| Procomm 2010 |

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Human comm professor captures two major awards for teaching, research

rick pullen

Dr. Stella Ting-Toomey (Human Communications Studies) is a perfect example of what the California State University system believes in – “to combine the best qualities of teaching and research universities where actively engaged students, faculty, and staff work in close collaboration to expand knowledge.”

This year Ting-Toomey was recognized with the university’s highest honor, the Outstanding Professor Award. University President Milton Gordon said of her, “… She is an exceptional teacher … and one who gives generously to the university as well as to local and global communities.”

Besides that, she also was chosen to receive the 2008 California State University Wang Family Award, a system-wide award of $20,000 to only four faculty members for their contributions to their academic disciplines and their impact on students.

Ting-Toomey has become an expert in intercultural communication and intercultural conflict, her major teaching and research areas. In fact, two new theories involving conflict and cultural differences have been established by her: the conflict face negotiation and identity negotiation theories.

“Ting-Toomey exemplifies the perfect professor … a consummate scholar, an excellent classroom teacher who gives back to her department, college, the university and the community. We are fortunate that she is a member of our faculty,” wrote the dean of the College of Communications, Dr. Rick Pullen, in nominating her for the top faculty honor.

Ting-Toomey’s vitae is decorated with 17 authored, co-authored, edited or co-edited books -- 12 since joining the faculty at CSUF in 1989. “She is one of the top three scholars in intercultural communication,” said Linda L. Putnam, professor of communication at UC Santa Barbara.

“Dr. Ting-Toomey possesses an important trait for a mentor: selfless advancement of the academic pursuits of those that she mentors.” said Angela K. Hoppe-Nagao, chair and professor of speech communication studies at Cerritos Community College and former graduate student of Ting-Toomey at CSUF.

“Stella’s personal story of an immigrant’s struggle and triumph over adversity, cruel stereotypes and great challenges has inspired a generation of her students who now dedicate their energies to defining the theory and research in the field of intercultural communication,” said Dr. John Reinard, chair of human communication studies, in the May 2008 issue of Inside.

But despite the international, national and local recognitions – and they are many – Ting-Toomey remains dedicated to those she encounters daily.

“There are so many dedicated and remarkable faculty on campus,” Ting-Toomey said. “More importantly, I really want to thank the engaging students who are all so willing to stretch and use their infinite imagination on this learning journey. You are all so very precious to me.”


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