The Catholic University of America

May 4, 2007

Professors Receive CUA's Top Faculty Awards From Provost

CUA professors recognized at the annual Provost Awards by Father O'Connell (standing, center) and John Convey (standing, right) include: (seated, from left) Peter Shoemaker, John Judge, James Youniss, Lu Sun; and Timothy Noone (standing).
Five prestigious annual awards were bestowed on CUA professors at the May 3 spring faculty luncheon in the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center. Inaugurated last year, the Provost Awards are given in three categories: excellence in teaching during the preceding year, excellence in research during the preceding year, and lifetime achievement in both teaching and research. The awards in the first two categories come with a cash prize of $2,500 and the lifetime award includes a prize of $10,000.

The nominees for this year's awards in the first category - 2006 Excellence in Teaching - were:

  • John Figura, assistant professor of art
  • Rev. Timothy Friedrichsen, associate professor of theology and religious
  • Eric Jenkins, associate professor of architecture and planning
  • John Judge, assistant professor of mechanical engineering
  • V. Bradley Lewis, associate professor of philosophy
  • Gunnar Lucko, assistant professor of civil engineering
  • Timothy Noone, professor of philosophy
  • Kenneth Pennington, professor of law and the Kelly-Quinn Professor of Ecclesiastical and Legal History
  • Peter Shoemaker, assistant professor of modern languages and literatures

At the luncheon, Provost John Convey named John Judge and Peter Shoemaker the winners of this 2006 teaching award. Their accomplishments are described as follows:

Judge has been nominated for this award for two consecutive years, indicating the esteem with which his colleagues and students view his teaching. Students have indicated that he is always prepared for class, knows his material well, and - most significantly - is able to explain complex technical ideas in a way that is easily understood.

Shoemaker also has an outstanding reputation for the quality of his teaching, and faculty members and students have mentioned this reputation to the provost many times. Shoemaker has accompanied CUA honors students on university-sponsored trips to Europe and made a great impression teaching the students in this less-formal context as well.

The nominees for this year's awards in the second category - 2006 Excellence in Research and Scholarship - were:

  • Luis Boza, assistant professor of architecture and planning
  • Christopher Kauffman, the Catholic Daughters of the Americas Professor of American Catholic History
  • Stefania Lucamante, associate professor of modern languages and literatures
  • Peter Lum, assistant professor of biomedical engineering
  • Adnan Morshed, assistant professor of architecture and planning
  • Timothy Noone, professor of philosophy and director of the Center for Medieval and Byzantine Studies
  • Lu Sun, associate professor of civil engineering

Convey named Timothy Noone and Lu Sun the winners of this 2006 research award. Their accomplishments are described as follows:

Noone, the current president of the American Catholic Philosophical Association, was extraordinarily productive in 2006. He completed the critical edition of the Philosophical Works of John Duns Scotus with the publication of the fifth volume, the Quaestiones in De anima. In addition, he contributed chapters on Duns Scotus to two major books, one published by Brill in the Netherlands and the other by Peeters in Belgium. He also received a National Endowment for the Humanities grants for the critical edition of another work of Duns Scotus, the Reportatio Parisiensis.

Sun also was very productive in 2006, seeing the publication of five articles and the acceptance of two others in some of the most important journals in his field. Sun, who specializes in transportation engineering, frequently has presented papers and invited lectures in the United States and abroad. He has attracted about $1.7 million in sponsored funding, including a recent CAREER award from the National Science Foundation.

Nominees in the final award category - Lifetime Excellence in Scholarship, Research and Teaching - are automatically nominated for the lifetime excellence award in each future year for as long as they teach at Catholic University. Therefore the following nominees for this year's award include some who were first nominated last year and some newly nominated this year:

  • Rev. Christopher Begg, the Katharine Drexel Professor in Religious Studies
  • Uta-Renate Blumenthal, professor of history
  • Lucy Cohen, professor of anthropology
  • Clifford Fishman, professor of law
  • Rev. John Ford, C.S.C., professor of theology and religious studies
  • Rev. Patrick Granfield, O.S.B., the Shakespeare-Caldwell-Duval Professor of Theology
  • Rev. Jacques M. Gres-Gayer, professor of theology and religious studies
  • Pedro Macedo, professor of physics and director of the Vitreous State Laboratory
  • Rev. Frank Matera, the Andrews-Kelly-Ryan Professor of Biblical Studies
  • Nelson Minnich, professor of theology and religious studies and professor of history
  • Michael Mullins, professor of biology
  • Claes Ryn, professor of politics
  • Joan Urban, professor of politics
  • James Youniss, the James R. and Wylma R. Curtin Professor of Psychology

The provost named James Youniss the winner of the lifetime excellence award. His accomplishments are described as follows:

Youniss received his Ph.D. from The Catholic University of America in 1962 and joined the faculty in 1967. His reputation in developmental psychology, focusing on youth, friendships and civic engagement, is international in scope. He has written or co-written nine books and more than 160 scholarly articles. His honors include a lifetime research award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, a senior fellowship from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, and a lifetime achievement award from the CUA Alumni Association.

His fellow faculty members responded to the announcement of this award with a standing ovation.

Praise, too, for the Provost
Provost Convey was not the only one giving out praise for a job well done. Very Rev. David M. O'Connell, C.M., president of CUA, commended Convey for his 10 years as CUA's provost.

"Throughout the past 10 years, I have come to depend upon the wisdom and counsel of Dr. John Convey," said Father O'Connell. "He has served The Catholic University of America with great honor and distinction as our provost. I'd like to say publicly how much I admire John and how much I always will admire him and care for him, not only as an adviser but also as a dear friend. … He has helped provide the excellence that this institution is known for."

The faculty responded to Father O'Connell's remarks with a standing ovation for Convey, who will be handing off the position of provost to James Brennan (who was most recently the provost of Towson University) and returning to being a professor of education at CUA. Convey thanked the assembled faculty for their cooperation with him over the years.

Honoring retirees
Provost Convey also recognized and thanked five CUA professors who will soon be retiring or who recently retired:

  • Michael Foley, associate professor of politics, who joined the faculty in 1989
  • Marilyn Neeley, professor of music, who joined the faculty in 1987
  • Sister Mary Alice O'Connor, C.S.J., assistant professor of music, who joined the faculty in 1974
  • Sister Anne O'Donnell, professor of English, who joined the faculty in 1973
  • Carol Walker Yekovich, professor of education, who joined the faculty in 1984

    -By Richard Wilkinson