Dr. Gregory Mixon Wins Faculty Engagement Award

Dr. Gregory Mixon has won the 2nd Annual J. Murrey Atkins Library Faculty Engagement Award. Mixon is a professor in UNC Charlotte’s Department of History in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. He will be honored at a reception on September 15, 2016, in the library’s Halton Reading Room; the event begins at 3:30 p.m.
The Atkins Library Faculty Engagement Award is presented to a UNC Charlotte faculty member who has engaged in innovative or exceptional work with library collections, programs, and services. The award, given in the fall along with a $2,500 allocation for professional development, enables Atkins to recognize outstanding faculty contributions to the library’s mission, vision, and strategic initiatives.
Dr. Mixon was nominated for the 2015-2016 award by Amanda Binder, Social Sciences & History Librarian, and Marilyn Schuster, Local Documents Librarian and Interim Special Collections Reference & Outreach Librarian at Atkins Library. The award committee recognized Dr. Mixon for his collaborative work with library faculty and staff to produce creative opportunities for students to feel connected to History through the exploration of library materials.
Every semester, Dr. Mixon’s students complete an archives assignment in which they visit the Reading Room on the 10th floor of the Library for a “show and tell” of primary sources that relate to the class. The assignment allows each student to explore a manuscript collection and to gain experience with analyzing primary sources, a core research skill in the History curriculum. With Liberal Studies courses, Dr. Mixon invites librarians into the lecture hall where students work in small groups to analyze copies of local primary sources from Special Collections.
Recently, Dr. Mixon worked with History Librarian Amanda Binder to develop a “Who Am I” project for his 2000 level History courses. In this assignment, students research a profession that interested them, and then identify an African American pioneer in that field. Students use reference sources to gain background information, and then use the library collections to research specific individuals.
“These opportunities to work with rare and special collections truly engage students in the work of History,” said Amanda Binder. “Beyond introducing students to the Atkins Library collections, Dr. Mixon also promotes library and archives professions. Library faculty and staff that work with his classes are asked to discuss librarianship so that students with an interest in our work can learn more about it.”
Dr. Mixon credits university libraries, state, public, and private archives, and public libraries for enriching his life since elementary school.
”It is these personal experiences with the library and the various librarians who have welcomed me in each facility that I have sought to share with my students at UNC Charlotte,” said Dr. Mixon. “I am indebted to libraries and librarians in my personal and professional lives.  I am glad to return the support by creating meaningful library experiences for my students.”  
Dr.  Mixon received his Ph.D. in history from the University of Cincinnati. His research focuses on Race Relations, Southern History, Black, Southern, and United States Urban History, Progressive era, and Black Southern State Militia Companies from 1865-1910.  He is author of The Atlanta Riot: Race, Class, and Violence in a New South City (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, Spring 2005) and Show Thyself a Man: Georgia State Troops, Colored, 1865-1905 (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, August 2016).