Tag Archives: Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award

Dr. Donald J. Curtis, Jr. Selected for 2015 Director’s Award

The Director’s Award for Outstanding Service to Honors Programs was created in 2010 to recognize significant contribution to and support of the efforts of the University Honors Program on campus.

The 2015 recipient of the Director’s Award is Dr. Donald J. Curtis, Jr.

Dr. Don Curtis, 2015 Director's Award Recipient
Dr. Don Curtis, 2015 Director’s Award Recipient

Honors and Undergraduate Research thanks Dr. Curtis for his unending support of University Honors and Honors education at Texas A&M in general. His dedication to and high standards for the Cornerstone Honors Program in the Liberal Arts as well as his willingness to give of his time and energy to mentor colleagues across campus in the art of Honors is greatly appreciated. Dr. Curtis also provided critical insights and suggestions as we revised University Honors and developed the Common Honors Information page and Common Honors Application. His close personal attention to the College of Liberal Arts Honors Program enabled many students to have enriching educational and personal experiences while at Texas A&M.

Bio
Dr. Don Curtis currently serves as the Assistant Department Head for Undergraduate Programs in the Department of Public Health Studies in the Texas A&M Health Science Center, a position he has held since March 2015.

Dr. Curtis has been at Texas A&M since 1993 and previously served as Honors Programs Coordinator in what was then the Office of Honors Programs and Academic Scholarships, Director of Undergraduate Student Services for the College of Liberal Arts, and Assistant Dean for High Impact Programs in Liberal Arts.

He has undergraduate degrees in biological science and history from the University of Nebraska and an MA in military history from NU  as well.

Dr. Curtis received his doctorate from Texas A&M University in 2000 with a specialty in American Military and Diplomatic History.  He is the author of Hard Times Come Again No More:  General William S. Graves and the American Military Intervention in Siberia 1918-1920.  Dr. Curtis has authored several articles in military history and the applications of  honors programs and learning communities in higher education.

Dr. Curtis was named the Wells Fargo Faculty Mentor of the Year in 2014 and was a 2013 Fish Camp Namesake.  He is a past President of Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society at Texas A&M and has served as a University Scholars Faulty Mentor.

Dr. Curtis has been married to his wife Kari for sixteen years.  They have a nine year old son, Ben, a lab/hound mix and an antisocial cat.

Our warm congratulations and well-deserved thanks go to Dr. Curtis for his strong support of Honors. We will be presenting the Director’s Award to Dr. Curtis at the HUR Recognition Ceremony on Thursday, May 14, 2015. For a list of previous recipients, visit the TAMU HUR Faculty Awards page.

 

HSC Presents Faculty Mentor Award to Dr. Don Curtis

The Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award recognizes and rewards Honors faculty members whose dedication and
commitment to excellence in education is truly outstanding.
These faculty members encourage a spirit of inquiry in their students, are thoughtful teachers, and exhibit the strongest desire to train a new generation of thinkers and creators. This award is of special significance because recipients are nominated and selected by Honors Students.

2014 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Plaque
2014 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Plaque

The 2014 recipient of the Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award, presented by Honors Student Council, is Dr. Donald J. Curtis, Jr.

Dr. Curtis was nominated by Honors Student Travis Askew. In the nomination statement, Askew writes:

Dr. Don Curtis is a man who truly cares for all the students within the College of Liberal Arts at Texas A&M. He is the Assistant Dean of Liberal Arts and the head of Liberal Arts Honors. Additionally, he is the head of the Cornerstone Liberal Arts Honors Program, which he puts a majority of his time into maturing. His goal with Cornerstone Program is to take some of the greatest students the Liberal Arts College has to offer and turn them into great critical thinkers and leaders. He teaches his students how to think critically and gives them the opportunity to gain international experience. In everything he does, it is truly evident that he cares for his students. He makes himself completely available to his students, whether they have important questions, or just need to talk: he is always there for his students. Furthermore, he truly cares for the development and advancement of his students inside and outside of the classroom. He doesn’t make his classes easy. He gives his students challenging assignments that take them outside of their comfort zone so that they will grow and be better prepared for the challenges that life and college will throw at them in the future. Dr. Curtis goes above and beyond the call of duty. He takes being an instructor and an adviser to whole new level and leaves a lasting, positive impact on all the students who have the privilege to spend any amount of time with him.

The distinction also comes with a $1000 monetary award. To see a list of previous awardees, visit the TAMU HUR Faculty Awards page.

HSC President Kathryn Kudlaty presents the 2014 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award to Dr. Don Curtis
HSC President Kathryn Kudlaty presents the 2014 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award to Dr. Don Curtis

Bio

Dr. Don Curtis, 2014 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor
Dr. Don Curtis, 2014 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor

Dr.  Don Curtis is Assistant Dean for High Impact Programs for the College of Liberal Arts at Texas A&M University. He is also a visiting assistant professor of American History and Director of the Liberal Arts Honors Program. Dr. Curtis is Director of the Cornerstone Program Honors Learning Community, a group of some of the best and brightest Liberal Arts majors at Texas A&M

Dr. Curtis received his doctorate from Texas A&M University in 2000 with a specialty in American Military and Diplomatic History. He has been at Texas A&M since 1993 and has previously served as Honors Program Coordinator for the University and Director of Undergraduate Student Services for the College of Liberal Arts. He has undergraduate degrees in Biological Science and History from the University of Nebraska and an MA in Military History from NU as well.

He is the author of Hard Times Come Again No More: General William S. Graves and the American Military Intervention in Siberia 1918-1920. Dr. Curtis has also authored several articles in military history and the applications of honors programs and learning communities in higher education.

Dr. Curtis had the honor of being a Fish Camp namesake in 2013 and was a TEDx TAMU speaker in 2014.

Dr. Curtis has been married to his wife Kari for fifteen years. They have an eight year old son, Ben, a lab/hound mix dog and a 100% antisocial cat.

HSC Presents Faculty Mentor Award to Dr. Gregory Huff

By Hayley Cox

Dr. Gregory Huff, Electrical Engineering Associate Professor and Department Head
Dr. Gregory Huff, Electrical Engineering Associate Professor and Department Head
Associate Professor and Department Head of electrical engineering at Texas A&M University Dr. Gregory Huff was presented with the Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award in late August. This award recognizes Honors faculty members who are dedicated to excellence in education. Along the way, these faculty members provide opportunities for students to develop academically and professionally through relationships which extend beyond the realm of a classroom. They are strongly willed towards ushering in a new generation of thinkers and creators on the Texas A&M campus.

Dr. Gregory Huff was born in Oklahoma City in 1975 and has received his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has been a vital member of the Electromagnetics and Microwave Laboratory in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Texas A&M since 2006. Dr. Huff received the Nation Science Foundation’s CAREER award and the Presidential Early Career Center Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). He was also the recipient of the 2012 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award, now earning the majority vote for two years in a row.

Students submitted letters in order to nominate Dr. Huff for the Wells Fargo Mentor Award. Student Amanda Couch wrote, “I noticed that he made a serious effort to make the class both understandable and enjoyable, despite the challenging material.” She wrote that the mentorship she received during Dr. Huff’s lab gave her the skills and experiences that she needs to be successful after graduation.
Student Ryan Brown wrote that he noticed how Dr. Huff loves to inspire and work with innovative students and that he is always an encouraging voice. And Alyssa Bennett, a student who conducted research under the guidance of Dr. Huff in the Aggie Challenge, said she was “surprised by his willingness to work with a student not in his major.” Bennett said, “Dr. Huff treats his student researchers with respect and trust, allowing them to not only work on projects, but to lead them as well.”

Students also remark about Dr. Huff feeding his students well! Before his time as a professor, Dr. Huff apprenticed the rank of Chef de Cuisine with specializations in French and Mediterranean fare, and reportedly still likes to break out the pots and pans every once in a while.

Honors and Undergraduate Research is so grateful to all of its dedicated faculty and staff who make such an impact on its students. Congratulations go out to Dr. Gregory Huff on receiving the 2013 Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award!

HSC Presents Faculty Mentor Awards to Bergbreiter, Caffey

The Texas A&M Honors Student Council will present Dr. David Bergbreiter and Dr. Stephen Caffey with the Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentor Award in recognition of their dedication and commitment to excellence in education at the annual Honors Recognition Ceremony, May 12, at the College Station Hilton and Convention Center.

Wells Fargo Faculty Mentors are nominated and then selected by open voting among students actively participating in the University Honors Program. Award recipients distinguish themselves by extending the mentoring relationship beyond the confines of the classroom, encouraging a spirit of inquiry in their students, being thoughtful teachers, and exhibiting the strongest desire to train a new generation of thinkers and creators. “Providing opportunities for students to develop academic and professional relationships with the very best faculty is a key principle in honors education,” says Jon Kotinek, Assistant Director for Honors and Undergraduate Research and co-advisor to Honors Student Council.

Dr. David Bergbreiter

Professor of Chemistry and holder of the Eppright University Professorship for Undergraduate Teaching Excellence, Dr. David Bergbreiter moved to Texas A&M after receiving his Ph.D. in 1974 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A Presidential Professor of Teaching Excellence, he has also previously received Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award for Research. In his 36 years at Texas A&M, he has directed the research of over 100 coauthors of his 240 peer-reviewed publications, has been selected as a Fish Camp namesake, and has “had the pleasure of introducing thousands of sophomores to the enchantment of OChem.”

Dr. Stephen Caffey

Dr. Stephen Caffey, Assistant Professor of Architecture, completed his dissertation research at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London and the Terra Foundation for American Art in Giverny, France. He earned the PhD in art and architectural history from the University of Texas at Austin in 2008, joining the TAMU faculty as Assistant Professor of Art and Architectural History the same year. His courses include surveys of the history of art and architecture from the Renaissance to the present day, History of Modern art, History of American Art and Visual Cultures of Islamic South Asia. Dr. Caffey is a faculty affiliate of the American Studies Program, Assistant Director of the Sustainability and Energy Laboratory and a faculty fellow of the Center for Heritage Conservation.Caffey’s research interests include visual and spatial literacies, the role of empire in identity formation and the integration of passive climate-responsive features from historic architecture into contemporary design practice.

Wells Fargo Honors Faculty Mentors receive a $1,000 award, made possible by a generous endowment from Wells Fargo. “But we know that good teachers aren’t simply motivated by monetary gain,” Kotinek adds. “The real prestige of this award is in that it is given by students in recognition of the countless hours that honors professors pour into developing and challenging the lives and minds of the student body.”