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Faculty Scholarship Honored at Recognition Luncheon

Provost Papazian (third from right) and the faculty honorees.
Provost Papazian (third from right) and the faculty honorees.

Several Lehman faculty members were honored for their scholarly accomplishments at the College's first Faculty Recognition Luncheon May 13 in the East Dining Room.

Provost Mary A. Papazian presented gifts to faculty from the divisions of Arts and Humanities, Education, Natural and Social Sciences, and also the Library. "It is important to take a moment to acknowledge the excellence with which our colleagues do their jobs," said Dr. Papazian.

Three of the faculty members—Professors Margot Mifflin, Victoria Sanford, and Eleanore Wurtzel—have been selected to receive the College's 2009 awards for reseach, scholarship, and creative works and spoke about their work.

Professor Mifflin (Department of English) discussed her new book The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman. It tells the story of the abduction of Olive Oatman by Yavapai Indians in the American West and her later assimilation among the Mohave Indians, who tattooed her face and raised her as their own. At nineteen, she was ransomed back to white society and became an instant celebrity. Professor Mifflin is an expert on women's issues, art, and contemporary culture. Her other publications include Bodies of Subversion: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo, as well as articles in The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Salon.com.

Professor Sanford (Anthropology), who recently received a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, spoke about how she became interested in the field of anthropology while volunteering with immigrant communities from Mexico. A human rights activist and scholar, she focuses her research on collective memory, community reconstruction, human rights, and international humanitarian law during internal armed conflicts. She has conducted extensive field research with Maya communities in Guatemala and Colombia, and with indigenous peace communities in Colombia, as well as with refugee communities in Ecuador. Professor Sanford will use the award to work on her new book, The Land of Pale Hands, which will examine post-conflict violence, social cleansing, and feminicide in Guatemala.

Professor Wurtzel (Biological Sciences) discussed her ongoing work to develop tools for breeding new lines of maize rich in provitamin A—a finding that could greatly reduce malnutrition around the world. Each year, Vitamin A deficiency is the cause of eye disease in approximately forty million children and places hundreds of millions at risk for other health disorders. Maize is the most common crop grown in much of sub-Saharan Africa and the Americas, where substantial numbers of children are deficient in vitamin A. Using a variety grown in the Lehman cornfield, Professor Wurtzel and her team investigate gene regulation in crop plants to understand how carotenoid content and composition are controlled. Her research has been widely published in journals such as Science. She is also a member of the CUNY Graduate Center faculty.

Following is a list of the other faculty who were recognized at the luncheon:

Division of Arts and Humanities

  • Carmen Esteves, Languages and Literatures, Faculty Recognition Award in Service
  • Alyshia Galvez, Latin American and Puerto Rican Studies, Faculty Recognition Award in Research and Scholarship
  • Amy Larimer, Journalism, Communication, and Theatre, Faculty Recognition Award in Service
  • John Locke, Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, Faculty Recognition Award in Research and Scholarship
  • Paula Loscocco, English, Faculty Recognition Award in Teaching
  • Janette Tilley, Music, Faculty Recognition Award in Teaching

Division of Education

  • Margo DelliCarpini, Middle & High School Education, Faculty Recognition Award in Teaching
  • Rogelio Fernandez, Early Childhood & Childhood Education, Faculty Recognition Award in Teaching

Division of Natural and Social Sciences

  • Maryam Bamshad-Alavi, Biological Sciences, Faculty Recognition Award in Teaching
  • Christopher Bonastia, Sociology, Faculty Recognition Award in Research and Scholarship
  • Christopher Gerry, Physics and Astronomy, Faculty Recognition Award in Research and Scholarship
  • Patricia Kolb, Social Work, Faculty Recognition Award in Teaching
  • Jane Levitt, Health Sciences, Faculty Recognition Award in Service
  • Vincent Prohaska, Psychology, Faculty Recognition Award in Service

Library

  • Robert Farrell, Library, Faculty Recognition Award in Service
  • Kachuen Gee, Library, Faculty Recognition Award in Research and Scholarship