Presidential Award Winners 2023

Presidential Awards for Excellence in Teaching

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Professor/Associate Professor

Roseann Mandzuik
Department of Communication Studies

Dr. Roseann Mandziuk is a University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Communication Studies. She joined the Texas State faculty in 1987 after earning her Ph.D. in Rhetorical Studies from the University of Iowa, M.S. in Communication from Illinois State University, and B.A. in Speech Communication and English from Wayne State University. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses including protest rhetoric, media criticism, and rhetorical methods. She has been awarded two Fulbright Scholar Awards for teaching, Poland in 2011 and India in 2019. She also has held visiting professorships at the University of Amsterdam and Moscow State University. Her teaching and mentoring have been recognized with the National Communication Association’s 2017 Francine Merritt Award, the Southern States Communication Association’s 2014 Michael M. Osborn Teacher-Scholar Award, and six Presidential Distinction Awards for Teaching Excellence. She actively mentors students in achieving their academic and career goals and is dedicated to fostering student success.

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Assistant Professor

Elizabeth Eger
Department of Communication Studies

Dr. Elizabeth K. Eger, an assistant professor in the Department of Communication Studies, joined Texas State University in 2017. Dr. Eger earned her PhD from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Her qualitative and critical communication research, teaching, and service explore communication and difference; LGBTQ+ work and health; how collectives co-construct organizational identities; and how work shapes our lives, identities, and health. Dr. Eger’s teaching and research has been recognized nationally by the National Communication Association (NCA)Organizational Communication Division for the Outstanding Teaching Award, the NCA Ethnography Division for the Early Scholar Career Award, and with two articles of the year awards from NCA Ethnography and the Organization for the Study of Communication, Language, and Gender. Dr. Eger utilizes critical, creative, inclusive, and engaged pedagogy. Her teaching philosophy is “rigor with care,” offering rigorous courses where students are supported to succeed as whole people inside and outside of the classroom.

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Senior Lecturer/Lecturer

Ewa Siwak
Department of World Languages and Literatures

Dr. Ewa Siwak, a senior lecturer in the Department of World Languages and Literatures, has taught at Texas State University since 2011. She completed her PhD in German Literature and Translation Studies at The University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Siwak teaches a variety of courses: German language, German Civilization, Business German, Foreign Language Acquisition, as well as supervising student teachers in World Languages. In 2015, she initiated the transfer of the Texas State German Contest to our campus and has served as the event’s co-director since. She has developed three co-curricular programs for students of German: a summer study abroad in Munich, Tandem—a virtual language exchange with our partner university in Munich, and SPARK—a professional internship in German. Her teaching has been repeatedly recognized by Alpha Chi and the Office of Student Retention, and she has received the Liberal Arts Achievement Award for Excellence in Service.

Presidential Awards for Excellence in Scholarly/Creative Activities

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Professor/Assistant Professor

Ty Schepis
Department of Psychology

Ty Schepis is a Professor in the Department of Psychology, having joined Texas State in 2009. He earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and completed a National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded postdoctoral fellowship at Yale University School of Medicine. His research identifies individuals at high risk for substance use and substance use disorders at different points in the lifespan. It is also focused on targets for screening and intervention to limit the consequences of risky substance use, informing recent guidelines on prescription stimulants from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and on benzodiazepines from the UK Home Office. Dr. Schepis has published over 90 peer-reviewed manuscripts and edited the book, The Prescription Drug Abuse Epidemic: Incidence, Treatment, Prevention, and Policy. His research is supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH) and the FDA, and he has served on multiple NIH grant review panels.

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Assistant Professor/Lecturer

Carlton J. Fong
Department of Curriculum and Instruction

Dr. Carlton J. Fong, an assistant professor in the College of Education, holds a doctorate in educational psychology from the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Fong uses a sociocultural lens to study motivational, affective, and self-regulatory factors influencing postsecondary student success. Inducted into the Society for Research Synthesis Methodology, he is also an expert in meta-analytic techniques. Dr. Fong has published over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles and was recognized as one of the most productive early-career educational psychologists in the world. He received the 2023 American Psychological Association Richard E. Snow Award for Early Career Contributions, a 2021 Association for Psychological Science Rising Star Award, and an American Educational Research Association Study for Deeper Learning Fellowship.   He was recently awarded grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

Presidential Awards for Excellence in Service

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Professor/Associate Professor

Christine Lynn Norton
School of Social Work

Dr. Christine Lynn Norton received her Ph.D. in Social Work from Loyola University Chicago. She has a Master of Arts in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago and a Master of Science in Experiential Education from Minnesota State University-Mankato. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Board Approved Supervisor in the State of Texas. Dr. Norton helped launch Foster Care Alumni Creating Educational Success (FACES) at Texas State in 2011, and has served as the FACES Faculty Advisor, the Chair of the Foster Care Advisory Council, and the Foster Care Liaison Officer to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. She also is the founder of the Foster Care Adventure Therapy Network, an international group of programs and practitioners who utilize adventure therapy with current and former foster care youth and young adults. Dr. Norton is a founding member of the Education Reach for Texans Board of Directors, having served as President of the Board, and she has helped train foster care liaisons around the state of Texas. In the past 12 years, Dr. Norton has been a state and national leader in research and best practices for helping students with lived experience in foster care find support and success in higher education. 

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Assistant Professor/Senior Lecturer/Lecturer

Dale Blasingame
School of Journalism and Mass Communication

Mr. Dale Blasingame is an assistant professor of practice in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Texas State University, where he also received the 2017 Presidential Excellence Award for Teaching. Blasingame is a part of the Digital Media Innovation faculty, and he teaches courses that introduce students to different aspects of how technology is changing journalism, media and marketing. He is entering his second term on the Faculty Senate and served as co-secretary for the past two years. Mr. Blasingame has also served on several university-level committees, including the Alumni Association Board of Directors, the COVID-19 Vaccination Task Force, University Marketing Advisory Committee, Presidential Excellence Award in Teaching Selection Committee and six search committees. In his free time, Blasingame is an avid hiker and traveler. He and his dog, Lucy, have been included on Texas Highways Magazine's list of Extraordinary Texans.

Presidential Seminar Awards

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Professor/Associate Professor

Johanna R. Fauerso
School of Art and Design

Ms. Joey Fauerso, a professor in the School of Art and Design holds an MFA in Studio Art from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and joined the faculty at Texas State University in 2007. Ms. Fauerso is an interdisciplinary artist working in painting, installation, video and performance. Her subject matter centers on family, humor, figuration and representation. She seeks to expand the definitions of traditional mediums like painting and drawing, by integrating time and space-based elements into the work. Ms. Fauerso has exhibited her work widely with recent art exhibitions at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. She is the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships including a 2020 Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant, and a 2022 McDowell Fellowship. Ms. Fauerso was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in Fine Arts in 2022.

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Assistant Professor

Tanzima Islam
Department of Computer Science

Dr. Tanzima Z. Islam earned her doctorate from Purdue University and was a postdoctoral scholar at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). Her research focuses on increasing scientific returns by effectively and efficiently utilizing supercomputers. Since joining Texas State (TxState) in 2020, Dr. Islam received nine grants as the PI or Co-PI totaling over $4.081 M from various funding sources, including the Department of Energy (DOE), LLNL, and AMD. She is a 2022 Early Career Research Program award winner from DOE, the first and the only in the history of Texas State University. Due to the profound impact of her research on Computer Science (CS), the R&D World Magazine selected her research as one of the world’s top 100 innovations in 2019, and LLNL bestowed its prestigious Science and Technology award. She regularly gets invited to various task forces that influence the direction of computational and computer science research. Beyond research, Dr. Islam actively provides mentorship through her co-founded research and mentoring platform for female CS students in Bangladesh.