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FROSTBURG — The Frostburg State University Honors Convocation will be held May 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the Pealer Recital Hall of FSU’s Woodward D. Pealer Performing Arts Center.

The 2023 Faculty Achievement Award will be bestowed on six faculty members and outstanding graduating seniors will be recognized by their departments for academic excellence and leadership.

This year’s award winners for teaching are David P. Puthoff, department of biology, and John F. Raucci, department of English and foreign language. Academic Achievement award winners include Rebecca M. Chory, department of management, and Heather L. Hurst, department of educational professions. The recipients of the University and Community Service award are Kristine McGee, department of educational professions, and Kara Rogers Thomas, department of sociology.

Puthoff has become a model of innovative practices in the teaching of biological sciences with a focus on creating activities and projects that let students participate in hands-on activities with the confidence necessary to fully engage in the field. Students can discover and characterize new viruses, identify and map genes involved in cancer, design and carry out their own experiments and co-author peer-reviewed publications.

Raucci spearheaded the redesign of English 101, using his ongoing scholarship in rhetoric and composition to offer innovative ways of teaching argumentation and critical proficiencies, including audience definition, remixing and recursive writing practice. His courses and creative assignments generate skills transferrable in and out of the classroom. Raucci’s vision of writing instruction inspires his colleagues and influences the development of undergraduates at FSU.

Chory’s exceptional accomplishments, including peer-reviewed journal articles, published book chapters and classroom research citations, have provided her field with significant contributions and professional development opportunities. She has received 25 Top Paper Awards for her conference presentations and has served on editorial boards, as a special issue editor and a reviewer for more than 25 journals. Chory has also been a consultant and guest speaker domestically and abroad and has been interviewed and cited by premium news media outlets for her outstanding contributions.

Hurst’s contributions to her field include numerous publications and conference presentations. She focuses on creating equitable educational spaces of belonging, writing research for audiences of practitioners and contributing scholarly work that reflects on her core value of collaboration. As the director of the doctorate in educational leadership program, her enthusiasm and commitment are reflected through her engagement in research that focuses on social justice and belonging. Hurst’s leadership has led to the program’s nomination as a finalist this year for the Carnegie Project on the Educational Doctorate Program of the Year.

McGee takes the meaning of service to a higher level through her work creating, nurturing and leading the Promoting Awareness of Literacy Skills free summer literacy program. Centered at the University System of Maryland Hagerstown, the program provides food and literacy enrichment to children, often from marginalized populations. McGee pairs graduate students who serve as literacy leaders and coaches with the children in the program to help them develop their thirst for knowledge and literacy.

Thomas’ commitment to bringing awareness to and sustaining Appalachian culture and traditions is at the heart of her service to the university and region. She has coordinated the annual FSU Appalachian Festival and her leadership at Mountain City Traditional Arts has resulted in more than 100 performing artists coming to Frostburg along with a winter farmers market that promotes the region’s agricultural heritage. A member of the Allegany County Museum board of directors, she was the local curator for the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum on Main Street traveling exhibit.

For more information on the Faculty Achievement Awards, contact the FSU Office of the Provost at 301-687-4211.

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