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Released April 19, 2004



HATTIESBURG - Seven faculty members were recognized for outstanding service to the university during a Faculty Excellence and Grand Marshal Awards luncheon today.

The recipients are selected by the awards committee of the Faculty Senate and also each receive a $1,000 honorarium.

Faculty members and their awards are as follows:

Excellence in Professional Service: Dr. Harriet L. Perry, assistant professor of Coastal Sciences, College of Marine Sciences. This award recognizes exceptional service to a professional organization or activity outside the university community.

Excellence in University Service: Dr. Darlys Alford, associate professor of psychology, College of Education and Psychology, Southern Miss Gulf Coast. This award is given to a faculty member who has excelled in non administrative service to the university community.

Excellence in Teaching: Dr. Leah Fonder Solano, assistant professor, Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures; Dr. John C. Koeppel, associate professor of psychology, College of Education and Psychology; Dr. Lawrence Gwozdz, professor of music, College of the Arts; and Dr. Juliana Sam Abbenyi, associate professor of English, College of Liberal Arts. These awards recognize faculty members with records of exceptional teaching. Candidates are full time faculty with a minimum of three years experience at Southern Miss.

Grand Marshal Award: Dr. William Scarborough, professor of history, College of Liberal Arts. This award recognizes a faculty member who has excelled in teaching, research and service. To be eligible, candidates must be full time faculty who hold the rank of full professor and have a minimum of 10 years experience at Southern Miss. Scarborough will serve as grand marshal for commencement ceremonies for one calendar year.

Faculty members can be nominated by colleagues, staff, administrators or students and must submit an extensive dossier of materials related to their teaching, research or service.

Awards committee chair Dr. Amy Chasteen Miller said the awards are especially meaningful because they are selected by peers. "It's a wonderful job to have to be able to recognize our most outstanding faculty, but difficult because we have so many who are excellent," said Miller, associate professor in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology.


OCEAN SPRINGS -- Award-winning wildlife photographer Tom Ulrich will lead two photographic events at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory on Wednesday, March 10.

He will present a nature photography workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and then a talk and slide show called "Wildlife Images 2003" at 7 p.m., both at The University of Southern Mississippi GCRL.

Admission to the evening event is free and will be held in the Caylor Auditorium at GCRL. The veteran photographer will feature photos from his 2003 photographic safaris abroad and in North America. He will answer questions and sign his books during the reception following his slide show.

The registration fee for the all-day workshop is $50 per person, payable to GCRL. Registration includes a continental breakfast, light lunch and snacks. Participation is limited to 20. Though the workshop is geared toward beginners, Ulrich tailors the experience to meet needs for all degrees of skill.

"The beginners will definitely benefit from the workshop, but I always help the more advanced get something out of it also," Ulrich said. "I lead many photo trips and always find a wide range of levels."

Ulrich said participants do not need to bring their photographic equipment unless they need an explanation about some aspect of their equipment.

Topics include a brief review of the principles of photography, relationships between shutter and aperture settings, fundamental elements of composition, use and timing of fill-in flash, digital versus film photography, techniques of close-up photography, and a brief discussion of slide etiquette, the photography business and marketing.

Ulrich grew up in South Chicago, graduated with a degree in biology from Southern Illinois University and taught for four years before launching his career as a freelance photographer. He has supported himself with nature photography for the past 29 years.

His library of more than 300,000 transparencies includes birds and mammals from all over the world. His photographs have been featured in publications such as National Wildlife, Audubon, National Geographic, Montana Outdoors and Life.

He has published six nature books, including Mammals of the Rockies, Birds of the Northern Rockies, Once Upon a Frame and his 2002 release, Photo Pantanal. Dr. William E. Hawkins, GCRL executive director, said Ulrich brings the scientific and artistic worlds together.

"Tom earns his living photographing wildlife all over the world," Hawkins sad. "He is an outstanding observer and a biologist. His approach to photography is to capture his subjects exhibiting their natural behavior."

The GCRL is home to the university's Department of Coastal Sciences, the Center for Fisheries Research and Development, and the Gulf Coast Geospatial Center. The J.L. Scott Marine Education Center and Aquarium is also a unit of the laboratory. The GCRL is part of the Southern Miss College of Science and Technology. For more information, call the laboratory at (228) 872-4200.


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April 20, 2004 4:09 PM