WMU News

Szarmach receives Medal of Service from Poland

Dec. 10, 2004

KALAMAZOO--Dr. Paul E. Szarmach, director of the Medieval Institute at Western Michigan University, has been commended for his efforts to build bridges between American and Polish medievalists by Aleksander Kwasniewski, president of the Republic of Poland.

A letter from the president's office cites Szarmach's "outstanding service in developing a collaboration with the Polish scientific institutions" and confers upon him an Officer Cross of the Medal for Services for Poland.

Szarmach was among nine scholars, and one of two Americans recognized at a ceremony Nov. 26 at the Presidential Palace in Warsaw. Medals were presented by President Kwasniewski's chief of staff Yolanta Szymaniak-Deresz. President Kwasniewski was in Kiev participating in negotiations on the recent Ukrainian presidential election and was unable to attend the Warsaw ceremony.

Szarmach accepted the award while in Poland for the Third Medieval English Studies Symposium Nov. 27-28 in Poznan. He also visited and lectured Nov. 30-Dec. 3 at the Catholic University in Lubin.

Media contact: Thom Myers, 269 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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