Nominations sought for president’s awards for public engagement

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University of Michigan leaders are encouraging the community members from all three campuses to nominate individual faculty members who have demonstrated a commitment to public service for the president’s awards for public engagement.

Launched in 2017, the President’s Award for National and State Leadership and the President’s Award for Public Impact aim to celebrate faculty public engagement at U-M.

The award for national and state leadership honors an individual who has held leadership and service roles in major national, state, local or community capacities. The recipient will have contributed to the health, resilience and prosperity of the nation, state and society at large, or support a safe global environment.

Emily Toth Martin, associate professor of epidemiology, received last year’s award for her critical surveillance and engagement work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

The award for public impact honors an individual who have offered their academic research and expertise in tangible service of a major public sector challenge. The recipient will have actively addressed significant challenges in society and have used their academic capacity and expertise to combat such threats, in cooperation with governmental and non-governmental stakeholders.

Margaret Dewar, professor emerita of urban and regional planning, received last year’s award for her work in helping strengthen deteriorated neighborhoods and enhancing access to safe and affordable housing.

The awards are part of the university’s greater institutional effort to promote and support faculty public engagement, an initiative President Mark Schlissel said aims to help faculty share their expertise with the public and showcase the public value of university research.

“For generations, the Michigan faculty have made big, crucial contributions to national policy — and in most every other domain that affects humanity,” Schlissel said. “Our renewed focus on faculty public engagement seeks to stimulate faculty to share their considerable expertise and research capacity with the public, through purposeful efforts focused outside the academy.”

Nominations for both awards must be submitted by Dec. 10.

Awardees will be recommended to the president by a committee, appointed by Schlissel, that includes members of the faculty, the U-M Office of the Vice President for Research and the Office of Government Relations.

The award is open to tenured, tenure-track or research faculty members from all U-M campuses, schools, colleges and units. Individual members of other categories of instructional faculty may also be nominated. An event celebrating the awardees will be March 15, 2022.

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