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Faculty earn top undergraduate teaching awards

Two McDaniel professors have earned awards for their dedication to teaching and scholarship, awarded at McDaniel’s 153rd Commencement ceremony. The awards are the Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award and the Ira G. Zepp Teaching Enhancement Grant.

Kerry Duvall hugging Wendy Morris with Julia Jasken looking on at Commencement.

Professor of Accounting Kerry Duvall earned the 2023 Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award at Commencement.

Two McDaniel professors have earned awards for their dedication to teaching and scholarship. The chosen professors were honored at the 153rd Undergraduate Commencement ceremony on May 20, 2023. The awards are the Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award and the Ira G. Zepp Teaching Enhancement Grant.

2023 Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award

The Ira G. Zepp Distinguished Teaching Award recognizes inspired classroom work and dedication to students. Established in 1995 through the generosity of Charles E. Moore Jr. ’71 and Carol Hoerichs Moore ’70, the award memorializes the beloved faculty member Ira G. Zepp ’52, Hon. L.H.D. ’15, who taught in the Department of Religious Studies until his retirement in 1994.

Kerry Duvall with President Jasken at 2023 Commencement.

Kerry Duvall, associate professor of Economics and Business Administration, has helped students make professional connections in the accounting and business industries.

A certified public accountant and member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants, Duvall joined the Economics and Business Administration Department at McDaniel College in 2014 as an assistant professor. She was named a Charles A. Boehlke Jr. Engaged Faculty Fellow for her exceptional commitment to students in 2018 and was promoted to associate professor in 2020.

During her time at McDaniel, she has worked with students to develop resume writing, interviewing skills, securing internships, and career planning. She annually organizes the Economics and Business Administration Department’s Interviewing Day, which prepares students for entering the workforce and helps them land internships and jobs while still in college.

She also served as program coordinator of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, allowing accounting, economics, and business administration students to gain real-world experience while giving back to the community by providing free tax help to low-to-moderate income taxpayers.

Duvall believes that it is imperative for college students to be exposed to financial education before they enter the world after graduation and has lent her expertise to educate students on the importance of personal finance and credit scores by holding workshops and presentations for First Year Seminars and Jan Term courses.

She also assisted with the coordination of a national survey with The Ohio State University that examined financial wellness of college students at McDaniel and over 200 other institutions across the country.

In 2019, she was honored with the college’s Phenomenal Woman of the Year faculty award. She previously served as faculty advisor for the Catholic Campus Ministry and assisted with the coordination of the Dorsey Scholars program.

Before arriving at McDaniel, she worked as a tax consultant and department manager with UHY Advisors, one of the nation’s largest professional services firms providing audit, tax, consulting, and advisory services, while teaching accounting and personal finance at Carroll Community College. She was also previously employed in the audit department at KPMG, one of the “Big Four” accounting firms.

She earned a bachelor's degree in Accounting from Villanova University and a Master of Science from the University of Baltimore.

Outside of McDaniel, she is involved in the community as a volunteer travel softball coach, softball program commissioner, treasurer for a youth sports organization, and treasurer for a Parent Teacher Organization. She is also an avid scholar of the American Civil War and World War II, specifically the 101st airborne and French resistance.

2023 Ira G. Zepp Teaching Enhancement Grant

The Ira G. Zepp Teaching Enhancement Grant encourages a significant project designed to enhance teaching. The award favors, but is not limited to, faculty in the first decade of service at McDaniel College and is designed to demonstrate the college’s ultimate commitment to the classroom as our most important function.

Elly Engle at 2023 Commencement.

Elyzabeth “Elly” Engle, Ph.D., has been an assistant professor of Environmental Studies on the Hill since 2018. In 2019, she assumed the role of coordinator of agrifood systems programming at the McDaniel Environmental Center and in 2021 began advising students in the Food Fellows Program.

Engle has previously received the Nora Roberts Foundation Faculty Award for Community Engagement in 2019 and the Charles A. Boehlke Jr., Engaged Faculty Fellows Award in 2020. In 2022, she received the Early Career Award from the Association for Environmental Studies & Sciences.

Engle’s proposed project, Entrepreneurial Learning & Collaboration in the Shaffer Forest Garden, will expand the McDaniel Environmental Center’s Shaffer Forest Garden through a new 5,000-square-foot edible perennial planting installation, referred to as the “Jam Garden.”

With the funds from the Zepp Teaching Enhancement Grant, Engle will purchase more than 20 new edible, perennial plants and the necessary growing supports; educational signage and tags for the plants; and an outdoor chalkboard. The new Jam Garden in the Shaffer Forest Garden will open opportunities for workshops, labs, internships, independent studies, and student-led research related to regenerative agriculture, environmental restoration, human health and wellbeing, and food-based entrepreneurship. The project will also expand opportunities to collaborate with other departments, campus offices, and community partners.

Engle will work with her 2023 Food Fellows and 2023 Student-Faculty Collaborative Summer Research students on site design, plant pre-orders, and plant identification tag design throughout the summer, with phase one of planting to begin in August 2023.