UMBC honors faculty fellows, recognizing decades of exemplary scholarship and service

On November 1, the UMBC community celebrated faculty who have earned exemplary recognition as fellows by their professional associations and societies. Designation as a fellow is one of the top honors an academic can earn, recognizing a career of accomplishment, often decades in the making. Nearly 50 UMBC faculty members—about 14 percent of the university’s tenure-track faculty—have received this high distinction in their fields, and the number is growing quickly across all three UMBC colleges.

At a special event to honor their achievements, organized by the Office of the Vice President for Research, President Freeman Hrabowski told the faculty fellows, “All of you here today represent the best in your disciplines and we wanted to celebrate what you have done, to make the point that our institution has a wide range of scholars from literature and history, to the sciences and social sciences, to the arts.”

Hrabowski specifically mentioned Michael Summers, Robert E. Meyerhoff Chair for Excellence in Research and Mentoring and University Distinguished Professor of chemistry and biochemistry, who recently became the first UMBC faculty member elected to the National Academy of Sciences.

Jessica Berman, professor of English and director of the Dresher Center for the Humanities, received praise for her editorial work on the Modernist Latitudes book series (Columbia University Press) and service to the board of the American Comparative Literature Association. Robert Provine, professor of psychology, internationally known for his expertise on human behavior, met with hearty applause for his 40+ years of service to UMBC.

Hrabowski highlighted Bimal Sinha, professor of mathematics and statistics since 1985 and founding member of the statistics program at UMBC, and department colleagues Thomas Mathew and Nagaraj Neerchal for their extensive international collaborations, including applied statistics work to address economic challenges in Africa.

Hrabowski also honored Tulay Adali, University Distinguished Professor of computer science and electrical engineering, for research completed in her lab at the intersection of signal processing and medical imaging, and Warren DeVries, professor of mechanical engineering, for his long-term commitment to mentoring students and younger faculty as they launch their careers.

Provost Philip Rous addresses the faculty fellows.
Provost Philip Rous praises the faculty fellows for their achievements.

“The recognition that you’ve received from your international peers is one of the most tangible measures of your success as a scholar and a researcher,” shared Provost Philip Rous, “and through that recognition you bring great honor and visibility to our community and our university.” Rous stressed UMBC’s emphasis on excellence in research with impact, and thanked the faculty fellows for their contributions to that trajectory.

Provost Rous also recognized that each honoree’s efforts go far beyond scholarship. “Every one of you who’s here is an outstanding professor, teacher, and dedicated mentor for our students,” Rous shared, “and it’s that combination as well as your incredible achievements in research that makes UMBC such a great place to be.”

The complete list of faculty fellows is available here. It can be sorted by name, department, or professional society.

Banner image, left to right: Scott Casper, dean of College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences; Jessica Berman, professor of English and director of the Dresher Center for the Humanities; President Freeman Hrabowski, III. 

All photos by Marlayna Demond ’11 for UMBC.