UVA | Batten Faculty Excellence Award Winners

Faculty Award picture of winners

In the faculty’s extensive peer-based annual review process, Batten’s Executive Committee selects the Batten Faculty Awards Winners in the four areas of review: research, teaching, engagement and service. This year’s awards are given in recognition for the faculty members’ contributions throughout 2023.

Batten Excellence in Research Award

Ashley Jardina, Associate Professor of Public Policy (as of August 2024)

Over the past three years, Ashley Jardina has published more than a dozen articles, made nearly two dozen scholarly presentations, and drafted two new book manuscripts – in addition to joining Batten’s faculty in the fall of 2023.  Jardina exemplifies the interdisciplinary approach to scholarship embraced by the Batten School, with an NBER working paper, psychology and sociology publications, and highly cited pieces in Political Behavior and in the British Journal of Political Science

Batten Excellence in Teaching Award

Andy Pennock, Associate Professor of Public Policy

Pennock consistently brings thoughtful and innovative teaching practices to the core and elective courses he teaches in our MPP curriculum. Over the last year, in addition to publishing a revised version of his textbook, The CQ Press Writing Guide for Public Policy, and an article on innovations in teaching leadership, Pennock was a particularly invaluable resource to Batten and the University more broadly for his leadership on UVA’s Generative AI in Teaching and Learning Task Force. His contributions allowed Batten to take an important leadership role in addressing the challenges of effective teaching in the era of AI.

Batten Excellence in Service Award

Dan Player, Associate Professor of Public Policy

Through service within Batten and beyond, Dan Player demonstrates his deep commitment in this area of faculty excellence.  This year, Player dedicated his time to serving as a leader on essential committees including Batten’s Executive Committee, the Curriculum Committee, the Admissions Committee, and various hiring and review committees. In addition, he co-leads the Education Policy Associates program, which provides a cohort of students with regular mentoring, professional development, and opportunities to conduct research directly with policymakers. Beyond this, Player regularly assists in hosting job candidates, attends student-focused events, and makes himself available to the Batten community.

Batten Excellence in Engagement Award

Daphna Bassok, Professor of Education and Public Policy

Daphna Bassok's engagement activities are deeply intertwined with her research, which focuses on early childhood education policy. She collaborates closely with the Virginia Department of Education and other federal, state, and local policymakers, holding federal grants for partnered research in Virginia and Louisiana. Bassok’s work has notably influenced early childhood policy, with her studies being included in the United States Economic Report of the President and guiding policy changes in Virginia and other states. Bassok also regularly presents her findings to policymakers and practitioners, contributing to significant policy impacts - including compensation reform for child-care teachers in Virginia, which was expanded during the COVID pandemic due to her research findings.


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