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David Gies Noted Scholar And Former Thomas Jefferson Award Receipient  To Speak At U.Va.’s Founder Day

September 23, 2004 -- David T. Gies, professor of Spanish at the University of Virginia, will deliver the University’s annual Fall Convocation address on Oct. 22 at 2 p.m. in University Hall.

Gies, a former chairman of the department of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese, was the 2000 recipient of the Thomas Jefferson Award  which has been given annually since 1955. It honors a member of the University community who exemplifies in character, work and influences the ideals of the University’s founder.

Known for his devotion to the classroom and students, Gies received the University’s Outstanding Teaching Award in 1992. Extending his influence well beyond his own classroom, he has conducted numerous educational programs for high school teachers statewide and nationwide for two decades. Serving as chair of the Department of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese from 1984 to 1989 and again from 1992 to 1995, Gies helped guide the department to a position as one of the most prestigious language programs in the country.

An expert on the literature of Enlightenment and Romantic Spain, and contemporary Spanish film, he has published twelve books and critical editions of Spanish literature, including “The Cambridge Companion to Modern Spanish Culture (1999), “Theatre and Politics in Nineteenth-Century Spain (Cambridge, 1988)” and “The Theatre in Nineteenth-Century Spain (Cambridge, 1994; Spanish version, 1996),” which won honorable mention from Phi Beta Kappa in Virginia.  Gies has written more than eighty articles and one hundred book reviews, and has lectured at universities in the United States, Canada, England, Italy, Germany, France, Argentina and Spain.  In 2000 he served as Chair of the Faculty Senate. He is currently organizing and editing the “Cambridge History of Spanish Literature.”

CONVOCATION CEREMONIES

Fall Convocation, which officially opens Family Weekend, honors undergraduate students for their academic excellence. Intermediate Honors will be presented to the top 20 percent of students who earned at least 60 credits of course work at U.Va. during their first two years. Following the event, U.Va. President John T. Casteen III will host a reception for students and their families at University Hall’s North Entrance Terrace. The rain site is The Cage.

The Thomas Jefferson Award given annually to a member of the University community also will be presented.  For parking information visit the  Major Events Web site: http://www.virginia.edu/majorevents/convocation.html

Contact: Katherine Thompson Jackson, (434) 924-3629

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Contact the Office of University Relations at (434) 924-7116. Television reporters should contact the TV News Office at (434) 924-7550.

SOURCE: U.Va. News Services

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