via Ka Leo O Hawaii: UH Manoa Student College Newspaper & Media – Convocation Ceremony awards distinguished faculty.

By Junghee Lee


Published: Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Updated: Wednesday, September 16, 2009


M.R.C. Greenwood delivers her fi rst offi cial speech at the University of Hawaiʻi 2009 Convocation Awards Ceremony, in which a total of 44 faculty members were rewarded for their dedication and work ethic.

Outstanding faculty and staff were rewarded for their hard work and dedication at the University of Hawai‘i 2009 Convocation Awards Ceremony yesterday.

Seventeen different awards were given to a total of 44 faculty members from all 10 UH system schools.

This year, 13 faculty members, four of whom were from UH Mānoa, were given a medal, a $1000 honorarium and a certificate as part of the Board of Regents’ Award for Excellence in Teaching, the most prestigious award of the year,  according to Gerald Meredith, faculty specialist and interim chair for UH Mānoa faculty development and academic support.

“The Board of Regents’ Award for Excellence in Teaching honors faculty members who exhibit an extraordinary level of subject mastery and scholarship, teaching effectiveness and creativity and personal values beneficial to students,” said Meredith.

Jim Henry, associate professor of English, received the Regents’ Award but was surprised when notified that he was nominated. He received messages in his mailbox and congratulating voice mails from his department chair and dean.

“It was quite a whirlwind of notifications and came at a difficult time; otherwise, it was quite uplifting,” said Henry in an e-mail.

Every year around October, the nomination forms are sent to all departments, the Associated Students of the University of Hawai‘i (ASUH) and Sinclair Library, and are made available online. Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to nominate a faculty member they believe deserves the award.

“We encourage more students to nominate their professors for the award because they are the ones who interact with them,” said Meredith.

“I nominated Professor (Sang Yee) Cheon because I could feel that she cares for her students more than herself,” said junior Sohyung Kim. “She would be available for me or any of her students anytime and any day.”

Cheon, an assistant professor in East Asian Languages and Literatures, previously taught in Korea, where she said she learned that “a good teacher could help students and change their lives.”

David L. Callies, a William S. Richardson School of Law professor, and V. Amarjit Singh, a civil and environmental engineering professor, were the other two Regents’ Award recipients from UH Mānoa.

By mid-December, dossiers for nominees are due. From February through April, the evaluation phase occurs among the department chairs and the Honors and Awards Committee care of the Office of Faculty Development and Academic Support. Notifications of selections are made by mid-April.

UH President M.R.C.Greenwood delivered her first official speech at the convocation.

As the “newest kid on campus,” ‘ohana and aloha were two local concepts she was given, said Greenwood.

“‘Ohana is especially important at this convocation, as we recognize outstanding professionals for their dedication and successful efforts on behalf of the university,” said Greenwood.

During her speech, Greenwood briefly touched upon future and current plans to improve UH. She described UH as “one of the world’s foremost indigenous-serving universities.”

“I came here knowing that the University of Hawai‘i was already a great university,” said Greenwood. “With your support and input, we will become even greater.”