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Recognitions, December 11

There’s been a lot to celebrate lately! A UT alumna was named a 2020 Rhodes Scholar—UT’s ninth; another student won UT’s very first Mitchell Scholarship; four faculty members received NSF Early Career awards; two faculty were named AAAS fellows; a UT professor is among the most highly cited researchers; the Haslam College of Business MBA program ranked 50th in the nation; two English professors received recognition for their work; and a former Earth and Planetary Sciences professor was posthumously honored with a special journal issue.

Hera Jay Brown Is UT’s Ninth Rhodes Scholar

Hera Jay Brown, who graduated from UT in August 2018, has been named a 2020 Rhodes Scholar—the ninth current or former UT student to earn this prestigious honor.

As a Rhodes Scholar, Brown—a native of Corryton, Tennessee—will begin all-expenses-paid studies at the University of Oxford in England next fall. Brown tentatively plans to pursue both a master’s degree and a doctorate in migration studies.

“Having a Rhodes Scholar for a second consecutive year is a tremendous honor that underscores our university’s commitment to excellence in undergraduate scholarship, research, and engagement,” Chancellor Donde Plowman said. “Hera Jay has spent her academic and professional career researching important, and sometimes difficult, topics. She wants to make a difference in the world by informing international policy and decision making.”

Four Faculty Among 2019 NSF Early-Career Award Winners

Four UT faculty members have received Faculty Early Career Development awards from the National Science Foundation for 2019. The recipients include one professor from the Tickle College of Engineering and three from the College of Arts and Sciences.

The national program recognizes early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to advance the mission of their department or organization.

Natalie Campbell is First UT Student to Win Prestigious Mitchell Scholarship

Natalie Campbell, a senior at UT, who serves as student body president and has earned accolades for her work advocating alongside people with disabilities, has been selected for a Mitchell Scholarship, one of the most prestigious undergraduate awards in the country.

She is the first UT student to be named a Mitchell Scholar and one of only 12 members of the George J. Mitchell Scholar Class of 2021, having been chosen in a highly rigorous national selection process that culminated in interviews in Washington, DC.

Mitchell Scholars are awarded a year of postgraduate study in any discipline offered by institutions of higher learning in Ireland and Northern Ireland. As a Mitchell Scholar, Campbell will pursue a master’s degree in inclusion and special educational needs at Queen’s University Belfast in Northern Ireland.

“We are thrilled to have our first Mitchell Scholar at UT, and even more pleased that the recipient of this prestigious honor is Natalie Campbell,” said Chancellor Donde Plowman. “She is a proven leader on campus and in the greater community, and is committed to helping those around her. We’ve always known that UT students are extraordinary, and it’s wonderful to see them receive international honors. Their success is also a testament to our university’s commitment to excellence in undergraduate scholarship, research, and engagement.”

Two Professors Named AAAS Fellows

Two UT professors have been named Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Fellows are named in recognition of scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications.

Annette Summers Engel and Christopher M. Fedo, both professors in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, will receive their AAAS rosette pin in a ceremony in February during the 2020 AAAS Annual Meeting in Seattle.

AAAS is the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science.

Materials Science Professor Among Most Highly Cited Researchers

David Mandrus, the Jerry and Kay Henry Endowed Professor in UT’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering, has been named in the Highly Cited Researchers list compiled by the Web of Science Group and released last week. This is the third consecutive year he has been named in the list.

“Having your work cited is evidence that other researchers care about what you are doing,” Mandrus said. “It is a measure of both scientific relevance and impact. Science is a communal activity, and it is important to be working on problems that your peers care about.”

Haslam MBA Reaches Top 50 Nationally in Poets & Quants Ranking

The MBA program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s Haslam College of Business rose to the 49th spot among all full-time master’s programs in the 2019 Poets & Quants Top 100 U.S. MBA rankings. Additionally, the program climbed to No. 25 among public institutions.

In recent years, the college’s full-time MBA has shown a steady upswing in the Poets & Quants Top 100 U.S. MBA Programs rankings. It moved from No. 56 among all institutions in 2017 to No. 52 last year. Among public institutions, it rose from 29th in 2017 to 26th last year.

Henry, Welch Honored at College Awards Banquet

The 2019 College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Awards banquet took place Thursday, December 5 at the Holiday Inn Downtown. From Diversity Leadership to awards in research, advising, and teaching, the annual awards banquet honors faculty excellence in all areas of the college mission.

Nancy Henry and Anthony Welch received awards for their work in the Department of English.

Lunar Science Pioneer Posthumously Honored with Special Journal Issue

A special issue of the geochemistry journal Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta publishing December 1 is a tribute to Professor Lawrence A. Taylor, a founding figure in what would become UT’s Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences and the Planetary Geosciences Institute. The publication is sponsored by the Geochemical Society and the Meteoritical Society.