Advancing knowledge

Sep 22, 2006

Kettering's highest awards for teaching and research were presented Sept. 20 during the all-employee University Conference.

Those are some of the characteristics of award winners - and that is, in part, what was celebrated Wednesday, Sept. 20, when Kettering University handed out its highest awards for teaching and research. The faculty award presentations were the finale of the first University Conference, a campus-wide meeting to encourage communication, collaboration and community building among Kettering employees.

A large crowd of 350 faculty and staff members listened to presentations by Kettering's leadership team and applauded as a select group of faculty members were honored by Dr. Robert Simpson, interim provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. This year's list of winners follows.

Outstanding Teaching Awards
This award is given to faculty members whose course materials were expertly taught; whose courses encouraged and provided tools for lifelong learning, and whose efforts inspire and build connections with students. The three faculty members honored are:

Dr. Terri Lynch-Caris '88 of Industrial and Mechanical Engineering. Simpson said her enthusiasm and concern for her students and her clear and creative teaching are among the qualities that mark her as an outstanding teacher.

Dr. Karen Palmer '86 of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Simpson said she is known for her energy, passion and commitment to teaching, making her an asset to the University.

Dr. Brian McCartin of Science and Math. Simpson said he has a reputation for knowledge and clarity, and the relevance of his lectures. McCartin is also known for his genuine kindness and willingness to help students succeed.

Outstanding New Research Award
Recipient of this award must have less than five years of service at Kettering and must have at least three recommendations with one recommendation from another Kettering faculty member. This year's Outstanding New Research Award went to Dr. Yuri Sikorski of Science and Math for his outstanding contributions in the area of Photonics.

Outstanding Research Award
Recipient of this award must have more than five years of service at Kettering and must have at least three recommendations with at least one from someone outside of Kettering who is familiar with the recipient's work, and one from another Kettering faculty member. This year's award was a tie, going to: Dr. Michael Callahan of Liberal Studies for his work in the history of international relations and Dr. Boyan Dimitrov of Science and Math for his work in applied probability and statistics - modeling and applications.

Outstanding Applied Research Award
This award recognizes significant, sustained funded applied research. The recipient must have more than five years of service at Kettering, a record of funded applied research over time, and a minimum of $50,000 in funded awards through the Sponsored Research Office. Research must have produced tangible and significant benefits for the sponsor. Three letters of recommendation are required, at least one from outside of Kettering and from someone who was directly involved with the applied research project for which the recipient received funding. This year's winner of the Outstanding Applied Research Award is Dr. Massoud Tavakoli of Mechanical Engineering for his work in vehicle collision safety.

2006 Rodes Professorship
The Rodes Professorship is an honor conferred upon a Kettering faculty member in recognition of scholarly achievement. It provides an opportunity for the continued development of the individual(s) and carries with it a responsibility for sharing significant accomplishments. The title is conferred for one year and recognizes a breadth and depth of knowledge, an excitement of inquiry, a commitment to diligence, the courage to innovate, among other attributes. The winners this year are Dr. Janet Brelin-Fornari and Dr. Massoud Tavakoli, both of Mechanical Engineering, for their work in automotive collisions and child seats. They received $5,000 for their efforts.

Written by Pat Mroczek
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