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Five Receive 2016 College of Science Excellence Awards

Each December, College of Science faculty and staff are selected as winners of annual awards for excellence based on nominations by their peers. This year’s winners include:

  • Excellence in Teaching: Hemanshu Kaul, associate professor of applied mathematics, won this year’s award for best teacher. He has worked with students ranging from high school to Ph.D. on award-winning research projects, developed courses based on student requests that are now vital to the department, and is a student favorite, consistently earning above average ratings on his evaluations, placing him among the top few in his department.
  • Excellence in Research, Senior Faculty: Tom Irving, professor of biology and physics and chair of biology, won the senior research award for his long history of excellence and success in biophysics research. Since 2001, he has been the director of the Biophysics Collaborative Access Team (BioCAT). This year, Irving successfully renewed the NIH funded grant for this project for another five years. Between this and his other research initiatives, he has been funded continuously since 1995.
  • Excellence in Research Junior Faculty: Two junior faculty were chosen this year, Kevin Jin, assistant professor of computer science, and Jeff Wereszczynski, assistant professor of physics, for being recipients of prestigious external awards for junior scientists. Jin received a Young Investigator Research Program (YIP) grant from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, which honors junior scientists and engineers at research institutions across the United States who demonstrate exceptional ability and promise for conducting basic research. Wereszczynski was the recipient of a Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation for his proposal, “The Effects of Post-translational Modifications and Histone Variants on Chomatin Fiber Dynamics.”
  • Excellence in Staff: Bridget Vaughn, senior major gift officer for the College of Science, received this year’s staff honor. She received the award for her success in advancing relationships with College of Science alumni and other constituents in order to meet and exceed fundraising goals for the college.