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Commencements Set for Dec. 15 and 17; Sleigh to Receive Kinard Award
During the 11 a.m. ceremony at Winthrop Coliseum, the university will award 300 degrees to graduating seniors and an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters to Rock Hill businessman and philanthropist Gary Williams.
Merry Sleigh, an associate professor in the Department of Psychology, joined the Winthrop faculty in 2003 and quickly established herself as an outstanding teacher who not only teaches difficult courses but transforms her students to engage in their learning.
ROCK HILL, S.C. - An outstanding psychology faculty member who seeks to transform student learning will receive a prized faculty award for teaching during the Dec. 17
at Winthrop University.
Also during the 11 a.m. ceremony at Winthrop Coliseum, the university will award 300 degrees to graduating seniors and an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters to Rock Hill businessman and philanthropist Gary Williams.
James Pinckney Kinard and Lee Wicker Kinard Award for Excellence in Teaching
will go to
. Established by the Kinard family in honor of former Winthrop President James P. Kinard and his wife, Lee Wicker Kinard, the award is given annually to the faculty member who has demonstrated a dedication to teaching.
Sleigh, an associate professor in the
Department of Psychology
, joined the Winthrop faculty in 2003 and quickly established herself as an outstanding teacher who not only teaches difficult courses but transforms her students to engage in their learning. She embodies many of the qualities of an excellent teacher: commitment to student learning, high standards and expectations, superior command of subject matter and a passion for improvement.
Heavily involved in supporting undergraduate research,
is a willing mentor to any student who wishes to work on a research project. She has supervised more than 180 students in more than 130 conference presentations. Under Sleigh’s direction, the Winthrop chapter of
routinely receives a “model chapter” award from the national office and in 2009 was selected as best chapter in the Southeast.
She models the virtues of a scholar to her students with her own program of research, which focuses on
, along with presentation and publication. She has reviewed for and published in referred journals such as
Teaching of Psychology
Journal of Comparative Psychology
Sleigh received the
2008 College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Advisor Award
2010 Psi Chi Regional Faculty Advisor Award
. In 2011, she received the
Southeastern Psychological Association Mentor Award
and the prestigious
Florence Denmark Psi Chi Faculty Award
, given to one Psi Chi advisor nationally each year.
She earned her undergraduate degree in psychology and English from James Madison University and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in developmental psychology, both from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
Williams to receive honorary degree
President Anthony DiGiorgio
will confer an honorary degree on businessman
, who is a champion for education in the Rock Hill community.
Born in Atlanta, Ga., Williams spent his childhood in Memphis, Tenn., and Charlotte, N.C. He moved to Rock Hill in 1975 to start his own business and then founded
Williams & Fudge Inc.
in 1986 to serve the higher education community.
Williams donates his time and talents to serve as an officer of the
Winthrop University Foundation
and is the incoming president. He also has served on the boards of the
Rock Hill school district
York County Community Foundation
Culture & Heritage Museums
He has contributed to the revitalization of downtown Rock Hill with the renovation of the
Old Cotton Factory
, which houses the
Williams & Fudge, Inc.
offices. The building showcases area history and efforts by area artists, including those at Winthrop, to capture the vanishing railroad and textile industries.
Graduate Commencement also scheduled
Winthrop will hold its
on Dec. 15 at the Winthrop Coliseum where 90 students will receive master’s or specialist degrees. The ceremony begins at 7 p.m.
Students who graduated in August, which includes 64 undergraduates and 56 graduates, have the option of participating in the
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