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Sociology Alum Wins National Award

Author: Kate Cohorst

Walls for AL Web

N. Eugene Walls, who received his Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Notre Dame, has won a national award for scholarship and community engagement.

An assistant professor at the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work, Walls will receive the New England Resource Center for Higher Education (NERCHE) 2010 Ernest A. Lynton Award for the Scholarship of Engagement for Early Career Faculty at an October ceremony in California.

According to NERCHE, “the award honors the work of faculty committed to social justice that acknowledges the need for authentic educational responses to the challenges of the contemporary world.”

Walls works closely with several agencies in Colorado to focus on the needs of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community. He involves these community partners in his teaching and research, while helping them improve their data-collection methods and funding initiatives.

“In order to qualify as truly being community-engaged research, practice, and education,” Walls writes, “our endeavors must go beyond their applied nature to embody an approach that values the public good, trusts the wisdom of communities, and commits to social justices.”

The Lynton Award is open to pre-tenure and early career faculty in any field of study, and only one winner is selected each year. Past Lynton award winners have included professors in art, urban studies, human development, and biological and agricultural engineering.

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