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Drew’s Caspersen School Salutes Outstanding Students

Fulbright fellow among the honorees.

May 2019 – Drew University’s Caspersen School of Graduate Studies honored nine students, two professors and a dedicated staffer at its annual awards ceremony.

Among the honorees was Patrick Mahoney, who’s pursuing a PhD in history and culture and just earned a Fulbright fellowship to conduct research abroad. Mahoney is examining how the writings of an Irishman who immigrated to the U.S. in 1863 broadly reflect the experience of Irish immigrants who settled in the Midwest, and for that, he’ll spend the next academic year in Ireland.

Also recognized were Adjunct Professor Liana Piehler G’96,’01, who earned a fellowship, Assistant Professor Jonathan Golden, for excellence in teaching, and Executive Assistant Joanne Montross, for dedicated service to Caspersen.

“It’s great to get to celebrate the incredible academic work of the folks in the community—and that is both honoring the work that the students have done and also appreciating the faculty and staff who have supported you to do it,” said Debra Liebowitz, provost of Drew and dean of Caspersen.

Four of the awards were from the Graduate Student Association, which is led by Hamza Radid. Here’s who won what.

General Awards

Dean Pain Prize – Jennifer Gromada 

Established in 2006 to honor Dr. Pain for 15 years of service as dean of the Caspersen School of Graduate Studies.  Awarded annually for the best interdisciplinary doctoral dissertation that is singularly distinguished by creative thought and prose style.

Dean’s Master of Arts in Teaching Prize – Rachel Fintz

Awarded to a student graduating from the MAT program who has excelled in all facets of the program, including coursework, field experiences and student-teaching.

Dean’s Medical Humanities Dissertation Prize – Brenda Hall

Awarded annually for the Doctor of Medical Humanities dissertation that is singularly distinguished by creative thought and prose style.

Dean’s Prize for Excellence and Creativity in Poetry – James Rogers

Awarded to a student from the MFA program who has excelled in all facets of the program, including coursework, residencies and final manuscript.

Mary Pennywitt Lester Dissertation Prize – Heather Bennett, Daphne Wolf

Endowed in 2001 for Mary Pennywitt Lester C’78 and is awarded to an outstanding doctor of philosophy dissertation.

Neal Riemer Prize in Democratic Political Theory – Pehr Englén

Established in 2002 by family and friends in memory of former Political Philosophy Professor Riemer’s important contributions to the Caspersen School of Graduate Studies and of his significant body of scholarly work in the area of democratic theory. Awarded for a completed doctoral dissertation, master’s thesis or exceptional paper relevant to the work of Neal Riemer.

Patrice M. and John F. Kelly Fellowship in Arts and Letters – Liana Piehler 

The Caspersen School benefited greatly by the establishment of the Patrice M. and John F. Kelly Fellowship in Arts and Letters. The fellowship is established in recognition of the humanities based education and its purpose is to expand and enhance the teaching, mentorship and scholarly activities of faculty in the Arts and Letters Program.

Graduate Student Association Awards

Lisa Nocks Student Award – Daniel Michalak

Introduced to celebrate the service of a graduate student to the graduate student community in general and the Graduate Student Association in particular.

Dean Pain Community Service Award – Joanne Montross

Awarded to a member of the Drew community who encourages and embodies the spirit of community through action and support within the Caspersen School of Graduate Studies.

Dean Robert Ready Award for Putting the Humanities to Work – Patrick Mahoney

Recognizes a member of the graduate community who demonstrates the importance of humanities education beyond the classroom through the implementation of programming in the larger community.

Merrill Skaggs Award for Excellence in Teaching – Jonathan Golden
Recognizes a Drew University professor who is passionately devoted to his or her discipline.