2012 RCA Awardees
Recognizing important scholarly achievementS—from public art to bioinformatics

RCA Awards 2012

"Public art can highlight research findings that can otherwise go unseen. It can extend research work into the community; you can see history painted on a wall," said Ricardo Guthrie, Assistant Professor in the Ethnic Studies Program at Northern Arizona University (NAU), as he accepted his 2012 Research and Creative Activity (RCA) award on September 13.

The RCA awards celebrate NAU faculty and students for their scholarly achievements and call attention to the impact that these activities have on the NAU campus and in the broader community.

Guthrie received his RCA award in the category of "most significant artistic/creative work" for his historic Southside mural at the Murdoch Center in Flagstaff.  It represents a visual history of African Americans of significance to the city. Guthrie garnered widespread recognition for the project and presented a research paper on the creation of the mural in Liverpool, England, in July.

The other 2012 RCA awardees are:

  • Okim Kang, Assistant Professor in the Department of English, who was named "most promising new scholar."  Kang received her RCA award for achievements in applied linguistics—specifically, for her innovative work in the area of spoken-language assessment for teaching and learning English as a second language and in the acquisition of English language skills for non-native speakers.
  • Emily Cope, who was honored as the "most promising graduate student researcher" for her work to elucidate polymicrobial disease processes and virulence and for demonstrating extraordinary academic achievement and scientific talent. She received her PhD this year from the Department of Biological Sciences.
  • Jai Rideout, who was named "most promising undergraduate researcher." While at NAU, Rideout demonstrated extreme promise and productivity as a student researcher in bioinformatics. This included considerable contributions to two open-source bioinformatics software packages that are already being widely used in microbial ecology. Rideout also contributed significantly to four peer-reviewed publications; he was the first author on two of those articles. Rideout received his BS degree in electrical engineering and computer sciences in May.
RCA Awards 2012

"Most Promising Undergraduate Researcher" Jai Rideout holds his RCA Award. Also pictured (from left to right) are NAU President John Haeger, NAU Provost Laura Huenneke, NAU Vice President for Research Bill Grabe, and NAU Assistant Professor and Researcher Greg Caporaso.

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