Astronomy & Astrophysics honors graduate studentsBy Steve Koppes
The Astronomy & Astrophysics Department has presented the Carl Sagan Award for Excellence in Teaching to graduate student Craig Tyler, and the Donn MacMinn Award for Service Beyond the Walls of the University to graduate student Brian Wilhite.
Tyler was cited for his work as a teaching assistant in the department, as well as for designing and teaching his own courses at National-Louis and DePaul universities.
Established in 1993, the Sagan Award is named for alumnus Carl Sagan, who died in 1996. Sagan earned four degrees from the University from 1954 to 1960.
Wilhite was cited for his work with neighborhood high-school students through the Center for Astrophysical Research in Antarctica, for his teaching at the Graham School of General Studies and for volunteering with the Chicago Cares community service program.
The MacMinn Award was established in 1998 in memory of a graduate student in Astronomy & Astrophysics who was killed in a cycling accident in 1997.
It was only after MacMinn died that the department learned of his outreach activities, mostly tutoring disadvantaged inner-city schoolchildren.