Regent University News – Awarding Faculty for Service, Scholarship and Teaching
Three of Regent University’s faculty members were recognized for their contributions Tuesday, November 1, at the university’s quarterly faculty and staff meeting. Dr. Gerson Moreno-Riaño, executive vice president for academic affairs, presented Fall 2016 Faculty Awards for service, scholarship and teaching.
Service – Dr. Gary Oster, School of Business & Leadership (SBL)
Known as the “go-to” colleague for innovation, Oster is recognized for his service providing insight for course development. He designed two new master’s degrees, a Master of Arts in Business & Design Management, and a Master’s in Data Analytics. He also collaborated with his students to begin an on-campus networking community of entrepreneurs and innovation enthusiasts called Innolab.
“It’s important to bring reality into entrepreneurship,” said Oster. “Working directly with students is what we do. There aren’t enough books in the world to educate them, so the learning is in the doing. That is our objective with Innolab.”
Scholarship – Dr. Michael Ponton, School of Education
Ponton is a respected scholar known for his focus on autonomous learning. He has authored and co-authored seven books, presented at the University of Oxford, and recently spoke at the 29th International Self Directed Learning Symposium in Florida. His passion for the topic drives him to encourage his students to continue learning beyond graduation by being intentional learners as they accomplish their individual pursuits. He says he is honored to be recognized for his work in this area.
“University recognition of my scholarly contributions provides some assurance to me that I have used God’s gifts in a productive manner that both glorifies Him and honors Regent,” said Ponton. “I am humbly pleased by this!”
Teaching – Dr. Mary Manjikian, Robertson School of Government
Manjikian receives consistently high rankings from student surveys. She’s taken an active approach in new course development, creating classes in Cyber Security Policy and Russian Politics. Recognized in the area of teaching, she is known for innovative use of technology in the classroom and is planning a trip to Russia that would be available as a one-credit class.
“Teaching is one of my favorite things and I feel that my conversations with students over the years have really sparked my research as well,” said Manjikian. “Lots of times a student will ask a question and I’ll realize that no one has written about this topic yet, and I will end up authoring a journal article which came out of that class section. For example, last year we had a conversation about intelligence sharing between nations in my intelligence class, and I ended up authoring an article on the ethics of intelligence sharing, a neglected but important topic.”
Manjikian encourages a collaborative and interactive degree of participation, especially with her online students. She’s been experimenting with an add-on to PowerPoint that allows her to gather feedback from students and incorporate it into her presentations.