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Connie Kirker
4/17/2008 —

Connie Kirker, assistant professor of integrative arts, has earned the Madlyn Hanes Faculty Award at Penn State Brandywine. Created in 1988, the award recognizes a full-time faculty member of Penn State Brandywine who has made outstanding contributions to the campus community through exceptional achievement in teaching, research, scholarship, creative activity, or service.

Kirker, who lives in Philadelphia, received the award at the campus' Spring Honors Convocation on April 17. She said it was a great honor.

"Dr. Madlyn Hanes is one of my most favorite people in the entire world and my model for living happily in the academic world," said Kirker. "She placed her trust in me when, as director of academic affairs at the campus, she hired me in 1992. I am most delighted and honored to have my name linked with hers through this award."

Among her countless endeavors on behalf of the campus, Kirker was on the 40th Anniversary Committee at Penn State Brandywine this year, helping to shape the year-long celebration. Kirker almost single-handedly organized a "Paint a Lion" project, during which members of the Penn State Brandywine community and the community-at-large painted and otherwise put artistic flourishes on plastic resin Nittany Lion statuettes. Approximately 100 lions were crafted, 40 of which will be auctioned off at the campus' 40th anniversary gala on May 10. Proceeds will benefit campus scholarships.

Campus Chancellor Sophia Wisniewska said: "Connie is the embodiment of the 'can-do' spirit that permeates our campus, whether it's professors going the extra mile to educate students, or students taking classes while also working jobs to help finance their education. During this, our 40th anniversary year, no one has done more to enhance the partnership between the campus and the community in which we educate, and she is very deserving of this honor.”

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