Loyola University Chicago

Faculty Center for Ignatian Pedagogy

Spring 2015

Award Recipients

Faculty Awardee


Award Name

Daniel Becker Chemistry & Biochemistry Hayes Award for Advising and Mentoring
Kim Williamson Biology Langerbeck Award for Undergraduate Research Mentoring
Howard Laten Biology Langerbeck Award for Undergraduate Research Mentoring

Daniel Becker

Professor, Chemistry & Biology

Alice B. Hayes Award for Advising and Mentoring

The Hayes Award recognizes faculty who demonstrate commitment to advising and mentoring students within and outside the classroom. Excellent faculty mentors are involved in helping students discover their passions, develop a dedication to life-long learning, and guiding students’ intellectual, personal, social and spiritual growth.

The awards committee was particularly impressed with the comments Dr. Becker made in his personal statement. He states: “Mentoring begins in the classroom and in the laboratory through example, sharing a love of learning, not just of chemistry, but of art and music, languages and history, and it continues beyond graduation. Showing respect to students is fundamental, so they know that they are valued and that their ideas are valued.  Even when I counsel a student who is failing my course, they must leave my office with their dignity and self-esteem intact.”  

Dr. Becker’s students were passionate about the impact this professor has had on their lives: One student wrote: “Dr. Becker regularly makes himself available outside of class time to speak on matters that supersede academic advising. He has guided me as I apply to graduate programs in biochemistry, advising me on what factors in these programs I might consider, how to speak to faculty at interview weekends, how to structure a competitive curriculum vitae, and how to write a more effective and expressive personal statement. He is encouraging when I am feeling uncertain about my future--never pushing me to a particular path, but rather drawing out & reminding me of my strengths.”  

Dr. Becker was nominated by several students for the Hayes award. Another student wrote: “[Dr. Becker] has encouraged me to advance my education beyond the classroom by presenting my research at research symposiums, doing my own literature searches, and coming up with my own ideas. I feel like I have received an incredible education from this University partly because of his advising.”

Kim Williamson

Professor, Biology

Langerbeck Award for Undergraduate Research Mentoring

With multiple nominations, Rana Alcheikh explains, “Dr. Williamson is dedicated and meticulous in her work and she never hesitates to make sure we have what we need to be successful scientists.” According to fellow student Trina Sircar, “Her faith in her undergraduate research students is never wavering and she pushes us to new limits and urges us to think about research and applications of knowledge . . .  in new and abstract ways. Dr. Williamson has helped me foster a passion for research and curiosity and eager desire to be actively involved in research.” And yet another student nominator, Cameron Callipari, stated: “She gave me the confidence to tackle project after project all the while providing me the resources and literature to learn exponential amounts of knowledge about immunology and virology which developed me not only as a researcher and a student, but as a person as well.”

Howard Laten

Professor, Biology

Langerbeck Award for Undergraduate Research Mentoring

According to one of his students, Haley Luebke, “Over the past few semesters I have become very much autonomous in the lab, which has allowed me to transform into an independent and well-rounded researcher who is now ready to venture on to research in a medical school setting. . . . I have also developed and advanced many life skills because of Dr. Laten’s mentorship such as patience, teamwork, work ethic, time management, and most importantly honesty. . . .  I will always resort to honesty in both personal and professional settings because Dr. Laten constantly showed us the importance of presenting all data and results in an honest and truthful manner. . . . It was because of his method of instructing that he is able to continually produce students that are ready to enter the workforce or professional programs with the proper tools necessary for success.”