(Posted May 9, 2016)

The recipients of the Beachley Awards and the Gibbel Award are, from left, Regina Lamendella, assistant professor of biology and recipient of the Gibbel Award for Distinguished teaching; James A. Troha, Juniata president; Jay Hosler, professor of biology and recipient of the Beachley award for Distinguished Teaching; Dominick Peruso, professor of accounting and recipient of the Beachley Award for Distinguished Academic Service; and Lauren Bowen, Juniata provost.
The recipients of the Beachley Awards and the Gibbel Award are, from left, Regina Lamendella, assistant professor of biology and recipient of the Gibbel Award for Distinguished teaching; James A. Troha, Juniata president; Jay Hosler, professor of biology and recipient of the Beachley award for Distinguished Teaching; Dominick Peruso, professor of accounting and recipient of the Beachley Award for Distinguished Academic Service; and Lauren Bowen, Juniata provost.

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Three Juniata College faculty members were honored Tuesday, May 3, with distinguished teaching and service awards during the College's Spring Awards Convocation in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts, held Tuesday, May 3, at 3 p.m.. Honored for their work were Dominick Peruso, professor and chair of accounting, business and economics; Jay Hosler, professor of biology; and Regina Lamendella, assistant professor of biology.

The convocation was held in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts. The convocation address was given by Benjamin Sunderland, professor of mathematics.

Peruso, a Huntingdon, Pa. resident, was honored with the 27th annual Beachley Award for Distinguished Academic Service, and Jay Hosler, a Huntingdon, Pa. resident, was named the 49th recipient of the Beachley Award for Distinguished Teaching. Regina Lamendella, a Huntingdon, Pa. resident, received the Henry and Joan Gibbel Award for Distinguished Teaching (for faculty members with fewer than six years of service).

Nominations for the awards are received from students, faculty, administrative personnel, alumni and trustees. The college president, the provost, the student government president, and the three most recent recipients of the award make the final selections.

The last three Distinguished Teaching Award recipients were Benjamin Sunderland, professor of mathematics (2015); Jamie White, professor of physics (2014); and Belle Tuten, professor of history (2013). The first was presented in 1989 to the late Mary Ruth Linton, a Juniata music professor. Last year's academic service award recipient was Vince Buonaccorsi, professor of biology. The recipient of the 2015 Gibbel Award for Distinguished Performance was Kathy Baughman, associate professor of business.

Dominick Peruso started at Juniata College not as an academic, but rather as part of the college's student services staff. He served as a residence director, director of campus activities and career programming coordinator from 1993 to 1999. At the same time, he earned a master's degree in higher education in 1999 from Penn State University.

"Dom Peruso works quietly behind the scenes to improve both the college and his department," says James A. Troha, president of Juniata. "He is a faculty member who puts in the time to serve on committees where vital decisions affecting the quality of our college are made."
Peruso, who worked at Price Waterhouse for a year as an accountant after earning a bachelor's degree in accounting from St. Francis University in 1995, started at Juniata in 1999 as an assistant professor while also working at Barley & Co., a Huntingdon-based accounting firm for a few years.

His commitment to service at Juniata has been deep and long-lasting. Peruso, who began his career as an accountant, led the effort in the Department of Accounting, Business and Economics to establish a master's degree program in accounting, which has become Juniata's most successful graduate program. Peruso also has remained dedicated to Juniata's model of "shared governance" in higher education, which means faculty participate fully in how a college or university is run. For example, he is the former chair of the college's Academic Planning and Assessment Committee, and this year was named to the Faculty Executive Committee. In addition, with colleague Kathy Baughman, associate professor of business, he is spearheading the process to attain accreditation for the college's business department.

He was promoted to associate professor in 2005 and was named full professor in 2011. He became chair of the business department in 2011. He has been recognized in his profession through inclusion in Tau Pi Phi, the National Honor Society for Accounting, Business, and Economics, and also received the National Collegiate Business Merit Award.

Peruso is a member of the American Accounting Association, The Institute of Management Accountants and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators.

Jay Hosler has led two lives at Juniata College: one as a respected teacher of biology and neurosciences, and the other as a nationally renowned cartoonist and author of graphic novels. More recently he has combined both interests by having students draw comics as a final paper in Invertebrate Biology, using his lab researchers to research how effective comic books are as a teaching tool and team-teaching a course on "Comics in Culture."

"Jay Hosler is equally adept at explaining how arachnids use spinning to form webs and how Spiderman uses webs to spoil the nefarious plans of the Green Goblin," says Troha. "Jay finds common ground with all students; those who are comfortable in the lab and those who are comfortable reading about Snoopy or superheroes."

Hosler came to Juniata in 2000 from Ohio State University where he was a National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow at the university's bee laboratory He has taught such courses as Invertebrate Biology, Neurobiology, Animal Behavior, Cell Biology and a course called "Talk Nerdy to Me."

He has been recognized for his teaching previously, winning the Gibbel Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2005. He was promoted to associate professor in 2006, and was promoted to full professor in 2012.


As a postdoctoral researcher, Hosler was awarded a National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health to study olfactory processing in honey bees. During that time he also received a Xeric Grant to publish in 1998 "Clan Apis," a comic book on honey bee biology and natural history. In the years since, he wrote and published "The Sandwalk Adventures," a comic book series on Charles Darwin, "Optical Allusions," a comic book about the eye, "Evolution: The Story of Life on Earth" and "Last of the Sandwalkers," a story of a team of adventurous beetles published in April. "Last of the Sandwalkers" has won a variety of awards from agencies rating children's and young adult literature.

His work and story have been detailed in the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Discover, Science, NPR and many other media outlets.
A 1989 graduate of DePauw University, Hosler earned a bachelor's degree in biological sciences and earned his doctorate. He has published articles and abstracts in various journals including the Journal of Experimental Biology, Behavioral Neuroscience, the Journal of Insect Physiology, and the Journal of Comparative Psychology. In addition, Hosler has illustrated articles in the Journal of Insect Behavior, Animal Behaviour, Nature: Medicine, and the Association For Women in Science Magazine.

Regina Lamendella, a resident of Huntingdon, joined the Juniata faculty in 2012 as assistant professor of biology. Previously she was a postdoctoral fellow at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in Berkeley, Calif. She teaches a variety of biology courses, such as Microbiology, and also oversees many research projects for undergraduate researchers.

She earned a bachelor's degree in biology in 2004 from Lafayette College in Easton, Pa. She went on to earn two master's degrees from the University of Cincinnati: one in 2006 in environmental science, and one in 2011 in molecular genetics, biochemistry and microbiology. She earned a doctoral degree in environmental science from the University of Cincinnati in 2009.

Her research focuses on molecular microbial ecology approaches to better understand the role of microbes in human health and the environment.

Lamendella served as the Lawrence Postdoctoral Fellow from 2009 to 2012. Her previous research experience is extensive, including a job as a private contractor for the Environmental Protection Agency in 2009. She also served as an EPA Graduate Student Trainee from 2004 to 2008. As an undergraduate, she was an EXCEL Research Scholar from 2003 to 2004 and a Robert Hunt Research Fellow from 2002 to 2003.

She is a member of the American Society of Microbiology, International Society for Microbial Ecology, Graduate Women in Science and the Water Management Association of Ohio.

Her research has been published in such scholarly journals as BMC Microbiology, Water Research, ISME Journal, Applied and Environmental Microbiology and Journal of Environmental Quality. Her research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Lawrence Berkeley lab and Nabisco.

Contact Gabe Welsch at welschg@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.