Quinnipiac University has recognized three faculty members and three staff members as recipients of the 2018 Center for Excellence in Teaching and Service to Students Awards.
This year’s recipients of the Excellence in Teaching awards are Lynn Byers, professor of mechanical engineering; Scott McLean, professor of political science; and Robert Yawson, assistant professor of management.
Byers, of Cheshire, Connecticut, said, “I’m thankful for everyone who has made it possible for me to receive this award. It’s a privilege to work with the amazing people here at Quinnipiac – faculty, staff and, of course, the students.”
McLean, who lives in North Haven, Connecticut, said his mother was a teacher.
“If I could have half the impact on people as she did, I might be able to consider myself excellent,” he said. “Like her, I measure success by my students who are responsible leaders and active citizens in their communities. I’ve had some wonderful teaching role models too. I feel like I’ve joined a very select group now. It is a wonderful surprise and a sweet feeling to have students nominate me, and excellent colleagues give this award to me.”
Yawson, of Wallingford, Connecticut, agreed that, “teaching is an arduous task and serious endeavor and its product intangible.
“Often our real accomplishments go unnoticed,” he added. “We sometimes need encouragement and affirmation. Many great teachers are pouring out their hearts and minds to students at this university; many without winning awards. I hope this award gives me renewed energy for this high calling of teaching and provides everyone the renewed confidence that good teaching is indeed valued and that what we do, even when it sometimes flies below the radar, matters a great deal.”
This year’s honorees for the Excellence in Service to Students awards are Ray Ciarlelli Jr., public safety officer; Ronda Kolbin, public services librarian; and Lauren Erardi, director of academic technology.
Ciarlelli Jr., of Cheshire, Connecticut, said, “This award gives me a great sense of accomplishment. It makes me feel good to be able to take care of our student body, staff and faculty every day.”
Kolbin, a Hamden resident, said she considers herself very fortunate to have made her career at Quinnipiac and to be part of the academic community.
“The students inspire me and give me great satisfaction, and I get to know many of them individually,” she said. “If I can make a difference in just one student’s life, I feel immense gratification. Quite simply, I do what I do because I love what I do. Never did I expect those efforts to lead to this honor the university has bestowed on me.”
Erardi, of Cromwell, Connecticut, said she also was humbled by the honor.
“I am very thankful,” she said. “The faculty and staff who have won this award in the past, as well as this year’s honorees, are incredibly impressive people. I am beyond proud to stand amongst them.”
Recognizing its 16th year of honorees, the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Service to Students bestows the highest level of employee recognition to members of the university community who provide extraordinary service to Quinnipiac students. The center serves as an important vehicle in helping the university achieve its educational mission, consistent with its three core values: high-quality academic programs, a student-oriented environment and a sense of community. Award winners are nominated by students, alumni and colleagues of the university community.
Honorees will be recognized at the annual Center for Excellence Awards ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 18. This celebration includes students, staff, faculty and members of the honorees’ family and friends. In addition, award winners receive a cash award and a Center for Excellence sculpture, are featured in Quinnipiac Magazine and have their names engraved into the stone plaque located in the Arnold Bernhard Library.