Each year the College of Professional Studies gives Faculty Excellence Awards in three categories—teaching, public service, and research—and this year SMC faculty are taking home two of those awards. The winners are Dr. Mark Giese and Professor David Weekley, and they are eligible for university-wide honors in April.
Dr. Giese, who teaches production courses primarily, and who has led the Summer Media Camp activity that brings high schoolers to UALR, has won in the public service category. Among his other accomplishments are extending UALR’s reach to work with the Arkansas Education Association to help secondary school teachers broaden their technical expertise, coordinating an estimated 50 technology-related seminars, and generously assisting community organizations, in keeping with the spirit of an urban university.
Professor Weekley, a longtime teacher of production courses, winner of awards for his own professional work, and supervisor of numerous interns and studio productions, has won in the category of teaching. By involving his students in productions both on campus and off, he has extended the classroom experience by helping students apply concepts and techniques learned there to help clients and organizations complete deadline-based professional projects. This hands-on teaching approach helps students prepare for post-college work in the field.
Other SMC Faculty Excellence Award winners in past years include Dr. Bruce Plopper, winning in all three areas in various years, Professor Sonny Rhodes for teaching, and Dr. Jamie Byrne for public service. Professor Tim Edwards won in the teaching category several times, and Professor Jeanne Rollberg has won in public service twice, also winning the university-wide award.
The Faculty Excellence Awards come with cash awards of $1,000 at the college level, and $5,000+ at the university level. Congratulations to Dr. Giese and Professor Weekley!