Marian University hosted its annual Faculty & Staff Recognition Ceremony recently, presenting a number of awards to employees – including the James Underkofler Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award to Dr. Sarah Garvey.

Garvey, an Associate Professor and Department Chair of Math and Natural Sciences, earned the award – which requires the recipient to “demonstrate outstanding performance and excellence in undergraduate teaching” as well as “reflect the college’s mission, purpose, and commitment” – because of her deep concern for students’ learning.

The Underkofler award was established through an endowment fund created to honor Mr. James R. Underkofler by Alliant Energy, and is administered by the Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (WAICU). Marian is one of five Wisconsin independent colleges eligible for the award.

Described by her colleagues as creating a welcoming, inclusive learning space, Dr. Sarah Garvey holds her students accountable to their professional aspirations. She implements best-practice pedagogy for student learning, and meets her students where they are on their learning trajectory.

One consistent theme in Garvey’s nomination letters, is how she cares for her students and in doing so, represents and lives Marian’s mission each day. Her engaging and respectful teaching style positively impacts her students’ learning experiences. Garvey’s commitment to student success has influenced many of her students to build confidence in their abilities.

Brenda Stueber, Associate Professor of Social Work, received the Social Justice Award, which is conferred upon individuals in recognition of their activities in challenging structures that are inequitable, oppressive, wasteful, or violent; or in promoting alternative, just structures.

Dr. Alan Johnson, Associate Professor and Criminal Justice Program Chair, was awarded the Academic Advising Excellence Award. This award identifies positive role models for Marian students and acknowledges the importance the role academic advising plays in the University’s mission and core values and in students’ success.

Tracey Marx, director of Adult and Online Studies, received the Staff of the Year award. The Staff of the Year award is given to an individual who makes exceptional contributions to the Marian University community in the areas of inspirational focus, community and service, innovation, and proactive leadership and learning.

PICTURED: Jennifer deHart, VP for Collaborative Services for WAICU (left), Dr. Sarah Garvey, Associate Professor for Marian University (middle), and Justen Foral, Manager of Custom Operations for Alliant Energy (right).