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September 22, 2000

Three Recognized for Teaching in College of Arts & Sciences

Three faculty members at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls have received the College of Arts & Sciences Outstanding Faculty Awards. Recognized in the area of arts/humanities was English Professor David Furniss; in mathematics/sciences was biology Professor E. Katherine Miller, and in social sciences was psychology Professor Daniel Linwick.

Faculty members and students selected Miller, Furniss, and Linwick for the honor through nomination. Nominations focused on excellence in teaching, understanding, helpfulness as advisers, and their ability to motivate students.

Among the comments made by students who supported Furniss' nomination were:

"He did an excellent job in the classroom, but also was always open during his office hours."

"He is a very inspirational teacher‹one who engages students and is enthusiastic about his teaching. It was a pleasure being in his classroom."

"Knowledge; real sense of humor; professional," offered another.

Furniss joined the faculty in 1987 and teaches such courses as Freshman English, sophomore literature, advanced composition, literature for adolescents, and has taught an honors section on the Vietnam War and reading and writing skills courses for master's candidates from Taiwan.

Furniss' professional activities include membership in the Popular Culture Association, the Conference on College Composition and Communications, the Midwest Modern Language Association, the Wisconsin Council of Teachers of English, and the National Council of teachers of English. He reviews for The English Journal and he has participated in more than a score of scholarly presentations or published activities.

His University and departmental governance activities include service on the Faculty Senate, many of its committees, and in his department as the freshman English coordinator, on the department executive committee, department freshman English committee and department sophomore literature committee.

Furniss holds a bachelor's degree in English from Yale University, and a master's in English education from the University of Minnesota, where he also received his doctorate in American literature.

Linwick received his bachelor's and master's degree in Psychology from Western Washington University. He holds a doctorate in experimental psychology from the University of Minnesota.

Linwick came to UW-RF as an assistant professor in 1987 teaching courses in general psychology, research methods, behavior modification, learning and animal behavior. He also established the UW-RF animal learning laboratory, and has researched animal cognition. Prior to joining UW-RF, Linwick taught laboratory courses with a learning focus at the University of Minnesota. He also worked with educationally disadvantage minority students as a member of the Martin Luther King program staff. He also was an applied psychologist in the developmental disabilities program at the Brainerd Regional Human Services Center.

Students and recent graduates who supported his nomination offered such praise as:

"He¹s a genuine person. He knows how to teach, can relate to individual students well, and doesn¹t have an ego in the way‹it makes students want to learn."

"Exceptional person, understanding and encouraging."

"Made learning fun‹a class I never wanted to miss."

Linwick¹s professional affiliations include the American Psychological Society, the Midwestern Psychological Association, and the Midwest Association for Behavior Analysis and Therapy. He has published and presented extensively in his specialty of psychology

. Since joining the faculty in 1994, Miller has supervised student research, work study projects, independent studies, and internships. She teaches classes in biology, cell biology, microbiology, biological Greek and Latin, colloquiums, molecular biology, and histology, and she is an instructor in UW-RF College of Kids.

Miller received her bachelor's degree in biology from the University of California at Santa Cruz, doctorate in cell and molecular biology at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, and she conducted postdoctoral research associate at Baylor college of Dentistry in Dallas.

At UW-RF Miller has served on numerous department, college and University committees. These include the Faculty Senate disability advisory, Faculty Senate external relations, Arts and Sciences curriculum, Facility Senate multi-cultural advisory, and the McNair Scholars search committee. She also is a college camp instructor, supervisor of the animal research faculty, and is an advisor for pre-professional students.

Further, she has attracted more than $93,000 in grants to support her classroom and laboratory teaching activities.

Among the comments offered by students and recent graduates who nominated her were:

"Exceptional instructor and a person who made the college experience very meaningful."

"I thought cell biology would have been the hardest class in my major. However, Katherine made the class my favorite; it was fun and she made it very easy to learn a difficult subject. She made college fun and educational, the way it should be."

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