Accolades, March 2022

Accolades News for Researchers

Posted March 31, 2022 by Tiffany Lee

Awards, Honors and Recognitions

Paul Barnes, music, was named the Nebraska Music Teachers Association Foundation Fellow for 2022. He was honored with other state recipients during the virtual Music Teachers National Association Convention, March 26-30. Fellows are individuals, designated by their peers, who have made outstanding contributions to the music teaching profession.  

Stephanie Bondi, educational administration, was named to the Diversity Scholars Network, formed by the University of Michigan’s National Center for Institutional Diversity. The network is a community of more than 1,500 global scholars committed to advancing the understanding of historical and contemporary social issues related to identity, difference, culture, representation, power, oppression and inequality. As part of the network, Bondi will engage with other scholars doing work in these areas and gain access to opportunities for the translation and dissemination of her scholarship.  

Crystal Garcia, educational administration, received the Early Career Award from the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. The award recognizes full-time faculty members in their first six years who have distinguished themselves in research, teaching and service. Recipients are emerging scholars who have published a body of scholarly works in the student affairs profession, established themselves as excellent teachers and contributed to the field through service.

Doug Golick, entomology, will receive the 2022 Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching from the Entomological Society of America’s North Central Branch. The award honors a branch member who has demonstrated excellence in classroom instruction, development of courses or curriculum and outreach activities. 

Patrice McMahon, political science, received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award sponsored by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars. While based at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland, McMahon will collaborate with Polish colleagues to conduct research focused on the role of nonstate actors and how they work with states and governmental actors to respond to transnational security threats. She will also teach a graduate seminar on American foreign policy in the post-9/11 era, with a focus on U.S.-Polish and U.S.-Central European relations. McMahon is director of the University Honors Program at Nebraska.

George Morcous, architectural engineering and construction, was named a fellow of the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute. Fellows are recognized for their continuous outstanding contributions to the precast concrete industry and exceptional service to the institute. Morcous was honored for his teaching and research, which focuses on ultra-high-performance concrete, precast concrete bridge systems and connections, and large-diameter prestressing strands. 

Christopher Neale, biological systems engineering, received the Royce J. Tipton Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers. The award recognizes contributions to the advancement of irrigation and drainage engineering in teaching, research, planning, design, construction or management. Neale, who is director of research for the Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute at the University of Nebraska, was honored for his significant contributions to the use of remote sensing for estimating evapotranspiration of agricultural crops, irrigation water management and hydrology, and the education of irrigation engineers.

Jian Wang, mechanical and materials engineering, received the Distinguished Scientist/Engineer Award from the Materials Processing and Manufacturing Division of The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society. The award recognizes an individual who has made a long-lasting contribution to design, syntheses, processing and performance of engineering materials, with significant industrial applications. Wang was honored for his efforts to understand the structure-properties relationships of structural materials.

Three Nebraska Business faculty were recently ranked among the world’s top business and management researchers by, which is one of the leading websites providing research rankings based on h-index, publications and citation values. Fred Luthans (emeritus), management, ranked No. 94 in the world and No. 43 in the U.S. David Olson, supply chain management and analytics, was No. 251 in the world and No. 119 in the U.S. Sang Lee (emeritus), management, was No. 254 globally and No. 121 nationally. These rankings were based on data as of December 2021.

Professional Service

Amit Jhala, agronomy and horticulture and Nebraska Extension weed management specialist, was invited by the Weed Science Society of America to write review papers for Weed Technology, one of the peer-reviewed journals published by the society. The papers synthesize previous studies focused on how pollen-mediated gene flow can transfer herbicide resistance alleles from herbicide-resistant to susceptible broadleaf and grass weeds. Jhala is an internally recognized researcher in the areas of biology, pollen-mediated gene flow and management of herbicide-resistant weeds.     

The University of Nebraska College of Law was recognized as a 2021 Pro Bono Leader for its dedication to pro bono work and participation in the American Bar Association’s Free Legal Answers Program. This recognition honors individual attorneys, law firms and law departments that have provided extraordinary pro bono services through the program, which enables volunteer attorneys to answer questions and provide legal information and advice. Nebraska Law is the only law school that has received this recognition for four consecutive years.


Carrie Heitman, anthropology, received a book award from the Society for American Archeology in its “popular” category, which annually honors a book that is written for the general public and presents the results of archeological research to a broad audience. Heitman was honored for “The Greater Chaco Landscape: Ancestors, Scholarship and Advocacy,” which she co-edited with Ruth Van Dyke of Binghamton University in New York. The book includes the perspectives of many stakeholders – indigenous people, policymakers, researchers, preservationists and more – as they navigate conflicts over energy development and help inform the public about the importance of the Greater Chaco landscape. 

Taeyeon Kim, educational administration, received the Outstanding Research Paper Award from the Korean-American Educational Researchers Association. The award recognizes an exceptional research paper that addresses critical educational issues facing Koreans and overseas Koreans, including Korean Americans.

Crystal Powers, research and extension communications specialist with the Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute and the Nebraska Water Center, is featured in a case study included in a new book published by UNESCO, “Managing Aquifer Recharge: A Showcase for Resilience and Sustainability.” Powers co-authored the study, which examines a project from Nebraska’s Central Platte Valley as an effective example of managed aquifer recharge. It is one of 28 similar global projects included in the book. Learn more about the project in this video.  

Other News

Andrew (Andy) Belser is the new dean of the Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts. He will also hold a faculty position in the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film as a tenured full professor. He will officially begin his new role July 11, pending approval by the University of Nebraska Board of Regents. He comes to Nebraska from the University of Arizona, where he is director of and professor in the School of Theatre, Film and Television and leads arts and medicine initiatives. Prior to Arizona, he was professor of movement, voice and acting in the Bachelor and Master of Fine Arts acting program at Pennsylvania State University. He was founding director of the Arts and Design Research Incubator at Penn State. Belser has a Bachelor of Arts in communication arts and theater from Grove City College, a Master of Arts in theater from Villanova and a Master of Fine Arts in directing from Virginia Tech.

Mitchell Stephenson, agronomy and horticulture, and forage and range management specialist at the Panhandle Research and Extension Center, was appointed interim director of the Panhandle Center. A member of the center’s faculty since 2015, Stephenson was tapped as interim associate director in mid-2020. Stephenson’s research focuses on areas related to managing grazing lands throughout central and western North America. A search for a permanent director is underway.  

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