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Women's Studies Awards celebrate creativity, passion and courage

RELEASED: May 12, 2010

EAU CLAIRE — University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire students were recently honored for their undergraduate and graduate research and creative projects on women's issues during the 2010 Women's Studies Awards Celebration.

Senior English major Christina Huber, Cottage Grove, Minn., received first place in the undergraduate research paper category of the Helen X. Sampson award for her paper "Fighting the American Mistress: America and the Female Self in 'The Journal of Madam Knight.'" Dr. Cathy Rex, assistant professor of English, was her faculty sponsor.

Junior English major Kelsey Hillestad, Eau Claire, received the second-place Helen X. Sampson award in the undergraduate research paper category for her paper "Kate to Petruchio's Bride: A Lesson in Wifely Deference." Dr. Theresa Kemp, professor of English, was Hillestad's faculty sponsor.

Senior physics major Derek Brochu, Duluth, Minn., won first place in the undergraduate project category of the Helen X. Sampson award for his project "Research Paper and Related Art Project — Vandana Shiva." Laurel Kieffer, lecturer of women's studies and Title III grant director, was Brochu's faculty sponsor.

Receiving the Helen X. Sampson award in the graduate category was Lisa Cooper-Murphy, Balsam Lake, for her project "Beyond the Metaphor: Ethically Teaching Literary Depictions of Sexual Assault in Rape Culture." Her faculty sponsor was Kemp.

The Virgiline and Joseph See Poetry Award recognizes an outstanding poetry submission by a student who knows the risk it takes to call oneself a poet. First place went to senior English major Lisa Zondlo, Rib Lake, for her submission "The Shackles of Freedom: Damning Racist and Misogynistic Discourses in William Shakespeare's 'Othello.'" Her faculty sponsor was Kemp. Second place went to senior women's studies major Anne Estling Andrews, Chippewa Falls, for her submission "From Death to Life: Changing Visions of Masculinity in Cameron Crowe's 'Elizabethtown."' Her faculty sponsor was Patti See, senior student services coordinator in the Academic Skills Center, and the award sponsor. Receiving the third-place award was senior journalism major Marguerite Berg, Wisconsin Rapids, for her collection "Lace's Passage: A Fragmented Journey." Berg's faculty sponsor was Dr. Jenny Shaddock, professor of English.

The Tillie Olsen Award for Fiction or Creative Nonfiction, sponsored by See, is awarded to students whose work explores progressive gender relationships. Senior Jennifer Matthews, Eau Claire, was awarded first place for her piece "It's a Girl Thing." Dr. Audrey Fessler, assistant professor of English, was her faculty sponsor. Freshman Mai Yia Moua, Schofield, received the second-place award for her piece "Daddy's Little Girl." Emily Krusack, lecturer of English, was her faculty sponsor. Graduate student Susan Santee-Buenger, Cedar Falls, Iowa, was awarded third place for her piece "It Is What It Is." Her faculty sponsor was Dr. Karen Loeb, professor of English.

Graduate student Abby Vercauteren received the Mary Catherine and Caroline Kessler Award for her paper "Hardship and Perseverance: A Gendered Analysis of the Impact of War, Sanctions and Occupation on the Lives of Iraqi Women." Her faculty sponsor was Dr. Katherine Rhoades, interim coordinator of women's studies and dean emerita of the College of Education and Human Sciences. The award is sponsored by Dr. Patricia Quinn, McNair Program director. The award recognizes an outstanding research paper or project in history.

Senior women's studies major Marci Korb, Eagle River, received the Donna C. Turell award for her oral history project on Sarah Harder, associate professor emerita of English and former coordinator of women's studies. Rhoades was her faculty adviser. The award is given for an undergraduate or graduate paper or project related to the application of feminism to one's life. The award is sponsored by Dr. Susan Turell, interim associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and dean of undergraduate studies.

Senior psychology major Sarah Gonzalez, Sheboygan, received the Cecelia M. Belter award for her project "Student Leadership." The award recognizes outstanding service by an undergraduate student in promoting women's issues through a class project, service-learning initiative, program development or student organization activity. Jodi Thesing-Ritter, associate dean of students, was her faculty sponsor and also sponsors the award.

Recent graduate Andrea Fuss, Waupaca, and senior Angela Nieman, Milwaukee, were awarded the Mickey Crothers Award, which is offered to an outstanding first-generation undergraduate female student whose creative expression is related to gender issues or represents an unusual achievement for a woman. Fuss and Nieman were honored for their work on "En Travesti: The Mezzo-Soprano as Leading Man." Dr. Mitra Sadeghpour, associate professor of music and coordinator of the voice division, was their faculty sponsor.

Junior women's studies major Catherine Emmanuelle, Eau Claire, was awarded the Ailish Frances Barcelo Award, a memorial award honoring Barcelo's life. Barcelo received her undergraduate degree from UW-Eau Claire in 2004 and died two years later while traveling in Egypt. She was a feminist who lived her life to the fullest. The scholarship is available to support an undergraduate woman in women's studies whose passion for women's issues is evident in her course work and by the way she lives her life. The award is sponsored by Christine Webster, a program assistant for the Blugold Beginnings program and for the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning.

A number of faculty also received awards for their contribution to women's studies. Dr. David Jones, associate professor of English, received the Feminist Teacher Award. Dr. Nicole Schultz, assistant professor of communication and journalism, was awarded the Feminist Mentor Award. Dr. Audrey Fessler, assistant professor of English, received the Women's Studies Scholarship Research Award. Dr. Karen Loeb won the Women's Studies Scholarship Creative Work Award. Dr. Margaret Cassidy, associate dean for academic affairs and curriculum in the College of Arts and Sciences, received the Women's Studies Service Award.

Named for a pioneer advocate for women's studies and the goals of women's movement at UW-Eau Claire and in the state of Wisconsin, the Helen X. Sampson Awards are funded through the UW-Eau Claire Foundation, as are all awards presented at the Women's Studies Awards celebration. Some are sponsored by individuals and others by the donations of many.

To contribute to the annual awards, call the UW-Eau Claire Foundation at 715-836-5630 or the women's studies program office at 715-836-5717.

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AH/RD/DW

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