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Dean Sicotte: 'I can’t express how grateful I am to everyone in the faculty'

Faculty and staff honoured in annual Dean's Awards for Excellence

Concordia's Loyola Campus AD building with Concordia 'C' in foreground

The 15th edition of the Dean's Awards for Excellence recognizes the resilience and accomplishments of staff and faculty. 

"I can’t express how grateful I am to everyone in the faculty who has worked so hard to deliver on all fronts – our teaching, our research, our service to the institution and to our communities," says Pascale Sicotte, dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science, in her opening remarks.

The 2021 Honourees

Dean's Award for Excellence in Research

Pat Forgione, Senior Scholar, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

The selection committee noted Pat’s outstanding work establishing a vibrant research program in therapeutic molecule development, supporting an impressive list of graduate students, and forging inter-departmental research collaborations.

Adeela Arshad-Ayaz, Mid-Career Scholar, Department of Education

The selection committee recognized Adeela’s outstanding research in the areas of counter-radicalization and counter-extremism, and strong record of publications, student supervisions, grant application success, and board memberships at well-recognized internal and external research centres.

Ashlee Howarth, Junior Scholar, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

The selection committee highlighted Ashlee’s outstanding list of high-impact publications, successful grant applications, and numerous graduate supervisions.

Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching

Kathleen MacDonald, Department of Classics, Modern Languages and Linguistics

The selection committee noted Kathleen's major contribution to the departments’ curriculum development as well as her dedication to pedagogical innovation, her success with student-centered learning, and efforts to adapt her teaching approach and course materials to the varied needs of her students.

Darren Wershler, Department of English

The selection committee was impressed with Darren's work adapting his courses to Universal Design Learning guidelines as well as his dedication to curriculum revision that includes student consultation.

Dean's Award for Excellence in Academic Service

Alexandre Champagne, Department of Physics

The selection committee noted Alexandre's time as department Chair where he worked to double the unit’s admissions and grant funding, support innovative program and curriculum development, and prioritize diversity and inclusion in all facets of the unit’s activities.

Leander Schneider, Department of Political Science

The selection committee noted Leander's work as undergraduate program director, his active involvement on several committees, his service to CUFA and his grant and publication review work.

Dean's Award for Excellence in Service to the Faculty by a Staff Member

Vincent Lau, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

The selection committee was impressed with Vincent's work developing the home laboratory kits during the pandemic, as well as his resourcefulness, leadership, and commitment to fostering an environment of inclusion and respect in the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

Sandra Woywod-Pagé, Department of Classics, Modern Languages and Linguistics

The selection committee noted Sandra's outstanding work as Coordinator- Academic Programs and Exchange and Summer Program Coordinator as well as her commitment to creating a welcoming environment to students, faculty, and staff.

Dean's Award for Excellence in Community Outreach and Public Engagement

Nadia Chaudhri, Department of Psychology

The selection committee wishes to acknowledge Nadia’s efforts to raise awareness about the early signs of ovarian cancer as well as her work in establishing and bringing attention to the Nadia Chaudhri Wingspan Award—an annual scholarship to support the training of neuroscientists from underrepresented backgrounds. Her fundraising campaign raised over $650,000 from nearly 9,000 donors to date. The faculty is deeply appreciative of her contributions to the university as a colleague, researcher, mentor and friend.

Ann-Louise Davidson, Department of Education

The selection committee noted the impact and broad reach of Ann-Louise's collaborations and partnerships with other educational institutions as well as community organizations such as the Chalet Kent makerspace. It was also impressed with the impact of Ann-Louise's children’s book, Amber the Maker, and its recognition by the Canadian Commission for UNESCO.

Dean's Award for Excellence in Graduate Supervision

Jason Camlot, Department of English

The selection committee was impressed with Jason's work assisting students in organizing symposiums and other forums for sharing their work-in-progress, involving students in his own research activities, mentoring students with grant applications and publications, celebrating their accomplishments, and ensuring that they receive professional development in their fields of interest.

Research Awards and Chairs

Distinguished University Research Professor and Concordia University Research Fellow

David Howes, Department of Sociology and Anthropology

His research areas include the anthropology of the senses and legal anthropology. He is co-founder of the Centre for Sensory Studies, the general editor of the Sensory Formations and Sensory Studies book series and managing editor of The Senses and Society, a premier journal in the field.

Concordia University Research Fellow

Adeela Arshad-Ayaz, Department of Education

Her research examines the intersections of political economy, cultural pluralism, sustainability, citizenship, technology, hate speech/counter-extremism, and social justice in conjunction with the advancements in interactive technologies.

Concordia University Research Fellow

David Walsh, Department of Biology

His research focuses on aquatic microbial ecology and evolution. His research lab investigates the biodiversity, metabolic versatility, and evolution of microorganisms using novel genomics-based molecular approaches. The lab’s research is coordinated to provide insights into how microbial distributions and activities may be influenced by environmental pressures like climate change, and how changes in microbial distributions and activities may affect aquatic ecosystems as a whole.

Petro-Canada Young Innovator Award

Angela Alberga, Department of Health, Kinesiology and Applied Physiology

Her research program focuses on building a better understanding of how societal, school and other institutional factors influence weight-related issues including obesity, eating disorders, physical inactivity and weight stigma. She is currently Principal Investigator on a research study aimed to improve conversations between health care providers and people who are pregnant, which is funded by a grant from Canada Institutes of Health Research.

Concordia University Research Chairs

Krista Byers-Heinlein, Concordia University Research Chair in Bilingualism and Open Science (Tier 2)

Her research uses open science to study bilingualism, particularly early bilingualism in babies and young children. Open Science is a newer movement in science that encourages collaboration and transparency. Her lab uses open science practices like sharing raw data online, posting preprints of journal articles early in the publication process and working collaboratively with other labs around the world to collect data on large projects.

Stefanie Duguay, Concordia University Research Chair in Digital Intimacy, Gender and Sexuality (New Scholar)

Her research looks at how digital technologies and digital media affect those different facets of our lives – from how we represent ourselves, to how we relate to and engage with others, particularly using dating apps, and what happens when these essential components of our lives become data that is integrated into technologies that use artificial intelligence.

Rafik Naccache, Concordia University Research Chair in Sustainable Multifunctional Nanomaterials (Tier 2)

His research lab is focused on exploiting the fluorescent qualities of nanomaterials. These materials, 80,000 times smaller than the diameter of a human hair, can be used to target pathogens; capture heavy metals to clean up waterways; build nano-sized vehicles for drug delivery to treat disease; and in the creation of biofuels.

Thien Thanh Dang-Vu, Concordia University Research Chair in Sleep, Neuroimaging and Cognitive Health (Tier 1)

His research lab investigates sleep, examining why and how sleep is important for memory and health in general. His lab uses brain imaging to better understand how the brain functions in relation to sleep and what disturbances in the brain might lead to sleep and conditions like insomnia.

Carly Ziter, Concordia University Research Chair in Urban Ecology and Sustainability (New Scholar)

With half of the world’s people living in cities, her research group focuses on understanding the impact of urban greenspaces on biodiversity and on our overall health. In addition, she looks at how we manage our greenspaces and green infrastructure and what impact that has on things like summer heatwaves, floods and our mental health. She emphasizes working across disciplines and in collaboration with communities to reduce barriers to action and implement best practices.


Additional chairs

Co-chair in artificial intelligence and digital health for health behaviour change

Simon Bacon, Department of Health, Kinesiology and Applied Physiology

With this new research chair from the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS), Simon will work with co-chair Éric Granger at École de technologie supérieure, to identify and measure ambivalence in health using AI techniques for automatic expression recognition.

Research Chair in Canadian Jewish Studies

Miranda Crowdus, Department of Religions and Cultures

This chairship combines community outreach and the directorship of the flagship Concordia Institute for Canadian Jewish Studies. Crowdus' research interests are at the intersection of Jewish Studies, Cultural Studies and Ethnomusicology with additional expertise in cultural sustainability, traditional minorized communities belonging in contemporary, urban settings, and with a particular interest in Jewish Romani musical traditions in Greece.

Jean Monnet Chair

Deborah Folaron, Département d'études françaises

This chairship focuses on the Multiple roles of translation in Minority Multilingual Romani Contexts. Only two Jean Monnet Chairs were awarded this past year in Canada. Funded by the European Union, these Chairs allow researchers and students to study many aspects pertaining to the EU, including minority languages, inclusion and integration. A specialist in multilingual and romani translation studies, Deborah’s chair will combine teaching and research activities ensuring that Concordia becomes the North American hub for multilingual translation and Romani studies.


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