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Faculty Honors 2013
LAS professors bring honor and recognition to the college.
Martin Gruebele, the James R. Eiszner Endowed Chair in Chemistry, has been elected a fellow of the National Academy of Sciences. Election to the NAS is one of the highest professional honors a scientist can garner. Using laser manipulation techniques and computational modeling, his work has increased the understanding of protein folding in the test tube and in living cells, how energy flows through molecules, and how glass surfaces morph and move.
Sharon Hammes-Schiffer, a Swanlund Professor of Chemistry, has been elected a fellow of the National Academy of Sciences. Election to the NAS is one of the highest professional honors a scientist can garner. A world leader in theoretical and computational chemistry, her research focuses on chemical reactions in solution, in proteins, and at electrochemical interfaces, particularly the transfer of charged particles driving many chemical and biological processes.
LeAnne Howe, professor of English and American Indian studies, was among 54 artists to receive a 2012 USA Fellowship from United States Artists, with an unrestricted grant of $50,000. Howe received an award for literature.
Frederick Hoxie, Swanlund Professor of History, has been elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. One of the nation’s most prestigious honorary societies, the academy is also a leading center for independent policy research. Hoxie has published more than a dozen books on U.S. Indian policy, the history of Native American communities, and the meaning of indigenous history in modern society.
Michael Kraus, assistant professor of psychology, has been named a Rising Star by the Association for Psychological Science. This nonprofit organization is dedicated to the advancement of scientific psychology and its representation at the national and international level.
Brendan Harley, assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, has received a five-year National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award, which will allow Harley and his research team to develop a synthetic bone marrow biomaterial to aid the study of hematopoiesis and hematopoietic diseases.
Barry Pittendrigh, professor of entomology, and co-founder of Scientific Animations Without Borders (SAWBO), received the team award for the 2013 Campus Awards for Excellence in Public Engagement for SAWBO. The SAWBO initiative has so far produced educational materials on more than a dozen topics related to health, agriculture, sustainability, and entrepreneurship that can be viewed via cell phones in developing countries.
Ted Underwood, associate professor of English, was named a recipient of the 2013 American Council of Learned Societies Digital Innovation Fellowships. Fellows spend a year dedicated to a major scholarly project intended to advance digital humanistic scholarship in new directions. Underwood’s project is “Understanding Genre in a Collection of a Million Volumes.” His work focuses on making it possible to recognize genre algorithmically and shows that a digital approach has several important advantages.
Carol Symes, professor of history, was selected by the American Council of Learned Societies for a Frederick Burkhardt Residential Fellowship for Recently Tenured Scholars. The fellowship, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will be at the National Humanities Center for the 2013-14 academic year with a stipend of $75,000.
Mark Micale, professor of history, was named this year’s Distinguished Teacher-Scholar, which is sponsored by the Office of the Provost. Micale plans to use this title to address the challenges professors face in trying to connect the front of the general education classroom to the back. He has begun a research project to study which approaches on campus have been most successful in teaching large groups of students. The information he gathers will be used to create an abstract and to develop a resource guide sharing best teaching practices and techniques that can be duplicated in any large-class setting.
Bruce Rhoads, professor of geography and geographic information science, was recruited to serve as one of eight U of I faculty fellows for the National Great Rivers Research and Education Center. The center is a partnership among the U of I, Prairie Research Institute’s Illinois Natural History Survey, and Lewis and Clark Community College. The center is located near the confluence of the Mississippi, Missouri, and Illinois rivers in East Alton, Ill. Rhoads will help advance the research and educational missions of the center and better integrate the extensive research program he developed on the Wabash River.
Ed Diener, the Joseph R. Smiley Distinguished Professor of Psychology, is a recipient of the William James Lifetime Achievement Award for basic research, presented by the Association for Psychological Science. Diener’s scholarly work largely focuses on the concept of happiness and its influences, such as cultural, monetary, and personality factors.
Charles Schroeder, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, received a five-year National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award. The award will help Schroeder and his research team carry out new and cutting-edge molecular-level studies of branched polymer chains.
Robert Warrior, professor of American Indian studies, English, and history, and director of American Indian studies at U of I, has appeared in the Ultimate Guide to the Presidents, a four-part documentary on the History Channel offering stories and insight to describe how the White House has evolved during the past 200 years.