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KU News Release

April 21, 2005
Contact: Mary Jane Dunlap, University Relations, (785) 864-8853.

KU education professor wins 3 awards for multicultural education, leadership


LAWRENCE -- Cornel Pewewardy, associate professor of education and of indigenous nations studies at the University of Kansas, has received three awards, including a national honor, recognizing his work addressing complex education problems of a multicultural society and American Indian education.

He was named the 2005 Scholars of Color Distinguished Scholar by the American Educational Research Association (AERA) in Montreal, Canada, on April 13. During the 10th annual Big 12 American Indian Student Leadership Conference held at KU April 14 through 16, Pewewardy received two more awards: the 2005 Big 12 Outstanding American Indian Faculty Member of the Year and the 2005 Anthony Daniels Award for Leadership and Achievement in Multicultural Education, presented by the KU Student Senate during the April 16 conference powwow.

Colleagues attending the AERA meeting accepted the national award for Pewewardy, who was serving as a faculty adviser for the Big 12 American Indian Student Leadership Conference.

The AERA Scholars of Color Distinguished Scholar Award is made to a scholar who has made significant contributions to educational research and development in understanding the issues that disproportionately affect minority populations. The award goes to a scholar midlevel in his or her career who is beyond the first level of professional appointment and for whom 10 years has passed since receiving a doctorate.

Pewewardy's research addresses complex educational problems found in a multicultural society and American Indian education classrooms. The award reflects Pewewardy's extensive research in helping to solve poverty and racism in ways that respect culturally diverse communities as well as help develop self-determination policies within sovereign tribal nations.

Pewewardy has heritage in both the Comanche and Kiowa nations. He has been a kindergarten teacher, an Indian magnet-school principal and a football coach, as well as a university professor.

In addition to his teaching responsibilities at KU, Pewewardy serves on the advisory council for Comanche Nation College in Lawton, Okla., and was among the educators who developed a strategic plan for the college. Pewewardy also serves as an adjunct instructor in American Indian studies at Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence.

Previous awards recognizing Pewewardy's teaching excellence in multicultural education include a 2001 W.T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence at KU and the 1992 National Indian Educator of the Year award.

He came to KU from Cameron University School of Education in Lawton, Okla., where he taught for two years. From 1991 to 1994, he was principal of the American Indian Magnet School and of the World Cultures and Languages Magnet School in St. Paul, Minn. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Research on Multi-Ethnic Education at the University of Oklahoma in Norman in 1990.

Pewewardy earned a doctorate in educational administration from Pennsylvania State University at University Park in 1989. He has master's degrees in education from New Mexico State University at Las Cruces and from Northeastern State University at Tahlequah, Okla. He received his bachelor's degree from Northeastern State.

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