Four Heidelberg University professors were honored for innovation in the classroom, creative teaching, outstanding research and dedication to the humanities during a dinner with their colleagues and the Board of Trustees Friday night.
Presentation of the 2013-14 Faculty Awards was the culmination of a month-long celebration of academic excellence on campus. A day earlier, the university hosted the 21st annual Minds @ Work Student Research Conference.
In presenting the awards, Provost Dr. David Weininger praised the faculty’s collective contributions to the university. “We are so proud of all of our faculty for so many reasons,” Weininger said. “It is on their backs that this institution gains its reputation. The good news is Heidelberg is rising.”
Chris Tucci, assistant professor of theatre, is this year’s recipient of the Ream-Paradiso Distinguished Teaching Award, presented by Trustee Tony Paradiso. Tucci, an award-winning actor, is credited with pushing the envelope and challenging student learning. His classrooms have included the Irish countryside, Tiffin City Council meetings, the center of Heidelberg’s football field, the local library and the Globe Theatre in London. Tucci said his five-plus years at Heidelberg “have been rewarding in many ways. … I’m thankful for the opportunity to share my passion for storytelling with the community.”
Ryan Musgrave, clinical coordinator and assistant professor of athletic training, received the Innovative Teaching Award, presented for the second time this year. Musgrave, who has worked with athletes on all levels from junior high to Olympians, has optimized the use of social media in his classroom, especially in his 100-level Acute Care of Injury and Illness. Musgrave incorporates the use of social media tools such as Twitter, Instagram and YouTube into his classroom on a daily basis to engage students in platforms with which they are most familiar.
The winner of this year’s Distinguished Scholarship/Research Award is Dr. Julie O’Reilly, assistant professor of communication and women and gender studies. O’Reilly’s expressed her passion for media – and her research passion for television – in her remarks. She has studied the effects of television on consumers and ways it affects perceptions of gender. She turned her research into the recently published “Bewitched Again: Supernaturally Powerful Women on Television,1996-2006.”
Dr. Virginia Gregg, professor of psychology, is the recipient of the 2013-14 Jane Frost Kalnow Professorship in the Humanities. The award was presented by Heidelberg Trustee Andrew Kalnow, son of the late Mrs. Kalnow. Gregg was honored for her coordination of the annual Student Research conference, which this year drew a record number of student presenters. While conceding the conference “is one of the most anxiety-producing times of the year,” she said it symbolizes what is great about Heidelberg. “It is what the liberal arts are all about … exposing students to different styles of inquiry.”