Dr. Robert Levine selected for top teaching award

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Dr. Robert Levine selected for top teaching award

Dr. Robert Levine, a professor of psychology, has been awarded the top teaching honor at California State University, Fresno.

Dr. Jeri Echeverria, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, named Levine as recipient of the 2007 Excellence in Teaching Award. The provost also has honored the following:

Dr. Doug Singleton, professor of physics, for the Distinguished Achievement in Research, Scholarship or Creative Activities Award

Dr. Michael Botwin, professor of psychology and chair of the Academic Senate, for the Faculty Service Award

Dr. Corrine Clegg Hales, professor of English, for the Graduate Teaching and Mentoring Award

Dr. Scott Sailor, assistant professor of kinesiology, for the Technology in Education Award

Nine faculty members for the Promising New Faculty award, which recognizes exemplary achievements in teaching, research/creative activities and/or service among nontenured, tenure-track faculty. Honorees are: Kevin Ayotte, Steven Church, Jenelle Gilbert, Kenneth Hansen, James Mullooly, Segun Ogunjemiyo, Tamyra Pierce, Mamta Rawat and Klaus Tenbergen.

“These five outstanding professors are being acknowledged for their exceptional contributions to our students and to our academic community,” said Echeverria. “It is an honor, as well as a statement about what we value, to acknowledge them for excellence in teaching, graduate teaching and mentoring, research, service and instructional technology.

“We have so many excellent faculty at Fresno State. I congratulate them all on another outstanding year,” Echeverria said.

The awards include stipends of $5,500 for the Excellence in Teaching recipient and $3,000 each to the other awardees.

Dr. Robert Levine, Excellence in Teaching Award. A professor and chair of the Department of Psychology, Levine is internationally known for his teaching and scholarship. He is highly sought after as a lecturer for international business agencies and is the author of four books and more than 60 research publications. Levine, a Fresno State faculty member since 1974, specializes in social psychology. He is the author of three books. His first, “A Geography of Time” (1997), was the subject of feature stories around the world, including Newsweek, The New York Times Magazine, CNN, the BBC, ABC’s Primetime, and NPR’s All Things Considered and Marketplace.

His recent book, “The Power of Persuasion: How We’re Bought and Sold” (2003) has been translated into seven languages.

As a mentor, he encourages student collaboration – nearly all his publications and presentations have student co-authors. Levine is responsible for developing the first courses in his department that emphasized cultural diversity and cross-cultural issues and also was a founder of the psychology honors program. He has made the classroom the cornerstone of his work and insists that students take an active role in their learning, sending his students into the real world so that they will encounter at firsthand the concepts they learned in the classroom. Active in helping students network with many professionals he knows, Levine sets high standards for his students and motivates them to succeed by encouraging them to try harder–.

Dr. Scott Sailor, Technology in Education Award. An assistant professor of kinesiology, Sailor is known for his groundbreaking use of video podcasts in education. He provides many of his lectures in digital format, ensuring that his students can have the information any time, anywhere and as often as they want. An innovator in the use of new technologies in the classroom, he has incorporated video teleconferencing, digital information exchanges, Web page creation, online discussion boards, online case study databases, Web-based courses and more into his repertoire of teaching tools.

Dr. Michael Botwin, Faculty Service Award. A professor of psychology, Botwin has been very active in the Academic Senate and in the university’s strategic planning process. He has served on the Academic Computer Planning Subcommittee, the Honor Code Committee, the Student Success Task Force and the campus’ BEAMS team. A leader in student service, he has been faculty adviser to Psi Chi, the psychology honor society, and has been a member of the Faculty Mentoring Program.

Dr. Corrine Clegg Hales, Graduate Teaching and Mentoring Award. A professor of English, Hales is the author of four poetry collections. The most recent, “Separate Escapes,” was awarded the Richard Snyder Poetry Prize. Since she became the coordinator of the MFA program in 2001, Hales has created unprecedented opportunities for graduate students, including the Distinguished Author Literary Reading series, the Philip Levine Poetry Book Contest, the Andres Montoya Memorial Scholarships and two cash awards for students in fiction and creative nonfiction.

Dr. Doug Singleton, Distinguished Achievement in Research, Scholarship or Creative Activities Award. An associate professor of physics, Singleton has worked tirelessly in active research in theoretical physics. His work includes 36 publications in refereed journals, 12 published conference proceedings, presentations at 18 conferences/workshops, several external grants and international collaborations with scientists in Russia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, the Republic of Georgia, Costa Rica and Poland. As colloquium coordinator, he has hosted national and international speakers, including internationally recognized experts in physics and astronomy.

The Promising New Faculty award winners:

Dr. Kevin Ayotte (Communication) has taught a wide range of courses at all levels and is a mentor to undergraduate and graduate students. He has five competitive conference papers, including one on bioterrorism that has been accepted as part of an “Emerging Scholars in Critical and Cultural Studies” panel.

Steven Church (English) teaches creative nonfiction writing and literature in the Master of Fine Arts Program. Church has won numerous awards for his writing, including the Colorado Book Award for “The Guinness Book of Me,” and is completing his second book, “The Day After.”

Dr. Jenelle Gilbert (Kinesiology) routinely integrates professional development opportunities into graduate classes. Her scholarly activity is in the area of sport psychology and performance enhancement issues. She serves as the graduate program coordinator for the Department of Kinesiology.

Dr. Kenneth Hansen (Political Science) has developed several important and innovative courses, including environmental politics, homeland security and Native American politics. In 2005-2006, he published five articles in peer-reviewed journals.

Dr. James J. Mullooly (Anthropology) was recognized as the McNair Program’s 2005-06 Faculty Mentor of the Year. He has revolutionized the way Fresno State students conduct field training in cultural anthropology and established the department’s Institute for Public Anthropology.

Dr. Segun Ogunjemiyo (Geography) is a researcher engaged in cutting-edge scientific research for the solution of Valley environmental and agricultural problems. He was instrumental in establishing the Central Valley Environmental Research Laboratory in the Geography Department.

Dr. Tamyra Pierce (Mass Communication and Journalism) has taught both undergraduate and graduate courses using multimedia teaching techniques, She has had five scholarly articles published in academic and professional journals, including Journal of Media Psychology and Human Communication Research.

Dr. Mamta Rawat (Biology) has developed a research program that ranges from bacterial detoxification mechanisms to bioremediation of toxic substances. She has made 35 presentations, 11 of which were national or international.

Klaus Tenbergen (Food Science and Nutrition) has a passion for the culinary arts and a knack for using technology to enhance the classroom. A hands-on and creative teacher in the lab, he encourages his students to venture out into the community and explore the diverse local cuisine.