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President's Distinguished Award Applauds Three Duquesne Faculty Members

Three faculty members at Duquesne University have been honored for their outstanding work with the President's Distinguished Awards.

At convocation, President Charles J. Dougherty recognized Dr. Monica Sorescu of Pittsburgh, Dr. Nancy Trun of Pittsburgh and Dr. Vincent Giannetti of Cranberry Township. Details about their awards and their work follow.

Excellence in Scholarship

Dr. Monica Sorescu, an associate professor in the Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, has established and constructed a state-of-the-art laboratory in Condensed Matter Physics, dedicated to both synthesis and characterization of nanostructured magnetic materials.

Sorescu also has received more than $1.2 million in grant money for her research over the past eight years, many of those grants from the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy. Sorescu has published 128 research papers, 100 while at Duquesne.

She has mentored undergraduate and post-doctoral students in advanced nanostructured and energy related materials. As a result of her insights, many of her students have continued in this field, researching even more advanced materials in science and technology.  

Excellence in Teaching

Dr. Nancy Trun, associate professor in the Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences and designated National Academies Teaching Fellow from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has distinguished herself in her teaching expertise and commitment. Dr. Trun has taught a diversity of courses, ranging from freshman lecture classes to small elective courses to specialized graduate courses.

An innovator in her introduction and development of Application-Based Service Learning, students in her Microbiology SuperLab course focus on characterization of bacterial parasites in feral cats.

Last year, a national test showed the impact of Trun's teaching methods. Her students were administered the Critical Thinking Assessment Test, which measures critical thinking skills at the beginning and the end of a course. On average nationwide, a 5-point gain was measured between freshman and senior years. Trun's students showed a 7-point gain in only one semester, showing how much her teaching influences her students.

Excellence in Service to the Mission

Dr. Vincent Giannetti, professor in the Mylan School of Pharmacy, has served on numerous committees that require long hours and total commitment. He has chaired the Outcomes Assessment Committee for the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education Self-Study for the School of Pharmacy, as well as the University Grievance Committee, served as co-chair of the Academic Affairs Committee for the Middle States accreditation and has participated on the University Curriculum Committee.

Beyond the campus community, Giannetti is a member of the PA Drug Device and Cosmetic Board and the Allegheny County Drug Overdoes Prevention Committee. He is also assisting in making Naloxone, a drug used to counter opiate overdose, available to the public.

Giannetti educates pharmacy students about alcohol and other chemical dependencies. He co-founded and is currently faculty advisor to a student-centered organization called Helping to Educate and Rehabilitate Together.

In 2005, he received the Eugene P. Beard Award for Distinguished Leadership in Ethics. 

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.