Almost 100 CAS faculty honored for research and teaching awards

Scholars in the UO College of Arts and Sciences have drawn praise both on and off campus while racking up 115 research and teaching awards over the past year.

In his first dean’s reception of 2015, W. Andrew Marcus, interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences recently recognized 92 faculty who have received international, national and university awards, including 19 who received multiple awards. The awards cross all three divisions of the college: humanities, social sciences and natural sciences.

 “You have no idea how good you are,” Marcus said, “and I mean this very sincerely.”

As evidence of that excellence, Marcus said he scanned some open promotion and tenure files to look at the comments made by external reviewers about CAS faculty currently under consideration. He said those comments show that prominent researchers at other universities hold UO faculty in high regard.

Among some of the comments: “World-class scholar,” “projected star quality from very beginning of career,” “undisputed technical leader,” “extraordinary original thinker,” “unprecedented in establishing a new line of inquiry” and “among the front ranks of scholars.”

“That’s what I was able to pull together in about five minutes of randomly selecting from the external letters that have come in,” Marcus said. “Each of these quotes was from a different person’s file.”

Among the recent awards are five international research awards, largely fellowships, to faculty in the humanities and social sciences. They went to Mark Alfano, philosophy, from the Australian National University; Andrew Goble, history, from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science; Dong Hoon Kim, East Asian languages and literature, from the Japan Foundation; Philip Scher, anthropology, from the Catholic University of Lyon, France; and Carol Silverman, anthropology, from the Centre for Excellence in the Humanities, Sofia University, Bulgaria.

A sampling of other awards includes National Science Foundation CAREER Awards to George Nazin and Michael Pluth, both in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and Stephanie Majewski in the Department of Physics. Andy Marcus, also in chemistry and biochemistry, received both the Schrag Honorarium from the University of Wisconsin and was named a fellow of the American Physical Society.

Alec Murphy, geography, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Association of American Geographers; Jeff Ostler, history, received a research fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities; Geri Richmond, chemistry and biochemistry, was named a U.S. Science Envoy by the state department; Richard Taylor, physics, received the InnoCentive Award from the W.M. Keck Foundation; and Harry Wonham, English, was named scholar in residence by the Center for Mark Twain Studies.

The reception was held Feb. 16 in the Gerlinger Alumni Lounge.

—By Greg Bolt, Public Affairs Communications