Loyola University Chicago

College of Arts & Sciences

2017 Sujack Awards

By Gabrielle Barnes | Student Reporter

Each year, the Sujack Awards honor College of Arts and Sciences faculty members for their dedication to their profession. Whether they stand out through their teaching inside or outside the classroom, these faculty members are leading by example. This year’s ceremony will be held on April 27 at 4:00 p.m. in the Damen Student Center, Sr. Jean MPR South, and will be followed by a reception. 

The 2017 Sujack winners are as follows:

The Sujack Family Award for Faculty Research Excellence recipients are Sushma Reddy, PhD, associate professor of biology, and Ruth Gomberg-Muñoz, PhD, assistant professor of anthropology. This recognition provides continued faculty research and covers the costs of data acquisition, summer stipends, and research-related travel expenses. Reddy, who has a dual appointment in bioinformatics, studies the evolutionary history of birds in tropical regions in hopes that her research will settle the debate among scholars as to where bird groups emerged. Through her research, she is able to better inform her students as well as inspire their passion for the subject matter. Her most outstanding research accomplishment was the recent discovery of two new bird genera and a new species.  

Equally impressive, Gomberg-Muñoz has published six articles in peer-reviewed journals, one book chapter, and her own book, Becoming Legal: Immigration Law and Mixed-Status Families—all within the past year.  She has dedicated her career to studying the political economy and human migration, with a focus on undocumented Latinos and Latinas in the United States. "Dr. Gomberg-Muñoz’s work reflects a deep commitment to rigorous critical evaluation and to the human spirit,” said Anne L. Grauer, professor and chair of anthropology.

The awards for the Edwin T. and Vivijeanne F. Sujack Award for Teaching Excellence have been granted to assistant professors of psychology Perla Gamez, PhD, and Rebecca Silton, PhD.

Gamez’s unconventional teaching style breaks away from the typical lecture-style classes, according to one of her students, senior Ha Tran. Tran said Gamez utilizes technology to make shy students feel comfortable asking questions through a laptop, as well as making herself accessible to students at all times. Her work as both a professor and a mentor continues to inspire her students to pursue excellence in all aspects of their lives.

It is Silton’s unique teaching style and dedication to the inclusion of diverse populations that make her a model of Jesuit values, according to one of her students, senior Shaniqua Mitchell.

“Professor Silton encourages students to challenge themselves to understand others from a different perspective,” said Mitchell.  

The Master Teacher Award recipients are:

 2017 Master Teachers Award:

  • Badia Ahad, PhD, associate professor of English
  • Chad Eichman, PhD, assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry
  • Christine Li-Grining, PhD, associate professor of psychology
  • Kristin L. Krueger, PhD, assistant professor of anthropology

 2017 Master Researchers:  

  • Miguel Ballicora, PhD, associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry
  • Cristina Lombardi-Diop, PhD,  senior lecturer of Modern Languages and Literatures
  • Kyle Roberts, PhD, associate professor of history,
  • J.D. Trout, professor of philosophy

For more information about the Sujack Awards, please visit LUC.edu/cas/thesujackawards