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Professor honored by SMC students

Liz Harter | Thursday, April 3, 2008

Theresa Marcy, professor of political science, received the “Women Honoring Women” award Wednesday night during Saint Mary’s sixth annual Women Honoring Women ceremony.

Marcy was joined by fellow finalists biology professor Doris Watt and Welcome Center Receptionist Ann Sheldon, who were selected from the faculty, staff and administrators nominated by students for their dedication to Saint Mary’s core values, said event organizer Kelly Payne, student body vice president and Student Academic Council (SAC) coordinator.

“These are women who the students believe exemplify the core values of the College, particularly in the intellectual, spiritual and personal realms,” Payne said.

Like last year, the event was open to students who nominated the finalists. Originally, the event was only attended by members of SAC, a professor of their choosing, two students from each academic department and the finalist and her husband.

The event included a cocktail reception and formal dinner after which the students who nominated each finalist read their nomination presentations.

Junior Arlene Forney nominated Watt because she is an “exemplary role model.”

Watt is never afraid to ask questions and encourages her students to do the same, Forney said.

“She explores complex issues with an open mind and encourages the women of Saint Mary’s to continue to search for truth through questioning, observing and engaging their community,” she said.

Watt challenges and encourages each woman to search for realistic answers to pacify their curiosity, Forney said.

Next, senior Kristy King spoke about why she nominated Sheldon.

Sheldon’s title of Welcome Center receptionist does not fully illustrate her vital role on campus, King said.

“I have come to know her as the warm face that greets every prospective Saint Mary’s student and campus visitor,” she said. “[Ann] is constantly able to put anxious students and parents at ease and make them feel at home at the beginning of their Saint Mary’s experience.”

Finally, senior Cate Cetta said she nominated Marcy because of her dedication to the College.

Marcy has been a part of the Saint Mary’s community since she was a student in the 1950s, Cetta said. She has been a fixture of the political science department for decades.

“Her consistency and commitment has been an asset to both the administration and students of Saint Mary’s,” she said. “[She] has had an impact on my life by pushing my to achieve my academic potential.”

Cetta said she took an upper level course taught by Marcy in her freshman year at the College and Marcy helped and encouraged Cetta to write a semester long research paper that she was proud of.

“This was so striking to me because up to this point in my academic career I simply cared about completing assignments, doing them well was just a bonus,” Cetta said.

Marcy said she was surprised to achieve the award because she only teaches a few courses a semester.

“I can remember when I served on endless committees that voted awards and how much we appreciated the recommendations from students,” Marcy said. “I really appreciate the fact that this is a student award and that students determined it.”