Kate McLaughlin ’21
Professor Bukatko, Professor of Psychology, Distinguished Professor of Education, and Affiliate of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, was awarded the 2018 Donal J. Burns ‘49 Career Teaching Medal at the Provost’s address given by Dean Margaret Freije. The medal, which honors “long-term teaching excellence,” is awarded to a faculty member who has devoted his or her lifetime to teaching students at Holy Cross. The award recipient is selected through nominations by students and groups on campus, and it allows the College to highlight the commitment and dedication of its most passionate and dedicated faculty members.
Over the course of her 42-year tenure at Holy Cross, Professor Bukakto has devoted her career to researching cognitive development, gender-role development, and social cognition in early childhood. She also studies leadership, and how people can learn to be more confident and effective leaders.
Her students say that her encouraging and accessible approach is what makes her stand out as an educator. She pushes her students out of their comfort zones and creates dynamic communication, both in and out of the classroom. In an article published on the Holy Cross website, one of her students described her as a professor who is able to “deeply connect with her students” and “push them outside of their academic comfort zones and foster open and dynamic communication that set[s] her classes apart from others.”
Professor Bukakto said that her most memorable moments at Holy Cross have been working with students. She added that it is especially meaningful when “students who may have struggled or had some challenges in courses end up having great success, and that means a lot.”
When asked about her reaction to receiving the award, Professor Bukakto said, “I am so humbled and thrilled … I feel that what I represent with this award is the excellence of everyone on the faculty. I am humbled to be representing everybody.”
Photo by Tom Rettig.