Your Colleagues

UB honors exceptional scholars, innovative teachers


Published July 19, 2018


Eighteen UB researchers and teachers have been named recipients of the university’s 2018 Exceptional Scholar and Teaching Innovation awards.

The recipients will be honored at the annual Celebration of Faculty and Staff Excellence, to be held on Nov. 1.

Introduced in 2002, UB’s Exceptional Scholar Award recognizes faculty members for their outstanding research performance at different stages of their careers. There are two types of awards: Sustained Achievement Awards and Young Investigator Awards.  

Sustained Achievement recipients are selected based on their body of work over a number of years. The award is not meant to serve as a lifetime achievement honor, but rather as recognition for outstanding performance in a recent segment of a scholar’s career.

This year’s recipients are David Castillo, professor, Department of Romance Languages; Sherry Chemler, professor, Department of Chemistry; Matthew Dryer, professor, Department of Linguistics; Xiufeng Liu, professor, Department of Learning and Instruction; Amanda Nickerson, professor, Department of Counseling, School and Educational Psychology; Abani Patra, professor, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; and Robert Zivadinov, professor, Department of Neurology.

The Young Investigator Award is presented to untenured faculty members who finished their terminal degree within the past eight years. The honor acknowledges awardees’ superior scholarly achievement and their position as an up-and-coming member of their field.

Recipients for 2018 are Timothy Cook, assistant professor, Department of Chemistry; Seong Won Han, assistant professor, Department of Educational Leadership and Policy; Josep Jornet, assistant professor, Department of Electrical Engineering; Oliver Kennedy, assistant professor, Department of Computer Science and Engineering; Pinaki Sarder, assistant professor, Department of Pathology and Anatomical Sciences; Z. Jack Tseng, assistant professor, Department of Pathology and Anatomical Sciences; Ciaran Williams, assistant professor, Department of Physics; and Lukasz Ziarek, assistant professor, Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

Established in 2003, UB’s Teaching Innovation Award is given to faculty members who have used new methods and approaches to teaching that have had a demonstrable effect on enhancing student-learning outcomes, including innovative uses of educational technology. All UB faculty members are eligible for the award.

This year’s honorees are Nicole Albanese, clinical assistant professor, Department of Pharmacy Practice; Dimitrios Koutsonikolas, associate professor, Department of Computer Science and Engineering; and Amy VanScoy, assistant professor, Department of Library and Information Studies.