Campus News


Faculty Merit Awards Banquet

A new program to recognize excellence in faculty research and scholarship has been developed at SUA within the Academic Affairs office. The program builds upon an earlier program known as the Course Relief program, developed by Ed Feasel and Michael Weiner, which awarded points to faculty based on their publications in research journals and in books. The new program, co-developed by Dean of Faculty Bryan Penprase, VPAA Ed Feasel, and Associate Dean Michael Weiner, includes an analysis of submitted faculty publications that recognizes faculty publications within the top-tier academic presses and journals, as well as high profile activities within scholarly disciplines. These additional components include chairing and organizing conferences, publishing and editing academic journals and representing SUA at a wide variety of academic settings and performance venues. Faculty submit their works in a bi-annual cycle, the first of which occurred in September 2018.

Dean Bryan Penprase and Associate Dean Michael Weiner developed criteria for prioritizing the highest impact journals and most prestigious academic presses using a wide variety of internationally recognized measures. The effort has been developed to identify and recognize those scholars within SUA’s faculty who are having great impacts across the world in their research and scholarship, which greatly benefits SUA students by enabling faculty to bring deeper and fresher insights into their subjects in the classroom and in capstone projects. The research also enhances the reputation and prestige of SUA, and we are grateful to all of SUA’s faculty for their hard work in all of their diverse scholarly activities. Our first 11 SUA faculty selected for a Merit Award are listed below, and we congratulate them for their achievements which represent an amazing range and depth of intellectual interests.

SUA 2019 Merit Award Winners: 

  • Robert Allinson
  • Shane Barter
  • Esther Chang
  • Sarah England
  • Dongyoun Hwang
  • Edward Lowe
  • Jim Merod
  • Lisa MacLeod
  • Nalini Rao
  • Kristi Wilson
  • Jim Williams

The Merit Award winners were recognized in an Awards Banquet at the Athenaeum on April 25. The event was opened by Dean of Faculty Bryan Penprase, who introduced VPAA Ed Feasel, who provided opening words that described the history of faculty research at SUA, and an overview of program and congratulations to the faculty winners. Danny Habuki provided an inspirational speech to the gathered faculty and presented the Merit Awards to the faculty. Arch Asawa, SUA’s CFO, was also in attendance and has provided crucial support to the new program.  The Merit Award program will continue with a bi-annual submission schedule, and faculty will be invited to submit their materials for consideration for the next round during Fall Semester 2020 for awards in Spring 2021. 

Photos courtesy of Soka University Archivist and Photographer