Klingler College of Arts and Sciences 2018 Awards

Celebrating faculty, students and staff excellence.

The Klingler College of Arts and Sciences awards recognize faculty, students and staff for exemplary contributions to the college in the areas of teaching, scholarship, mentorship and service. This year, there were nine award recipients from all over the college’s vast academic departments.

Scholar of the Year: Rajendra (Raj) Rathore

Dr. Rajendra Rathore

The Scholar of the Year Award is given to a college faculty member in recognition of his or her outstanding scholarly contributions over the past three years.

Dr. Rathore, Pfletschinger-Habermann Professor of Organic Chemistry, unexpectedly passed away on Feb. 16, 2018, following a brief battle with respiratory disease. He was a devoted husband and loving father to two daughters, and had a zeal for life that was embodied in his passion for his family, as well as for his science.

Dr. Rathore established a world-class research program during his 17-year career at Marquette in the Chemistry Department. He made key contributions to the areas of organic supramolecular and materials chemistry. He published more than 150 articles over the span of his career with many articles appearing in the discipline’s most prestigious journals. He exceeded $2.3 million in career funding, including grants from the National Science foundation (notably a CAREER award), the National Institutes of Health and the American Chemical Society. He raised the scholarly profile of the Chemistry Department, the college and university.

Teacher of the Year: Darren Wheelock

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Dr. Darren Wheelock

The Teacher of the Year Award is given in recognition of outstanding classroom achievements and innovation in curricular development.

Dr. Darren Wheelock is an associate professor of Criminology and Law Studies who teaches both introductory and upper division courses. He created and introduced the Race, Crime and Punishment course for the major, a course that reflects [his] enduring concerns with social inequities in the criminal justice system and society at large. He is a regular participant in the McNair Program where he has mentored first-generation students who are considering graduate school.

Mentor of the Year: Lezlie Knox

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Dr. Lezlie Knox

The Mentor of the Year Award is given in recognition of outstanding contributions to the development of graduate students.

Dr. Lezlie Knox is an associate professor in the Department of History. She also serves as director of graduate studies, a role she enjoys, and one in which she is actively engaged in mentoring MA and Ph.D. students. Her commitment to guide students is evidenced through her statement.

A student shared, “I owe much of my success as a graduate student and as an academic to Dr. Knox. My successes, however, are only one example. She is an advocate for all of her students and has guided many of my colleagues on to similar achievements.” She is clearly committed to bringing forth the highest achievement from her students.

Excellence in Advising: Martin St. Maurice

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Dr. Martin St. Maurice

The Excellence in Advising Award recognizes and rewards outstanding academic advising by a faculty member.

Dr. Martin St. Maurice is an associate professor of biological sciences. His advising philosophy includes, “…I consider it my most important role to listen carefully to her or his perspective on progress, struggles and future plans… The goal with every meeting is to build a stronger rapport with my advisees and to help them realize that I care about them as individuals.

Martin truly lives this philosophy and it is our students who benefit. One student wrote, “It may come as a surprise to you to know that I am not an advisee of Dr. St. Maurice… I am not even a student within the College of Arts and Sciences… To put it simply, [he] was the first person on Marquette’s campus to invest in my career path — in my life.”

Outstanding Staff Member: Jolene Kreisler

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Jolene Kreisler

The Outstanding Staff Award is given to a college staff member in recognition of his or her contributions to their respective department and the college. This candidate demonstrates and supports the Ignatian ideal of care for others and carries out the mission of the college on an on-going basis.

Jolene is the administrative assistant in the Department of History and has dedicated herself to the department since her arrival to Marquette in 2009. She has the experience and understanding that enable her to respond to a variety of issues both student and faculty related. It’s clear the department appreciates all that she does on their behalf.

A member of the department shares, “Jolene is the glue of the department bringing order to the complex variety of activities that faculty and students engage in on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.”

Graduate Scholar: Brian Pattengale

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Brian Pattengale

The Graduate Student Scholar Award is given in recognition of significant scholarly achievements by a graduate student.

Brian is a fourth-year chemistry Ph.D. student who plans to graduate in 2018. His research focus is on investigating structure-function relationships that govern the photocatalytic activity of materials that catalyze the water splitting reaction. He has published 11 peer-reviewed articles, five as first author. Brian has presented three posters at national conferences and given two talks. He has taught general chemistry and organic chemistry laboratories and discussion sections and has mentored five undergraduate students.

Graduate Teacher: Daniel Burkett

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Daniel Burkett

The Graduate Student Teacher Award is given in recognition of exceptional effort and contributions to academic excellence through teaching.

Dan is a third year Ph.D. student in chemistry who has a passion for teaching. He has served as a TA for six semesters in both organic chemistry and general chemistry labs. Dan believes in developing relationships with students and taking an interest in their lives. He finds students are more eager to come to class with a relationship established and are able to maintain a more optimistic disposition throughout the semester.

Nominators had this to say about Dan, “His energy is infectious, and he is able to convince his students to be interested in the subject, have fun, and even laugh a little; which isn’t always easy in organic chemistry” and “[I can] rely on Dan to give good feedback about different experiments. He is not afraid to say when something is not working out or he sees a way it can be improved.”

Undergraduate Scholar: Emily Davis

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Emily Davis

The Undergraduate Scholar award is given in recognition of outstanding achievement in scholarship for a college major.

Emily is a major in biological sciences and in 2015 she began working in Dr. Anita Manogaran’s lab. Emily’s research interest is the human transport protein, Transthyretin, and its associated disease (Amyloidosis Transthyretin). Dr. Manogaran shares that, “Emily is currently working at the level of a third-year graduate student and has completed a project worthy of a master’s thesis.” Emily has provided all of the preliminary data for a 3-year grant application ($225,000) which was funded by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. She and Dr. Manogaran are preparing this data as a manuscript in which Emily will be first author.

Emily plans to pursue a Ph.D. program in cellular and molecular biology. She has received interviews at top academic institutions including Northwestern University, University of California-Davis, Washington University and University of Oregon

Outstanding Senior: Eva Schons Rodrigues

Dr. Richard C. Holz and Eva Schons Rodrigues

The Outstanding Senior Award and is given based on academic record, service, leadership, integrity and evidence of commitment to the ideals of a liberal arts education.

Eva is a triple major — history, classics and international affairs — with a minor in women’s and gender studies. She is actively engaged in organizations across campus serving as Chapter President and co-founder of Sigma Iota Rho, the national international relations honors society; vice president of Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honors society and she is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Sigma Nu.

She has been involved in a variety of service activities. Being a peer mentor with the national mentorship organization Women and Youth Supporting Each Other (WYSE) has been the most meaningful experience for her. This year-long program pairs Marquette women with middle school girls from an under-resourced area in Milwaukee.

Eva will address the graduating class of 2018 at the college commencement ceremony. She plans to pursue a graduate degree and is leaning towards a masters in classical languages at the University of Chicago.