Barry McGaw, recipient of the 2005 Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Award for Exceptional Achievement.
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Two alumni, a law professor and an undergraduate student are recipients of awards given for international achievement at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Recognized at an awards banquet on campus on March 15 were:
• Australian educator Barry McGaw, recipient of the 2005 Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Award for Exceptional Achievement.
• Peter Maggs, the Clifford M. and Bette A. Carney Chair in the College of Law, winner of the 2005 Distinguished Faculty Award for International Achievement.
• Mattito Watson, an administrator with a non-governmental organization in the Sudan, recipient of the 2005 International Young Humanitarian Award.
• Erin Lewis, a senior in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, winner of the 2005 Illinois International Undergraduate Achievement Award.
The awards are sponsored by the Office of the Chancellor, Office of the Provost, International Programs and Studies, and the U. of I. Alumni Association.
Peter Maggs, the Clifford M. and Bette A. Carney Chair in the College of Law, winner of the 2005 Distinguished Faculty Award for International Achievement.
The Sheth award, established in 2000, recognizes alumni who were citizens of another country at the time of their enrollment at the U. of I., and who have achieved international or national prominence in business, government, academia and other fields. It is named in honor of a former university marketing professor and his wife.
The faculty award, given first in 2001, honors faculty members who are highly distinguished in their disciplines; have a sustained record of scholarly work reflecting the international dimension; and have contributed in significant ways to strengthening the international dimension at the U. of I.
Other requirements include setting an example for students, faculty and staff, and making contributions that further humanity, science art or human welfare throughout the world.
The humanitarian award, sponsored by the U. of I.'s associate provost for international affairs and given for the first time this year, recognizes the accomplishments of young alumni considered to international humanitarians. Winners, who must have graduated within five years of nomination, additionally must have contributed significantly as volunteers or professionals to the advancement, education and health and well-being or security of people outside the United States, or to global human welfare generally. Additional award criteria include setting an example for others and demonstrating courage and dedication to the welfare of fellow global citizens.
Mattito Watson, left, an administrator with a non-governmental organization in the Sudan, recipient of the 2005 International Young Humanitarian Award.
The undergraduate award, also given this year for the first time, recognizes a significant contribution to an activity resulting from participation in an international course of study sponsored through a U. of I.-sanctioned program. Awardees, who must be in at least their second year of study at the university, must also have maintained a 2.5 grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale).
McGaw, a career educator, earned a doctorate in educational psychology and measurement from the U. of I. He is the half-time director of the Melbourne Education Research Institute at the University of Melbourne, Australia, and a consultant with McGaw Group Pty Ltd.
From 1998 to 2005, he served at the Paris-based Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, first as deputy director for education in the Directorate for Education, Employment, Labor and Social Affairs, and, beginning in 2002, as the first director for education in the newly established Directorate for Education. At OECD, his work on the design and implementation of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) standards, which analyzes student educational achievements in participating countries worldwide, profoundly influenced the international debate about education reform.
Erin Lewis, a senior in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, winner of the 2005 Illinois International Undergraduate Achievement Award.
Prior to his work with the OECD, McGaw was executive director of the Australian Council for Educational Research, an independent, not-for-profit company based in Melbourne. He also taught on the education faculty at Murdoch University in Perth, Australia.
Maggs, who speaks fluent Russian and is an expert in Russian and Soviet law, has been on the faculty of the U. of I. College of Law for more than 40 years. His other areas of expertise include unfair trade practices, consumer protection and computer law.
At the U. of I., Maggs also works with the campus's Russian, East European and Eurasian Center. He has made major contributions to education and law-reform projects in several countries in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union; notable among them is his work on the Moldovan Civil Code, enacted in 2002. He has written extensively on intellectual property issues.
Maggs is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He was a Fulbright lecturer in Yugoslavia in 1967, the Soviet Union in 1977, and in Brazil in 1982. He also held the Fulbright Distinguished Chair at the University of Trento, Italy, in 2002.
Watson, who earned two master's degrees from the U. of I. - in public health and in African studies - is deputy field office director for Save the Children/U.S. in Darfur, Sudan. Previously, he served the organization in Guinea, addressing the needs of former child soldiers from Sierra Leone and Liberia.
His background includes working in Senegal and Guinea as a Peace Corps volunteer; conducting workshops in Cameroon aimed at preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS; and training new Peace Corps volunteers while working with the Eritrean Ministry of Education.
While at Illinois, Watson received a Ford Foundation research fellowship to conduct research at the Southern African Regional Institute for Policy Studies in Zimbabwe and served as a campus Peace Corps recruiter.
Lewis, who as an undergraduate at the university has demonstrated a commitment to issues related to global poverty, development, environment and food production, spent the spring 2005 semester in Khon Kaen, Thailand.
There, she worked with farmers and villagers as well as with the urban poor, and explored the devastating side effects of developmental programs. She also assisted tsunami victims in Thailand's Phang Nga province. At the end of the semester, with her team, she produced a publication called "Common Ground," which focuses on the complexity of sustainable development and has been used in Thailand and the United States.
After completing her undergraduate degree in natural resources and environmental sciences, Lewis plans to attend graduate school at the U. of I. and focus her studies on sustainable agriculture.