Faculty recognized as Presidential, Antone award winners

(From left) Award recipients Ernest Jolicoeur, Dr. Anthony Mangieri, Dr. Sean O’Callaghan, Dr. Margaret Svogun and Dr. JD Swanson.

President Jane Gerety, RSM has announced this year’s recipients of the Presidential Faculty Award and the Sister M. Therese Antone Academic Excellence Award.

Presidential Faculty Award winners include Dr. Anthony Mangieri, associate professor in the Department of Art and Art History, and Dr. Margaret Svogun, professor in the Department of English and Communications. The Sister M. Therese Antone Academic Excellence Award was presented to Dr. JD Swanson, associate professor and chairman in the Department of Biology and Biomedical Sciences; and Dr. Sean O’Callaghan, assistant professor in the Department of Religious and Theological Studies; while a collaboration between Mangieri and Ernest Jolicoeur, assistant professor in the Department of Art and Art History, received special projects recognition.

“It’s particularly gratifying for me to recognize the great work being done by our faculty,” Sister Jane said. “You are scholars and teachers who are incredibly passionate about ensuring that our students get the education they need to thrive in an ever-changing world. I congratulate these award-winning faculty who are proving every day that Salve Regina is indeed a very special place.”

Mangieri is awarded a one-course reduction for one semester during 2018-2019 to support his work in expanding the University’s art history course offerings to embrace non-western art, adopting a more global perspective. He said the course reduction will allow him to revise existing courses and develop new ones that will align the curriculum more closely with the goals of the department’s learning objectives, the University’s academic and religious missions, best practices in the field, and recommendations from the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

“I want to ensure that our students are exposed to artistic traditions and accomplishments beyond the western canon,” he says. “To truly understand a civilization’s art, one has to study its broader culture, including subjects like religion, philosophy, literature and economics.”

Svogun also receives a one-course reduction for one semester in 2018-2019 to support her project to analyze J.D. Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye” through the lens of Mikhail Bakhtin’s theory regarding the significance of individual language use. Svogun has published articles and given conference presentations on Salinger’s classic work over the course of several years, and most recently has become interested in the way he exploits the idea of varying speech patterns and the expectations and stereotypes that can arise from judgments about a person’s use of language and style of speech.

“J.D. Salinger is widely recognized for his skill in creating the convincing voice of Holden Caulfield, the narrator of his classic novel,” Svogun says. “However, the focus on Holden has often led readers to overlook the effect of multiple other powerfully realistic voices present in the novel; the narrative consists mainly of a series of about 26 conversations that Holden has with various people he encounters, and whose voices he faithfully records and often even comments on directly, noting their speech patterns, vocabulary, and verbal markers of class, education, age and gender. Salinger repeatedly reminds us of the degree to which one’s voice creates one’s ‘self’.”

Swanson receives a $5,000 recognition award for excellence in teaching and dedication to the University. Earlier this month, he started a new position as program director at the National Science Foundation in Washington, D.C., while remaining on the Salve faculty, where he has served since 2011.

He teaches a variety of classes, including Human Anatomy and Physiology for non-majors and Developmental Biology. He has a research lab that works primarily on cell-cell communication using raspberry and blackberry prickles, human stomach cancer cells and algal blooms as models. And he has been involved in the sport of shotokan karate since 1980, founding several shotokan clubs along the east coast, including at Salve Regina.

O’Callaghan receives $5,000 to research and visit top institutions in the U.S., and attend conferences on research in the area of religion and advanced/emerging technologies with particular emphasis on social ethics.

Last fall, he presented a TEDxNewport talk on “Redesigning Humans,” an examination of his research exploring technology and its impact on the human body and mind. Teaching primarily in the field of world religions, O’Callaghan regularly introduces his research into his classes to get students thinking about these issues and viewing religion as something dynamic and relevant. Religion, he says, does have a voice in this debate, and will have to speak to a world where technology is rapidly advancing and challenging what it means for us to be human.

“Most religious people believe that we are made in the image of God,” he says, “so in what many are predicting to be a post-human world, what will religion have to say to society?”

Mangieri and Jolicoeur receive a $5,000 special projects award for their work to develop a natural wonders collection and library in the Antone Academic Center, Room 101, an “underutilized space” that features “turn of the century, floor to ceiling glass-fronted bookcases lining an entire wall.” In addition to specimens, objects and books that could be housed within the glass projects, Mangieri and Jolicoeur hope to enliven the space by framing prints and student work on the walls.

The idea for the project was the direct result of research developed during a course they co-taught last term on Curatorial Practices and the Gallery Experience. “A natural history collection would allow students to study objects at first hand, to privilege experiential, visual learning,” the two write in their proposal. “Students would learn about the world through visual study and inspection.”

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