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Mihuc Promoted to SUNY Distinguished Service Professorship Rank

Dr. Timothy Mihuc, professor in the Center for Earth and Environmental Science and director of the Lake Champlain Research Institute, was promoted to the rank of distinguished service professorship by the SUNY Board of Trustees.

Mihuc, who joined the faculty in 1999, “has a long track record of service to this campus, our community and Lake Champlain," said Dr. John Ettling, president of SUNY Plattsburgh. "His worked has crossed borders as he has developed strong connections through joint studies with peers in Canada. He has also crossed other boundaries, as he has advanced experiential learning opportunities for students and built into their lives and careers. He is a shining example of what a SUNY Distinguished Service Professor represents." 

Director of the LCRI

An expert in stream and lake ecology, Mihuc has extensively studied freshwater ecosystems and the impact of a variety of forces on Lake Champlain. He has received funding for his work from a number of agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. He is an affiliate of the Center for the Study of Canada, a member of the International Joint Commission Lake Champlain-Richelieu River Study Board, and co-director of the Lake Champlain Sea Grant.

On campus, Mihuc serves as director of the Lake Champlain Research Institute, drawing hundreds of students, faculty and community members into its research efforts, creating a base of knowledge and activism on behalf of the lake that makes a major contribution to its preservation.

Mihuc has edited a special issue of the Journal of Great Lakes Research and is the creator and editor of Scientia Discipulorum, an online undergraduate research journal that introduces students to the processes of scientific publication. 

It’s his work with students in the LCRI that Mihuc says he is most proud, citing the numbers who have gone through the program whom he has helped with career and life skills, and the satisfaction he’s derived over the years being “able to provide students with hands-on, real-world skills.”

‘Happy to Have Helped’

“The lifeblood of LCRI is the student,” he said. “We spend a lot of time outside the classroom with our students, training in a variety of areas and helping them learn skill sets they can use in real life. Our students learn limnology sampling techniques on Lake Champlain, taxonomy of plankton, how to manage complex data sets and many other skills in ecology and aquatic sciences.

“We have many LCRI alumni out there working in successful careers and we are very happy to have helped them along the way.”

Mihuc has served as the longtime coordinator of the professional science master’s program as well as the master’s program in natural science. He has mentored more than 100 undergraduate student research projects and served as thesis adviser for 11 master’s degree students so far.

Continue Successful Funding

In fact, one of his ongoing goals is to continue the successful external funding record he’s maintained in the LCRI, which allows him to hire more students to help with research projects and “help them move on to successful careers.”

“We are proud to honor SUNY faculty for their accomplishments as researchers, teachers, mentors, who are dedicated to their work and making a positive impact on campus,” said SUNY Chairman H. Carl McCall. “In order to receive distinguished ranks, appointees must possess the ability to lead and innovate, as well as meet the rigorous standards of our distinguished ranks.”

The Distinguished Service Professorship honors and recognizes extraordinary service by faculty across SUNY. Candidates must have demonstrated substantial distinguished service, not only at the campus and system-level, but also at the community, regional and state levels.

They must have held the rank of full professor for five years, must have at least three years of full-time service at the nominating institution and must have completed at least 10 years of full-time service in the SUNY system. Further, many individuals appointed to this rank have rendered influential service at the national and international levels. To be considered, service activities must exceed those generally considered to be a part of a candidate’s basic professional portfolio of work and should include service that surpasses that for which professors are normally recognized. It must also extend over multiple years and must involve the application of intellectual skills drawing from the individual’s scholarly and research interests to issues of public concern.

“The SUNY faculty members receiving these distinguished ranks have achieved immeasurable success within their fields and on their respective campuses,” said SUNY Chancellor Kristina Johnson. “These individuals have set the bar for their peers and work closely with students to help them find their calling inside and outside of the classroom. It is their excellence that drives SUNY forward.”

Since its inception in 1963, SUNY has appointed 1,116 faculty to the distinguished ranks as follows, including the most recent promotions:

399 distinguished professorships

326 distinguished service professorships

386 distinguished teaching professorships

Five distinguished librarian professorships

At SUNY Plattsburgh, two faculty members have been promoted to the highest rank of distinguished professorship; 21 faculty members have been named to the teaching professorship rank; and 16 have been promoted to service professorship. And of the five distinguished librarian professorships system-wide, two are from SUNY Plattsburgh. 

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