Professor Kurk Dorsey has been an integral part of the UNH community for over 25 years, serving in various roles including Director of Graduate Studies and Chair of the History Department. The impact of Professor Dorsey’s teaching and scholarship on how foreign policy and the environment intersect to influence American history is made clear by a quick look at his CV, which includes, among many impressive accomplishments, several previous UNH recognitions and two award-winning books. The award he receives tonight, however, recognizes something that he would probably agree is even more important than his own academic achievements, and that is his impact on graduate students as an advisor and mentor.
During his career, Professor Dorsey has supervised 16 doctoral students and 20 master’s students and served on a total of 68 committees. Those numbers are astounding and clear evidence of his commitment to his department and its students, but they do not tell the whole story. What makes Professor Dorsey stand out as a mentor is the ongoing care he takes in helping his students find their way, while they are students at UNH and afterward. This is demonstrated most clearly in the testimony that poured in from former students for his nomination. “He is incredibly selfless,” “…a mentor who does the right thing, all the time, without question,” “…he has done everything possible to facilitate my success,” “I am a better student, professional, and person because of him.”
Please join me in recognizing Professor Dorsey’s warm generosity, kindness, wit, and dedication to his students, colleagues, and the university as a whole by awarding him the Graduate Faculty Mentor Award for 2021.