In late December every year, we announce our Dean’s Excellence Awards. They are chosen based on nominations from students, faculty, administrators, and staff. Organized alphabetically by last name, the 2020 Excellence Award recipients are:
Karen de Bruin, Associate Professor of French and Chair of our Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures, received our Administrative Excellence Award. Colleagues who nominated her note that under her leadership “global programs have flourished; partnerships with international institutions have been strengthened, supported, and expanded; and new interdisciplinary cooperation and collaboration such as the International Studies and Diplomacy program were launched.” Some of her other accomplishments include creating a testing structure that provides all graduating language majors with an official certificate of their proficiency and instrumental involved with the formation of the Global Language and Area Studies Minor.
Juliette Dunn, instructor of French, received our Part-Time Faculty Teaching Excellence Award. One colleague who nominated her noted that she approaches teaching as a “process of constant reflection and an opportunity to improve and innovate in real time, in response to the changing needs of students.”
Kristin Johnson received the Advising Excellence Award. She’s been advising students in varying roles at URI since 2009 — from serving as an advisor in University College and for political science majors, to now serving as director of our master’s in international relations and director of our international studies and diplomacy program. Colleagues who nominated her for this award praised her “comprehensive and compassionate” approach to advising, noting that she spends “countless hours with students…to ensure their success both at URI and after.”
Kathleen McIntyre, Assistant Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies and Associate Director of Honors, received the Research Excellence Award. She is the author of the 2019 monograph Protestantism and State Formation in Postrevolutionary Oaxaca (UNM Press) and is currently working on her second book project, “Protestant Women and Political Activism in Mexico, 1900-1955”. Her new book project examines how Protestant women conceptualized citizenship after the 1910 Mexican Revolution. In 2020, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) awarded her a summer stipend grant. She also participated in NEH’s “Suffrage in the Americas” Summer Institute in 2018.
Michael Tammaro received our Teaching Excellence Award — specifically one presented to a lecturer, senior lecturer, or teaching professor in the College. Professor Tammaro has been teaching physics at URI for the past 23 years. “Many of my students are taking their first college physics course,” he says. “Of those, some have little confidence and struggle. Some take advantage of my office hours and offers to help through email. One of the highlights of my job is observing such students gain confidence and have success. They realize that with good resources and focused effort that they don’t really need me at all. They have gained an important life skill that will serve them long after they complete my classes.
Nancy Woyak, administrative support in the Department of Political Science, received our Administrative Support Excellence Award. Her colleagues noted that she is a “knowledgeable and efficient administrative assistant, and a vital source of knowledge about university processes.”
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