FLORENCE – Three Francis Marion University faculty members were honored for outstanding individual work during the past year at a faculty recognition banquet on April 21.
Associate Professor/Coordinator of the Speech Communication Program Bryan Fisher was given the Award of Excellence in Teaching; Assistant Professor of Management Hari Rajagopalan was presented the Award for Excellence in Research; and Assistant Professor of Biology Latha M. Malaiyandi received the Award for Excellence in Service. Each award carries a cash prize.
“Exemplary teaching, public service and scholarship are essential characteristics of a good faculty member, and these awards recognize the importance of each in our mission of educating students,” said FMU President Fred Carter. “The distinctive accomplishments of Bryan, Hari and Latha within each of these areas have earned the respect of this entire campus and highlight the extraordinary capabilities of the finest collegiate faculty in the state. I am very proud of them and applaud their achievements.”
Fisher joined the FMU faculty in 2003 as an assistant professor of speech communication. A native of San Diego, he earned the B.A. degree in American studies from the University of California at Davis, and the M.A. degree in American culture studies from Bowling Green State University. He has done post-graduate work in speech communication and American studies at Indiana University.
He has taught at a number of universities including Bowling Green State University, Indiana University (both in Speech Communication and in the Kelley School of Business), and East Tennessee State University. He has taught public speaking, interpersonal, small group, human, business, professional, organizational and marketing communications and communication apprehension.
Rajagopalan joined the FMU faculty in 2006. He earned the B.E. degree in engineering from Anna University, the M.B.A. degree from Delhi University, and the M.S. degree in computer science and the Ph.D. degree in information technology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
His research has been published in academic journals such as Journal of Service Science Management, Journal of Operations Research Society, European Journal of Operational Research, Computers and Operations Research and Decision Support Systems. His most recent work was published in the Springer International Series in Operations and Management Science. He is also an active participant in INFORMS, Decision Sciences Conference and European Working Group in Transportation Meeting and Mini EURO Conference.
Malaiyandi came to FMU in 2006. She earned the B.A. degree in molecular and cell biology/biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, and the Ph.D. degree in molecular pharmacology from the University of Pittsburgh.
Her study of epilepsy has translated into millions of dollars in grant monies to service the Pee Dee region and the state and even has national ramifications. In her quest to find more effective treatments for the illness, Malaiyandi has garnered the support of the national Center for Research Resources. In addition, she has served the campus community as a student and career mentor, a faculty interviewer and faculty supervisor.
Chris Johnson, chair of the English Department, professor of English and coordinator of the English Program, was presented the Shared Governance Award, sponsored by the FMU Chapter of the American Association of University Professors. This award is given to a faculty member who demonstrates commitment to the principles of shared governance between the faculty, administration and the board of trustees. Johnson joined the FMU faculty in 1996 as the chair of English, Modern Languages and Philosophy. Previously, he worked at Missouri Valley College as the dean of arts and humanities. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Delaware.