[ skip to content ]


Michelle Kelley, professor of psychology, was named the winner of the Old Dominion University College of Sciences 2007 faculty excellence research award at the college's Awards Day ceremony on Saturday, April 21. She has earned broad recognition for developmental psychology research examining the effects on families of military service, the abuse of drugs and alcohol, and other disruptive influences.

Charles Sukenik, associate professor of physics, received the college's 2007 Distinguished Teaching Award. He is the physics department's undergraduate program director and heads a research group that conducts fundamental and applied research in ultra-cold-atomic and molecular physics. He was the winner of the college's Gene W. Hirschfeld Faculty Excellence Award in 2004.

The award for outstanding undergraduate advisor went to James Bliss, associate professor of psychology, whose expertise is in the field of human factors. The college's outstanding laboratory teaching assistant for 2007 is Donika Plyku, graduate teaching assistant in the physics department.

Also honored at the ceremony was John Adam, University Professor of mathematics and statistics, who earlier this year was named a winner of the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia 2007 Outstanding Faculty Award.

Lauren Connor, past president of the ODU Alumni Association, presented alumni appreciation awards to Harold Marshall, Morgan Professor Emeritus of Biological Sciences, and Daniel Sonenshine, professor emeritus of biological sciences.

The research award for Kelley comes just weeks after her comments concerning children who have a parent fighting in the Middle East received media attention in dozens of national and international newspapers, magazines, online news sites and broadcast shows. One interview she did was for ABC's "20/20" program. Her research has received more than $6 million in support from contracts and grants.

Kelley's award included a prize of $1,000. Sukenik and Bliss each received $500, and Plyku received $250 cash and a $250 gift certificate.

In his welcoming remarks, Provost Thomas Isenhour encouraged students of the college to promote the sciences. "We live in a scientifically illiterate society and I don't think we can afford to stay that way," he said.

Students who were honored at the ceremony on Saturday were:

Biological Sciences
-Brittany Fields, undergraduate service award (Ralph Stevens, mentor)
-Lindsay Koren, undergraduate service award (Chris Osgood, mentor)
-Carol E. Griffin, outstanding undergraduate award (Roland Cooper, mentor)

-Vassiliki Pravodelov, outstanding senior, biochemistry (Ralph Stevens, mentor)
-Elizabeth Dupont, outstanding senior chemistry (Nancy Xu, mentor)

Computer Science
-William Scott Parrish, December 2006 outstanding undergraduate (Janet Brunelle, mentor)
-Daniel Buhrman, Spring 2007 outstanding undergraduate (Janet Brunelle, mentor)
-Mahmoud Abu-Elala, outstanding teaching assistant (Stephan Olariu and Hussein Wahab, mentors)
-Frank McCown, outstanding research assistant (Michael Nelson, mentor)

Mathematics and Statistics
-Sarah Parrish, Philip R. Wohl Scholarship (Fang Hu, mentor)
-Rebecca Clark, top graduating senior (Gordon Melrose, mentor)
-Alan McIntyre, top graduating senior
-Hector Morales, top graduating senior (John Tweed, mentor)

Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
­-Frank Thompson, S. Zaneveld Endowed Scholarship (Fred Dobbs, mentor)
-Katherine Filippino, Hampton Roads Maritime Scholarship (Margaret Mulholland, mentor)
-Matt Botzler, Neil and Susan Kelly Scholarship (Don Swift, mentor)
-Hussain Abdullah, Dorothy Brown Smith Scholarship (Bob Dias, mentor)
-Xinping Hu, outstanding doctoral student (David Burdige, mentor)
-Lisa Van Kylen, outstanding undergraduate student (Richard Whittecar, mentor)

-Brandon Rodgers, Lillian and Clifford Adams Scholarship (Larry Weinstein, mentor)
-Dao Ho, Lillian and Clifford Adams Scholarship (Larry Weinstein and Charles Sukenik, mentors)
-Robert Horne, outstanding senior (Charles Sukenik, mentor)

-Ashley Doane, Elizabeth C. Guy Outstanding Academic Award and Service Award (Jennifer Younkin, mentor)

This article was posted on: April 23, 2007

Old Dominion University
Office of University Relations

Room 100 Koch Hall Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0018
Telephone: 757-683-3114

Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.