University professor recognized as 2013 W. Clark Santini Cup recipient

Alicia Barber honored for her commitment to oral history; students to receive Griffin medal and Cashill scholarships during Nevada Debate and Oral Communications Awards Ceremony May 7

5/1/2013 - By: Staff Report
Alicia Barber University of Nevada, Reno Assistant Professor Alicia Barber will be presented the sixteenth Santini Cup at the Nevada Debate and Oral Communication Awards Ceremony held on May 7. The award recognizes her for her contributions to helping strengthen the community through sharing stories about its history.

The W. Clark Santini Cup Award is given each year to a person who, through oral communication, has brought significant benefits to the University of Nevada, Reno or the community as a whole. Assistant Professor Alicia Barber will be presented the 16th Santini Cup at the Nevada Debate and Oral Communication Awards Ceremony held on May 7. 

The awards ceremony will honor Barber with the W. Clark Santini Cup, the students of the Nevada Debate Team, who finished the season ranked eighth nationally, and the winners of the Robert S. Griffin Medal, the Robert S. Griffin Scholarship and the William J. Cashill Scholarship. 

Barber has been a member of the faculty in the Department of History at the University since 2003. She is director of the University of Nevada Oral History Program, is a public speaker on a number of local history topics and has played a key role in the collection of interviews that document interesting aspects of local history that might have otherwise been lost. 

"Through public talks, publishing and teaching, Alicia attempts to impart an 'ethic of care' within her audience through the telling of stories about the region and its people," said Phil Sharp, the University's forensics director in the College of Liberal Arts and the awards ceremony coordinator. "Her contributions to public knowledge and the recording of the past are a significant gift to the community."

As indicated in her nomination letter for the award, "Barber is a speaker, educator and scholar dedicated to helping strengthen her community through sharing stories about its history." 

The Robert S. Griffin Medal is awarded to the top member of the Nevada Debate Team each year. The award memorializes the first director of forensics at the University and exemplifies the commitment, charity and professionalism that Griffin taught to generations of students and members of the debate team at the University of Nevada, Reno. 

This year's Robert S. Griffin Medal winner is Mitchell Grover, a senior graduating with a degree in Spanish and economics. He is the vice president of the Nevada Debate Union and coaches the debate team at McQueen High School in Reno. As a member of the Nevada Debate Team, Grover was recognized as an All-American by the National Parliamentary Debate Association for his academics, debate performance and contributions through community service. Grover is a graduate of Carson High School. 

In addition to these awards, the Griffin-Santini Endowment was established to provide funding and support to the Nevada Debate Team. The fund annually provides one student the Robert S. Griffin Scholarship, which is awarded this year to Jonathan McGuire, a graduate of Reno High School and now a junior at the University studying political science. McGuire is captain of the Nevada Debate Team, president of the Nevada Debate Union and an accomplished debater. This year, he and his partner Kelly Brill finished 11th in the nation in the National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence rankings.

Also recognized at the event will be the recipients of the William J. Cashill Scholarship. McGuire and Brill will receive the 2013-2014 Cashill Scholarship. Brill is a sophomore and also graduated from Reno High School. 

"Kelly is a hard worker, mentors other members of the team, and has partnered with McGuire to create one of the top teams in the nation," Sharp, debate team coach, said.

The reception begins at 4:30 pm. and the ceremony begins at 5 p.m. The event, held in the Great Room on the fourth floor of the Joe Crowley Student Union, is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Sharp at 775-784-4035 or psharp@unr.edu.


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