Alumni CLASnotes Spring 2003

Around the College



Teresa PorterCLAS Students Receive Prestigious Scholarships
Teresa Porter, a junior double-majoring in political science and sociology, has been named a Harry S. Truman Scholar. One of just 76 winners nationwide and the only recipient from Florida, Porter will receive $3,000 to use during her senior year of college and $27,000 for graduate school.

Truman Scholars are selected for their extensive record of community service and for their commitment to careers in government and public service. A St. Augustine native, Porter is president of the Panhellenic Council and a member of Phi Mu sorority. She has studied abroad at the University of Cambridge and teaches intermediate and advanced level dance at a local studio.

Robert AbelAnup PatelRobert Abel, a junior from Davie, Florida, and Anup Patel, a junior from Altamonte Springs, Florida, have each received a Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. The award was created to encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in mathematics, the natural sciences or engineering, and foster excellence in those fields. Abel is a mathematics major and chemistry minor who intends to pursue a doctorate in theoretical or computational chemistry. Patel is double-majoring in biochemistry and molecular genetics and economics. He hopes to pursue an MD/PhD specializing in molecular genetics.

Each scholarship covers expenses for tuition, fees, books, and room and board, up to a maximum of $7,500 annually.


CLAS Teacher / Advisor of the Year Awards
CLAS had eleven college-level award winners for 2002-2003. The awards recognize excellence, innovation and effectiveness in either teaching or advising.
Darragh P. Devine, Psychology
Robert A. Hatch, History
Selman P. Hershfield, Physics (Advisor)
James C. Horvath, Chemistry
Konstantinos Kapparis, Classics
Benjamin R. Karney, Psychology
David D. Metzler, Mathematics
Ido Oren, Political Science
Sergei S. Pilyugin, Mathematics
Kathryn A. Rex, Academic Advising Center (Advisor)
Brian E. Ward, History


Marianne Mathewson-ChapmanMajor General Visits Campus
Marianne Mathewson-Chapman, the first woman to be promoted to the rank of Major General in the Army National Guard, visited campus in late March in honor of Women's History Month. Hosted by the Center for Gerontological Studies, Mathewson-Chapman is a UF alumnus with a PhD in nursing sciences and a gerontology minor. She gave two lectures on her experiences rising through the ranks of the military and on her career as a nurse executive for the Veterans' Health Administration. She is pictured above with her two daughters who are UF students, Helena (left) and Heather (right).


Nobantu RasebotsaUniversity of Botswana Dean Visits UF

For 10 days in April, Nobantu Rasebotsa, University of Botswana Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, got a taste of how the University of Florida runs business. Rasebotsa shadowed CLAS Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Yumiko Hulvey and met with different groups on campus. Her goal was to begin preparations for an agreement between the two universities that would allow for an exchange program. Rasebotsa, who received a PhD in English literature from the State University of New York, says there are structural differences between UF and her university, which is only 21 years old, attended by 12,000 and is the only university in the country of 1.7 million, but that both want to enhance the sharing of knowledge for both its students and faculty. "The good thing is that both universities recognize the importance of collaboration and diverse interdependence that comes from a shared responsibility of going beyond and joining hands with the rest of the world."


Karen BjorndalZoology Professor is Teacher/Scholar of the Year

UF Zoology Professor Karen Bjorndal has been named the 2003 Teacher/Scholar of the Year, the highest honor bestowed upon a faculty member by the University of Florida. The award is given annually to a faculty member who demonstrates excellence in both teaching and scholarly activity.

Bjorndal, who received a PhD from UF in 1979, joined the faculty in 1987. As director of the Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research, she conducts a wide range of studies on the ecology, physiology and behavior of sea turtles. She has written more than 100 scientific publications and edited several books on a variety of topics, from sea turtle biology and conservation to digestive processing in herbivorous reptiles. Bjorndal teaches an undergraduate course for non-science majors called Ecology, Evolution and Behavior. She also teaches graduate-level courses and seminars on nutritional ecology and sea turtle biology.


Stephen McKnightHistory Professor Visits White House

In February, History Professor Stephen McKnight and his wife Rebecca traveled to Washington, DC for the National Council on the Humanities induction ceremony. During the trip, the McKnights met First Lady Laura Bush and other council members. President George W. Bush nominated McKnight to serve on the 25-person advisory council last fall, and the US Senate unanimously confirmed his nomination in January. He will serve a six-year term on the council, which is an independent grant-making agency of the federal government dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation and public programs in the humanities.


Keene-Flint Hall Dedicated
The dedication of Keene-Flint Hall was held on February 20. Janet and Kenneth Keene, who made the restoration of the building possible through a generous gift, and members of the Flint family were on hand for the ceremony.

Built in 1910 as Science Hall to house all of the experimental sciences taught at that time, the building was renamed Flint Hall in 1955 in honor of Edward Flint, the first professor of chemistry and resident physician at the University of Florida. Flint Hall fell into disuse in the 1970s and was condemned in 1978.

Keene-Flint Hall now serves as the home of the Department of History. The new annex building to the southwest provides advanced teaching facilities for the Department of Chemistry and accommodates a modern multi-media, 150-seat auditorium.


Photos:
Jane Dominguez: Porter, Abel, Patel, Mathewson-Chapman, Rasebotsa, Bjorndal
Richard Frasier, Courtesy National Endowment for the Humanities: McKnight

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