Professors Accept Awards in May

Teachers of the Year

Professor Helen RheeProfessor Steve JulioProfessor Jesse CovingtonProfessor Mark NelsonWestmont honored several professors during the Commencement ceremony in May. Helen Rhee, assistant professor of religious studies (above left), received the award Teacher of the Year in Humanities. Steve Julio, assistant professor of biology (above center), was Teacher of the Year in Natural and Behavioral Sciences. Jesse Covington, assistant professor of political science (above right), accepted the award Teacher of the Year in Social Sciences. Richard Pointer, acting provost, presented these honors and also recognized Mark Nelson, Kenneth and Peggy Monroe professor of philosophy (right), as the recipient of the Faculty Research Award. Nelson delivered the 2010 Baccalaureate address, “The Meaning of Your Life.” A video of his talk is available on Westmont’s YouTube channel,

Professors take the stage at awards Ceremony

Professors Miller James, Mitchell Thomas and John BlondellThe Santa Barbara Independent honored Theater Arts Professors Mitchell Thomas (center), John Blondell (right) and Miller James with Indy Awards in May for excellent work done in the local region. Thomas won an Indy for directing Westmont’s production of “The Bald Soprano.” Blondell accepted an Indy for directing “Our Town,” performed by Santa Barbara Theatre. James, Westmont instructor of theatre arts, earned a costume design Indy for “Our Town” and Westmont’s production of “The Bald Soprano.” Indy Awards are nothing new to Blondell and Thomas. Blondell received one in 2008 for his direction of Lit Moon’s “Queen C.” They both won Indy Awards in 2006 for “King Richard II,” Blondell for directing and Thomas for performing. Thomas appeared in the roles of Othello and Isabel in a fusion of “Othello/Measure for Measure” in 2008. His 2009 production of “Muéveme, Muévete” was an original bilingual, site-specific piece written by a playwriting student. Blondell is founder and director of Lit Moon Theatre Company, an award-winning international theatre ensemble. He also founded the Lit Moon World Theater Festival, an annual international event in Santa Barbara. In 2006, he founded the Lit Moon World Shakespeare Festival, the first of its kind in the United States and one of only five in the world.

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