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Three Juniata Faculty Receive Teaching, Service Awards

(Posted May 5, 2008)

The recipients of the Beachley Awards and the Gibbel Award were honored at Spring Convocation April 29. They are, from left, James Lakso, provost of Juniata; Patricia Weaver, Dana Professor of Accounting, who received the Beachley Award for Academic Service; Loren Rhodes, Dale Chair in Information Technology, who received the Beachley Award for Distinguished Teaching; Mark McKellop, assistant professor of psychology, who received the Gibbel Award for Distinguished Teaching; and Thomas R. Kepple, president of Juniata.

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Three Juniata College faculty members were honored Tuesday, April 29, with distinguished teaching and service awards during the College's Spring Awards Convocation in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts. Honored for their work were Patricia Weaver, Dana Professor of Accounting; Loren Rhodes, Dale Chair of Information Technology; and Mark McKellop, assistant professor of psychology.

The convocation was held in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts. The convocation address was given by David Hsiung, Knox Professor of History.

Weaver, a Petersburg, Pa. resident, was honored with the 19th annual Beachley Award for Distinguished Academic Service, and Rhodes, a Huntingdon resident, was named the 41st recipient of the Beachley Award for Distinguished Teaching. McKellop, a Huntingdon resident, received the Henry and Joan Gibbel Award for Distinguished Teaching (by a faculty member 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 David Hsiung, Knox Professor of History (2007); Judy Katz, associate professor of English (2006); and Jack Troy, associate professor of art (2005). The first academic service award was presented in 1989 to the late Mary Ruth Linton, professor emerita of music. Last year's recipient was David Sowell, professor of history. The recipient of the 2007 Gibbel Award for Distinguished Performance was Richard Hark, associate professor of chemistry.

As he introduced Weaver, Juniata President Thomas R. Kepple said, "Pat Weaver is a person who is always able to see the human element of accounting, as well as the human side of teaching. She has always been able to look beyond numbers and discover the story beneath those figures. At Juniata she has been deeply invested in the success of our students and has taken great pride in seeing the dividends our graduates have earned."

Weaver teaches many of the college's accounting courses, but most recently she has been recognized for a course she developed with Paula Beckenbaugh, director of clinical experiences, called Investing Your Future. The course takes students through the mysteries of investing and eventually allows them to invest the college's funds. She has published articles on teaching the course, and presented workshops at professional conferences across the country.

Weaver joined the Juniata faculty in 1986 after a career as a self-employed certified public accountant and as a staff accountant for Young, Oakes, Brown and Co. from 1983 to 1986. She earned a bachelor's degree in 1963 and a master's degree in 1965, both in English, from Penn State University. She returned to Penn State to learn accounting and business from 1980 to 1983 and earned her Certified Public Accountant certificate in 1983. She earned a master's degree in business administration from Penn State in 1991. Weaver was promoted to associate professor in 1993 and to full professor in 1999.

She received the Beachley Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2000. She is a member of the Pennsylvania Institute of CPAs. Weaver also served as chair of the self-study committee that prepared a self-assessment for the 2002 Middle States Commission on Higher Education accreditation report for Juniata.

She teaches management information systems and finance courses, as well as managerial and cost accounting at Juniata. She also is a co-author of the text "Persuasive Writing: A Manager's Guide to Effective Letters and Reports." After graduating from Penn State's master's program in English, Weaver taught technical and business writing at the university from 1965 to 1977.

The 2008 recipient of the Beachley Award for Distinguished Teaching, Loren Rhodes, joined the Juniata faculty in 1980 as an instructor in computer science. He has been previously recognized for classroom excellence, receiving the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1986. He was promoted to assistant professor in 1983 and became associate professor in 1988. He was promoted to full professor in 1993.

He teaches a variety of courses in programming, database management, programming languages and computer architecture. He has overseen Juniata's departmental transition from computer science to information technology, helping to create an educational model designed to foster collaboration with faculty in the business and communication departments. In 2000, he was named Dale Endowed Chair of Information Technology.

A native of McVeytown, Pa., Rhodes earned a bachelor's degree in computer science in 1979 from Penn State University. He went on to earn a master's degree in computer science in 1980 and a doctorate in computer science in 1991, both from Penn State.

Rhodes spent a sabbatical semester working with a start-up company, Avail Technologies, to develop an intelligent transportation tracking system. He is a member of the Association of Information Technology Professionals and the Association of Computing Machinery. He also is a member of the Consortium for Computing in Small Colleges and the ACM's honorary society, Upsilon Pi Epsilon.

Rhodes also remains active within the Huntingdon community, serving on the board of directors of Camp Blue Diamond and as a member of the Stone Church of the Brethren Leadership Team

"Loren has been one of the most visionary leaders within our faculty. He took a lead role in creating a new paradigm for our information technology program and helped make our collaborative, interdisciplinary approach a model for other colleges. Although he is an expert in computer languages the rest of us can only pretend to understand, he certainly speaks the language of superb teaching," Kepple said.

Mark McKellop, the recipient of the Gibbel Award for Distinguished Teaching, joined the Juniata faculty in 2002 as an assistant professor of psychology. He earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from Ohio State University in 1994 and went on to earn a master's degree in clinical-child psychology in 1996 and a doctorate in clinical-child psychology in 2000, both from the University of Cincinnati.

At Juniata, he teaches courses in introductory psychology, abnormal psychology, health psychology and a psychology senior research course. As a researcher, he is interested in the behavioral aspects of health, the influence of gender on development and how psychology and psychotherapy are portrayed in the media.

McKellop began his postdoctoral career at the Children's Hospital Medical Center in Cincinnati from 2000 to 2001, where his clinical work focused on children with cancer. He transitioned into a teaching career by working as a visiting assistant professor of psychology at Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind. from 2001 to 2002. He also was a psychology resident at Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio from 1999 to 2000.

He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1985 to 1992. He repaired and calibrated precision equipment as a meteorologist at Ramstein Air Base in Ramstein, Germany, and served as a technical training instructor at Lowry Air Force Base.

His research has been published in academic journals such as Child Neuropsychology and the Journal of Pediatric Psychology. He is a member of the American Psychological Society, the American Psychological Association, the Society of Pediatric Psychology, the Society for Teaching Psychology and the Society for Psychological Study of Men and Masculinity.

The Beachley Awards were established by the late Donovan R. Beachley Sr., a 1921 graduate of Juniata; the late Mrs. Grace Rinehart Beachley; Donovan R. Beachley, Jr., a member of the class of 1947 and an emeritus member of the Board of Trustees; and Mrs. Mary Ellen Beachley, all of Hagerstown, Md. Additional support for the awards is provided by Donovan R. Beachley Jr. and David C. Beachley, a 1977 Juniata graduate and current president of the Beachley Furniture Co. of Hagerstown, Md.

The Beachley Award for Distinguished Teaching provides a $5,000 stipend to a professor who contributes to the development of the nominee's department and the college as a whole. Teaching effectiveness, scholarly activities, service beyond the campus, and length of service to the college also play roles in the process.

The Beachley Award for Distinguished Academic Service also provides a $5,000 stipend. The award is made to a professor showing outstanding service to students through advising, counseling or development of student-related activities, and outstanding service to the college through curriculum or department development, committee activities, or collegewide activities.

The Henry and Joan Gibbel Award for Distinguished Teaching recognizes excellence in teaching among faculty members who have been at Juniata College for fewer than six years. The recipient receives with the honor a $2,500 stipend. The award is sponsored by Henry H. Gibbel, chairman and chief executive officer of Lititz Mutual Insurance Company, and his wife, Joan.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.