Recognition for Mentoring

Champion of Undergraduate Research Award

2021 CUR Faculty Awardees:

Dr. Michael RovitoDr. Michael Rovito
Associate Professor, Department of Health Sciences
College of Health Professions and Science


Dr. Valerie SimsDr. Valerie Sims
Associate Professor, Department of Psychology
College of Sciences

This faculty award was first given in 2019 and is designed to honor outstanding faculty mentors who are supporting undergraduate research across the UCF campus and within their own research teams. Faculty are self-nominated for this award. Preference will be given to those who have not been previously recognized by our Mentor of the Year award.

The awardees will be selected by a faculty committee, based upon the following criteria:

  1. Depth of consistent, documented involvement (e.g. # of students compared to department, program involvement among students mentored, sustained mentorship each year)
  2. Contribution to the culture of undergraduate research at UCF at the department, college, or university level, as well as involvement as a mentor to student researchers
  3. Student achievements (e.g. presentations, publications, awards, graduate or professional school placement)

Applicants are strongly encouraged to have completed the following:

  • Served as a faculty member at UCF for at least three years
  • Been the primary mentor to five or more undergraduate researchers, working together with each student over the course of at least two semesters (applicants should have a consistent record of mentorship)
  • Had students who participated in opportunities such as (but not limited to) Honors Undergraduate Thesis, UCF Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship, McNair Scholars, L.E.A.R.N.,  etc.
  • Mentored students who have disseminated their work at UCF and beyond (e.g., internal and external conferences, publications)
  • Applicants must be professors or lecturers who meet the OUR Policy on Faculty Mentors.

Nomination packets are due at 11:59 p.m. on Monday, February 1, 2021.

Previous CUR Faculty Awardees


  • Dr. Sherron Killingsworth Roberts (English Language Arts Education, College of Community Innovation and Education)
  • Dr. Ali Gordon (Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, College of Engineering & Computer Science)

Faculty Mentorship Activity Reports are pulled on each CUR Faculty Award applicant.

Did you know that you can request your own copy of this report at any time by emailing and including your UCFID or EMPLID?

SURC Mentor of the Year

Faculty are nominated for this award by their undergraduate researchers. Nominations are reviewed by the Student Undergraduate Research Council, a group undergraduate researchers from across the campus. Winners are announced annually in April during Research Week.

Congratulations to Faculty Mentor of the Year, Dr. Chase Mason of UCF’s Biology department.

The winning nomination letter recognizing Dr. Mason’s singular impact on her undergraduate research experience was submitted by his mentee, Mari Irving.

Previous Awardees

2019: Dr. Geoffrey Cook (Biology) nominated by Adam Searles

2018: Dr. Stephanie Florczyk (Materials Science and Engineering) nominated by Minh-Chau Le

2017: Dr. Luis Favela (Philosophy) nominated by Zachariah Neemah

2016: Dr. Linda Walters (Biology) nominated by Julie Deslauriers

2015: Dr. Joanna Mishtal (Anthropology) nominated by Tiernan Middleton

2014: Dr. Christopher Parkinson (Biology) nominated by Hollis Dahn

2013: Dr. Joshua Colwell (Physics) nominated by Allison Bratcher

2012: Dr. Karen Mottarella (Psychology) nominated by Emily Edwards

2011: Dr. Andrew Daire (Counselor Education) 

2010: Dr. Bernadette Jungblut (Political Science)

2009: Dr. Michael Georgiopoulos (Electrical and Computer Engineering)

2008: Dr. Ken Teter (Biomedical Sciences)