Instituted in 2007, the College of Science and Technology's Distinguished Faculty Awards recognize tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty who are outstanding teachers, mentors and researchers. Nominated by their peers and students, these professors have demonstrated tremendous dedication to their work and are instrumental to the College's goal of producing well-educated science and technology graduates and innovative research. Each award carries a $5,000 or $10,000 prize.
Dieter Forster, Professor of Physics
Forster, who joined Temple in 1974, teaches undergraduate, honors and graduate physics. He received the Distinguished Teaching Award for the College of Arts and Sciences in 1988, was Honors Professor of the Year in 1992, and received the Temple University Great Teacher Award in 1994. A student says of Forster:
I would have to say that Dieter Forster is the best physics professor that I have ever had. His approach to teaching this subject and to learning in general was inspiring to me not only as a scientist, but also as a person interested in the world around me.
Claudia Pine-Simon, Instructor, Computer and Information Sciences
Pine-Simon, who joined Temple in 2000, teaches undergraduate and honors courses and is the Faculty Advisor for the Temple Student Chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery. She was Temple University Honors Professor of the Year in 2009. A student says of Pine-Simon:
I can honestly say that my decision to take an introductory Computer Science course with Claudia Pine-Simon was the single most important one in finding my path to academic and professional success.
Marjatta Lyyra, Professor of Physics
Lyyra, who joined Temple in 1991, teaches undergraduate and graduate physics and advises undergraduate and doctoral students. She is a fellow of the American Physical Society whose research explores molecular structure and dynamics through the interaction of light with matter. A former student says of Lyyra:
Eight years after my graduation I still feel a part of Marjatta's group. I stay in touch with five generations of Marjatta's graduate students. Certainly she has the unique talent to unite, inspire, and motivate people not only for doing research but for building long lasting collaboration and friendship as well.
Edward Gruberg, Professor of Biology
Gruberg, who joined Temple in 1982, teaches undergraduate and graduate biology and is former co-director of the Temple Neuroscience program. His research explores the physiology, anatomy and behavioral aspects of the frog visual system. He received the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1994. A colleague says of Gruberg:
He is an effective and energetic teacher and is known and praised for his high standards. He is also known for being a fair and caring teacher who devotes a lot of energy and time to superb teaching, keeping in mind learning outcomes.
Wei-Shih Yang, Professor of Mathematics
Yang, who joined Temple in 1990, teaches undergraduate and graduate mathematics and advises doctoral students. His research interests include probability theory, mathematical physics and quantum computing. A student says of Yang:
He is an outstanding professor who can clearly and effectively explain abstract and complicated concepts. His courses are challenging, have high standards and are delivered in a way that attracts students. His lectures are well prepared and use a variety of resources and examples (mostly from physics and finance).
Allison Tumarkin-Deratzian, Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Science (Teaching/Instructional)
Tumarkin-Deratzian, who joined Temple in 2006, teaches undergraduate and graduate earth and environmental science courses. Her research interests include bone growth patterns in archosaurs, the histology of modern and fossil bone, and the evolution and growth of ceratopsian dinosaurs. A student notes of Tumarkin-Deratzian:
Her investment in students' understanding of course material is truly remarkable. There were several times in class, during field trips and outside of class when Dr. Allison would think of and utilize multiple approaches to explaining course material until students fully grasped any concept she had presented.
Deborah Stull, Assistant Professor of Biology (Teaching/Instructional)
Stull, who joined Temple in 2006, teaches undergraduate biology and science writing and has developed three new courses, including one in neurosciece and one in science writing. She received an award for outstanding teaching at Harvard University in 1999. A student says of Stull:
Questions often led our class into further and deeper discussion. Dr. Stull's extensive knowledge in developmental biology allowed her to let the discussion progress rather than forcing the class back to a rigid agenda. The method proved effective as it invited us as students to help guide the class, question our own knowledge, and grow as analytical thinkers.
Jayakumar Gilbert, Assistant Professor of Chemistry (Teaching/Instructional)
Gilbert, who joined Temple in 2005, teaches undergraduate chemistry. His research in inorganic chemistry has led to the successful synthesis of three new hexadentate ligands and their metal complexes during his time at Temple. A student says of Gilbert:
Dr. Gilbert provided an excellent learning environment with his easy-going nature. He challenged us but created an atmosphere where we could make mistakes, ask questions, and learn.
Antonio Giordano, President, Sbarro Health Research Organization, Inc.; Director, Sbarro Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine and Center for Biotechnology; Professor of Biology
Giordano, who joined Temple in 2002, leads the Sbarro Health Research Organization. His groundbreaking research on defining the complex network of biochemical signals by which the gene pRb2/p130, which Giordano discovered, regulates cellular proliferation, survival and differentiation has led to more than 320 scholarly publications, representing major advances in the field of cell cycle control. Giordano also discovered the Novel Structure Protein family of genes, one of which shows promise as a tumor marker and is believed to play a critical role in cell division, and the genes Cdk9, which plays a critical role in cell differentiation, and Cdk10. A colleague says of Giordano:
The quality of his work is attested to by the fact that it provides an impetus for other investigators studying cancer growth control and it has resulted in a framework for our conceptualization of cancer development and mechanisms of tumor suppression. Dr. Giordano is able to define areas of research that will become important, rather than simply following the leads of other investigators.