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Donna McCracken

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This Year



Annual reception honors UIS faculty achievements

May 6, 2004

SPRINGFIELD - The University of Illinois at Springfield held its annual spring reception to recognize faculty achievements on May 5. Chancellor Richard Ringeisen and Provost/Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Michael Cheney made presentations honoring faculty members who have received tenure and/or promotion, been awarded sabbaticals, or granted emeritus status. Three major awards -- the Pearson Faculty Award, the Spencer Faculty Service Award, and the Faculty Excellence Award -- were also presented.

The seventh annual Pearson Award for outstanding teaching was presented to Beverly Rivera, associate professor of Criminal Justice. The award recognizes a faculty member who has established a record of teaching excellence and supports his or her continuing development as a teacher and a scholar. The award was established by a gift from Dr. Emmet and Mary Pearson, longtime benefactors of the campus.

Presenting the award Ringeisen noted, “Dr. Rivera exemplifies the commitment to excellence in teaching that this award recognizes.  She has established an outstanding record as a superb teacher by motivating and involving students, using challenging academic materials, offering students extra assistance, giving extensive time to teaching, and continually updating resources.  Dr. Rivera has a record of sound scholarship and public service in her field and is very deserving of the support for continuing development provided by this award.”

The sixth annual Spencer Award was given to Jan Droegkamp, professor of Individual Option/Liberal Studies. Honoring Robert Spencer, founding president of Sangamon State University, this award for professional development is made to a faculty member with a cumulative record of significant accomplishment in service.

“Robert Spencer emphasized that education for good citizenship was integral to a liberal arts education and challenged Sangamon State University to make a difference in society,” observed Ringeisen. “Dr. Droegkamp’s record of service -- to this university, to this community and state, and, indeed, to the world – has established her as a model ‘professor-citizen’ as well as an ‘international-citizen.’

“She has served on the boards of Planned Parenthood, Parents without Partners, and the Mini O’Bierne Crisis Nursery and was an active participant in the Study Circles program started by the mayor of Springfield to create dialog on racial harmony.  Currently, she is on the downstate advisory committee for the Illinois Women’s Funding Federation that coordinates SECA efforts to raise money and awareness for organizations that serve women and children in Illinois.

“She is known for her ‘Trip to Africa’ presentations designed to educate children and adults about conditions in other countries, and serves as a resource for teaching methods for global education.  During her sabbatical in fall 2003, Dr. Droegkamp was a visiting professor at the University of Botswana where, among other things, she conducted research to create two faculty development seminars for education professors.  She continues to serve as a training consultant to the Peace Corps and is a member of the World Affairs Council.”

Barbara Hayler, professor of Criminal Justice, received the third Faculty Excellence Award, made to recognize sustained, career-long accomplishments at UIS in teaching and scholarship as well as those faculty who best exemplify the ideal of the teacher-scholar and whom colleagues recognize as role models. The award is funded by a gift from Richard and Carolyn Ringeisen.

Cheney presented this award, noting, “Barbara Hayler has established an outstanding record of applied scholarship, seeking and obtaining grant funding for a number of projects that have studied intervention in the areas of sex offending and domestic violence.

“Since 1999 she has also been researching questions related to the processes by which judges are selected, as well as the impact of electoral processes on judicial candidates. Dr. Hayler’s scholarship exemplifies the UIS ideal of public affairs scholarship that applies scholarly expertise to community concerns, and she has consistently involved students in her research projects. She is an excellent teacher, in and out of the classroom.”

A number of faculty members were also recognized for their efforts by receiving recommendations for promotion, tenure, and sabbatical leave. Eight retiring faculty members were granted emeritus status.

Recommended for tenure and promotion to associate professor were Terry Bodenhorn, History; Carol Jessup, Accountancy; and Martin Martsch, Social Work.

Rachell Anderson, Human Services; Stephen Schwark, Political Studies; Pinky Wassenberg, Political Studies; and Robert Wright, Business Administration, were recommended for promotion to full professor.

Sabbatical leaves were granted to Nancy Ford, professor of Legal Studies with an appointment to the Institute for Legal, Administrative, and Policy Studies; Shahram Heshmat, associate professor of Public Health and Economics; Michael Lemke, associate professor of Biology; Sandra Mills, associate professor of Social Work and associate director of UIS’ Community Outreach Partnership Center; Anthony Sisneros, associate professor of Public Administration; and Theresa Sullivan-Stewart, associate professor of Teacher Education.

Recognized on their retirement by receiving the designation of emeritus faculty were William Bloemer, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and professor of Chemistry and Clinical Laboratory Science; Willa Bruce, professor of Public Administration; Jeffrey Chesky, professor of Human Services and Biology; Beverly Frailey, associate professor of Library Instructional Services; Lawrence Golden, professor of Political Studies and Legal Studies; Jonathan Hess, professor of Psychology; Larry Shiner, professor of Philosophy; Gary Storm, associate professor of Teacher Education; and William Warren, professor of Environmental Studies.

All promotions, tenure, sabbatical leaves, and emeritus status are approved by the University of Illinois Board of Trustees. A reception honoring faculty scholarship and creative work is held in the fall.

    The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 40 degree programs – 20 bachelor’s, 19 master’s, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.