North Park University Leaders Recognized at Honors Convocation

Professor Chad Eric Bergman Accepts Zenos Hawkinson Award at Honors Convocation

CHICAGO, IL (April 26, 2010) – The North Park community gathered in Anderson Chapel last Monday to observe the University’s annual Honors Convocation.

Dr. Dennis Bricault, Professor of Spanish, ESL Program Director, and last year’s recipient of the Zenos Hawkinson Award for Teaching Excellence and Campus Leadership, delivered the address, which centered around the numerous opportunities for North Park students, faculty, and staff to learn, perform, play a sport or a musical insrument, lead, and serve. “Each experience,” he said, “is a potential opportunity in disguise that could possibly change our lives and even reveal a gift we never knew we had.”

Dr. Chad Eric Bergman, Professor of Communication Arts (pictured left), was honored with the Zenos Hawkinson Award. This award is given to a faculty member who has made a significant contribution to teaching and leadership at North Park in areas including model classroom teaching, campus leadership, student mentoring, pioneering instructional methodology, and creative course development. Zenos Hawkinson was a history professor at North Park College from 1952 until his retirement in 1976. In 1988, North Park established an award for teaching excellence and campus leadership in recognition of Hawkinson's devotion to his students.

Dean Charles Peterson presented the Zenos Hawkinson Award, commending Professor Bergman for his creativity, cooperative nature, and superb teaching ability. “He has helped countless students find life direction,” Dean Peterson said. He continued by sharing a comment from a nomination letter: “Students recognize that the lessons Professor Bergman teaches them will go far beyond the classroom or the stage. He manages to combine fairness, firmness, and compassion as he moves students beyond time and space to realms where imagination is manifested.”

Bergman came to North Park University in 2002. He has just finished production of the student play Legitimate Geniuses, and this fall, he will present five contemporary Scandinavian plays. He also regularly supports the Scandinavian Studies major with courses in Ibsen and Strindberg and Swedish language classes.

Each year, North Park's Student Association recognizes one professor or staff member who has demonstrated a passion for and a commitment to caring for and living in true community with students, by presenting the Student Association Service Award. This year's recipient was Dr. Donald Wagner, Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies and Professor of Middle Eastern Studies-Diversity Intercultural Programs. He teaches courses in peace and conflict transformation studies, and comparative religion. He has been with North Park for 15 years, and is the founder and director of the only Middle East Center at an Evangelical Christian school in North America or Europe.

In addition to the faculty awards, students receiving Certificates of Honor were acknowledged. These students are seeking degrees, have at least 12 semester hours of credit at North Park, and have a GPA of 3.7 or higher.