Prof Honored for Public Service

11/23/2008
By From the Lowell Sun

By David Perry

UMass Lowell Professor Regina Panasuk was one of six faculty members from across the UMass system to receive a Public Service Award from UMass President Jack Wilson last week in Boston.

The awards, established in 1997, celebrate contributions beyond the classroom.

Panasuk, a professor of curriculum and instruction in UML's Graduate School of Education, has long made sure her work has benefited schoolchildren across the city, especially in mathematics, for which Panasuk holds a doctorate from the Academy of Pedagogical Sciences in her native Russia. She has been at UML for 18 years.

For 15 years, she had helped guide Lowell's public schools in curriculum and professional development for math teachers. She has also helped the schools with research instruments and diagnostic tests, and funneled her students to teach in local schools, contributing to the partnership between the city and the university, according to UMass Lowell.

"Working with the community is very fun and rewarding," Panasuk said.

Panasuk's research programs have drawn more than $650,000 in funding, including a recent $255,000 grant from the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education for a program called "Enhancing Math Collaboration: School-University Initiative for Professional Development."

The three-year program is a collaboration between UML and the Bartlett Community Partnership School, which has been identified as underperforming. It will match the K-8 Bartlett math teachers, administrators and university doctoral students in collaboration.
"I believe everyone can learn and enjoy math," she said, noting that the teachers she had in school inspired her.

The six who received awards Wednesday at the University of Massachusetts Club in Boston share a commitment to "exemplary public service, both in their professions and in their communities," Wilson said.

Other winners are Jerri Willett of UMass Amherst, Taylor Stoehr of UMass Boston, Susan Krumholz of UMass Dartmouth, and Deborah Harmon Hines and Jean King of UMass Medical School.