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UH System Success Stories AUGUST 2008
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Photo: Arthur B. WegleinArthur B. Weglein, Hugh Roy and Lillie Cranz Cullen Distinguished Professor of Physics, is one of eight 2008 recipients of the Townsend Harris Medal, the highest honor awarded alumni of his alma mater, the City College of New York. Previous awardees include Nobel laureates Arno Penzias and Leon Lederman, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, polio vaccine developer Dr. Jonas Salk and former Intel CEO Andrew Grove.


Sharanya Murty (’07) and Sujit S. Sansgiry, associate professor of pharmacy administration, recently received a 2008 Presentation Merit Award for Contributed Research Paper from the American Pharmacists Association Academy of Pharmacy Practice and Management (APhA-APPM). The award was in recognition of their project, “New Information Card Labels to Improve Consumer Comprehension for Behind-the-Counter Pseudoephedrine Products.” Sansgiry also was a co-author on the APhA-APPM award-winning paper in 2007.

Former Cougar softball pitcher Angel Shamblin was named the 2007-2008 Conference USA Female Athlete of the Year. Shamblin plays softball for the Akron (Ohio) Racers of the National Pro Fastpitch softball league.

Bauer College of Business alumnus Rabih Zeidan (’08) was recognized by the American Accounting Association with an Outstanding Dissertation Award from the association’s government and nonprofi t section. Zeidan received the award for his dissertation “Charity Care Measurement, Political Cost Constraints and Discretionary Spending by Hospitals.”


John J. Antel, College of Liberal Arts and Social Studies dean, is the recipient of the 2008 Air Force Association Houston’s Educator of the Year Award. The award recognizes his dedication and support for the principles of Air Force aerospace leadership.

Wynne Chin, professor of decision and information sciences, is one of the top five human computer interaction researchers and one of the top 10 researchers in technology acceptance, according to the Journal of the Association for Information Systems and the Communications of the Association for Information Systems.

Rives Taylor, adjunct professor of architecture, was honored as a 2008 Fellow of the American Institute of Architects.


UH presented its top staff honor, the C.F. McElhinney Distinguished Service Award, to Beverly Green, custodian supervisor for Residence Life and Housing. UH also recognized six employees with Staff Excellence awards and another with the George Magner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Academic Advising. Staff Excellence Award recipients are Michael Barnes, supervisor of the carpenter shop; Fred McGhee, director at the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics business operations; Lois Shaw, custodial supervisor at the University Center and associated facilities (UC); Edward Sierra, administrator coordinator in the department of research financial services; Linda Jauregui, UC office coordinator; and Juanita Virgin, human resources information management data control clerk. Troy Hopkins, academic adviser 2 in the Bauer College of Business, received the George Magner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Advising.

Alex Alexander is one of 50 people in the nation who have successfully completed the APPA (Association of Physical Plant Administrators) Educational Facilities Professional knowledge-based exam. The distinction makes him a facilities professional in the areas of general administration and management, operations and maintenance, facilities planning and construction, and energy and environment.

Men’s basketball head coach Tom Penders was one of six prominent sports figures named for induction into the Fairfield County, Conn., Sports Hall of Fame.


Bauer College of Business students won in international and regional competitions. Joe Corkin, Mauricio Franco, John Keeton and Quyen Nguyen placed third in the international Chartered Financial Analyst Institute’s Research Challenge. Ana Lucia Chaverria and Rieza Marukot took first and second place, respectively, in the NYMEX Open Outcry Competition, which included 75 competitors from universities in Texas and Oklahoma.

Pharmacy student Laura Edmundson was one of only 28 students nationwide to receive a 2008 RXportfolio National Achievement Award. The award recognizes pharmacy students for creating exceptional RXportfolios, an online student portfolio service that allows students to post their resumes, employment history, goals and other personal, academic and professional activities.

Pharmacy student Ann Marie Prazak recently received the Glenda Lawson McRee Pharmacy Student Award and the Student Research Poster Award from the Texas Society of Health-System Pharmacists (TSHP). In addition, pharmacy students Jacob Hall and Ngocanh “Jennifer” Phan won first place in TSHP’s Clinical Skills Competition.


The Shea Street Building, home of the UHD College of Business, was recognized as a “project of distinction” for outstanding design and architecture in the Educational Design Showcase Annual Awards – Colleges and Universities. The award is sponsored by College Planning and Management magazine.

Ivonne MontalbanoUHD Employment Services and Operations has received the Impact Award for human resources service technology from HR Houston. The award recognizes human resource work groups that create significant business value for their organizations. Ivonne Montalbano, vice president of employment services and operations, accepted the award on behalf of the university.


Daniel Brenes (‘05) was awarded the Alfred P. Sloan Scholarship. The $38,500 scholarship award will help Brenes continue doctoral studies at Pennsylvania State University.

Anna Calvo (‘02) has been awarded Houston United Way’s 2008 Dorothy F. Caram Commitment to Leadership Award for serving people with disabilities.

Bettina Carter (’97) recently had her first novel, “Where the Heart Is,” published by Better Day Publishing Co.

UHD has named a new Red Rose Scholarship endowment in honor of alumni Armando (’84,’85), Ricky Jr. (‘83) and Albert (’82, ‘83) Diaz. The brothers belonged to the Latin American Student Service Organization and started the Signature Red Rose Ball in 1981 with the help of their parents.

Steve Jones (’99) was hired as vice president of Merrill Lynch Commodity Partners L.P.

Joe Stiles (‘99) was selected Volunteer of the Year by the Houston West Chamber of Commerce.

Mario Salinas (’08) was chosen out of 400 applicants to work for the city of Houston for a year beginning next fall in the City Hall Fellows program. Some 90 candidates were interviewed for 10 spots in both Houston and San Francisco.


Merilee Cunningham, associate professor of English, received a grant to be a cultural envoy for the Department of State in Serbia and Macedonia. The grant funded a three-week poetry tour of the two countries.

Jacquie Baly-Chaumette, adjunct professor in political science, was elected to the Sugar Land City Council.

Floyd Newsum, professor of art and artist-in-residence, received an Artadia: The Fund for Art and Dialogue Artadia Award. He was chosen as one of the top three awardees from a pool of more than 200 Harris County applicants.

Leigh Van Horn had his book, “Reading Photographs to Write with Meaning and Purpose, Grades 4-12,” published. Van Horn is an associate professor of education.


Lucy Bowen, Web developer publication specialist, was awarded the 2008 UHD Staff Merit Award.


The Houston Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation presented awards to Lauren Gracia, Kristopher Overholt and Nguyen Lam for achieving the highest grade-point average in computer and mathematical sciences, engineering technology and natural science at UHD.

Benedict Khoo and Kristopher Overholt won the Brown Foundation Poster Presentation Award. The Brown Foundation Leadership awards went to Ali Abedi, Adolfo Aranzales, Nguyen Lam, Danil Safin, Overholt and Liem Luong. Luong also received a 2008-2009 Microsoft Technical Scholarship.

Autumn Jodzi was named the recipient of the Center for Public Policy’s spring 2008 Government Internship Award. A business student team, which included Mark Longerot, Justin Lyssy, Shah Rukh and David Bryan Sandoval, placed in the top five of the Spring 2008 Capsim Management Simulations Inc. Foundation Challenge. Teams from the United States, Europe, Asia, South and Central America, Australia and Africa competed in the challenge. Steven Maranville, associate professor of management, sponsored the team.

Christine Mastracchio, business student, received the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston Outstanding Intern 2008 Award.

Dorothea LermanDorothea Lerman, professor of psychology, is adding individualized training for children with autism spectrum disorders to the host of services offered by the newly established UH-Clear Lake Center for Autism and Developmental Disabilities. Made possible through a partnership with Mental Health and Mental Retardation Authority of Harris County, the collaborative initiative is funded by a $1.25 million grant from the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services.


Gavin Clabaugh (’80), vice president and chief information officer of the C.S. Mott Foundation, was named one of the 2007 NPT Power and Influence Top 50 by Nonprofit Times.

Kathy Jo Cook (’92) has been named president of the Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts. She is a litigator for the law firm of Keches & Mallen.

Robert J. Exley (’82, ’84) has been appointed president of Snead State Community College in Boaz, Ala.

Karen H. Perry (’78), co-authored “Lil’ Tex Visits the Alamo,” which was recognized by ABC’s Children’s Picture Book Competition.


Terry Feagin, professor of computer science, received the 2008 President’s Distinguished Research Award. Professor of finance Grady Perdue received the 2008 President’s Distinguished Service Award. Professor of finance Edward Waller was presented with the 2008 President’s Distinguished Teaching Award.

UHCL awarded 2008-2009 faculty fellowships to Mike Hanna, professor of decision sciences; Sandria Hu, professor of fine arts; Dorothea Lerman, professor of psychology; and Jack Lu, professor of chemistry.

Everette Penn, associate professor of criminology, edited the book “Homeland Security and Criminal Justice: Five Years After 9/11.”

The National Science Teachers Association honored Steven Rakow, former program chair and professor of curriculum and instruction, with its Legacy Award for his “signifi cant contributions to the association as well as his dedication and service to science education.”

Alix Valenti, assistant professor of legal studies and management, received a Fulbright Scholar Award to lecture in business administration at National Sun Yat-Sen University in Taiwan during fall 2008.


UHCL recently recognized Cindy Cook, associate director of career and counseling services, with the 2008 President’s Distinguished Staff Service Award. The university’s 2008 Staff Merit awards went to Jean Grant, library technician; Ann Hinojosa, School of Human Sciences and Humanities advising coordinator; and Lynda McKendree, executive director of student financial aid.

The Texas Educational Support Staff Association appointed University Advancement program assistant Wanda Honeycutt as a member on its Staff Training for Effective Management Committee. She will serve in this capacity for the 2008-2009 school year.


UHCL’s Association for Childhood Education International garnered two branch awards and two individual member awards during the association’s national conference. The branch won the Best Children’s Event/Community Outreach for its First Book event. It also received the Best Global Focus Award for its participation in the Starfish Kenya Outreach Project. UHCL part-time faculty member Marlene Morgan received the Outstanding Member Service Award, and student Jorge De La Garza received the Nancy Bartlett-Wright scholarship.

UHCL students placed in the 2008 Undergraduate Student Art Exhibition. First place in the exhibition was awarded to John Collins. Brandon Miller came in second place. Third place was presented to Ann Albritton. Honorable mention went to Irma Garza.

Student-produced publications Bayousphere and The Signal received 18 Texas Intercollegiate Press Association (TIPA) awards. The Signal was honored with the following awards: First place was presented to its staff (headline writing), Lona Cain and Donna Cox (picture story) and Lindsay Humphrey (ad design). Second place went to Emily Hawkins for news feature and Donna Cox for feature photo. Honorable mentions were awarded to Kim Boswell (sports feature), Emily Hawkins, Febe Menendez and Donna Cox (single subject presentation), Neesha Hosein (editorial) Lindsay Humphrey (ad design), Kimber Roque (page one design), Richard Willis (op/ed page design) and The Signal staff (overall design.) Bayousphere also received numerous TIPA awards. First place awards went to Lona Cain (feature photo), Janette Tingle (poem) and Matt Fourcade and Kristina Rogers (cover design). Gary Hamilton received second place for his short story. A third place award went to Emily Jaschke for her essay. Kelly Rogers received honorable mention for a feature photo.

The Columbia Scholastic Press Association also recognized The Signal with several awards. Neesha Hosein received a first place award for a personal opinion editorial. Lindsay Humphrey was honored with two third place awards for black and white single ad and single ad photo. An honorable mention went to Richard Willis for feature page design. The association also honored Bayousphere staff. Matt Fourcade and Kristina Rogers placed third (black and white cover design). Honorable mentions were given to Tracy Moody and Stephanie Wilcox (photo and copy), Matt Fourcade (photo), Kelly Rogers (portfolio of work), Emily Jaschke (photo) and the staff (overall design).


This fall, UHV will become the new home of Fiction Collective Two (FC2), an independent press. FC2, formerly based at both Florida State University and Illinois State University, is a 35-year-old, author-run, nonprofit press that publishes fi ve to six books a year.

The National Endowment for the Arts awarded UHV a $10,000 grant to help cover the costs of bringing nationally known authors to Victoria through the UHV/American Book Review Reading Series.

Entrepreneur Magazine highlighted the Master of Business Administration program as one of the Top Five Greatest Opportunities for Minorities in the United States.

The American Book Review, a literary journal published at UHV, was one of the featured journals during a reading at the New York City Library.

Kathryn TartKathryn Tart was hired as the first dean of UHV’s newest school, the School of Nursing. Tart, who will begin her new position Sept. 1, is the baccalaureate coordinator for the nursing program at Texas Woman’s University at the Texas Medical Center. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved the school designation in December.



Beth Dow (’96), principal of Velasquez Elementary School in Richmond, was named a finalist in the elementary school principal category of the 2008 H-E-B Excellence in Education awards.

Sandra Wicker Consilio (’02) was recognized by her peers as the 2007-2008 Teacher of the Year at Jane Long Elementary School in Freeport and selected as Elementary School Teacher of the Year in the Brazosport Independent School District.

Wes Carew (’07) and computer science professor Mel Damodaran co-wrote the paper “X-Windows, GUI (Graphical User Interface) Programming, and Microsoft Windows.” It will be published in the scholarly journal Issues in Information Systems. Damodaran also will make a presentation about the article at the 48th Annual International Association of Computer Information Systems International Conference.

Kelli Gill (’08) was selected as a member of the 2008 Annie’s List Campaign School. The school trains recent college graduates about all aspects of political campaigns and then places them with the campaigns of Texas Democratic women for the three months before the November elections.


Andrew Baerg, an assistant professor of communications, spoke during a workshop on digital sport as part of the Fifth World Congress of Sociology of Sport in Kyoto, Japan. Lee Cho, professor of computer science and math, had his book “Strategies and Technologies for Developing Online Computer Labs for Technology-Based Courses” published.

President Tim Hudson and associate professor of management Nagarajan Ramamoorthy presented a paper at the 15th annual conference of the Educational Innovation in Economics and Business Network in Malaga, Spain. They collaborated on the paper titled “Self-Directed Learning Readiness, Individualism-Collectivism and Adult Student Learning in an Online Environment: Development and Test of a Causal Model.”

Ramamoorthy also received a Fulbright Award to lecture and conduct research in Bulgaria for five months.

A paper co-authored by Stephanie Solansky, assistant professor of management, was named one of three finalists for the 2007 Best Paper Award from the Academy of Management Journal for “Radical Change Accidentally: The Emergence and Amplification of Small Change.”


Head softball coach Keri Lambeth and her staff tied for the National Fastpitch Coaches Association National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Southwest Regional Coaching Staff of the Year.


Outstanding students for the spring semester were recognized recently. Graduate students Crystal Marie Lester and Delores Evens White, and undergraduate Christian Manalansan were the recipients from the School of Arts & Sciences. Graduate Mounia Zouggarh and undergraduate Alfred James Baca received honors from the School of Business Administration.

Graduate Lisa A. Gonzales and undergraduate Gloria Madrigal Ramirez were recognized from the School of Education & Human Development.

Jaguars softball players Lauren Garza, Kristen Lindley, Stephanie Lavey and Cirby Ryan were named to the Region VI National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics All-Region Team and the National Fastpitch Coaches Association NAIA Southwest All-Region First Team. The 2007-2008 school year marked the first time UHV fielded softball and baseball teams.

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