Burkhart to give Distinguished Graduate Faculty Lecture Sept. 22

Barry Burkhart, a professor in the Department of Psychology, will give Auburn University’s 2015-16 Distinguished Graduate Faculty Lecture on Tuesday, Sept. 22, at 4 p.m. in 112 Thach Hall.

The lecture honors a faculty member who has made significant contributions to graduate education at Auburn University. Burkhart’s address is titled “The gifts of the university: Reflections and a case study.”

“Of all the tasks that come with being a graduate faculty member, that of being a mentor to young scholars is the most dear to me,” Burkhart said. “I am honored to have an opportunity to be recognized for this labor of love.”

Burkhart received his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Florida State University in 1970 and his PhD in clinical psychology in 1974, also, from Florida State University. He has been on faculty at Auburn since 1974 and is a former chair of the Department of Psychology. His main research interests center around the assessment and treatment of problems resulting from violence and victimization.
Burkhart is the 41st lecturer in the Distinguished Graduate Faculty Lecture series, which is jointly sponsored by the Graduate School and the Auburn Alumni Association. Since beginning in the 1975-76 academic year, it has developed into a major university lecture series that fosters a better understanding of the scholarly contributions made by Auburn’s faculty. Nominations for the honor are solicited from the university’s faculty, and the recipient is selected by a committee of graduate faculty members. The lecturer receives a $2,000 award from the Auburn Alumni Association.
Following the lecture, a reception with light refreshments will be held outside Thach Hall. Students, faculty and members of the community are invited to attend. For more information about the Distinguished Graduate Faculty Lecture, visit www.grad.auburn.edu/dgfl.

Five honored with Distinguished Dissertation Awards

Five recent Auburn University graduates have been selected as winners of the Graduate School’s 2014-15 Distinguished Dissertation Awards.
Award winners are Chris Eklund and Libby Jones in the Humanities/Fine Arts category and Justin Havird, Farruk Lutful Kabir and Rui Malinowski in the Biological/Life Sciences category. Eklund and Lutful Kabir will go on to compete for the Council of Graduate Schools/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Awards.
The Distinguished Dissertation Awards recognize the scholarship of doctoral students whose dissertations make an unusually significant contribution to their respective disciplines. Auburn’s colleges and schools nominate students for the awards, and an award committee composed of graduate faculty selects the award winners.

This year’s winning dissertations are:

  • “Private Paths to Protecting Places: The Creation of a Conservation Infrastructure in the American South Since 1889” by Chris Eklund (dissertation embargoed). His dissertation committee consisted of Auburn faculty members Aaron Shapiro (chair), Jennifer Brooks, Cathleen Giustino and David Lucsko. Eklund graduated in May 2015 with a doctorate in history and has accepted a position teaching high school in North Carolina. He is ultimately seeking a teaching position at a college or university.
  • “The Devolution of Irish Masculinity in Twentieth Century Irish Drama: Representations of Manliness in the Plays of John Millington Synge, Sean O’Casey and Martin McDonagh” by Libby Jones (dissertation embargoed for non-Auburn University users). Her dissertation committee consisted of Auburn faculty members Jonathan Bolton (chair), Chris Keirstead, Sunny Stalter-Pace and Ralph Kingston. Jones graduated in May 2015 with a doctorate in English and now teaches at the University of South Alabama and Spring Hill College.
  • “Disturbance in the anchialine ecosystem: ramifications for ecology and physiology” by Justin Havird. His dissertation committee consisted of Auburn faculty members Scott Santos (chair), Raymond Henry, Mark Liles and Alan Wilson. Havird graduated in May 2014 with a doctorate in biological sciences and is now a postdoctoral fellow at Colorado State University.
  • “Altered Expression Profiles and Defects in a Group of Cell Cycle Regulators and Tumor Suppressor Genes (INK4) and Evaluation of Comprehensive Expression Profiles of Canine miRNAs in Spontaneous Canine Breast Cancer Models” by Farruk Lutful Kabir. His dissertation committee consisted of Auburn faculty members R. Curtis Bird (chair), Bruce Smith, Frederik van Ginkel and Jacek Wower. Lutful Kabir graduated in December 2014 with a doctorate in biomedical sciences and is now a postdoctoral fellow at Auburn.
  • “Carbonyl inhibition and detoxification in microbial fermentation of biomass hydrolysates” by Rui Malinowski (formerly Rui Xie). Her dissertation committee consisted of Auburn faculty members Maobing Tu (chair), Yoon Lee, Maria Auad and Eduardus (Evert) Duin. Malinowski graduated in May 2014 with a doctorate in forestry and now works as an analytical chemist at Cool Planet Energy Systems.

Award winners receive an honorarium of $500 and a certificate.
The two categories for the Distinguished Dissertation Awards rotate each year. The Graduate School will solicit nominations in the fall for the 2015-16 categories: Social Sciences and Mathematics/Physical Sciences/Engineering.

428 graduate degrees to be awarded at summer graduation

Auburn University will award 428 graduate degrees during the university’s two graduation ceremonies Saturday, Aug. 1, in Auburn Arena.
Of the degrees to be awarded, 300 are master’s degrees, 110 are doctorates and 18 are education specialist degrees.
Auburn alumnus Mike Warren Jr., president and CEO of the pediatric acute care facility of Children’s of Alabama, will be the speaker at the commencement ceremonies.
Warren, who graduated from Auburn in 1968, received the Auburn Alumni Association’s 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award and he is also a 2015 inductee into the Alabama Business Hall of Fame. After graduating from Auburn, he attended law school at Duke University and began his career practicing law in Birmingham. He became president of Alagasco in 1984 and was named president and CEO of Energen in 1997 and chair in 1998. In 2008, he was named president and CEO of Children’s of Alabama in Birmingham.
The 10 a.m. ceremony will include the colleges and schools of Architecture, Design and Construction; Engineering; Forestry and Wildlife Sciences; University College, formerly Interdisciplinary Studies; Liberal Arts; and Sciences and Mathematics. The 2 p.m. ceremony will be held for the colleges and school of Agriculture; Business; Education; Human Sciences; and Nursing.
The ceremonies can be viewed live through the university’s website at www.auburn.edu/graduationlive.
Since awarding its first graduate degree in 1870, the Graduate School has awarded more than 44,000 degrees. Click here to read more about summer graduation.