UIW Faculty Awarded Prestigious Fellowships

February 16, 2023

Pair will also Create Faculty Fellows Program to Benefit UIW

Dr. LuElla D’Amico and Dr. Sandra Guzman FosterSan Antonio – The University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) is proud to announce that Dr. LuElla D’Amico, associate professor of English, and Dr. Sandra Guzman Foster, associate professor of Education, have been awarded Lilly Faculty Fellowships. The team will participate in the two-year Lilly Faculty Fellows Program that includes four conferences in Indianapolis and Chicago. The team will also receive start-up funds of $8,000 to inaugurate a Lilly Faculty Fellows Program on the UIW campus.

Dr. D’Amico is Associate Professor of English and Coordinator of the Women’s and Gender Studies program at UIW, where she teaches a variety of courses in early and nineteenth-century American literature and culture. Her primary research interests include girlhood and girl culture, transatlanticism and women’s religious writing in the long nineteenth century. She has published articles in Girlhood Studies, Children’s Literature Association Quarterly, Children’s Literature in Education as well as book chapters in the collections Who Writes for Black Children? African American Children’s Literature Before 1900 and Nineteenth-Century American Women Writers and Theologies of the Afterlife, among other venues. She’s edited a volume about the history of girls’ series books in the U.S. titled Girls’ Series Fiction and American Popular Culture and co-edited the collection Reading Transatlantic Girlhood in the Long Nineteenth Century. D’Amico currently serves as President of the Harriet Beecher Stow Society. At UIW, she’s won the Provost’s Legacy Award in Teaching.

“Being selected as a UIW faculty leader to further its Mission means a vast deal to me,” says D’Amico. “As a Catholic scholar, my teaching, service and research always seeks to serve God and support the common good. Because this Lilly initiative will generate a Faculty Fellows program at UIW with aims to explore how Christian thought intersects with personal vocation, I believe it will inspirit intellectual community at UIW in wide-ranging ways. What starts with faculty always ends with students. I’m thrilled to collaborate with Dr. Guzman Foster on this exciting project.”

Dr. Guzman Foster earned her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Arizona State University where she was also a Gates Millennium Scholar and a Spencer Interdisciplinary Fellow. Prior to joining UIW, Dr. Guzman Foster worked as an education consultant where she worked on several projects such as leading research and evaluation teams, developing course curriculum for online programs and serving as a research subject matter expert. Dr. Guzman Foster has experience teaching at the K-12 level, community college level and at the university level in Texas, Arizona and Colorado. She was the UIW 2021-2022 Moody Professor and the recipient of the 2021 Mission Continues Award for Education.

“This is a great honor for UIW because we will get to explore how Christian thought and practice intersect with our vocation,” says Guzman Foster. “It is a great opportunity to discern our sense of calling as people of faith, as faculty and as scholars. As fellows we will be able to create and pilot our own UIW Faculty Fellows program, which we believe will benefit the UIW community greatly. I feel blessed and I am honored to be selected with Dr. D’Amico. We will make UIW proud.”

Founded in 1991, the Lilly Fellows Program seeks to strengthen the quality and shape the character of church-related institutions of higher learning through four programmatic initiatives. First, it offers postdoctoral teaching fellowships at Valparaiso University for early career scholars who wish to prepare themselves for positions of teaching, scholarship and leadership within church-related institutions. Second, it supports students of exceptional academic talent who are exploring vocations in church-related higher education during their early years of graduate school in the Lilly Graduate Fellows Program. Third, it maintains a collaborative and ecumenical National Network of Church-Related Colleges and Universities that sponsors a variety of activities designed to strengthen the mission of church-related institutions. The National Network represents among its current membership of 100 schools a diversity of denominational traditions, institutional types and geographical locations. Finally, it offers the Lilly Faculty Fellows Program for mid-career faculty leaders across the disciplines at Network schools to engage the intersections of Christian thought and practice with the academic vocation. The Lilly Fellows Program is based at Christ College, the interdisciplinary honors college of Valparaiso University in Northwest Indiana.