St. Lawrence University faculty, staff receive awards for outstanding service at convocation
Thursday, August 30, 2012 - 5:44 pm

From left, Neal Burdick, Deborah Bishop, Karl Schonberg and Mehretab Assefa (Photo by Tara Freeman)

CANTON - St. Lawrence University faculty and staff received awards for outstanding service at Convocation, held on campus August 29, marking the start of the academic year.

Professor of Government Karl K. Schonberg received the J. Calvin Keene Award; Associate Professor of Sociology Mehretab A. Assefa won the Louis and Frances Maslow Award; Director of Editorial Services Neal S. Burdick received the John P. Taylor Award; and Deborah Bishop, administrative secretary in the First-Year Program, won the Thomas Coakley Award.

The Keene Award was established in 1975 and is given to a faculty member in recognition of "high standards of personal scholarship, effective teaching and moral concern." Schonberg, who also serves as associate dean of international and intercultural studies, holds a Ph.D. in international relations from the University of Virginia. He came to St. Lawrence in 1999 after holding a doctoral fellowship at the Brookings Institution and teaching in a visiting position at Dickinson College. Schonberg teaches courses in international security, international law and organization and U.S. foreign policy, as well as a First-Year Program course in globalization and identity. He is the author of two books and numerous articles on the intellectual history of U.S. foreign relations, constitutional war powers, and international relations theory.

The Maslow Award goes to the faculty member who has shown "the most interest in and understanding of the education and welfare of the student body as a whole." Assefa, who holds a Ph.D. from SUNY Binghamton, is a sociologist focusing on world historical change. He came to St. Lawrence as a Jeffrey Campbell Fellow in 2000 and has taught a course in his native Ethiopia for several summers. A historical sociologist, Assefa is interested in large-scale and long-term social relations and processes.

The John P. "Jack" Taylor Distinguished Career Service Award was established in 1995 at Taylor's retirement as dining services director, recognizing distinguished service to the University by an administrator who has worked at least 12 years at St. Lawrence and who sustains the high standards of performance exemplified by Taylor. Burdick, who graduated from St. Lawrence in 1972, returned to his alma mater in 1977 after earning his master's degree and Ph.D. in American studies at Case Western Reserve University. He leads the writing and editing aspects of St. Lawrence's publications program and teaches a senior-level writing course providing an internship in the communications office.

The Thomas F. Coakley Distinguished Career Service Award, established in 2010, honors distinguished service to the University by an active, permanent hourly employee who has worked at St. Lawrence for a minimum of 10 years as of August 1st of the year. The award is presented to an hourly employee who, in the eyes of fellow employees, offers high standards of performance and dedication to St. Lawrence as exemplified by Coakley's own service to the University. Bishop has worked in the First-Year Program office since it began in 1987, after working in the dean's office for nine years. The Bishop Book Fund was established in 2007 by Bishop and her husband Gene Bishop, who was employed in the University's Information Technology department. Prior to Gene's death in 2010, the Bishops established the fund to assist the students in purchasing books for their first semester at St. Lawrence.

Also recognized at Convocation were Jennifer Hansen, promoted to full professor in philosophy, and faculty awarded tenure and promotion were recognized: Associate Professor of History Matthew Carotenuto, Associate Professor of Performance and Communication Arts Ann Marie Gardinier Halstead, Associate Professor of Geology Antun Husinec, Associate Professor of History Melissane Parm Schrems, Associate Professor of Chemistry Matthew Skeels and Associate Professor of Mathematics, Computer Science and Statistics Sam Vandervelde.