Faculty Experts Roundup

Recent faculty achievements include awards in the arts, recognition for storytelling expertise, a podcast appearance and more.

March 19, 2024


Arts Council honors OHIO faculty

Three OHIO faculty members have received Individual Excellence Awards from the Ohio Arts Council. The Individual Excellence Awards program recognizes outstanding accomplishments by artists in a variety of disciplines. The awards “give artists the resources to experiment and explore their art forms, develop skills and advance their careers, and receive affirmation and acknowledgment for outstanding work.” Each award is $5,000.

  • For Playwriting: Associate Professor of Instruction, Playwriting and Director of the School of Theater Merri Biechler.
  • For Creative Nonfiction: Associate Professor and Stocker Professor of Creative Writing Eric LeMay.  
  • For Music Composition: Associate Professor of Composition and Theory and Chair of the Graduate Studies Division Robert McClure. 
Merri Biechler

Merri Biechler

Eric LeMay

Eric LeMay

Robert McClure

Robert McClure

Training data storytellers in France

Laaeq Khan

School of Media Arts and Studies Associate Professor Laeeq Khan has been invited by the Institut Universitaire de Technologie at the University of Angers, France, to deliver training workshops this summer on Visual Narratives: The Art and Science of Data Storytelling. Participants will be engaged in hands-on tutorials, equipping them with the skills to employ various tools and techniques to render data that is both accessible and appealing to diverse audiences. The workshops will comprise scholars from a broad spectrum of academic fields, including marketing, business administration, biology, electrical and mechanical engineering, and information science. This engagement underscores his dedication to global educational exchanges and the enhancement of students' understanding of international concerns, through the lens of varied academic disciplines.

Voinovich project head receives commendation

Three women pose for a photo in front of a portrait of George Voinovich. The woman on the left is holding a framed certificate
Stephanie Howe, center, accepts a commendation from the office of Senator J.D. Vance.

Stephanie Howe, associate director of human capital and operations in the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Service, received a commendation from Ohio Senator J.D. Vance for her work on the PORTSfuture development project. The project received the Aliceann Wohlbruck Impact Award for 2023.


National board membership elevates math education

Courtney Koestler

Courtney Koestler, director of the OHIO Center for Equity in Mathematics and Science (OCEMS) and associate professor of teacher education, was elected to the board of the Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators (AMTE), the largest professional organization devoted to the improvement of mathematics teacher education. With more than 1,000 members devoted to the preservice education and professional development of PreK-12 teachers of mathematics, the AMTE board membership aligns strongly with the OCEMS mission of to strengthening collaboration, coordination, and communication among PreK-16 educators and administrators throughout Southeast Ohio and beyond. Hear Dr. Koestler discuss math and science teaching challenges on NPR's Teaching Matters podcast.

Patton faculty member wins storytelling award

Kevin Cordi

Assistant Professor and storyteller Dr. Kevin Cordi has been nationally recognized with a Storytelling World Award for his work on "Social Action Stories: Impact Tales for the School and Community."  Cordi served as a contributing author and lead editor. The book features a series of social action stories that demonstrate how storytelling can inspire people to address injustice and take meaningful action, accompanied by activities to empower readers to make a difference in their own communities. Dr. Cordi's contribution includes an essay reflecting on his visit to the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama. This marks the final year for the award, with the largest pool of nominees ever as it included submissions from all 30 years the award was presented by Storytelling World.

Coaching education faculty member featured on podcast 

Photo of Ashley Allanson

Dr. Ash Allanson, a former professional soccer player and assistant professor of instruction in sports coaching education in the Patton College with a rich background in soccer coaching and education, was a guest on an episode of the United Soccer Coaches podcast. Hosted by Dean Linke, the podcast delves into the multifaceted world of soccer with a trio of distinguished guests. In this episode, Allanson shares the personal journey that led him from professional soccer player to Ohio University faculty member, talks about legacy and the "Bobcat connection," and more.

Patton group advocates at Ohio Statehouse

A group of people sit around a conference table, one gesturing as she talks

On February 21, Associate Dean for Academic Engagement and Outreach Dr. Connie Patterson and Interim Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies Dr. Danielle Dani traveled with undergraduate student ambassador Gwen Peters and doctoral student Dezere Martin to Day on the Square in Columbus. They spent the day at the Statehouse meeting with legislators to advocate for teacher- and education-related concerns.

Focused on Ohio educator preparation providers, Day on the Square is designed to: 

  • Establish a relationship with legislators
  • Communicate a consistent message about the value of educator preparation in Ohio
  • Demonstrate the commitment of educator preparation institutions and faculty
  • Provide information about current initiatives and educational issues
  • Listen to legislators’ concerns and respond to questions
  • Advocate for legislation that supports a vision for comprehensive, high-quality educator preparation
  • Network with colleagues on important issues in the state