Four IUP Faculty Members Honored with University Senate Distinguished Faculty Awards

Posted on 5/4/2015 3:08:53 PM

Four Indiana University of Pennsylvania faculty members have been selected for the 2015 University Senate Distinguished Faculty Awards.

Since 1969, IUP has presented these awards to honor faculty members who make significant contributions to the university.

The 2015 winners are Dr. W. Zachary Collins, Department of Music, Distinguished Faculty Award for Creative Arts; Dr. Benjamin Ford, Department of Anthropology, Distinguished Faculty Award for Research; Dr. DeAnna Laverick, Department of Professional Studies in Education, Distinguished Faculty Award for Teaching; and Dr. Michele Papakie, Department of Journalism and Public Relations, Distinguished Faculty Award for Service.

Each year, the University Senate invites students, administrators, and the faculty and staff to nominate faculty members for these awards, and the Senate’s Awards Committee determines the winners. Award recipients are recognized at the May commencement ceremony.

Music professor Zack CollinsCollins is an active musician as a performer and composer. In addition to performing on the IUP campus, he has recently appeared as a soloist with the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra and the IUP Wind Ensemble as well as in solo recitals at the International Tuba Euphonium Conference (ITEC - 2010, 2014), the South Central Regional Tuba Conference (2010), and the Northeast Regional Tuba Euphonium Conference (NERTEC - 2011, 2013, 2015).

For the past three years he has served as acting principal tuba with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, with whom he was recently featured as soloist on their production of “Tubby the Tuba.” He has been an active chamber musician, performing with the HoodleBug Brass, the faculty brass quintet at IUP, and Eastern Standard, a trio in which he is joined by Heidi Lucas (horn) and Jacob Ertl (piano).

Collins has toured with these ensembles throughout Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New York and has performed at the Northeast Regional Horn Workshop (2014), NERTEC (2015), and the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association Conference (2015). Collins has also been active in commissioning new works for solo tuba and chamber ensembles and has premiered these works at the aforementioned conferences.

In addition to performance, he is also an active composer. Several of his compositions for brass instruments have been published by Cimarron Music Press and Eighth Note Publications. His compositions have been performed by various collegiate ensembles at conferences, including the Southeast Regional Tuba Conference, NERTEC, and ITEC.

Anthropology professor Ben FordFord’s research centers on historical and maritime archaeology, with a particular interest in how people use and modify the spaces that they inhabit. His current research focuses on the maritime landscape of Lake Ontario’s shore, and Hanna’s Town, the Revolutionary War-era capital of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania.

Ford’s work includes directing field surveys and excavations, both on land and underwater, in New York and Pennsylvania, as well as theoretical studies that synthesize previously published finds. Over the past five years, he has published 11 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, as well three edited books, including the Oxford Handbook of Maritime Archaeology. His research has been supported by the National Geographic Society, the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, the Toomey Foundation, the Institute of Nautical Archaeology, and Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Ford is editor of the Society for Historical Archaeology Technical Briefs Series, as well as serving on the editorial board of North American Archaeologist. Beginning this summer, he will lead a multiyear National Park Service-funded investigation of the Ft. Necessity National Battlefield.

As a teacher educator, Laverick seeks to share her passion for teaching with her students with the goal of inspiring them to make a difference in the lives of the children they will teach. A former teacher at Penns Manor Elementary School, Laverick uses her elementary teaching experience, content knowledge, and effective pedagogy to teach her students research-based best practices. 

Education professor DeAnna LaverickLaverick’s teaching methods include modeling as a way to demonstrate key concepts, providing authentic learning experiences, utilizing motivational strategies, incorporating service learning, and assessing her students’ performance through a balanced approach that includes authentic methods. Her teaching philosophy centers on being a positive role model with the goal of equipping her students with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions they need to make a positive and lasting impact on the lives their students. Laverick’s research agenda and service are closely aligned with her teaching practice, and she has authored and co-authored journal articles and book chapters based on her teaching methods. Laverick is the co-advisor for the Beta Gamma Chapter of Kappa Delta Pi, which is the International Honor Society for Education.  

Journalism professor Michele PapakiePapakie joined the faculty at IUP in 2007. During her tenure at IUP, she has tied a service component to nearly every course she has taught, and she easily models outstanding citizenship to her students and advisees. 

As chairwoman of her department, she is responsible for serving on many committees. She has served as chairwoman of the Student Faculty Liaison committee and as a Legislative Assembly Delegate. She also has served as a Title IX trainer. 

In 2013, she led a team of 12 undergraduate students in creating the university’s Strategic Visioning Project. Through that project, she earned a seat on the University Planning Council, the Middle States Steering Committee, and the chapter writer position for Standard One’s subcommittee. She is also an active, academic adviser to six student clubs at IUP. 

In her community, she is running for her second six-year term as a Brush Valley Township supervisor, and she has been volunteering regularly at the Alice Paul House for four years. Papakie, a lieutenant colonel in the Air National Guard, is the inspector general of the 171st Air Refueling Wing, Pa. Air National Guard, celebrating 28 years of military service. In 2010, she served a six-month tour in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.