faculty Excellence

UA Little Rock faculty members are strong teachers, ground-breaking researchers, and dedicated public servants. We have set aside an evening in late spring to celebrate the contributions and achievements of our faculty at the annual Faculty Excellence Awards Ceremony.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Faculty Excellence Awards initiated by the UA Little Rock Foundation Board of Directors the Faculty Excellence Awards in 1989 to recognize outstanding performance in teaching, research or creative endeavors, and public service.

We are able to continue this cherished tradition because of the valued contributions of generous sponsors. Thanks to the financial support of the members of UA Little Rock Chancellor’s Circle and contributions of the UA Little Rock Board of Visitors,

University-level winners are selected by a panel of judges who review the achievements of college-level winners in the areas of teaching, research and creative endeavors, and public service.

2019 UniversityFaculty Excellence Winners

Public Service

Alicia D. MitchellAlicia D. Mitchell is currently an assistant visiting professor of law and director of the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic at the UA Little Rock Bowen School of Law.

Mitchell ran her own law practice before becoming a member of the UA Little Rock faculty. She has worked at Bowen for almost 17 years and has spent her entire teaching career working in the clinical program, training students on how to ethically and professionally represent parties before the Internal Revenue Service. Read more.

Research/Creative Endeavors

Mariya KhodakovskayaDr. Mariya V. Khodakovskaya is a professor of biology and interim associate dean in the College of Arts, Letters, and Sciences. Her research is primarily on plant biology and nanotechnology, and she is known for collaborations with scientists from other disciplines.

Khodakovskaya’s collaborations with material scientists, nanotechnologists, and other plant molecular biologists and biotechnologists resulted in the development of a unique research area in the intersection of plant biology and nanotechnology. She was the first person to demonstrate that carbon-based nanomaterials can affect plants at genomic and metabolomic levels, which activates genes involved in water transport, cell division, and response to environmental stress. Read more.

Bailey Teaching Award

Dr. Jin Wook Lee is an assistant professor in systems engineering. He has been a member of the faculty at UA Little Rock since 2013. Previously, Lee was a senior engineer at Samsung in South Korea. He connects with his students through a “disciplined, yet friendly” approach to instruction.

Lee gives “high priority” to his teaching performance, which is reflected in his excellent student evaluation scores. He has taught Heat Transfer and Capstone Design, two of the more difficult mechanical systems courses. He has refreshed several other courses in the curriculum, including Computational Fluid Dynamics and Advanced Fluid Mechanics. Read more.

2019 College-level winners and Faculty Excellence Nominees

Public Service

See all the college-level winners in the Public Service category.

Research/Creative Endeavors

See all the college-level winners in the Research/Creative Endeavors category.


See all the college-level winners in the Teaching category.

See past University Award Winners.