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Big Win for Title VI Centers, and Other Award News

Story by
Nancy Joseph

UW School Wins "Super Bowl" of Title VI Funding

The University of Washington has received more than $16 million, awarded by the U.S. Department of Education to the Jackson School of International Studies over a four-year period to fund all eight of its Title VI centers. The funding will support the teaching and study of foreign countries and languages.

“This time around, the UW really won the Super Bowl of Title VI Center funding," says Judith Howard, divisional dean for the social sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences. "The UW had eight centers funded—more than any other institution in the U.S—and the total dollar amount awarded is more than to any other institution.  Given that the competition was markedly more intense this year, with more institutions applying than in any previous year, this achievement is all the more impressive.  We are extremely proud of the superb faculty and staff who made this possible.”

All eight centers are housed in the Jackson School. "The school has a long history of commitment to international and area studies, which is something the Department of Education looks for," says Resat Kasaba, director of the Jackson School.

At least half of the funds are used for fellowships for students studying other languages, often through the College's wide-ranging language and literature departments. Outreach is another important component of the Title VI support, particularly to K-12 teachers and students, with programs ranging from weekend seminars to international tours. Funds are also used to develop new courses with an international perspective, in disciplines ranging from political science to environmental studies to art history.

For more about funding of the UW's Title VI centers, check out the October 8, 2014 story in UW Today.

Honorary Awards for Faculty

Ann Bostrom, research affiliate at the Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology, professor in the Evans School of Public Affairs, and Weyerhaeuser Endowed Professor of Environmental Policy, along with Mark Ellis, professor of geography and director of the Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology, and Alvin Kwiram, emeritus professor of chemistry, have been elected to the Washington State Academy of Sciences. This membership is in recognition of an outstanding record of scientific achievements and in bringing the best available science to bear on issues within the state of Washington.

Gary Christian, emeritus professor of chemistry, has been named a fellow of the American Chemical Society. This honor is bestowed upon scientists “who have demonstrated outstanding accomplishments in chemistry and made important contributions to the American Chemical Society.”

Rebecca Cummins, professor of photomedia in the School of Art, has been selected as the Honored Educator for the Society for Photographic Education Northwest Region.

Valerie Curtis-Newton, professor of drama and Donald E. Petersen Fellow, has been named a member of the National Theatre Conference.

Merrill Hille, professor of biology, and Tracy Larson, graduate student of biology, both received Undergraduate Research Mentor Awards at the UW’s 2014 Undergraduate Research Symposium. The award is given by undergraduate presenters to honor their faculty mentors. 

Samson Jenekhe, professor of chemistry and Boeing-Martin Professor of Chemical Engineering, is the recipient of the 2014 Charles M. A. Stine Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. The award recognizes Jenekhe’s outstanding and pioneering contributions to the development of semiconducting polymers for applications in organic electronics and optoelectronics.

David Knechtges, professor emeritus of Asian languages and literature, was honored by the Chinese government in August 2014 in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing with the Eighth China Book Award for his extensive contributions to Chinese literary scholarship.

Patricia Moy, professor of communication and adjunct professor of political science, won the David Swanson Career Achievement Award from the Political Communication Section and ICA Political Communication Division of the American Political Science Assocation.  The award recognizes distinguished and sustained contributions to the field as planners, editors, and leaders, and in roles that require time and energy, innovation, and personal dedication.

Haideh Salehi-Esfahani, principal lecturer of economics, was awarded the 2014 Henry T. Buechel Award for Distinguished Undergraduate Teaching in Economics.

Stephen Turnovsky, Ford and Louisa Van Voorhis Professor of Economics, was awarded the David Kendrick Prize by the Society for Computational Economics for contributions to computational economics.

Publication Awards

Chris Adolph, associate professor of political science and core faculty member in the Center for Statistics in the Social Sciences, won the Levine Award from the International Political Science Association’s Research Committee on the Structure and Organization of Government for his book Bankers, Bureaucrats and Central Bank Politics.  The prize is awarded to a book that makes “a contribution of considerable theoretical or practical significance in the field of public policy and administration, takes an explicitly comparative perspective, and is written in an accessible style.”

Daniel Bessner, assistant professor of international studies, was awarded the Charles Schmitt Prize for Best Article by a Young Historian by the International Society for Intellectual History for an article entitled "Murray Rothbard, Political Strategy, and the Making of Modern Libertarianism," which will appear in a forthcoming issue of the Intellectual History Review.

Caley Cook, journalism lecturer in the Department of Communication, received first place awards at the Nevada Press Association for Investigative Reporting and Community Service Reporting for a series that chronicled the complicated web of meth use in rural parts of Nevada and Utah and changed the way that the District Attorney charged cases in the county.

Elena Erosheva,  associate professor of statistics and social welfare, and core faculty member in the Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences, and Ross Matsueda, professor of sociology, have been awarded the 2013 Mitchell Prize from the International Society for Bayesian Analysis for their paper, " Modeling Criminal Careers as Departures from a Unimodal Population Age-crime Curve: The Case of Marijuana Use." This prize is awarded to an "outstanding paper that describes how a Bayesian analysis has solved an important applied problem."

Margaret Levi, professor emerita of political science, and alumnus John Ahlquist are co-winners of the Best Book Award given by the American Political Science Association Labor Project for their book In the Interests of Others: Organizations and Social Organizations

Jon Mercer, professor of political science, won the Alexander L. George Article Award from the Qualitative and Multi-Method Research Section of the American Political Science Association for "Emotion and Strategy in the Korean War."

Christopher Parker and Matt Barreto, associate professors of political science, won the annual best book award from the Race, Ethnicity, and Politics section at the American Political Science Association for their book Change They Can't Believe In:  The Tea Party and Reactionary Politics.

Thomas Rothvoss, assistant professor of mathematics, has been awarded the STOC 2014 Best Paper Prize for "The matching polytope has exponential extension complexity," which he will present at the 46th ACM Symposium on Theory of Computing (STOC 2014). Another paper "Polynomiality for Bin Packing with a Constant Number of Item Types," written jointly with Michel Goemans, received the SODA 2104 best paper award at the ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms.

Amanda Lock Swarr, associate professor of gender, women and sexuality studies won The Sylvia Rivera Award in Transgender Studies from the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies at City University of New York for “the best book to appear in Transgender Studies." Her book, Sex in Transition, also won Honorable Mention for the Ruth Benedict Prize, awarded by the Association for Queer Anthropology, American Anthropological Association, and Honorable Mention for the 2014 Distinguished Book Award, American Sociological Association's Section on Sexualities.

Barry Witham, professor emeritus of drama, was awarded the 2014 John W. Frick Book Award by the American Theatre and Drama Society for his book A Sustainable Theatre: Jasper Deeter at Hedgerow. “Witham provides striking insights about American theatre history by focusing on small but significant details,” notes the selection committee. “As a result, A Sustainable Theatre is an exemplary model for theatre historians studying the cultural significance of individual artists or ensembles.”

Chair and Professorship Appointments

David Bachman, professor of international studies, has been appointed Henry M. Jackson Professor of International Studies for a three-year term.

Michael Gelb, professor of chemistry and adjunct professor of biochemistry, has been appointed Boris and Barbara L. Weinstein Endowed Chair in Chemistry for a five-year term.

Christopher Hoffman, professor of mathematics, has been appointed Victor Klee Faculty Fellow in Mathematics for a three-year term.

Todd London, professor and executive director of the School of Drama, has been appointed Floyd U. Jones Family Endowed Chair in Drama for a five-year term.

Hwasook B. Nam, associate professor of history and international studies, has been appointed James B. Palais Endowed Professor for a three-year term.

Saadia Pekkanen, professor of international studies, has been appointed Job and Gertrud Tamaki Professor for a five-year term.

Steffen Rohde, professor of mathematics, has been appointed Robert B. Warfield, Jr. Faculty Fellow in Mathematics for a three-year term.

Cody Schlenker, assistant professor of chemistry, has been appointed Bernard and Claudine Nist Faculty Fellow in Chemistry for a one-year term.

Robin Chapman Stacey, professor of history, has been appointed Joff Hanauer Honors Professor in Western Civilization, for a two-year term.

Other Awards

Vincent Gallucci, director of Canadian Studies and Arctic and International Relations in the Jackson School of International Studies, and professor of aquatic and fishery sciences, has been awarded the 2014 Faculty Research Award from the European Union Center of Excellence at the UW.  

Richard Gray, professor of Germanics and Byron W. and Alice L. Lockwood Professor in the Humanities, andSabine Wilke, professor of Germanics, have received Hood Fellowships at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, which include a two-week residency in March 2015.

Munira Khalil, associate professor of chemistry, has been named to a Journal of Physical Chemistry B Lectureship by the Division of Physical Chemistry of the American Chemical Society. The lectureships were established to recognize the contributions of young investigators who have made major impacts on the field of physical chemistry related to research areas published in the Journals of Physical Chemistry.

Sándor Kovács, Craig McKibben and Sarah Merner Endowed Professor in Mathematics, and Eric Shea-Brown, associate professor of applied mathematics and adjunct in physiology and biophysics, have been named Simons Fellows in Mathematics. Kovács is the fourth professor from the UW Department of Mathematics to receive this honor from the Simons Foundation in the past three years.

Carole Lee, assistant professor of philosophy, and Elena Erosheva,  associate professor of statistics and social welfare and core faculty member in the Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences, won first prize in the category “Most Creative Idea for Detection of Bias in Peer Review” in the 2014 America Competes Act Challenge. See related Perspectives story.

Sarah Levin-Richardson, assistant professor of classics, won a 2014-15 Rome Prize to the American Academy in Rome. The Rome Prize is awarded annually to approximately 30 individuals who “represent the highest standard of excellence in the arts and humanities."  In Rome, Levin-Richardson will be continuing work on a project about the brothel at Pompeii that was built specifically for that purpose.

Richard Salomon, professor of Asian languages and literature, has been elected president of the American Oriental Society, the oldest learned society in America devoted to a particular field of scholarship.

Xu Tan, assistant professor of economics, was named #4 in Pacific Standard Magazine’s 2014 “Top 30 Thinkers Under 30,” described as “the accomplished economist who wants to empower whole societies” for her research focused on the intersection of development economics and theory.