Arts and Science Faculty celebrates its own 

By University Communications Services

The annual Arts & Science Dean’s Awards were presented at a cocktail reception on Sept. 25 in the downtown Faculty Club. Congratulations to all these deserving recipients.

Magnifying glass

Seen above at the celebration of the Dean’s Awards held by the Faculty of Arts and Science on Sept. 25 are, left to right in the back row: Fred Szabo, Donna Whittaker, Harald Proppe, Perry Calce, Pablo Gilabert, Andrew Ryder, Robert Bernard, Andrea Falcon, Linda Kay and Dean David Graham. In the front row, left to right, are Judith Herz, Sheelah O'Neill, Diane Poulin-Dubois, Walcir Cardoso and Philippe Caignon.

Professor Robert Bernard is an international authority in the field of distance education. Since joining the Department of Education in 1979, he has built a distinguished list of publications, and served as editor of the Canadian Journal of Educational Communication from 1985 to 1989.

His nominator said, “Bob’s work in distance education lies at the heart of educational technology and is of growing importance in Canada and throughout the world.”

Diane Poulin-Dubois joined Concordia as an assistant professor in 1984; since 2001, she has been a full professor in Psychology, and a Fellow of the Science College.

Her interests lie in the field of infant social cognition, and her research areas include concept formation, word meaning acquisition, language development, theory of mind development in infancy, and the cognitive correlates of bilingualism. In addition, she has conducted work that “has been central in filling gaps in the literature on gender development.”

New Scholars

Andrea Falcon is an assistant professor in the Department of Classics, Modern Languages and Linguistics who earned his doctorate at the University of Padua (Italy) and has made significant contributions to the study of Aristotelian philosophy.

Based on interest in his current research and recognition of the very high quality of his work, the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton University has offered him membership for the second term of the 2007-2008 academic year.

Pablo Gilabert is an assistant Philosophy professor. Since joining Concordia in 2003. He has produced 12 publications of about 200 pages of original, purely conceptual philosophical argument. A specialist in social justice and democracy, critical theory, and Kant’s practical philosophy, he spent this summer as a visiting fellow at Oxford University.

Andrew Ryder, an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology, excels in three areas — the study of culture, the study of personality, and the study of depression as a human experience and as a form of psychopathology — and in integrating them. Hailed as a creative scholar who has opened new lines of inquiry, he has been identified as “one of the top young psychopathology researchers most certainly in Canada and likely in North America.”

Outstanding Academic Service

Judith Herz, a professor in the Department of English, was recognized for her service as an administrator and member of numerous academic committees. She is the only unanimously elected honorary life member of the Association of Canadian and College University Teachers of English (ACCUTE).

Harald Proppe has helped build the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. He was instrumental, together with now-retired Prof. John Senez, in the creation of the actuarial mathematics program, which has become a flagship program of the department.

“Hal is a dedicated teacher, superb administrator and a wonderful colleague,” said one of his nominators. He was also a senior administrator and demonstrated unparalleled patience and negotiating skills.”

Exceptional Service to the Faculty

Perry Calce is the Coordinator of Academic Programs and Curriculum in the School of Community and Public Affairs. “Perry continues to play a vital role in the success of the SCPA and is, perhaps, its greatest ambassador.” He is an active volunteer for good causes at Concordia and in the larger community.

Sheelah O’Neill is the Assistant to the Chair of the Department of Communication Studies. Maurice Charland held that position when he nominated her and said he could count on her to know which courses were offered in which years and what their enrolments were, He also counted on her “to sense the pulse of student concerns.”

Donna Whittaker is the Assistant to the Chair of the Department of History, and produces the excellent History newsletter. “Donna is devoted to the History Department,” said a faculty member. “Her contribution to its life goes far beyond that normally expected of a secretary or administrator. None of us could accomplish what we do without Donna working behind the scenes to back us up and straighten us out.”

Senior faculty members rely on her support. “She is immensely caring, warm and thoughtful, as well as incredibly efficient, quick to learn and a fountain of information. Her knack for diffusing a difficult situation, or delivering a reality check to those asking for undeserved privileges, is an equally valuable asset.”

Teaching Excellence

Philippe Caignon is an associate professor in the Département d’Études françaises. Every faculty member in his department signed his nomination.

“Dr. Caignon has demonstrated truly superior work and unrelenting energy,” his nominators said. “En fait, le mot ‘professeur’ est probablement insuffisant pour décrire son dévouement extraordinaire.”

Walcir Cardoso is an assistant professor in the Department of Education. His nomination was supported by letters of support from his students: “I remember him patiently receiving me at his house one Sunday morning to help me hone my first conference presentation scheduled for the next day. Then he rose the following day at four in the morning to drive [several other students] and myself to the conference in Quebec City.”

Linda Kay is an associate Journalism professor. Her nominator said she’s the highest-rated teacher in the department. “Students find her inspiring, enthusiastic, organized, thorough, perceptive and caring.”
Kay says she started teaching when she was asked to share her professional expertise as an adjunct. A fellow teacher offered to advise her. “It was an act of immense generosity that I’ve never forgotten. Her benevolence shaped my teaching philosophy.”

Fred Szabo is a professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the director of an important co-op program. He is an internationally recognized expert on the use of technology in teaching abstruse mathematical ideas.

A colleague says admiringly, “His enthusiasm is infectious, and the skilful way in which he uses various technological tools to achieve his educational objectives is often like observing an artist perform on the stage.”


Concordia University