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UWRF Arts and Sciences Faculty Honored

By Meghan Dusek
UWRF University Communications

DEC. 4, 2006-- The University of Wisconsin College of Arts and Sciences recently recognized its faculty by presenting awards for outstanding teacher, advisor, scholarship and service awards, celebrating excellence in these areas.

"For an institute that values excellence in teaching, these awards are especially important," said CAS Dean Terry Brown. "These faculty are an inspiration to their colleagues for their dedication and commitment to helping students learn."

The following faculty members have received awards in the respective areas:

Outstanding Teacher

Arts and Humanities Division: James Mulvey currently serves on a number of committees for the University and the English Department . "This is my second Arts and Humanities Teacher of the Year award," says Mulvey. "I have enjoyed my 26 years of teaching here at UWRF and have been rewarded by working with so many wonderful students who keep me engaged with and enthusiastic about my teaching."

Sciences and Mathematics Division: Eileen Korenic is an associate professor in the physics department where she has taught since 1999. "The teaching award means a lot to me since it comes from students," says Korenic. "I believe in lifelong learning and I hope I share that enthusiasm with students so they will continue to grow intellectually on their own."

Social Sciences Division: Wes Chapin was received the Outstanding Advisor award for the social sciences division. Chapin is a professor of political science, head of the international studies program, chair of the Faculty Senate, and an International Traveling Classroom advisor. "I've been privileged to work with many excellent people over the years," says Chapin, a UWRF alumnus who rejoined UWRF as faculty in 1997. "The fact that there are so many faculty and staff willing to assist and teach each other in our efforts to better serve students is ... an extremely important component of the quality of this institution."

Outstanding Advisor

Arts and Humanities Division: Jennifer Willis-Rivera is an assistant professor of speech communication and theatre arts. She has been with UWRF since 2004. Willis-Rivera also serves as advisor to the UWRF National Communications Association Student Club. " I really am so honored to be selected for this award," says Willis-Rivera. "Helping students is the main reason I became a teacher. The fact that I was nominated by students makes th is even more special. Students are the main reason I came to UWR F; I wanted to be a part of an institution where everyone participated in the mission of educating the next generation."

Sciences and Mathematics Division: Elaine Hardwick is an assistant professor in the biology department. "I was surprised and humbled by it," Hardwick says of the award given to her by her advisees. She came to UWRF in 2003.

Social Sciences Division: Wes Chapin was also awarded the Outstanding Teacher award for the social sciences division.

Outstanding Faculty Scholarship

Arts and Humanities Division : Peter Mak has taught art for more than 20 years in a variety of settings including Arizona and Hong Kong. He also has a number of works on permanent display in galleries across the nation. "I think I am greatly honored by the award, " says Mak. "To be recognized by our peers for the quality of work produced in a sustained period of time is a powerful encouragement and motivation."

Sciences and Mathematics Division: Clarke Garry is possibly better known as "the bug Man" who taught at UWRF for 30 years before retiring in spring 2006 and is a former two-time winner of the Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year award (1993 and 2004). He is also noted for his work with the Kinnickinnic River and travels to Alaska and Canada to research paleo-environmentally significant beetles. "I hesitate to recall the hours, weeks and years that I spent on ongoing research projects throughout my several decades at UWRF," Garry said. "Of course, I did it because of my love of the subjects, whether fossil insects or aquatic invertebrates. It was just great to have it recognized in the form of this award."

Social Sciences Division: Cynthia Kernahan is an associate professor in the psychology department and has been at UWRF since 1999. She calls the award very significant and important to her: "In winning this award it feels like a confirmation of the work and a testament to the importance of doing research that involves students and investigates student learning," says Kernahan. "I think that this is especially important on a campus such as ours that values teaching so greatly and I feel especially honored to have been recognized in this way." She recently received a grant worth nearly $40,000 for her collaborative research on student thinking.

Outstanding Faculty Service

University Service: Tricia Davis is an assistant professor in the department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice as well as UWRF's assessment coordinator. "It is really an honor to be recognized by my colleagues for the work that I have done for my department, college and university," says Davis. "Since starting here in 2000, there have been wonderful opportunities to help me grow professionally here at UW-RF, and I do appreciate all the people I have worked with, helped and supported me in those positions."

Professional Service: Lynn Jermal is a professor of art and has been at UWRF since 1985. She has exhibited in more than 60 art shows over the past 25 years and also publishes articles in ArtTimes, the WAEA Journal and makes regular presentations at state and national meetings. Her public art projects are a fixture in the St. Croix Valley.

Community Service: Gorden Hedahl is a former dean of the College of Arts and Sciences as well as a professor of theatre. "The CAS community service award recognizes all of the work that our faculty do to reach out beyond the campus to serve the local community and region," Hedahl says of the award. "I assisted in the development of several of the CAS faculty awards and the planning of the Awards Wall [in the Kleinpell Fine Arts bulding], so I am particularly humbled and honored to be selected for recognition."

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