Educators in Pennsylvania and North Carolina earn top 2004 Mentoring Awards from AAAS

A Bryn Mawr College professor in Pennsylvania and an energetic North Carolina-based engineer this week earned top honors from AAAS, the world's largest general scientific organization, for their tireless efforts to help underrepresented students earn doctoral degrees in the sciences.

Rhonda J. Hughes, the Helen Herrmann Professor of Mathematics at Bryn Mawr College, was named by AAAS, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, to receive the prestigious 2004 AAAS Lifetime Mentor Award. Hughes has helped 57 women and minority students earn graduate degrees in mathematics, including 17 at the doctoral level.

Jagannathan Sankar, Professor of Mechanical and Chemical Engineering and the Director of the Center for Advanced Materials and Smart Structures (CAMSS) and the Center for Nanoscience and Nanomaterials at North Carolina A&T State University, received the 2004 AAAS Mentor Award. Sankar, who earned his Ph.D. in Materials Engineering from Lehigh University in Pennsylvania, was recognized for facilitating or mentoring 46 Ph.D. students, including 22 underrepresented minorities.


Hughes, winner of the 2004 Lifetime Mentor Award, "is a model teacher, scholar, and mentor who is selfless in her dedication to improving the advancement of young women in mathematics and science," explained Yolanda S. George, deputy director of Education & Human Resources at AAAS. "She works very closely with her students and has been successful in obtaining many grants that were used to promote student research and professional opportunities in mathematics. This has helped students to participate in national meetings, and to present posters and papers."

With her colleague, Sylvia Bozeman of Spelman College, Hughes developed two successful national programs -- the Spelman-Bryn Mawr Summer Mathematics Program and EDGE (Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education: A Transition Program for Women in the Mathematic


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