Marica S. Tacconi, professor of musicology and associate director of the School of Music in the College of Arts and Architecture, has been awarded the 2016 President’s Award for Excellence in Academic Integration.
The award is given to a full-time faculty member who has exhibited extraordinary achievement in the integration of teaching, research or creative accomplishment and service.
A nominator said Tacconi “effectively combines the role of scholar, practitioner, and activist to participate in a broader civic engagement movement that knits together public, and academic work.”
Tacconi, colleagues said, strives to create connections and is a believer in the value of interdisciplinary studies. Her research goes far beyond the walls of academia.
Her scholarly presentations have made their way to the University of Oxford Roundtable, the National Humanities Alliance Conference and Imagining America Meetings. Recently, she was part of a team of four international scholars who organized a major exhibition on Florentine art and music, which was hosted by the High Museum of Art in Atlanta.
“She brings people together and bridges communities for the greater good of exploring the ways in which the arts and humanities offer timely answers to timeless questions, thereby enriching our lives,” said a nominator.
As an educator, Tacconi is described by her peers as “an outstanding teacher who brings a passion and enthusiasm” to the subject matter. Her infectious manner, thorough understanding of the field, and the desire to help students learn, makes her a terrific educator, her colleagues said.
“In my work, the boundaries between teaching, research and service are often blurred,” said Tacconi. “When teaching a seminar that relies heavily on my findings of a scholar, when fostering the research profile of the University in my work as an administrator, or when raising the visibility of the arts and humanities on campus and beyond, teaching, research, and service blend together seamlessly."
In her 17-year career at Penn State, Tacconi has been a leading scholar of early modern music and ritual, a dedicated and award-winning teacher and mentor, an effective administrator, and an engaged citizen, according to her colleagues.