Stan State Honors Professors Costa, Alemán, Sims, Claus

April 05, 2017


Kimberly Greer, provost and vice president for academic affairs, has announced the recipients of the Outstanding Professor Awards and the Elizabeth Anne B. Papageorge Faculty Development Award at Stanislaus State for the 2016-2017 academic year.

Outstanding Professor - Elmano Costa, Professor of Teacher Education

Numerous letters from faculty, staff and students spoke of Costa’s passion and dedication for teaching and learning. He is well respected and admired by his colleagues, many of whom wrote about the ways Costa inspires them to become better teachers and to excel by pursuing all that is possible in the field of education. Michael Uretsky wrote, “Dr. Costa is truly an exceptional professor who possesses a passion for teaching and the strongest commitment to helping students. He is one of the finest educators that I have ever come across. His students consistently share extremely positive comments about their experiences in his classes. He is known for implementing highly effective teaching strategies, communicating information in a clear manner and maximizing instructional time.”

Outstanding Research, Scholarship and Creative Activity Professor - Elvin Alemán, Associate Professor of Chemistry

Alemán’s contributions to his department, college and the University are significant. A former student, Jing Lee, now a graduate student at the University of Washington, elaborated on his outstanding scholarship and service to students: “During the two years I worked with Dr. Alemán, I gained valuable lab skills that help me succeed in both college and graduate school. Dr. Alemán always took our lab group to conferences. At the conferences, I got the opportunity to present my project and talk to other experts in the field and exchange ideas with scientists. It was after attending the many conferences that I learned to be proud of being a chemist, something that Dr. Alemán told me the first time I met him.”

Outstanding Faculty Governance Award - Stuart Sims, Professor of Music

Sims has a distinguished record of active and engaged participation in faculty governance, which exemplify the criteria established for this award. He serves as Speaker of the Faculty for the Academic Senate. During his successful career at Stanislaus State he has demonstrated his dedication to faculty governance. One colleague, John Garcia, described Sims as follows: “In all of his governance work, Dr. Sims has been respectful and interested in others’ opinions, offered thought-provoking ideas in a non-threatening manner, shown the ability to keep others focused on the task at hand and demonstrated the capacity to change direction when others have offered a more viable path.”

Elizabeth Anne B. Papageorge Faculty Development Award - Christopher Claus, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies

It was clearly communicated through the many letters received from his peers and students that Claus relates well and works collaboratively with students and colleagues to promote social justice. Further, he is dedicated to assisting all students in the pursuit of their educational dreams. His teaching philosophy is certainly student-centered and rests on the core values of involvement, collaboration, application and challenge. His colleague, Keith Nainby, described him as follows: “Perhaps the most distinctive dimension of Dr. Claus’s probationary profile thus far is the tightly woven, principle-based integration among his teaching and advising responsibilities, his research program and his service efforts. As an educator, Dr. Claus attends to concrete applications of course material and, especially, challenges students to reach beyond their (and others’) established levels of academic goal-setting and achievement.”