Faculty and Staff - December 4, 2020

Dear Colleagues:

I am pleased to share with you that Professor of Mass Communication Padmini Patwardhan has been named this year's recipient of the Kinard Award for Excellence in Teaching, the university's highest teaching honor. Read more about Padmini's contributions to our learning community in the following news release. And do please take the time to congratulate her on this stellar, well-deserved accomplishment.


George W. Hynd
Interim President

Mass Communication Professor Padmini Patwardhan Earns Winthrop’s Top Teaching Award

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA - Winthrop University will honor Professor Padmini Patwardhan with its top teaching award this month for her outstanding teaching, her successful mentoring of students and her significant contributions to the university.

The Kinard Award is given annually to a faculty member who has demonstrated a dedication to teaching and is highly regarded on campus by faculty and students. Established by the Kinard family, it honors former Winthrop President James P. Kinard and his wife, Lee Wicker Kinard.

Patwardhan joined the Winthrop mass communication faculty in 2005 after working in faculty positions at Texas Tech University and the University of Pune in India. In addition to teaching, she serves as the coordinator for the integrated marketing communication program.

She was promoted to associate professor in 2008 and to professor in 2012. Known for giving her students opportunities in her classes to function as practicing professionals, Patwardhan is working on a departmental project to form a Student Communication Agency.

Patwardhan teaches courses in integrated marketing communication, advertising, public relations, and communication theory and research. Her current research focuses on leadership issues in advertising and public relations.

Current and former students praise her mentorship and support as they learn in the classroom and continue into their careers. 

Takita Sumter, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and a professor of chemistry, said Patwardhan has impressed her over the years as a faculty member who is productive, wise and an asset to the Winthrop teaching community. “She continues to find creative ways to spawn student interest in marketing and communications,” Sumter said in her award nomination letter, mentioning that Patwardhan has been recognized nationally for her teaching excellence by two different professional societies.

Patwardhan received top teaching awards from two leading national associations: the 2017 Charles H. Sandage Teaching Excellence Award from the American Academy of Advertising and the 2017 Distinguished Teaching Award in the Advertising Division from the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.

Her other honors include receiving the 2016 Scholarship Excellence Award from Winthrop’s College of Arts and Sciences, being named Winthrop’s 2011 Thompson Scholar and being selected as the 2006 Visiting Professor Fellow with the Advertising Educational Foundation.

She has served on executive committees with the American Academy of Advertising and Advertising Division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.

Patwardhan holds a Ph.D. in mass communication from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. She also earned an M.A. in English, a B.J. in journalism and a B.A. in English, all from the University of Pune.

For more information, contact Judy Longshaw, news and media services manager, at 803/323-2404 or e-mail her at longshawj@winthrop.edu.