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News and Noteworthy

This section of Dialogue features internal news and noteworthy achievements by faculty, staff, and students in our college, as well as other department news. If you have a news item, please email Amanda Womac.

alumbaughJamie Alumbaugh, a graduate student in the Department of Geography, received a research grant from the Paleoenvironmental Change specialty group at the April 2021 meeting of the American Association of Geographers. Read More

auerbachBenjamin Auerbach, associate professor of anthropology, received a 2020 Outstanding Academic Title Award for his book, The Evolutionary Biology of the Human Pelvis. Choice Reviews, the publishing unit of the Association of College and Research Libraries, bestowed the award.

barwariNuveen M. Barwari, graduate student in the School of Art, is using her work to create an entirely new space—one that allows her to connect her homeland and her host land. Read More


burghardtGordon Burghardt’s new book, The Secret Social Lives of Reptiles, was recently published by Johns Hopkins University Press.


Erin DarbyErin Darby, assistant professor of religious studies, received the 2020-21 Dr. Gilya Schmidt Endowed Faculty Award in Judaic Studies. Darby received the award for her consistent and considerable work in advising and teaching in Judaic studies, as well as her regular involvement in related community outreach and engagement. The year-long workshop series Darby arranged to engage campus ministers on the topic of anti-Judaism and antisemitism, for example, made a significant impact. Effective May 15, Darby is also the inaugural faculty director for the Office of Undergraduate Research and Fellowships. Her charge is to grow UT’s undergraduate research infrastructure and more profoundly embedding research within the UT undergraduate experience. 

Georgi GardnerGeorgi Gardiner, assistant professor in the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s Department of Philosophy, has been named a fellow of the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS). ACLS is a nonprofit federation of 75 scholarly organizations, dedicated to the advancement of all fields of learning in the humanities and the social sciences. Read More

Frank LoefflerFrank Loeffler and faculty with the Center for Environmental Biotechnology (CEB) at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville worked with industry partner BioLargo Engineering to demonstrate the effectiveness of a groundbreaking technology that removes harmful chemicals from drinking water. Read More

Helene SinnreichHelene Sinnreich, director of Judaic studies, received the 2020-21 Dr. Gilya Schmidt Endowed Faculty Award in Judaic Studies, which recognizes outstanding contributions to teaching and research in Judaic Studies at UT. Sinnreich received the award for her extraordinary work as director of the Fern and Manfred Steinfeld Program in Judaic Studies. In addition to mentoring, advising, and teaching students, as well as scheduling programming for the campus and East Tennessee community, Sinnreich has been central to ongoing efforts to combat antisemitism on campus.

Michael Eugene WoodsMichael Woods, associate professor of history, received a Superior Achievement Award from the Illinois State Historical Society, as part of the Society’s 2021 Best of Illinois History program. His recent book, Arguing until Doomsday, received the honor for demonstrating “superior achievement that serves as a model for the profession and reaches a greater public.”

The Department of Mathematics recognized outstanding students during their Math Honors Day. Read More

Albert Andrew Tuinman, former research associate professor of chemistry, and his wife Suoma Annikki Tuinman, passed away in their home March 16, 2020. Read More