Celebrating Excellence 2012

Oct 5, 2012

Kettering celebrated achievements by students, faculty and staff, during the Celebration of Excellence on Oct. 4.

Banner and mumsStudents, faculty and staff members were recognized Oct. 4 during the Celebration of Excellence, an event to honor the accomplishments and achievements of the campus community. President Robert McMahan served as master of ceremonies at the event, telling those assembled that “this is a great day on campus, and one of my favorite days.”

“As I meet with alumni and students one of the things that strikes me are the stories that are so foundational, the stories that illustrate a defining moment in someone’s life that are related to what we do here at Kettering,” said McMahan.

He said it is an honor to be a part of those defining moments and that at Kettering, “excellence is not a goal, it is a standard. You touch people. You help them find their role in this world. It is truly an amazing thing that you do every day,” he told faculty and staff members.

For a photo gallery of the event.

Student Awards
Betsy Homsher, Dean of Student Life, recognized students with the Robot Key Award, given to students who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in co-curricular activities. They were: Amy Allison, Katie Dale, Thomas Pawlicki, Kristin Russell, Joe Thielen, Cameron Oskoian and Christopher Oskoian.

New Employees
New employees hired in the last year were introduced by Ricky Brown, Office of Multicultural Student Initiatives. They are:
Theresa Atkinson, Mechanical Engineering
Thomas Ayers, Finance & Administration
Jodi Birchmeier, Business Office
Natalie Candela, Academic Success Center
Jonathon Conquest, IT Operations
Starr Cornell, University Advancement
Cornelius(Kip) Darcy, Marketing Services
Susan Davies, University Advancement
Matthew Hyde, Campus Safety
Kaitlyn Ibbotson, Student Life
Edwin Imasuen, Institutional Effectiveness
Russell Jacko, IT Operations
Michael Jerisk, Academic Affairs & Provost
Kelly Lehnst, Human Resources
Delisa (Lisa) Macon, Recruit & Admissions
Jamie Niehof, Library
Yolinda (Linda) Pierce, Library
Mark Richardson, Indust & Manuf Eng
Jennifer Rivet, Chemistry/Biochemistry
Michelle Smith, Registrar
Joseph Smith, Campus Safety
Monica Snyder, Advancement Services
Michael Stogsdill, Chemistry/Biochemistry
Allan Taylor, Research
Michell Thompson, IT Operations
Abdrahamane Traore, Research
Giuseppe Turini, Computer Science
Elizabeth Welch, Library
Jennifer Windle, Student Life
Justin Young, Indust & Manuf acturing Eng
Kenneth Zahrt, University Advancement
Matthew Zuwala, Campus Safety

Staff Awards
Shari Luck, of Academic Services and Thesis Office, handed out this year’s Staff Award honors. Luck said nominations were received from every department on campus and that nominations were received from faculty, staff and students. The honorees and awards are:

The 2012 Pillar of Quality Award went to Bonnie Switzer, Graduate Office Admissions. This award is conferred upon a staff member who demonstrates outstanding performance, work quality, and reliability within their respective job description.

The 2012 Pillar of Excellence Award went to Dan VanCura, Chemical Engineering Department. This award is conferred upon a staff member who goes above and beyond their respective job description by engaging in additional projects, committees, assignments, activities, organizations, campus responsibilities, or community involvement beyond their assigned job duties which reflects positively on Kettering University.

The 2012 Pillar of Service Award went to Chief James Benford, Campus Safety. This award is conferred upon a staff member who is dedicated to and demonstrates exceptional customer service to the Kettering customer, internally or externally.  The recipient exhibits incomparable customer care towards one or more of Kettering University’s customers and provides organizational value by embodying the true spirit of customer service.

Faculty Awards
The top faculty research awards were announced by Provost Robert Simpson.

The Outstanding New Researcher Award was given to Dr. Kevin Bai, of Electrical and Computer Engineering. The Outstanding Researcher Award was given to Dr. Ezekiel Gebissa, of Liberal Studies. The Outstanding Applied Researcher Award was given to Dr. Jennifer Aurandt, of Chemistry/Biochemistry. The Distinguished Researcher Award was given to Dr. Peter Stanchev, of Computer Science.

The Rodes Professorship, an honor conferred on a Kettering faculty member for a period of two years in recognition of scholarly achievement, went to Dr. Prem Vaishnava, of Physics.

President’s Awards
This year four individuals were recognized by President McMahan with the Distinguished Service Award for taking on additional responsibilities during a year of transition. Recipients were: Jack Stock, of University Advancement, Beth Covers, of the Business Office, Beth Ewald, of Human Resources, and Julie Ulseth of Marketing , Communications and Enrollment.

President McMahan also presented plaques to two academic departments in recognition of their national rankings by U.S. News and World Report’s 2013 Best Colleges edition. Mechanical Engineering is ranked number seven in the country for universities without a doctoral degree program, and Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering is ranked number one in its category in the nation.

Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) Awards

CETL Awards were announced by Dr. Terri Lynch-Caris, of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering.

The 2012 CETL Outstanding Teaching Award recipients were:
Dr. Greg Schneider,
of Liberal Studies;
Nancy Stock,
of Math; and
Dr. Petros Gheresus,
of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering.

The 2012 CETL Educational Scholar Award recipients were:
Dr. Kevin Bai,
of Electrical and Computer Engineering;
Dr. Lihua Wang,
of Chemistry/Biochemistry;
Dr. Montserrat Rabago-Smith,
of Chemistry/Biochemistry; and
Dr. Robert McAllister,
of Chemistry/Biochemistry.

The 2012 CETL Innovation in Teaching Award was given to Dr. Boyan Dimitrov, of Math.

This year’s recipient of the CETL Faculty Distinguished Citizenship Award was Dr. Petros Gheresus, of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering. The award is presented to honor a faculty member who serves the university through sustained engagement in activities such as leadership in departmental or university committees, participation in activities that contribute to the strategic mission of the university, activities that contribute to the recruitment, retention, and satisfaction of Kettering students, and performance in leadership positions in local, regional, state, national, and/or international professional organizations.

The Robert and Claire Reiss Chair of Industrial Engineering was conferred on Dr. Petros Gheresus, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, by Provost Simpson.

International Award

Dr. Basem Alzahabi, of Mechanical Engineering and director of the International Office, conferred the Oswald Fellowship Award on Dr. Bahram Roughani, department chair of Physics. The Oswald Fellowships sponsor international travel, teaching and research opportunities for faculty members and are made possible by a gift from Kettering alumnus and trustee Bob Oswald and his wife Marcy.

Years of Service Awards
Tom Ayers, vice president for Administration and Finance, recognized employees for their years of service to the university. Services awards were presented to employees for five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and 35 years of service, with special recognition for the following:

25 years
Dr. K. Joel Berry, Mechanical Engineering
Carol A. Brooks, Academic Services Office
Denise M. LeFreniere, Institutional Effectiveness
Julie A. Ulseth, Marketing, Communications and Enrollment
Dr. Karen Wilkinson, Liberal Studies
Paul H. Zang, Mechanical Engineering

30 years
Mohammad F. Ali, Mechanical Engineering
Stewart R. Ellis, Liberal Studies
Huseyin R. Hiziroglu, Electrical and Computer Engineering
George Q. Jones, IT Operations
Tracey L. Rodgerson, Video and Satellite Operations
Mohammad Torfeh-Isfahani, Electrical and Computer Engineering

35 years
Dr. Robert McAllister, Chemistry/Biochemistry

President McMahan closed the Celebration of Excellence by thanking everyone and saying “I fully appreciate all the unsung heroes in the lives of our students and colleagues who make this a home for all of us.”

Contact: Dawn Hibbard