Faculty and Staff - November 26, 2019

Dear Colleagues:

I am pleased to share with you that this year we have two Kinard Award recipients. Dr. Alice McLaine, assistant professor and athletic training program director, and Dr. Chris Van Aller, professor of political science and director of the Model United Nations program, have been named the 2019 recipients of Winthrop's highest teaching honor, the Kinard Award for Excellence in Teaching. Read more about the contributions of Alice and Chris to our learning community in the following news release. And do please take the time to congratulate them both on this stellar accomplishment when you see them around campus and at the Commencement ceremony on December 14.



Two Long-time Winthrop Faculty Members to Receive Top Teaching Award

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA - Winthrop University will honor two long-time professors with its top teaching award at the Dec. 14 Commencement ceremony in recognition of their many teaching contributions to the institution.

President Dan Mahony will present Assistant Professor of Athletic Training Alice McLaine and Professor of Political Science Chris Van Aller with James Pinckney Kinard and Lee Wicker Kinard Awards for Excellence in Teaching.

The presentation will take place during the 11 a.m. ceremony at the Winthrop Coliseum, where approximately 300 undergraduates and 50 graduate students will receive their degrees.

Giving the keynote address will be Gloria Jones ‘84, the retiring dean of University College.

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.

McLaine, an assistant professor in the Department of Physical Education, Sport and Human Performance, has been a certified athletic trainer for more than 35 years. She became involved in athletic training as a junior in high school and has maintained a passion for the field.

McLaine came to Winthrop in 2002 where she developed and obtained initial accreditation for the athletic training program. She successfully led the program through its first Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education review and over the past two years has led the program as it prepares to transition to a master’s degree in athletic training due to new standards.

Involved in her field at the local, regional and national level, McLaine serves as a member of several professional committees related to athletic training continuing education and peer support.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Ohio University, a Master of Science degree in exercise fitness, assessment, evaluation and prescription from West Virginia University and a Ph.D. in higher education from Iowa State University.

The other Kinard recipient, Van Aller, joined the Winthrop faculty in 1990. He was promoted to associate professor in 1996 and to professor in 2008. In his nearly 30 years at the university, he has taught a wide variety of courses, a major one for almost a quarter of a century being Model United Nations (MUN), which culminates in an annual three-day conference. He also leads yearly delegations of Winthrop students to regional MUN competitions in the Southeast.

Many of Van Aller’s courses deal with current events, such as post-Soviet politics, the environment, energy and gun control.

Van Aller earned a bachelor’s degree in English and history at Hamilton College and a master’s degree and a Ph.D., both in foreign affairs, from the University of Virginia. He has lived in the Netherlands, England, Canada and Singapore.

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