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April 30, 2001

Coastal Carolina University presented awards for student academic achievement at the annual Honors Convocation on Tuesday, April 24. Faculty recognition awards also were presented.

Ryan Bubucis, a senior accounting and finance double major of Uncasville, Conn., received the 2000-2001 Facultys Academic Excellence Award. Candidates for this award must attain a minimum cumulative grade point average of at least 3.5, the endorsement of a faculty adviser, and a record of academic honors. Bubucis has a perfect 4.0 grade point average. During his junior and senior years, he has been in the Wall Fellows program, an intensive leadership program for Coastals top business majors. He is also in Coastals Honors Program.

Kevin Cox, a senior marketing major of Conway, received the 2000- 2001 Ronald D. Lackey Service Award. Named in honor of the late Coastal faculty member and university chaplain, the award is given annually to a senior on the basis of conspicuous service to the university through involvement and leadership in campus organizations. Cox has been a leader in many Coastal organizations, including a term as president of Omicron Delta Kappa, a national leadership honor society. Cox also has been a Student Alumni Ambassador, an Orientation Assistant, and a business manager of Coastals student newspaper, The Chanticleer.

Robin Edwards Russell, assistant professor of dramatic arts, was presented the Student Affairs Division Award, which honors faculty who make significant contributions to the quality of student life through participation and leadership in the co-curricular activities of the university. Since joining the Coastal faculty in 1995, she has been active as a faculty mentor for undeclared freshmen. She earned a masters degree in theater from the University of South Carolina in 1991 and served an internship at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington D.C. Russell is co-founder of the South Carolina Shakespeare Company, based in Columbia.

Varavut Limpasuvan was named the Distinguished Teacher of the Year, an annual honor presented by Coastals Student Government Association to faculty who demonstrate excellence in teaching. Limpasuvan, an assistant professor of chemistry and physics, joined the Coastal faculty in 2000. He earned a bachelors degree in engineering and applied science from the California Institute of Technology and Ph.D. in atmospheric sciences from the University of Washington. He did post-doctoral research at the Joint Institute for the Study of Atmosphere and Ocean in Seattle.

Sally Z. Hare, Singleton Endowed Professor of Education at Coastal, received the Distinguished Teacher-Scholar Lecturer Award. Sponsored by HTC, Inc., this award was initiated in 1996 to recognize faculty members who distinguish themselves as teachers, scholars and communicators.

During the fall, the recipient delivers a public lecture drawn from his or her area of expertise. Hare joined the Coastal faculty in 1974 and has served as director of Coastals Center for Education and Community since 1993. During her career at Coastal, Hare has been a Kellogg National Fellow and a Fetzer Teaching Fellow and she won a national award in Community Development from the National Continuing Education Association. Under her guidance, Coastals Center for Education and Community has sponsored a number of innovative programs linking the university and the community, including Calling All Colors, Jump for the Sun and America Reads. Hare earned a bachelors degree, masters degree and Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina.

Paul Gayes, professor of marine science and geology, was named the Kearns Palmetto Professor. This endowed professorship, appointed periodically, was established in 1989 with funds provided by the state and matched by the Coastal Educational Foundation, Inc. Gayes, the third recipient of the honor, is director of the Center for Marine and Wetland Studies at Coastal. He joined the Coastal faculty in 1987 and has established an international reputation in marine geology, providing Coastal students with unique research opportunities. He earned a masters degree in geoscience-geology from Penn State University and a Ph.D. in coastal oceanography from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook. Coastal professors Richard Dame and Richard Collin are previous Kearns Palmetto Professors.

Department awards were presented to 25 students in recognition of outstanding academic accomplishments and contributions to the academic quality of their respective departments. Candidates for academic awards are nominated by respective department faculty.

The following awards were presented:

E. Craig Wall Sr. College of Business Administration:

Accounting - Lisa M. Antanaitis of North Myrtle Beach Finance - Ryan M. Bubucis of Uncasville, Conn. Management - Jessica C. Bafile of Conway Marketing - Tracy M. Strickland of Nichols

College of Education:

Early Childhood Education - Jacqueline Word of Conway Elementary Education - Risa L.Tritt of Bedford, Pa. Health Promotion - Christopher J. McDonald of Myrtle Beach Physical Education - Scott Eron of Longs Recreation - Alison E. Bach of Morristown, Tenn. Secondary Education - Amanda F. Rawls of Longs

Thomas W. and Robin W. Edwards College of Humanities and Fine Arts:

Art Studio - Leah Miller of Myrtle Beach English - Danielle E. Evans of Myrtle Beach Foreign Languages - Kimberly Hucks of Conway History - Rhett J. Graham of Myrtle Beach Music - Cale Pritchett of Woodbridge, Va. Philosophy and Religion - William L. Kelly of Myrtle Beach Politics and Geography - Christopher M. Becker of Myrtle Beach Theater - Steven S. Thompson of Surfside Beach

College of Natural and Applied Sciences:

Biology - Wendy L. Burd of Jefferson, Md. Chemistry and Physics - Danielle Laker of Bryan, Ohio Computer Science - Crystal C. Edge of Loris Marine Science - Christopher M. Prosser of OFallon, Ill. Mathematics - Leslie J. Elliott of Nichols Psychology - Theresa M. McDonald of Myrtle Beach Sociology - David C. Woodley of Myrtle Beach

Robert E. Derr of Myrtle Beach received the Interdisciplinary Studies Award from Coastals Division of Extended Learning and Public Services.

Medallions were presented to the following students who have successfully completed the requirements of Coastals Honors Program:

Christopher M. Becker of Myrtle Beach - Political Science Brad J. Blythe of Homer, N.Y. - Marine Science, Biology Ryan M. Bubucis of Uncasville, Conn. - Accounting Crystal C. Edge of Loris - Computer Science Jessica K. Hausman of Blairstown, N.J. - Marine Science Correen A. Lembo of Greenwood, S.C. - Elementary Education Tamara S. Maher of Brentwood, Tenn. - Marine Science Brianne L. Meagher of Londonderry, N.H. - Political Science Jelena Mirkovic of Conway - Chemistry, Biology Simona Palmieri of Myrtle Beach - Marketing, Management Tania Rubesa of Pula, Croatia - Management Shira Z. Shasho of Myrtle Beach - Chemistry Stephanie P. Sorrell of Rogersville, Tenn. - Biology, Marine Science

The more than 300 members of Coastals 15 honor societies and the 33 students listed in Whos Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities also were acknowledged, as well as 20 students who made presentations at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR).