Hope College presented awards honoring teaching, service and scholarship to multiple faculty and staff members during a reception on Friday, Jan. 17.

The annual recognition event traditionally marks the beginning of the college’s second semester.

Named a “Towsley Research Scholar” was Deborah Van Duinen, assistant professor of education, who has taught at Hope since 2011.

The “Janet L. Andersen Excellence in Teaching Award” was presented to Donald Luidens, professor of sociology, who has taught at Hope since 1977.

The “Ruth and John Reed Faculty Achievement Awards” were presented to Marc Baer, who is a professor of history and chairperson of the department and has taught at Hope since 1983, and Anne Larsen, who is the Lavern ’39 and Betty DePree ’41 VanKley Professor of French and has taught at Hope since 1984.

The “Academic Computing Committee Faculty Innovation Award” was presented to Maria Claudia “Claudine” André, professor of Spanish and chairperson of the department.

The “Provost’s Award for Service to the Academic Program” was presented to William Pannapacker, professor of English and director of the Mellon Scholars Program, who has taught at Hope since 2000, and Rajean Wolters, administrative assistant to the dean for the arts and humanities, who has been a member of the staff since 2005.

The Motoichiro Oghimi Global Courage Award was presented to Annie Dandavati, professor of political science and chairperson of the department, who has taught at Hope since 1992.

The Towsley Research Scholars Program is funded through an endowment made possible through a grant from the Harry A. and Margaret D. Towsley Foundation of Midland. Through the program, newer Hope faculty members receive support for a project for four years. The foundation’s awards to the college have also included grants for the construction of the Van Wylen Library and the Schaap Science Center, faculty development in the pre-medical sciences and support for an endowed chair in communication.

Van Duinen will apply her award to her research on adolescent boys’ out-of-school literate lives. National discussions about boys’ literacy underachievement often point to how boys perform less well than girls in meeting literacy standards. Van Duinen’s research focuses on the reading, writing, and viewing that boys do outside of school by analyzing the ways boys make sense of literacy purposes and practices across contexts such as sports involvements, religious affiliations, and affinity groups. She hopes her work encourages educators to better recognize and value boys’ out-of-school literacy practices and, in doing so, help them transfer their literacy skills to school-related tasks.

A member of the Hope faculty since 2011, Van Duinen taught high school English for five years before pursuing her master’s at Calvin College and her doctorate at Michigan State University.

The Janet L. Andersen Excellence in Teaching Award is presented to faculty members who have been teaching at Hope for at least seven years and who have demonstrated recognizable excellence in specific activities or aspects of teaching. The award is named in memory of Dr. Janet Andersen, a professor of mathematics at Hope who died of injuries sustained in an automobile accident on Thursday, Nov. 24, 2005.

Luidens was honored for his dedication to students and for creativity in the classroom in engaging students with topics.  He was also celebrated for his scholarship, work in which he has consistently involved students as collaborative researchers.  A member of the Hope faculty since 1977, Luidens has received recognition both nationally and on campus for his teaching, including the “Outstanding College Sociology Teacher of the Year Award” presented by the Michigan Sociological Association in 1987 and the “Hope Outstanding Professor Educator” (H.O.P.E.) Award presented by the graduating class of 2003.  External recognition of his scholarly work, which has emphasized membership trends in mainline Protestantism, included the “Distinguished Book Award” presented in 1994 by the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, for the book “Vanishing Boundaries: The Religion of Mainline Protestant Baby Boomers,” which he co-authored; and an “Award of Excellence” in the 1998 Awards Contest of the Associated Church Press for an article he co-wrote with Hope sociology colleague Dr. Roger Nemeth for “The Church Herald.”

The Ruth and John Reed Faculty Achievement Awards recognize members of the Hope faculty who are superior teachers and have also contributed significantly in some other area of professional life. The award was established in memory of Dr. Ruth Yzenbaard Reed, a 1965 Hope graduate who was associate dean of Macomb Community College. Reed died in August 1999 at age 55.

Baer was recognized for his teaching, scholarship, and commitment to connecting students’ exploration of Christian faith to their academic experience.  A member of the faculty since 1983, Baer specializes in modern British history.  He has received a variety of external grants in support of his research, work in which he involves students.  His numerous publications include most recently the books “The Rise and Fall of Radical Westminster, 1780-1890” and “Mere Believers: How Eight Faithful Lives Changed the Course of History.”  He is the founding director of the college’s Pew Society Program (now called Kleisis), which mentors students considering an academic career with an emphasis on Christian vocation, and spearheaded the college’s biennial Veritas Forum, a three-day event which considers Christian faith and the life of the mind from a variety of perspectives.

Larsen, a member of the faculty since 1984, was recognized for her teaching, scholarship, and extensive involvement of students in research.  Her teaching interests include intermediate French language and culture; the myth and reality of Paris; French and Francophone drama; Francophone literature of Algeria, West Africa and the Caribbean; literary theory; early modern French society; and writings of French intellectuals.  Her research interests include French Renaissance and 17th-century women writers, and early modern French drama.  She is the editor of multiple books, and has also published many scholarly articles and book chapters, and more than 50 book reviews.  External awards in support of her research have included two year-long fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Academic Computing Committee Faculty Innovation Award is presented to a faculty member who exemplifies innovation and ingenuity in the application of technology to the academic program.  The innovation may have been used in the classroom or out, in teaching or in research, or in any form of academic support or performance.

André, who has been a member of the faculty since 1994, is receiving the award in recognition for her own use of technology in the teaching of Spanish, and for her support and encouragement in the use of technology across her department. In addition to pedagogical uses of technology, she designed and developed, along with students, an online historical archive featuring “Women Surrealist Artists” (http://faculty.hope.edu/andre/homepage.html).

The Provost’s Award for Service to the Academic Program is presented to individuals who have provided special contributions to the academic program through student academic support, general education, assessment work, implementation of programs that support/enhance the curriculum, and any activity outside of formal teaching that contributes to the overall excellence of the academic program.

Pannapacker, a member of the faculty since 2000, was honored for his work as founding director of the Mellon Scholars Program and for his leadership on campus as well as nationally in promoting the digital humanities.  Established in 2009 and supported through two major grants from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Mellon Scholars Program involves students in coursework and research in areas of scholarly interest from a variety of academic disciplines, with a particular emphasis on teaching the students how to use new and emerging digital technologies in pursuing and sharing their work.  Beyond campus, he has advocated for the digital humanities through activities ranging from writing articles published in “The Chronicle of Higher Education,” to organizing professional conferences, to serving on the Digital Humanities Council of the National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education, to serving as faculty director of the Great Lakes Colleges Association Digital Liberal Arts Initiative.

Wolters, a member of the staff since 2005, was recognized not only for the high quality of her work but for her thoughtful consideration for others and enthusiasm.  In addition to her work as administrative assistant to the dean for the arts and humanities, she coordinates Hope student participation in the annual National Conferences on Undergraduate Research (NCUR), being held this year in Lexington, Ky.  Her involvement in the Hope community has also included activities such as organizing campus prayer groups.

The Motoichiro Oghimi Global Courage Award is presented to individuals who exhibit the intercultural courage exemplified by Motoichiro Oghimi, a member of the college’s Class of 1879 who came from Japan as one of Hope’s first international students.  It is given to faculty or academic staff members who exemplify deep engagement with the part of the college’s mission that calls for preparing students for leadership and service in a global society; bold risk-taking in creating new ways and opportunities to help students engage with other people, places and cultures; and engagement in global initiatives that go above and beyond their normal responsibilities.

Dandavati, a member of the faculty since 1992, was recognized for her leadership in increasing global engagement in the college’s curriculum.  In addition to her role with the international studies program, she has led or co-led study-abroad programs to nations including Mexico, Chile and Rwanda.  She has also held visiting professorships abroad in nations including India, Uganda, Japan and Egypt.  Her areas of scholarly interest which include comparative politics, Latin American politics, gender and development, and human rights, are reflected in the courses she offers and her academic publications.  She has received recognition including the H.O.P.E. Award in 1997, the college’s Ruth and John Reed Faculty Achievement Award in 2011 and selection by the college’s chapter of Mortar Board to speak through the group’s “Last Lecture Series” in 2011.


Faculty Honored for Service