Awards highlight excellence in research, scholarship, and creative activities
SACKVILLE, NB — Three Mount Allison University faculty members are being recognized for their outstanding contributions to research, scholarship or creative activities. Dr. Leslie Kern (Geography and Environment and Women’s and Gender Studies); Dr. Mario Levesque (Politics and International Relations); and Dr. Vicki Meli (Chemistry) are recipients of the 2020 Paul Paré Excellence Awards.
“This year’s recipients of the Paul Paré Awards all have impressive research programs in addition to their teaching and outreach,” says Mount Allison University Provost and Vice-President, Academic and Research Dr. Jeff Ollerhead. “I would like to congratulate Drs. Kern, Levesque, and Meli who have all made significant accomplishments in their respective areas.”
Dr. Leslie Kern teaches in Geography and Environment and Women’s and Gender Studies, where she also serves as program director. In addition to her teaching, Kern, an urban geographer and feminist, also runs an extensive research program. Her latest book, A Feminist City: A Field Guide was published in 2019 and shortlisted for the 2020 New Brunswick Book Awards (Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick Book Award for Nonfiction). The publication has received many accolades for its accessible and engaging presentation of the lived experiences of women living in cities around the world.
Kern holds research grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and has published in several academic, peer-reviewed journals. She has presented her research at many conferences, including as the keynote speaker at an international conference in Copenhagen.
A political scientist specializing in Canadian politics and disability studies, Dr. Mario Levesque is frequently called upon by media outlets for political analysis and commentary both regionally and at the national level. Levesque’s active research program includes several projects focussing on natural resource management, disability services, and public policy with colleagues both at Mount Allison and other universities. He holds research grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and has published articles in several peer-reviewed journals.
Levesque is also known for his dynamic teaching style and unique assignments. In his Canadian politics class, students took on the roles of Canadian premiers at a mock First Minister’s meeting. Class assignments included formal presentations as well as a question and answer period with the press. He has also supervised several student summer research projects and honours thesis.
A member of the Biochemistry and Chemistry department, Dr. Vicki Meli runs an extensive research program in the area of physical chemistry focusing on nanoparticles. She has held a number of research grants from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and the New Brunswick Health Research Foundation since 2007.
Along with an extensive teaching and research program, Meli has also mentored more than 20 students as research assistants and summer researchers, seeing many continue their studies at the graduate level and in professional programs.
Photo caption (l-r): 2020 Paul Paré Award recipients Vicki Meli, Mario Levesque, and Leslie Kern