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University Happenings


Distinguished Faculty Awards

Based on recommendations of the University Senate and awarded during the university’s Honors Day celebration in the spring, the awards were bestowed on the following faculty members: 


For Teaching: Dan Tannacito, a faculty member at IUP since 1977


For Research: Gawdat Bahgat, a faculty member in the Political Science Department since 1995


For Creative Arts: Jack Stamp ‘76, a faculty member in the Music Department since 1990


For Teaching: For Service: Caleb Finegan, a faculty member in the History Department since 2000

National Endowment for the Humanities/Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Post-Doctoral Rome Prize

Awarded to Paul Arpaia, History Department faculty member, who is taking up a year’s residency at the American Academy in Rome

Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship

Awarded to Elizabeth Paladin, a junior this fall in the Robert E. Cook Honors College and a Chemistry major. More about Paladin will appear in IUP Magazine’s Fall issue.

Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival National Award in Sound Design

Recognized as a competition finalist in IUP Magazine’s Spring issue, David Hunter received the national award in April and is spending the summer on a full fellowship at the Playwrights Conference of the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, Waterford, Conn.


Geoscience professor and author Karen Rose Cercone was the second speaker in the Mary Jane Schafer Distinguished Speaker series sponsored by the IUP Libraries. Her talk in April focused on “Gratuitous Science: One Geologist’s Journey through Genre and Serious Fiction.” Cercone has written or cowritten more than fifteen science fiction and mystery novels, including several Star Trek novels, and has often used the pen name La Graf. The speaker series is underwritten by a bequest from the late Mary Jane McMurray Schafer ’31. A dedication ceremony for the Mary Jane Schafer Memorial Collection of Current and Leisure Reading in Stapleton Library followed Cercone’s presentation.

The June and July issues of Woodwork and a recent issue of Fine Woodworking magazine featured IUP’s Center for Turning and Furniture Design, which is located in the College of Fine Arts. The Adirondack Chair has become a periodic theme for the center; six pages of Woodwork discussed the second exhibition to be connected with the theme and included an interview with faculty member Chris Weiland ’72. Fine Woodworking carried photos from the show, as well. Funding has been received by the center to begin developing the third Adirondack Chair exhibition in Spring, 2008.

Ronald Lunardini ’69 received the 2007 Outstanding Mentor to Graduate Students Award, presented at the decennial joint convention of the American College Personnel Association and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators last spring. Many of the alumni, current students, and colleagues who supported his nomination were in attendance at the award presentation and were among the more than 9,500 participants at the conference.  Lunardini is a faculty member in the Department of Student Affairs in Higher Education.

IUP English professor James Cahalan delivered the keynote address in May at the twenty-ninth annual meeting of the Thomas Wolfe Society in Asheville, N.C. Cahalan’s book Edward Abbey: A Life, which won the 2002 Thomas J. Lyon Book Award in Western American Literary Studies from the Western Literature Association as the best book of the year, is in its third printing.

Biology professor Thomas Lord has been elected to a two-year term as president of the Society for College Science Teachers. A divisional affiliate of the National Science Teachers Association, the society provides a forum for interdisciplinary interaction among teachers of science at all institutions of higher education. In May, it released a position statement on the teaching of evolution. Lord was quoted as saying, “We think it is important to add our voice to the list of organizations who support a robust and central role for evolution in the science curriculum. We do students a great disservice if we fail to teach evolution as one of the key principles in science today.”

At IUP’s annual Research Appreciation luncheon in April, sponsored by the School of Graduate Studies and Research and the IUP Research Institute, several faculty  and staff members received awards. They included David Hanauer (English), New Investigator Award; Jeffery Larkin (Biology), Outstanding Achievement in Research; Stanford Mukasa (Journalism), Outstanding Achievement in Curriculum and Instruction; Erick Lauber (Communications Media), Outstanding Achievement in Public Service; and Malinda Cowles ’80, M’87 (Center for Student Life), Outstanding Commitment to Sponsored Programs.