Three CARTA faculty members honored as 2019-2020 Top Scholars


Each year, the President and Provost recognize faculty members who, over the past year, had significant achievements in research and teaching. They are commended through the annual FIU Top Scholar Awards.

This year, three outstanding faculty members from the College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts were honorees. Aside from being educators, these three women have made significant and impactful contributions locally, nationally and internationally. Their achievements include creating curricular and extracurricular opportunities for students to be involved in real-life, community projects and career-oriented events and investigating cross-cultural Buddhist art and architecture in Central Asia.

Congratulations to Professors Ebru Ozer, Katie Rothfield and Lidu Yi!

Ebru Ozer | Teaching
Associate Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture + Environmental and Urban Design

Associate Professor Ebru Ozer’s Top Scholar Award is for her dedication to teaching that prioritizes pedagogy with a tangible impact on the community.

“I am honored to receive this prestigious award. I love teaching and also working with our local communities. Community-engaged teaching allows my students to study real-life issues affecting our neighborhoods while providing them with the opportunity to work closely with local stakeholders, not only opening doors for internships and job opportunities but also strengthening the ties between our institution and local communities. I am grateful to hear that FIU has recognized my teaching efforts with this Top Scholar honor.”


Katie Rothfield | Engagement Beyond the Classroom
Senior Instructor, Department of Interior Architecture

Senior Instructor Katie Rothfield’s Top Scholar Award recognizes her teaching in the category of Engagement Beyond the Classroom. The award reflects her leadership skills in organizing the D3E Student Conference, the Department of Interior Architecture’s Annual Festival of the Trees and the Department of Interior Architecture Master’s Super Jury; all of which were highly successful.

“I am honored to receive this award and proud that my efforts to positively impact FIU scholarships and student-employer engagement were recognized by the university in this way.”

Lidu Yi | Research
Associate Professor, Department of Art + Art History

Associate Professor Lidu Yi’s Top Scholar Award is for her research that investigates Buddhist grottoes and rituals on the Silk Road. She is a historian of art and an archaeologist specializing in cross-cultural medieval Buddhist art and architecture.

“I am greatly honored and humbled to be selected as an FIU Top Scholar for research in the category of Notable Academic Appointments. I will continue to work on groundbreaking research and sincerely hope to train more young scholars as well.”


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