Department of Human Development and Family Studies award recipients.

Recognizing talent

College of Education and Human Development honors outstanding students


1:48 p.m., May 18, 2012--This spring, the University of Delaware College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) honored outstanding students in the School of Education and the Department of Human Development and Family Studies.

Awards were presented to the students of CEHD to help foster academic achievement, research, leadership and diversity.

Honors Stories

National Medal of Science

President Barack Obama recently presented the National Medal of Science to University of Delaware alumnus Rakesh Jain.

Warren Award

Rosalind Johnson, assistant dean for student success in the NUCLEUS Program in UD's College of Arts and Sciences, was presented the John Warren Excellence in Leadership and Service Award during a May 26 ceremony.

Many of the awards honor benefactors, several of whom were in attendance to help recognize their recipients. Attendees included members of the Marion H. Steele family –Bonnie Steele and Marion Ainsley Steele; former faculty members, Mary Jane Strattner-Gregory and Kitty Bieber; and current faculty, Frank Murray and Julie Wilgen.

Through these scholarships and awards, promising students are provided opportunities they might otherwise not have and are rewarded for hard work in their scholarly pursuits.

“I couldn’t be prouder of our students,” stated Lynn Okagaki, dean of the College of Education and Human Development. “They have excelled in their coursework; some even attaining national recognition for their academic achievement. They have engaged in original research, authored papers and book chapters, and demonstrated excellence in their field placements. And they have taken advantage of all that the University has to offer, participating in study abroad, serving as tutors and mentors and holding leadership positions in student groups.  They are true role models for our college.”

For a list of award recipients in PDF format, visit:

Marion H. Steele Symposium and Honors Celebration (April 20) -- HDFS

Celebration of Excellence (May 11) -- School of Education

The students who were recognized were able to translate the knowledge gained in their coursework into practical experience; enriching both their lives and those they helped to serve. 

Undergraduate and graduate students in HDFS conducted research on a wide range of challenges that families face, including adoption, managing family relationships when a parent is incarcerated, and handling sibling and marital conflict.  They have strengthened their skills while interning and volunteering, benefiting organizations such as the Delaware School for the Deaf, Emmaus House, Habitat for Humanity and Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children.

Recipients from the School of Education were acknowledged for their mastery of education-based initiatives.  Individuals were recognized for developing engaging lesson plans grounded in research-based practices, seeking leadership roles in school and even conducting research abroad to develop an international perspective in their field.

In addition to identifying students with noteworthy achievements, the School of Education recognized three faculty members. 

Second Mile Award, for exceptional contributions to public education

Melva Ware, director for ASPIRE

Throughout Delaware, Ware has nurtured the academic dreams of middle and high school students, finding promise and potential where others did not.  By overseeing programs like GEAR UP and ASPIRE, she is often the best hope of talented students who might otherwise not make their way to college.  From summer internships to parent partnerships in all three Delaware counties, Ware goes the extra mile, to be sure that no talent lies latent.

2012 Distinguished Faculty Award 

Laura Glass, associate director of the School of Education

Since 2006, Glass has provided exceptional oversight of the 590 students in the elementary teacher education program.  Under her leadership this major—the fifth largest at the University of Delaware--has flourished. 

Amanda Jansen, associate professor

Jansen has developed a distinguished record of research, including the recent publication of her first book, Motivation Matters and Interest Counts.  She demonstrates that it is not only possible, but imperative, that research and teaching intertwine, to strengthen educational pedagogy. 

Article by Alison Burris

Photos by Kathy Atkinson and Ambre Alexander

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