ROCK HILL, S.C. - Winthrop University will honor Michael Lipscomb, an associate professor of political science, as the 2007 Kinard award winner for teaching at the Dec. 15 commencement exercises.
Nearly 350 graduates will receive degrees during the 11 a.m. ceremony at the Winthrop Coliseum. There is no commencement speaker.
The James Pinckney Kinard and Lee Wicker Kinard Award for Excellence in Teaching is awarded annually to the faculty member who has demonstrated a dedication to teaching and is highly regarded on campus by faculty and students. The award was established by the Kinard family in honor of former Winthrop President James P. Kinard and his wife, Lee Wicker Kinard.
Lipscomb specializes in political theory, particularly in critical and postmodern political theory, democratic theory, feminist theory and environmental politics. At Winthrop, he teaches critical and political theory, subjects that students typically do not embrace because the courses require concentrated critical thinking and extensive writing skills. Students report that Lipscomb is rigorous, fair and caring in that he helps them work through the complexities of difficult theories and then helps them see the value in the work not just for the course but for their lives.
A role model for students, Lipscomb has mentored students as they developed their research projects and presented those results at professional conferences. He also has organized a series of sessions for students who wished to apply to graduate school. His work on the Nature and Character of the University Task Force exemplified his devotion to a challenging education for all students. As a veteran teacher of The Human Experience, Lipscomb has served on a committee to develop and edit the course’s textbook and has helped train other professors. He has helped organize a new study abroad course offered in the spring on women and sustainable development in Costa Rica that includes a service-learning component.
Prior to coming to Winthrop in 2001, Lipscomb worked as an instructor at Pennsylvania State University.
He earned two bachelor’s degrees, one in English literature and another in political science, at the University of Richmond and Virginia Commonwealth University. He holds a master’s degree in political science from Virginia Polytechnic and State University and a Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University.
In addition to the Dec. 15 undergraduate commencement, Winthrop will hold a separate graduate commencement ceremony on Dec. 13 to honor nearly 90 students who will receive master’s and specialist degrees during the 7 p.m. ceremony in Byrnes Auditorium.