Faculty and Staff Receive Awards at Opening Convocation

St. Lawrence University honored several employees with awards for their outstanding service and recognized a number of faculty promotions during its Convocation ceremony, which was held on Wednesday, Aug. 30, marking the start of the 2017-18 academic year.

Eric Williams-Bergen '91, director of digital initiatives, received the Louis and Frances Maslow Award, and Samantha Glazier, associate professor of chemistry, received the J. Calvin Keene Award.

Mary Cosmo, controller, received the John P. “Jack” Taylor Distinguished Career Service Award, while Thadine Wight, specialist in the Center for International and Intercultural Studies, received the Thomas F. Coakley Distinguished Career Service Award.

The Maslow Award was established in 1980 and 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. Williams-Bergen, a St. Lawrence Class of 1991 alumnus, has been a driving force behind a number of key faculty and student initiatives and collaborations across the curriculum, has helped individual students and whole classes transform their research ideas into innovative projects which engage with cutting edge technologies. Nominators praised his capacity to encourage students to explore and expand what they can do, and what they can aspire to do. His peers say that it is clear to all who work with him that he is a treasure, and what is most relevant for the Maslow Award, he is a brilliant teacher, advisor, and mentor to students. Through his work he has transformed the thinking of many faculty, and the campus as a whole, about the ways in which technology can shape scholarship and student learning. One nominator wrote that “I simply could not have even dreamed about this dramatic change in my pedagogy without him.

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. Glazier has been a member of the St. Lawrence faculty since 2004, has been author or presenter of more than 30 peer-reviewed publications, research presentations, invited lectures, and workshops, and is both a leading scholar in her field and in the national discourse about pedagogy in the sciences. Her students and colleagues praise her intellectual energy and ambition, always pushing forward toward the next unanswered question, encouraging her students to do the same and supporting them tirelessly as they do. Both students and faculty colleagues praise her rigorous standards as a researcher and educator; her personal concern and willingness to go the extra mile to support those she works with; and her ethical commitments both in and beyond the classroom. One former student wrote, “She has shown me that I can be in a field where the learning curve never plateaus. Working alongside her played an enormous role in my path to a doctoral program this fall.” One nominator said, “In a recent conversation, she commented to me that ‘your integrity is everything.’ All you have to do is meet Sam to know that she lives this truth.”

The Taylor Award was established in 1995 and recognizes distinguished service to the University by an administrator who has worked at least 12 years at St. Lawrence. For more than 30 years, Cosmo has devoted herself to St. Lawrence University, carrying out complex work with aplomb and with personal and institutional integrity. One nominator wrote, “Cosmo is everything that the Taylor award stands for: a team player, communicator, doer and leader, purposeful, reliable, honest, even-tempered, and positive.” Another wrote, “she remains thoughtful, calm, and reasonable even under pressure and stress … always willing to reach out to colleagues in other offices to collaborate or to respond quickly to their concerns and work through related issues together.”

The Coakley Award was established in 2010 and honors distinguished service to the University by an active, permanent hourly employee who has worked at St. Lawrence for a minimum of 10 years. One nominator that Wight is “a walking SLU administrative encyclopedia, (who) knows the ins and outs of every process, every form, every system.” Colleagues describe her with high standards, tireless work ethic, astounding attention to detail, and prodigious memory. For more than 30 years, Wight has managed many competing demands on her time and carries out complex work with aplomb and with personal and institutional integrity.

The following faculty received tenure and were promoted to associate professor:

Mark Oakes, associate professor of psychology

Mindy Pitre, associate professor of anthropology

Jessica Prody, associate professor and chair of performance and communication arts

The following faculty were promoted to professor:

Sarah Gates, Craig Professor of English

Paul Graham, professor and chair of English

Marcella Salvi, professor of modern languages