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College of Science presents 2012-13 faculty, staff awards

Dean Pamela Jansma, center, with College of Science award winners Gaik Ambartsoumian, left, and Karen Twohey.
Dean Pamela Jansma, center, with College of Science award winners Gaik Ambartsoumian, left, and Karen Twohey.

The College of Science presented annual awards to faculty and staff and recognized faculty members who received various honors in the 2012-13 academic year during an end-of-year faculty and staff meeting on May 2.

UT Arlington Provost Ronald Elsenbaumer spoke to the assembly about the transition in leadership the University will undergo with President James Spaniolo retiring at the end of May and new President Vistasp Karbhari taking office. He also talked about how the current state legislative session in Austin is likely to affect the University, saying he had met with Arlington's legislative delegation in Austin last week and was confident they are looking out for UT Arlington's best interests.

The University's top building request in this session is $64 million in tuition revenue bonds for a thorough renovation of the Life Sciences Building. The Legislature has approved $32 million thus far.

"The Life Science Building needs renovation, and [the Legislature] knows we need it," he said. "Financially, we're in pretty good shape right now and we should be even better when the legislative session is done. That doesn't mean that we don't need to be very careful with our budget and make sure that everything we do financially is helping us move closer to our institutional goals of becoming a Tier I university."

Dean of Science Pamela Jansma then introduced the newest members of the Dean's office, including Jim Grover, associate dean for research and graduate studies, and Minerva Cordero, associate dean for academic affairs. She also noted that Ed Morton, assistant dean and health professions advisor, is retiring from UT Arlington at the end of May after 30 years of service to the College of Science.

Jansma then announced the faculty and staff members who recently received service awards for their time at UT Arlington. The group includes:

40 years - Bob McMahon, professor emeritus in biology. 35 years - Jonathan Campbell, professor and chair of biology; Jim Robinson, professor of biology; Suresh Sharma, professor of physics. 30 years - Ed Morton, assistant dean and health professions advisor; Krishnan Rajeshwar, professor of chemistry and biochemistry; Andrzej Korzeniowski, professor of mathematics; Martha Mann, associate professor of psychology. 25 years - Jimmy Rogers, senior lecturer in chemistry and biochemistry; Roger Mellgren, professor of psychology; Rita Anderson, Dean's office staff. 20 years - Paul Chippindale, professor of biology; Jim Grover, associate dean and professor of biology; Eric Smith, associate professor of biology; Kaushik De, professor of physics. 15 years - Gloria Burlingham, graduate program assistant in biology; Tim Henry, Honors College assistant dean and lecturer in biology; Christopher Kribs-Zaleta, professor of mathematics; Barbara Shipman, associate professor of mathematics; Zdzislaw Musielak, professor of physics;. 10 years - Laura Gough, professor of biology; Sophia Passy, associate professor of biology; Michael Roner, associate professor of biology; Ruth Gornet, associate professor of mathematics; Theresa Jorgensen, assistant professor of mathematics; Ping Liu, professor of physics; Marda Gunter, support specialist II in psychology.

Jansma then recognized the College of Science faculty members who were honored by the University with awards during the Spring Meeting of the Faculty and Associates on April 23. Honorees included:

&#9632 Purnendu 'Sandy' Dasgupta, the Jenkins Garrett Professor of chemistry and biochemistry, was named to the Academy of Distinguished Scholars, which exemplifies the University's commitment to quality research and creative activity. Members advocate the importance of research and creative activity, promote a sense of community among scholars, foster research and creative activity and advise the institution on research practices and policies. &#9632 Darlene Campbell, lecturer in mathematics, received the Provost's Award for Excellence in Teaching. The award honors non-tenure track instructors who have demonstrated a record of excellence in teaching, strong personal ark commitment to students and the ability to motivate, challenge and inspire. &#9632Bradley Pierce, assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry, received the President's Award for Excellence in Teaching. The award recognizes teaching that is inspiring, effective and innovative by professors in two categories, untenured tenure-track faculty and tenured faculty.

The following faculty served as mentors for junior faculty in the University-wide Faculty Mentoring Program during the 2012-13 academic year: Tuncay Aktosun, professor of mathematics; Benito Chen, professor of Mathematics; Chaoqun Liu, professor of mathematics; Krishnan Rajeshwar, professor of chemistry and biochemistry.

The following faculty served as mentors for undergraduate students in the McNair Scholars Program during summer 2012: Tuncay Aktosun, professor of mathematics; Jeffery Demuth, associate professor of biology; Rasika Dias, chair and professor of chemistry and biochemistry; Michael Roner, associate professor of biology.

Research Enhancement Program grants for 2013-14: Angela Liegey-Dougall, assistant professor of psychology, "Effects of Stress and Depression on Adherence to Cholesterol-lowering Treatments and Disease Outcomes"; Majie Fan, assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences, "Evaluate two tectonic models forming the high Rocky Mountains by paleoelevation reconstruction".

Jansma then announced faculty promotions. Those promoted to associate professor are: Gaik Ambartsoumian, mathematics; Jeffrey Demuth, biology; Theresa Jorgensen, mathematics; Laura Mydlarz, biology, Arne Winguth, earth and environmental science. Those promoted to full professor are: Wei Chen, physics; Minerva Cordero, mathematics; Perry Fuchs, psychology; Laura Gough, biology; David Jorgensen, mathematics. Promotion to senior lecturer: Nila Veerabathina, physics.

The recipients of College of Science awards were then announced, with the following receiving honors:

Outstanding Research Award - Subhrangsu Mandal, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry. Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award - Gaik Ambartsoumian, associate professor of mathematics. Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award - Kenneth Abayan, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. Mary Jane Goad Staff Excellence Award - Karen Twohey, administrative assistant II in psychology.