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Alumna hits trifecta with award from Rutgers University

  |   Kathryn Kao   |   Permalink   |   Alumni,   Kudos,   Spotlight

Julia Clark, an alumna of the University of Georgia College of Education, recently received the 2016 Distinguished Service Award from Rutgers University Graduate School of Education Alumni Association. Clark is a three-time Distinguished Alumni Award recipient and has received an award from every institution from which she has earned a degree.

These include Fort Valley State University, where Clark earned her bachelor's degree in natural science; the University of Georgia, where she obtained her master's degree in science education; and now Rutgers University, where she received a doctoral degree in science education.

Rutgers' Distinguished Service Award is presented in alternate years to recognize alumni who have contributed outstanding service to the field of education. As the program director of the National Science Foundation and a federal science administrator, Clark has influenced classrooms at every academic level.

She said her contributions to the field of science, technology, engineering and mathematics stem from her devotion to furthering the scientific enterprise while simultaneously enhancing cultural and gender diversity.

"It remains a testament to the promise of America that anything is possible when you put your heart and mind to it," said Clark.

In addition to receiving the Distinguished Service Award, Clark has also been recognized by the federal government. In 2012, she was awarded the National Science Foundation Director's Distinguished Award for Public Service. Additionally, in 2014, she was invited to join the influential Cosmos Club for her distinguished contribution to science education.

Clark continues to maintain her interest in education today. Her new book, "Closing the Achievement Gap from an International Perspective: Transforming STEM for Effective Education," explains how America can help close the achievement gap worldwide. She also serves as a mentor to numerous women and African American students.

"It is so gratifying to have others, especially the institutions that educated you, recognize and confirm that much of what I have tried to do is appreciated and respected," said Clark. "I am humbled by that confirmation."

© University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602