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Bentley, Devlin Honored at College Awards Banquet

The 2019 College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Awards banquet took place Thursday, December 5 at the Holiday Inn Downtown. From Diversity Leadership to awards in research, advising, and teaching, the annual awards banquet honors faculty excellence in all areas of the college mission.

Alex Bentley and Joanne Devlin received awards for their work in the Department of Anthropology.

“As we recognize particularly outstanding faculty this evening, I want to thank all of our faculty in the college, individually and collectively, for everything you do— your teaching, research, service on college and university committees, thesis committees, and tenure and promotion committees, and service to the public through community engagement,” said Theresa Lee, dean of the college and emcee for the awards ceremony. “A college can be no greater or stronger than its faculty and the College of Arts and Sciences is a college of excellence because each of you has a passion for our profession and you work selflessly to make our students, departments and university the best they can be.”


Alex Bentley, professor and head of the department, and colleagues Jon Garthoff, associate professor in the Department of Philosophy, and Garriy Shteynberg, associate professor in the Department of Psychology, received the Interdepartmental Collaborative Scholarship and Research Award. The recipients collaborated on a groundbreaking paper on how, when, and why people learn from one another. In their paper “A theory of collective learning: On the psychological foundations of common knowledge and cognitive collaboration” they argue that while learning from others has long been a cornerstone of social and biological sciences, learning with others has been underappreciated in terms of its importance to human cognition, cohesion and culture. The author’s thesis provides a psychological answer (Shteynberg) to a long-standing philosophical problem (Garthoff), with implications for human evolution (Bentley).


Joanne Devlin, distinguished lecturer of anthropology, received an Advising Services Award for her leadership as the director of undergraduate studies. In this role, she oversees all students’ progression to the major, reviews all petition requests, and meets with prospective students. She conveys the sense that majors are a part of small supportive academic program whether in her role as instructor of a core introductory course or in one on one advising conversations. Devlin’s commitment to advising and mentoring is demonstrated by her positive impact on individual student experiences as well as the creativity and innovation she is bringing to the academic program itself. In direct response to students’ expressed interest, Devlin as led the development of the new forensic concentration including the co-developing and co-teaching of a new marquee course, “Scene of the Crime: Demystifying Forensic Science.” She serves as advisor for a new student organization, Undergraduate Association of Forensic Sciences, and she has created experiential learning opportunities through crime scene exercises. 

Congratulations to our Department of Anthropology faculty award winners.