Seymour Menton, UCI professor emeritus of Spanish & Portuguese, has been awarded the Order of the Aztec Eagle by the Mexican government for his teaching and dissemination of Mexican literature and culture in the U.S., Latin America and Europe since 1948. It's the highest honor Mexico accords to foreigners. In 2007, Menton was named to Sigma Delta Pi's Order of Don Quijote, the supreme honor from the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society, joining such literary luminaries as Carlos Fuentes and Carmen Laforet. He has taught at UCI since 1965 and was founding chair of the Department of Foreign Languages & Literatures and, later, of the Department of Spanish & Portuguese.
UCI scientists James "Jay" Famigliettiand John Southon have been named 2012 fellows of the American Geophysical Union. Southon, an Earth system science researcher, manages UCI's W.M. Keck Carbon Cycle Accelerator Mass Spectrometry facility and has extensive expertise in carbon dating. Famiglietti, professor of Earth system science and civil & environmental engineering, heads the University of California Center for Hydrologic Modeling and is an authority on water scarcity, climate change and related issues.