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From left, Charles McDowell, Ruth Hoffman, Kenneth Pedrotti, Hilde Schwartz, Ana Maria Seara, Chancellor Denton, John Isbister, Dean Mathiowetz, and Martin Berger Photo: Matt Fitt

June 5, 2006

Faculty, teaching assistants honored for excellence

Seven faculty members and 10 teaching assistants have been honored with 2005-06 Excellence in Teaching Awards for their exemplary and inspiring teaching.

Selected by the UCSC Academic Senate Committee on Teaching and the Graduate Council, the winners of the 2005-06 Excellence in Teaching Awards awards were recognized by Chancellor Denton and Committee on Teaching Chair Charles McDowell on May 24 at the University Center. Their names were also announced during the final Academic Senate meeting of 2006, on May 19.

Nominations for the award are submitted by students, and the committee also reads a statement on teaching written by the nominee, as well as a letter from the department chair. The committee looks for evidence that the nominee has thought deeply about teaching and learning, and effectively applies that thinking in the classroom.

Faculty winners, followed by the text on their certificates, are:

Martin A. Berger, history of art and visual culture, for engaging and effective teaching of the history of art and visual culture, for building from the familiar to the challenging, for encouraging inquiry and discussion, for teaching the practice of art history as good citizenship.

Ruth Hoffman, College Nine, for passion and enthusiasm in teaching freshman core, for creating a safe place for dialogue, while emphasizing analysis and good writing, for encouraging students to develop their own voices within the world of ideas.

John Isbister, economics, for an enduring commitment to teaching economics and ethics, for an interdisciplinary approach, for incorporating writing in all courses, for challenging students to arrive at their opinions through hard work and analysis.

Dean Mathiowetz, politics, for dynamic and creative teaching of politics, for enthusiasm, respect, and high standards, for bringing discussion even to large classes, for challenging students to discover a role for themselves in the political realm.

Kenneth Pedrotti, electrical engineering, for versatile and engaging teaching of electrical engineering, for thorough preparation balanced with spontaneity, for multiple approaches to difficult material, for making engineering human.

Hilde Schwartz, Earth sciences, received the Ron Ruby Award for Teaching Excellence in the Division of Physical and Biological Sciences. Her award was for exceptional dedication in teaching Earth sciences, for good cheer in grueling field conditions, for hands-on learning and student presentations, for questioning students and encouraging their questions, always challenging them to go farther.

Ana Maria Camargo Seara, language studies and Language Program, for extraordinary energy and dedication in teaching Portuguese, for integrating writing, listening, speaking, and the study of culture, for making learning fun through humor, variety, and a welcoming attitude.

Graduate student award winners are Vincent Bonini, mathematics; Chris Dixon, history of consciousness; James Isaacs, linguistics; Paul Ralifo, chemistry; Abhijit SenGupta, economics; Mrinal Sinha, psychology; Adam Smith, computer science; Heather Turcotte, politics; Nicolas Winter, chemistry; Megan Yost; psychology.

The awards include $500 in cash for faculty members and $200 for graduate students.


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