August 19, 2004

Charles Harmon Director of University Relations, Joseph C. Agbasi Student Assistant

American Anthropological Association to present national award toValdosta State University's Dr. Matthew Richard

Valdosta State University Associate Professor Dr. Matthew Richard, a member of the Sociology, Anthropology & Criminal Justice Department faculty, has been named by the American Anthropological Association to receive the AAA/McGraw Hill Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching of Anthropology. The award is given annually in recognition of an AAA member's outstanding contribution to the undergraduate teaching of Anthropology.

Richard will receive his award during this year's AAA Annual Meeting at the Awards Ceremony and AAA Distinguished Lecture on Saturday, November 20, at the San Francisco Hilton & Towers, San Francisco, California.

The anthropology professor arrived at Valdosta State University in 1997 from S.U.N.Y. Binghamton where he received his doctorate in Cultural Anthropology.

Dr. Stephen Childs, a professor in the Sociology, Anthropology & Criminal Justice Department said, ?Three years after his arrival, three times as many students elected the Anthropology track, and enrollment in most of our courses has increased significantly. This disciplinary revitalization is largely due to Dr. Richard's teaching philosophy, classroom management style, and commitment to the student-teacher relationship. ?

Richard allows his students to feel comfortable expressing their concerns in the classroom. Students question their professor, their classmates, and themselves as they apply and strive to understand anthropology. ?Dr. Richard does not merely teach anthropology, he teaches students to do anthropology,? Childs said. ?To say that Dr. Richard has had an impact on students is an understatement. For many, he is a guide, an inspiration, and a model.?

Due to Richard's mentoring and support, three of his advisees have served in the Peace Corps, five have served or are serving in AmeriCorps, and five are pursuing graduate study in anthropology.

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