and Physical Examination sequence. .
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Jim Farris, PT, PhD
Dr. Farris is the Department Chair and Associate Professor. His Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education, 1987 and Master’s degree in Exercise Science, 1989 are from California State University, Fresno; Bachelor’s degree in Physical Therapy, 1999 at Arkansas State University. His doctoral degree was conferred by The Ohio State University 1995 where his studies focused on exercise physiology and nutrition. He completed the APTA's Education Leadership Institute Fellowship in 2015 and is an ELI Fellow. Dr. Farris joined the ATSU faculty in 2009 and is now in his 20th year of physical therapy teaching. His research interests are in cardiovascular disease prevention and human performance. His current scholarship efforts are related to submaximal aerobic fitness testing in children and other areas of human responses to exercise, the screening/management of DVTs/VTEs, and issues related to teaching and learning He also has interests in nutrition for optimal health and performance and he has written a chapter on “meal timing” in a sport nutrition book. His home is in the West where outdoor activity and sunshine is abundant. He currently teaches special topics within courses in the DPT program (cardiopulmonary, physiology, pharmacology, research, and prevention and wellness) and assists in lab classes for physical agents.