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Saint Mary’s professor honored

Angela Saoud | Thursday, March 24, 2005

Almost 110 Saint Mary’s students and faculty members met last night to honor professor Mary Connolly as the winner of the Student Academic Council’s (SAC) third annual Women Honoring Women award.

Connolly was recognized for her dedication to students both in and outside the classroom, as well as for instilling a strong sense of spirituality into each of her students.

Coordinator of SAC Mary Pauline Moran said Connolly’s dedication to the women of Saint Mary’s sets her apart from the crowd.

“Professor Connolly is someone her students can go to any time they need her – for academic questions or for personal reasons,” Moran said in her introduction speech. “She helps us to take a step back and realize the beauty all around.”

Three other candidates were also nominated for the award – director of the Office of Civic and Social Engagement Carrie Call, professor Astrid Henry and Athletics Director Lynn Kachmarik.

Moran said each woman was exceptional in her own way.

“These four finalists always go above and beyond their call of duty at Saint Mary’s, and students have noticed that and would like to recognize them this year,” Moran said. “They deserve recognition for all they do for the College.”

In February, students were asked to submit a letter of recommendation for female faculty or staff they felt best encompassed the mission statement of the group – including furthering women’s achievements by encouraging students to grow intellectually, spiritually and personally. Of the recommendation letters submitted, four women moved on to the Nominations Committee, where the winner was chosen by secret ballot.

In addition to having some of the outstanding faculty and staff members present at the dinner, other award nominees and top college administrators, including College president Carol Mooney, were also in attendance.

Students in attendance were nominated by department chairs to represent their major at the event.

“These students are considered exceptional within their department and the campus at large,” Moran said. “It is only fair that they receive recognition as well.”

After senior Molly Welton announced Connolly as this year’s recipient, Connolly thanked everyone in attendance for allowing her to be a part of their lives.

“Each person has a part in shaping the women around them,” Connolly said. “No one at Saint Mary’s earns an award by herself.”