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Wilkowski named 2016 Woman of the Year

Conference on Women and Gender 2016 (photo credit: Malala Yousafzai photo by Antonio Olmos; Toni Morrison photo by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders)Courtesy of After serving more than 30 years at the University, Bernadette Wilkowski, academic specialist for the Educational Opportunity Program’s (EOP) Center for Learning, Instruction and Assessment (CLIA), is the 2016 Woman of the Year, the Office of the Provost announced on Feb. 8. Wilkowski said in an email that she was “stunned and humbled” when she was notified that she was selected to win the award by Joan Guetti, senior associate provost. She continues to serve as a campus leader since the start of her Seton Hall career in September 1982. An email statement released by the Provost said, “The Woman of the Year award recognizes and honors outstanding leaders at Seton Hall who have made significant contributions to the success of women at the University.” Wilkowski said in an email that she stays in close contact with the students and their professors, especially in English courses. She added that she communicates with tutors and coordinates the English component of the Summer program with guidelines from the English department, and teaches English class with EOP Summer faculty. “Our goal is that students experience academic success in making a seamless transition from the summer to the fall semesters which is a huge factor in completing their degrees,” she said. Wilkowski’s previous professional roles at Seton Hall includes being a professional tutor in the Writing Center, adjunct instructor for freshman English courses, English lecturer, English Basic Skills Coordinator and Director of the Writing Center. “As a woman and professional, I try to inspire, challenge, and empower young women at Seton Hall University with kindness and compassion, conveying a definite set of values,” Wilkowski said. Mary Balkun, professor and chair of the English department, said in an email that she is “absolutely delighted” that Wilkowski is being recognized for her “many years of service to the University.” Balkun who has known Wilkowski for more than 25 years said that Wilkowski is “the kind of instructor who goes out of her way to help students, and she puts their needs before her own.” “She is, quite simply, one of the kindest and most genuine people I know,” she added. Wilkowski will be recognized and awarded the honor during the Awards Luncheon of the Women and Gender Studies Conference on Friday, Feb. 12. Leah Carton can be reached at


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