Three professors honored with Elon College excellence awards

Kirstin Ringelberg, Kathy Matera and David Crowe in Elon College, the College of Arts and Sciences, last month received Faculty Excellence Awards for the 2012-2013 academic year.

From left: Associate Professor Kirstin Ringelberg, Associate Professor Kathy Matera and Professor David Crowe. (Photo by Elsa Keefe)
Three faculty members in Elon College, the College of Arts and Sciences, were presented with Faculty Excellence Awards for 2012-2013 at the college’s August faculty meeting. Elon College Dean Alison Morrison-Shetlar presented one award for each for faculty teaching, scholarship and service leadership.

Associate Professor Kathy Matera in the Department of Chemistry received the Excellence in Teaching Award, which recognizes a faculty member who exemplifies the Elon teacher-scholar – outstanding in the classroom, current in the discipline, and committed to the intellectual development of students. Elon’s mission statement calls for “a rich intellectual community characterized by active student engagement with a faculty dedicated to excellent teaching.”

Matera consistently demonstrates a strong commitment to the teaching and learning process, a student-centered perspective, ongoing reflection of student learning outcomes and student perceptions of learning, and continuous, innovative actions to improve student attitudes and performance. She employs a diversity of pedagogies that promote student engagement, practice and learning such as discussion, writing, case studies and problem solving. Matera teaches a broad spectrum of challenging courses and her students respond very positively to her commitment to them, her disciplinary expertise and her passionate and effective teaching.  Since coming to Elon, Matera has provided many students with exceptional undergraduate research experiences. She is a highly sought after research mentor with students who frequently participate in the university’s Summer Undergraduate Research Experience and who routinely present their scholarship. Her research students typically pursue careers related to their majors and/or graduate degrees in related disciplines. Matera was selected as the A.L. Hook Professor in 2009, a three year professorship to support faculty and student scholarship, another testament to her excellence in teaching and mentoring.   

Professor David Crowe in the Department of History and Geography received the Excellence in Scholarship Award, which recognizes a faculty member whose scholarly work has a significant intellectual impact. Elon’s teacher-scholar model describes scholarship as “the most fundamental form of professional activity.” Elon College values the scholarship of discovering new knowledge, integrating knowledge, applying knowledge, and developing pedagogical innovations.

Crowe is internationally recognized for his work on the Roma of Eastern Europe, research related to the Holocaust, and his scholarship on war crimes, genocide and the international legal issues surrounding such crimes. He has established an impressive record as a productive scholar.  In the last few years,  Crow has edited a volume titled Crimes of State: Government-Sponsored Atrocities and International Legal Responses: Past and Present; published several peer reviewed articles; authored book chapters; written numerous entries for encyclopedias; and penned reviews of others work in his area of expertise.  His recent book on the Holocaust, The Holocaust: Roots, History, and Aftermath is being translated into a Chinese edition: and his new book War Crimes, Genocide, and Justice: A Global History – is in press.  Crowe has presented more than a dozen papers or given talks at regional, national and international conferences. He works to bring his scholarly work and connections back to Elon. He organized a conference at the law school on “International Law: War Crimes, Human Rights, and Immigration,” offering both former students and Elon Faculty opportunities to present at the conference.

Associate Professor Kirstin Ringelberg in the Department of Art and Art History was awarded the Excellence in Service/Leadership Award, which recognizes a faculty member who contributes to the ongoing welfare and betterment of the college, the university and the profession. The teacher-scholar document calls on faculty to “dedicate their talents, experience, and leadership skills to activities that sustain, develop, and improve the entire institution.”

Ringelberg has distinguished herself in service and leadership to the university, the college, her department and Elon students. She served on the University’s Alcohol Committee, helping to plan the implementation of recommendations from a presidential task force and the Promotion & Tenure committee. She has served on the Women’s & Gender Studies committee and served as coordinator of the program for a year. In 2011, she served as the LGBTQ coordinator, working closely with SPECTRUM to plan campus events, co-sponsor speakers, organize vigil protests and build relationships with other campus offices and constituencies. Ringelberg provided leadership for the development of a physical space for the LGBTQIA community and has served on the Inclusive Community Council, as well as on hiring committees for various positions including the new director of the LGBTQ & Gender Center. She is regularly sought after as a valued mentor by junior colleagues in her own department, and those outside of her department who greatly respect her input into their professional development. Within her department, Ringelberg provides strong leadership for the art history program as she advises majors, organizes curriculum, assists in hiring part-time faculty, and organizes engaging guest speaker series.