February 9, 2016  

Learning communities' instructors, resident assistants receive awards

Faculty, staff and resident assistants who are involved in the Learning Communities program were honored at a Jan. 27 luncheon for their outstanding work during the Fall 2015 semester.

Special recognition was given to Learning Community instructors (LCIs) who were especially successful in a variety of areas.

The Exceptional Event Planner Award was given to LCIs who have been successful in planning events that are engaging, exciting and integral to student learning and development during their first semester. The recipients are:

* Krannert Direct Admit Learning Community: Debbi Bearden, senior academic advisor and coordinator of management honors and direct admit programs, and Ilana Stonebraker, assistant professor in Purdue Libraries.

* Discoveries in Biology Learning Community: Lora Goonewardene, academic advisor in the College of Science; Jamie Linville, academic advisor in the College of Science; Marsha Rhees, academic counselor in the College of Science; and Karen Wiggins, academic advisor in biological sciences.

The Academic Connection Award is awarded to LCIs who are successful in planning events that directly connect classroom learning with hands-on experiences. The recipients are:

* Speech, Language and Hearing Science Learning Community: David Ertmer, professor of audio speech, and Michelle Mullen, senior academic advisor in the College of Health and Human Sciences. 

The Student Support Award recognizes LCIs who plan events that introduce students to helpful resources on campus and provide opportunities for direct interaction for support.

* Global Engineering Cultures and Practice Learning Community: Erin Cromer, graduate teaching assistant in the Department of English; Anne Dare, postdoctoral research associate in the Global Engineering Program; Mary McCall, graduate teaching assistant in the Department of English; Arvind Raman, associate dean for global engineering programs and the Robert V. Adams professor of mechanical engineering; and Elena Shvidko, graduate teaching assistant in the Department of English. 

* Computer Science and Computer Science-Bridge Learning Communities: Buster Dunsmore, associate professor of computer science; Vicki Gilbert, student and academic services specialist in Engineering Professional Education; Faith Giordano, senior academic advisor in the College of Science; Kevin Jones, academic advisor in the College of Science; Desiree Marmon, academic advisor in the College of Science; Scott Nelson, administrator of undergraduate programs and services; and Elizabeth Watts, academic advisor in computer science.

The Real-World Experience Award recognizes LCIs who plan events that offer introductions to various opportunities within their respective academic fields. The recipients are:

* Aviation Learning Community: Todd Brewer, aircraft maintenance technician; Stewart Schreckengast, limited term lecturer; and Brian Stirm, air operations technical specialist.

* The Nature of Wild Things Learning Community: Jeff Dukes, professor of forestry and natural resources and biological sciences and director of Purdue Climate Change Research Center; Reuben Goforth, associate professor of forestry and natural resources; Julie Pluimer, academic advisor in the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources; Linda Prokopy, professor of forestry and natural resources; and Robert Swihart, professor and head of Department of Forestry and Natural Resources.

Additionally, the Learning Community Advocate Award is presented to one or more LCIs and two resident assistants who were nominated by learning community participants in recognition of efforts going above and beyond expectations in their LC roles. The recipients are:

* Sana Chughtai -- resident assistant, Women in Engineering Learning Community, Earhart Hall.

* Alan Moretton -- resident assistant, EPICS Learning Community, Harrison Hall.

* Sheila Hurt -- LCI, Explorers Learning Community.

* Julie Pluimer -- LCI, The Nature of Wild Things Learning Community.

* Priya Sirohi -- LCI, Business Leaders Learning Community.

* Cara Wetzel -- LCI, Exploratory Studies Purdue Promise Learning Community. 

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