UMass ADVANCE Honors Seven Faculty with Mentoring Awards

Camille Cammack
Camille Cammack

The UMass ADVANCE team has announced the seven faculty who are the inaugural winners of their college’s Faculty Mentoring Award for 2020. Their mentoring ensures that faculty members excel in their careers and it helps develop a more inclusive environment at the university.

“Despite its importance,” points out Joya Misra, principal investigator (PI) of the UMass ADVANCE grant, “faculty mentoring is often invisible or seen as a labor of love.”

The UMass ADVANCE Program has disseminated resources, tools and training on best practices for excellent faculty mentoring. The annual award was created this year for faculty in each college to recognize the vital role they serve in mentoring their colleagues. Funded by the dean of each college, it provides the winners with $250 and recognition for the very valuable work that they do.

“This group of mentors should be very proud of this honor,” said Donna Baron, program manager for UMass ADVANCE. “It is clear, the work they do makes an enormous difference to the success of their colleagues and creates a more inclusive and equitable university.”

College of Education: Camille Cammack, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies

Cammack has played a central role in developing an important mutual mentoring group and ensuring that teacher licensure programs in the College of Education are well supported and structurally sound. Cammack’s mentoring of faculty has deeply impacted both her colleagues and their students. One mentee notes their “gratitude for Camille’s patience, professionalism, generosity and friendship.”  As Cristine Smith, associate dean, describes, “the depth and extent of her mentoring [has been] considerable.”

College of Engineering: Caitlyn Butler, Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Butler exemplifies faculty mentoring to her colleagues in the College of Engineering. Her mentoring regarding collaboration, grant proposals, and teaching and mentoring, profoundly impacts her colleagues through both formal and informal interactions. Mentoring both through research collaboration, and through informal lunches and an open door, colleagues note that she is “more than worthy of this award.” Erin Baker, associate dean, admires her not only for her “prominent” mentoring in her department, but her “mentorship to other women in the college.”

College of Humanities and Fine Arts: John Higginson, Professor of History

Higginson has regularly, and without comment, mentored colleagues across his college, ensuring that they have the information and tools they need to succeed in their careers.  Mentees describe his thoughtful engagement with their work, his practical support for their publishing, and his consistent generosity of spirit, while always advocating for diversity and inclusion. One mentee refers to his ability to share “his extensive knowledge … while still encouraging them to find their own voice.” Joseph Bartolomeo, associate dean, explains, “Professor Higginson's ‘everyday’ mentoring … has clearly had a shaping influence on a number of younger colleagues who have been quite successful.”

College of Natural Sciences: Maureen Perry-Jenkins, Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences and Director, Center for Research on Families (CRF)

Perry-Jenkins plays an exceptional mentoring role both within her department and college, and through CRF, across the university. Helping initiate and co-leading a mentoring group for new faculty in PBS, mentoring a wide array of senior colleagues, as well as running the CRF Scholars program, she not only supports her colleagues, but leads them to become great mentors themselves. As one colleague conveys, “This feeling of being valued, so effortlessly conveyed by Maureen, is truly priceless and goes a long way toward bolstering inclusion and diversity efforts in the department.” Mark Tuominen, associate dean, describes the impact of her mentoring by noting that she is “a model for faculty mentoring.”

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences: Angela De Oliveira, Associate Professor of Resource Economics and Chancellor’s Leadership Fellow

De Oliveira plays a critical role in mentoring faculty not only in her department and college, but more broadly through her role as a Chancellor’s Leadership Fellow. Her generous mentoring allows her colleagues at the university and in the discipline more broadly develop research agendas, form networks and connect with collaborators, engage effectively in leadership, teach new classes, understand tenure processes, and live balanced lives.  John Spraggon, head of Resource Economics, notes that she is an exceptional economist whose mentoring is her “greatest strength and passion.”

Isenberg School of Management: Mila Getmasky-Sherman, Professor of Finance

Getmatsky-Sherman engages in unusual and remarkable mentoring of faculty colleagues. Her mentoring includes helping faculty develop their research portfolios, ensuring that they can access critical datasets, providing support for teaching, and encouraging them as they develop roots in the Valley. As one mentee notes, “I have greatly benefited from Mila’s tremendous support and mentoring in several aspects in UMass, and I am eternally grateful to her for this.” Associate Dean George Milne endorses this work for the college, explaining “Mila is very deserving of this award.”

School of Public Health and Health Sciences: Elizabeth (Liz) Bertone-Johnson, professor of epidemiology and chair of the department of health promotion and policy

Professor Bertone-Johnson is a generous mentor to her colleagues in SPHHS, including in areas such as grants development, research collaborations, promotion and tenure, as well as in how to navigate the university. One mentee notes that her mentoring has been “career changing”; another lauds “her commitment to mentoring and to creating an environment for equity and inclusion at UMass.”  Susan Hankinson, associate dean, notes, “Liz's mentorship certainly helps retain strong women and minority faculty that in turn helps the University.  Liz is truly an exceptional candidate for this award.”

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