USM Board of Regents Announces Winners of Annual Faculty Awards
System’s Highest Faculty Honor Recognizes Outstanding Teaching, Research, Service and Mentoring
Baltimore, Md. (March 8, 2022) – The University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents is honoring 17 members of its faculty at institutions across the system as recipients of the 2022 USM Regents’ Faculty Awards.
The awards are the highest honor presented by the board to exemplary faculty members. The awards honor excellence in the following categories: Teaching; Mentoring; Public Service; Research, Scholarship, or Creative Activity; and Innovation.
Institutional faculty nominating committees make recommendations to the institutional presidents, who review nominations and supporting material and forward recommendations to USM Chancellor Jay A. Perman. The Regents Faculty Review Committee makes the final recommendations.
Chancellor Perman and Board of Regents Chair Linda Gooden will recognize the winners as part of the scheduled meeting of the full board on April 29 at Towson University.
“It is a pleasure every year to recognize these outstanding faculty members,” Chair Gooden said. “I am especially grateful for their dedication throughout the many phases of the pandemic and pleased we can plan to recognize them in person, thanks to the work our campuses have done to keep their communities safe.”
“The bedrock of the University System’s quality, its prominence, its power to transform lives and change the world is, quite simply, our faculty,” said USM Chancellor Jay A. Perman. “It’s a privilege to be able to honor them and celebrate what they make possible every day—possible for each individual student and for the body of scholarship that advances our progress and deepens our humanity.”
Each award carries a $2,000 prize provided by the institutions and the University System of Maryland Foundation.
EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING
Towson University (TU)–Emily Bailey: Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies. One of TU’s first faculty members to be fully certified in online instruction–well before the COVID pandemic–Dr. Bailey engages students creatively, often using digital technology that is second nature to them, while also taking her students beyond their comfort zones. She is committed to continuously improve her teaching, recently matriculating in a Doctor of Education program in instructional technology. Faculty peers and students praise Dr. Bailey for her inclusion of a variety of teaching and learning models, her organization of material, her presentation of multiple perspectives, and her ability to nurture great discussions. She puts learning first, so that her students can be better informed, more empathetic members of society.
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)–Lee Blaney: Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical, Biochemical, and Environmental Engineering. Dr. Blaney engages students in the classroom, the lab, and the field, presenting challenges that allow them to strengthen their analytical skills and expand their knowledge. He combines demonstration, facilitation, and delegation when teaching, which yields active learning that students find refreshing, challenging, and rewarding. His teaching philosophy–providing a safe space where students can collaborate and are challenged to think critically–and his open-door policy–making help available to all students–have been cited by several former students, many non-traditional, as key to successfully moving forward to defend their Ph.D.’s. And, equally strong as an undergraduate educator, Dr. Blaney is a great supporter of undergraduate research and service-learning opportunities for students.
University of Baltimore (UBalt)–Jennica Larrison: Associate Professor in the Global Affairs & Human Security Program, School of Public & International Affairs. An outstanding instructor for years, Dr. Larrison excelled during the COVID-19 pandemic. When UBalt switched to remote learning, she embraced the technology to help her students navigate the transition while she also worked with UBalt’s Center for Teaching and Learning to assist her fellow faculty members. Likewise, she continued her long-standing commitment to connect students with local, national, and international agencies, taking advantage of virtual opportunities to connect students with internships and mentoring experiences. Dr. Larrison brings these external connections back into the classroom, giving students exposure to real world problem solving in global policy. Her outstanding teaching and attention to her students has significantly improved retention in the program.
University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC)–Celeste McCarty: Professor of Psychology. Professor McCarty has taught both at the UMGC Adelphi campus and at UMGC Asia. Her approach to teaching is characterized by her use of real-world examples to bring the classroom to life. Her classroom management style is defined by her responsiveness, actively engaging with students to ensure their development, progress, and success. Focusing on discussions and assignments that help develop advanced critical thinking skills, psychological and clinical skills, and sound research methodology, Professor McCarty helps students become good consumers of information. Among the many recognitions she has received, last year Professor McCarty was honored with the Stanley J. Drazek Teaching Award, the highest recognition awarded at UMGC for excellence in teaching.
EXCELLENCE IN MENTORING
Coppin State University (CSU)–Loretta Baryeh: Associate Professor, Department of Accounting, Data Science, and Management Information Systems. An outstanding teacher, Dr. Baryeh’s graduates have received offers from major accounting firms and Fortune 500 companies. In addition, she actively pursues mentorship opportunities. Dr. Baryeh founded and advises two chapters of professional organizations at Coppin, including the first chapter of the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) ever chartered at an historically Black college and university (HBCU). Thanks to her fund-raising activities and student support efforts, 28 CSU students attended the 2020 IMA leadership conference, gaining access to professional development opportunities, internships, jobs, and more. Dr. Baryeh also mentored teams that won first- and third-place finishes at the April 2021 Zero Hunger/Waste Thurgood Marshall College Fund and Kroger Challenge. Moreover, she was asked to co-chair Coppin’s Community/Civic Engagement Committee.
University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB)–Greg Carey: Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Assistant Dean of Student Research and Education, and Executive Director of Student Research and Community Outreach in the School of Medicine. For almost two decades, Dr. Carey has increased the participation of underrepresented Baltimore youth, undergraduate, and graduate students in science and medicine. With funding secured from MPower and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Dr. Carey administers PRISM, UM Scholars, STAR-PREP, CURE STEM, and BUILD ASCEND. These pipeline programs prepare students to enter the biomedical and healthcare workforce. UM Scholars has 115 University of Maryland, College Park alumni ascending to medicine and/or science tracks. STAR-PREP–a one-year mentored research training program—boasts a 100% completion rate with 85% acceptance into top-notch graduate programs. Finally, 125 talented Baltimore City youth are currently enrolled in the National Cancer Institute CURE STEM Program.
University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES)–Miriam Purnell: Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacy Practice and Administration. Dr. Purnell’s commitment to mentorship goes well above academic advising. She develops and maintains strong relationships with students throughout their academic careers and beyond, from engaging in regular meetings to actively reaching out to students demonstrating signs of struggle. Her approach to mentorship includes counseling on communication and interpersonal issues; seeking feedback from faculty; encouraging student organization participation; linking students with professional role models; encouraging students who “stop out” from their studies to seek employment as pharmacy technicians; and mentoring junior faculty. Thanks to her efforts, Dr. Purnell’s mentees have earned placement in competitive residency programs, established professional careers, and are now impacting others. Her mentoring has proven critical to achieve UMES’ mission of increasing recruitment, retention, and graduation.
Towson University (TU)–Petra Tsuji: Associate Professor Department of Biological Sciences and Graduate Director. Dr. Tsuji’s mentoring philosophy is marked by an inclusive and intentional approach, constructive feedback, and holding students accountable. With a focus on women in STEM, Dr. Tsuji is faculty advisor to the Women in Science Club and co-director of the annual Women in Science Forum. She is also co-creator and leader of the Hill-Lopes Scholars Program, a three-year mentoring program for 30 undergraduate women designed to support and promote the next generation of STEM leaders. As a mentor to all the department’s graduate students, Dr. Tsuji provides opportunities for students to develop research proposals, contemplate career trajectories, and engage in discussions. Her accomplishments were acknowledged with the Fisher College of Science and Math Mentoring Award in 2020.
EXCELLENCE IN PUBLIC SERVICE
University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC)–Sabrina Fu: Collegiate Professor and Program Director for Environmental Science and Management. Dr. Fu was the founder and inaugural regional coordinator of the Howard County Citizens Climate Lobby chapter. With a focus on issues related to growth and environmental science-related service, she organized public events, meetings, presentations, and opportunities to lobby public officials. Dr. Fu is also a coordinator for the Mid-Atlantic Region of Citizens' Climate Education, working to help empower diverse voices to talk to Congress about solutions to address climate change. And she serves as a Watershed Steward for Howard County. A recipient of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s prestigious People, Prosperity, and the Planet award, Dr. Fu uses her environmental science expertise and her passion for community engagement to make the community a better place.
University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB)–David Marcozzi: Chief Clinical Officer for the University of Maryland Medical Center and Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine in the School of Medicine. For 20 years, Dr. Marcozzi has served as an active-duty colonel in the United States Army Reserves within special operations. With his expertise and experience in emergency medicine, he became the UMB-UMMS COVID-19 Incident Commander. Under his leadership, a systemic approach to the pandemic was developed and implemented, with the protection of the workforce and students given priority. Additionally, Dr. Marcozzi serves as Governor Hogan’s COVID-19 Senior Medical Advisor on the Coronavirus Task Force. In this role, he advises the governor and other state officials on policy decisions to combat the virus and improve public health. Beyond COVID, Dr. Marcozzi is presently involved in a three-year multidisciplinary effort focused on health disparities in West Baltimore.
Coppin State University–Danita Tolson: Chair, Department of Nursing (Bachelor’s Program). Dr. Tolson supports one of the most demanding programs at Coppin while exhibiting exemplary public service regarding health and social justice, two of the most critical issues facing our nation today. She simultaneously served as the Baltimore County Branch NAACP President and the Maryland State NAACP Health Chairperson. In 2020, she provided COVID-19 educational sessions at the NAACP Maryland State Conference. In 2021, she received a commendation from President Biden for her work encouraging people of color to get vaccinated. She has also partnered with the Baltimore County Health Department to go door-to-door to promote the flu shot during the pandemic and organized many COVID and flu clinics both on and off Coppin's campus.
University of Baltimore (UBalt)–Jan Williams: Associate Professor of Accounting, Merrick School of Business. Dr. Williams works on multiple levels to promote excellence in accounting education, improve standards and policies, and diversify the profession. At the national level, from 2017-18 she served as president of the Mid-Atlantic region of the American Accounting Association. On the national level, she is serving as incoming chair of the Academic Executive Committee of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. In Maryland, she served on Governor Hogan’s Maryland Board of Public Accountancy and was a founding member of the Maryland Association of CPA’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force. At UBalt, Dr. Williams directs the Accounting Honors program, serves as faculty advisor to the Beta Alpha Psi Honor Society, and established a chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants. Given that only 2% of US-based certified accounting professional are Black, her advocacy, commitment, and leadership are critical.
EXCELLENCE IN RESEARCH, SCHOLARSHIP, OR CREATIVE ACTIVITY
Bowie State University (BSU)–Bob Bartlett: Associate Professor of Theatre in the Department of Fine and Performing Arts. In the past three years, Professor Bartlett has written six full-length plays, a twelve-episode web series, and had five premieres of his work including noteworthy productions of “Swimming With Whales,” which was honored with six 2019 Helen Hayes Award nominations, including best play. In addition, Professor Bartlett's fictional story of a war veteran driving across country, “The Regular,” was among six plays invited to the national 2020 Seven Devils Playwrights' Conference. Professor Bartlett has achieved this success on top of his full load teaching four to six courses per semester in playwrighting, dramatic literature, play analysis, and an innovative theater appreciation course he co-created. He also serves as a mentor to young playwrights at Bowie State.
Towson University (TU)–Brian Fath: Professor, Department of Biological Sciences. Dr. Fath is globally recognized in the field of network analysis, ecosystem modelling, and sustainability. Over the past three years, he published extensively, including two books and 29 peer-reviewed articles. His research papers were cited approximately 4,000 times, making him one of the most cited faculty at Towson. He also gave 46 research presentations in 16 countries. In Fall 2019, he held a prestigious Fulbright Distinguished Chair position in Sustainability in the Czech Republic. Dr. Fath recently founded a new journal, Current Research in Environmental Sustainability, while maintain significant public service and teaching commitments.
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)–Marjoleine Kars: Professor, Department of History. Dr. Kars has been recognized by scholars for redefining the study of the North American Pre-Revolutionary Era and Atlantic World history. Her book, “Blood on the River: A Chronicle of Mutiny and Freedom on the Wild Coast,” has received national and international recognition. The book recently was named the winner of both the Cundill History Prize and the Yale Frederick Douglass Prize. The book draws on primary sources that span centuries, continents, and multiple languages. It has received positive reviews and media coverage, noting its engaging style that speaks to academic and non-academic audiences.
University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP)–Teng Li: Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Li’s research on natural wood as a structural material contributed to the discovery of a process that turns ordinary wood into super wood, which is stronger than steel but six times lighter. His groundbreaking advances in materials research and material discovery are pointing the way toward a more sustainable future. For this research, he received international attention and the prestigious R&D 100 Award. Dr. Li has published 132 peer-reviewed articles and secured more than $4 million in extramural funding. Additionally, he has co-founded an online community–iMechanica.orgone–of the most prominent international communities for scholars of mechanics. Dr. Li has achieved prestigious international recognition as a recipient of the Society of Engineering Science Young Investigator medal.
EXCELLENCE IN INNOVATION
University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB)–Joseph Scalea: Associate Professor of Surgery in the School of Medicine. Dr. Scalea is saving lives using innovative technology. Partnering with friends and colleagues from UMB, UMCP, UMBC, and the unmanned aircraft systems test site, Dr. Scalea led the team that pioneered the use of drone technology to innovate organ shipment, thereby saving time, decreasing cost, and improving long-term transplant outcomes. In April 2019, the team performed a successful test of their innovated organ drone system. This led to a $16 million investment to build two Baltimore-based startups–MediGo and MissionGO. Dr. Scalea is also attempting to obviate the need for anti-rejection drugs by “teaching” the transplant recipient’s own immune system to accept donor organs. He is also innovating access to human organs using artificial intelligence. (Dr. Scalea recently concluded 20 years at the School of Medicine and announced on Twitter that he is accepting a vice chair position at the Medical University of South Carolina.)
The USM comprises 12 institutions: Bowie State University; Coppin State University; Frostburg State University; Salisbury University; Towson University; the University of Baltimore; the University of Maryland, Baltimore; the University of Maryland, Baltimore County; the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science; the University of Maryland, College Park; the University of Maryland Eastern Shore; and the University of Maryland Global Campus. The USM also includes three regional centers—the Universities at Shady Grove, the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown, and the University System of Maryland at Southern Maryland—at which USM universities offer upper-division undergraduate and graduate courses.
Systemwide, student enrollment is roughly 165,000. The USM and its institutions compete successfully for nearly $1.5 billion in external grants and contracts annually. USM institutions and programs are among the nation's best in quality and value according to several national rankings. To learn more about the University System of Maryland, visit www.usmd.edu.
Contact: Mike Lurie