The College of Letters & Science announced this week that Prof. Dan McCammon has been awarded a 2022-23 Distinguished Academic Advising Achievement Award, the highest advising honor the College bestows.
Persons honored with an L&S Academic Advising award are exceptional advisors. Recipients have demonstrated exemplary performance both in terms of their positive impact on students and through distinctive contributions to their department, unit, and/or the College of Letters & Science.
“Dan is widely known in the physics department for the care and concern he shows to all our students,” says Prof. Thad Walker, chair of the department’s Faculty Recognition committee. “Literally thousands of students have benefitted from his thoughtful, knowledgeable, and non-judgmental advice.”
McCammon joined the Physics faculty in 1980 and has served in a formal or informal advising role ever since. He works tirelessly on behalf of all students in a role which most of them are likely unaware of — as their representative and defender within the physics department.
Katiya Fosdick was one of those students. She was an astronomy-physics major who had been assigned an academic advisor in the astronomy department, but frequently turned to McCammon for discussions about the major, course selection, and issues with workload in courses.
“Dan fights and advocates to do right by his undergraduate constituents,” Fosdick says. “He is motivated by a sense of responsibility and service to students and acts on it.”
McCammon has served as a research advisor for over 220 undergraduate students, both physics and non-physics majors, in addition to his academic advising role. He has served as the faculty mentor to the Undergraduate Physics Club for three decades, worked with the L&S Honors program to increase the honors section offerings in physics courses, and worked closely with the undergraduate course committees to ensure that physics course requirements are appropriate for all students regardless of their graduate school plans.
“Dan has served as an exceptional advisor to thousands of students over decades of service, and his unique understanding and compassionate mentoring has positively impacted students’ lives in myriad ways,” Walker says. “It is a pleasure that the College is acknowledging his outstanding work over so many years with this Distinguished Achievement Advising Award.”