Generous alumni and donors have created awards to recognize the excellent work done by Arts & Sciences faculty. These awards are united by a belief that faculty are the heart and soul of any university, and that the reputation of a university depends in great measure upon the quality and character of the faculty.

We warmly appreciate the countless contributions of the Arts & Sciences faculty to the education of our students. We congratulate the winners of these prestigious awards, and we thank the generous donors who make it possible.

KC Santosh, Ph.D., headshot

President's Award for Research Excellence: New Mid-Career Faculty
KC Santosh, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science. He holds a postdoctoral degree in computer science from the University of Lorraine. His research interests include AI, machine learning, pattern recognition, image processing, computer vision and big data. Santosh has authored 85 publications and two books, and has one book in press, all of which have been written during his time at USD. Additionally, Santosh is the associate editor for four journals, is a proceedings editor for another and is on the editorial board for five journals. He has given multiple talks at universities, conferences and symposia. 


Dan Engebretson, Ph.D., headshot

President's Award for Research & Innovation
Dan Engebretson, Ph.D., is a professor and chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering (BME). He holds a doctorate in physical chemistry from Michigan State University. Engebretson founded the biomedical engineering department, and he maintains an environment of innovation, collaboration and entrepreneurship. Engebretson received a Phase I Small Business Technology Transfer grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and he also created Tailored Medical Devices that received a $225k grant from the NIH. In total, Engebretson has received a total of more than $3.6 million in SBIR/STTR awards.


David Swanson, Ph.D., headshot

President's Award for Research Excellence: Established Faculty
Dave Swanson, Ph.D., is a professor in the biology department, and he holds a doctorate in zoology from Oregon State University. His research interests include patterns and mechanisms of seasonal phenotypic flexibility and adaptation to the cold in birds, freezing tolerance and overwintering strategies in amphibians, and woodland and wetland habitat use by migrating and breeding birds in the Northern Prairie region. Swanson has authored more than 100 well-cited publications and two books, and he is the associate editor for several journals. Over the last nine years, he has obtained more than $4.7 million dollars in external support for his research.  


""Blair and Linda Tremere Faculty Service Award
Bridget Diamond-Welch, Ph.D., associate professor of criminal justice studies, is the 2019 recipient of the Blair and Linda Tremere Faculty Service Award, which is presented annually to a member of the College of Arts & Sciences faculty who has demonstrated outstanding public service to the local community or to the state of South Dakota.

Diamond-Welch joined the faculty at USD in 2015. Within her first month, she began coordinating with other campus offices and writing the proposal that earned a $300,000 grant from the Department of Justice, Office of Violence Against Women. The grant allowed USD to create the I CARE program, which works toward preventing sexual assault in the campus community. Diamond-Welch serves as director of I CARE, which involves publicizing program services, organizing events, and training response team members, among other duties. She is also a trained Court Appointed Special Advocate who works with children in abuse and neglect cases. In addition, she is involved in statewide efforts around sexual assault, domestic violence, and human trafficking.


""Monsignor James Doyle Humanities Teaching Award
Joseph Tinguely, Ph.D., associate professor of philosophy, received the 2019 Monsignor James Doyle Humanities Teaching Award, given annually to a professor in a humanities discipline. Tinguely has taught at USD since 2012 and serves as coordinator of the Philosophy Program. He teaches courses in ethics, philosophy, history and aesthetics, in which he employs classroom activities to explore concepts such as power and revolution. In recent years the program introduced a degree specialization in “Ethics, Law, and Society” and now offers a Professional Ethics Certificate for USD students.


Joel Sander, Eric Jepsen and Joseph TinguelyRichard and Sharon Cutler Faculty Awards

Three members of the College of Arts & Sciences faculty have received the 2018 Richard and Sharon Cutler Faculty Awards in Liberal Arts. This year's recipients are Meghann Jarchow, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the Department of Sustainability & Environment, David Posthumus, Ph.D., assistant professor of anthropology and Angela Helmer, Ph.D., associate professor of Spanish and chair of the Department of Modern Languages & Linguistics. The Cutler Awards are presented to faculty who advance liberal arts education through teaching and research over a three-year span.


Prentiss Clark Headshot

Belbas-Larson Award for Excellence in Teaching 

Prentiss Clark, Ph.D., honored in the tenure-track category of the Belbas-Larson Award, is an assistant professor of English. Clark received her Doctor of Philosophy from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 2014. Her teaching and research interests range widely in American literature, literature and philosophy and the value of the humanities for human existence and civic life. Some of her favorite courses include Honors English, Ethics in Literature, Introduction to Criticism, and seminars in 19th-century American literature. She is currently completing “Ralph Waldo Emerson: A Literary Companion” for McFarland publishers and working on a monograph titled “Measures of Intimacy: Emerson to Du Bois to Baldwin.”


Darlene FarabeeTruman and Beverly Schwartz Distinguished Faculty Award
Darlene Farabee, associate professor and chair in the Department of English, has been named the fifth recipient of the Truman and Beverly Schwartz Distinguished Faculty Award.