April 24, 2020

Recipients of 2020 Students’ Union Teaching Excellence Awards announced

Students remotely recognize excellence in undergraduate teaching

The Students’ Union (SU) is paying tribute to 37 faculty members, instructors, and teaching assistants for their commitment to student success from a safe distance this year. The annual Teaching Excellence Awards (TEA) is the SU’s campus-wide recognition program which gives undergraduate students the chance to decide which instructors and teaching assistants have made a lasting, positive impression in the classroom. Student feedback is the basis on which all nominees and winners are determined.

“The best thing about the SU Teaching Excellence Awards is that the instructors we’re honouring were nominated by their own students,” says Kevin Dang, SU vice-president academic. “Despite the unconventional circumstances, the SU is proud to continue to recognize these incredible instructors for their ongoing commitment to quality education at the University of Calgary.”

SU Vice President Academic Kevin Dang with an SU Teaching Excellence Award

Kevin Dang with a Students' Union Teaching Excellence Award.

Gene Baines

This year, the SU received 1,143 nominations from students. Based on these, the SU’s Teaching Excellence Awards committee shortlisted nominees and conducted more than 115 class visits in the fall and winter semesters to collect written feedback. The winners were then decided after the committee analyzed just over 2,200 evaluation forms.

Award winners recognized remotely

“We couldn’t hold the TEA awards ceremony this year, and with classes taking place remotely we decided to recognize TEA winners remotely as well,” said Dang. “We contacted award winners in early April, and we will be posting their video replies on the SU’s social media channels in the coming days, which we feel is a great way to honour the achievements of these outstanding instructors.”

Winners of the SU Teaching Excellence Award will receive an Apple Award and a framed certificate when they are able to return to campus. In addition, the SU will make a $5,000 donation in recognition of the winners to the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning.

The SU has been honouring outstanding teaching at the university since 1975, with the Teaching Excellence Awards being handed out in their current form for the first time in 1984. From the start, the awards were intended to provide students with the opportunity to give feedback on the quality of university instruction. They have contributed to teaching excellence remaining a key priority for the institution, exemplified by the Eyes High vision to enrich the quality and breadth of learning at the University of Calgary.

Learn more about the SU Teaching Excellence program and the award criteria.

See below or online for a full list of this year’s winners.

Teaching assistants

  • Rebecca Booth (Faculty of Science)
  • Austin Che (Faculty of Science)
  • Marissa Clapson (Faculty of Science)
  • Brandon Ferguson (Schulich School of Engineering)
  • Dania Idriss (Faculty of Arts)
  • Nicholas Massaro (Faculty of Kinesiology)
  • Lauren McMillan (Faculty of Science)
  • Ronald Miksha (Faculty of Science)
  • Tony Stevens (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine)
  • Ryan Toth (Faculty of Science)

Teaching Excellence honourable mentions

  • Judy Anderson (Faculty of Arts)
  • Kerry Black (Schulich School of Engineering)
  • Dr. Cari Din (Faculty of Kinesiology)
  • Ryan Hamilton (Faculty of Science)
  • Katherine Mueller (Werklund School of Education)
  • Thuntida Ngamkham (Haskayne School of Business)
  • Allen Sandwell (Schulich School of Engineering)
  • David Wright (Faculty of Law)

Teaching Excellence Award winners

  • Dr. Fabiola Aparicio-Ting (Cumming School of Medicine)
  • Rachel Friedman (Faculty of Arts)
  • Kathleen Hughes (Faculty of Arts)
  • Safaneh Mohaghegh Neyshabouri (Faculty of Arts)
  • Alexander Whalley (Faculty of Arts)
  • Carol A. Gibbons Kroeker (Faculty of Kinesiology)
  • Lorian Hardcastle (Faculty of Law)
  • Margarita Gil (Faculty of Nursing)
  • Ania Harlick (Faculty of Science)
  • Peter Hoyer (Faculty of Science)
  • Jerrod Smith (Faculty of Science)
  • Lesley Taylor (Faculty of Social Work)
  • Campbell Rolian (Faculty of Veterinary Medicine)
  • Phil Davidson (Haskayne School of Business)
  • Syed Rahat Ali Jafri (Haskayne School of Business)
  • Mina Iskander (Schulich School of Engineering)
  • Qi Zhou (Schulich School of Engineering)
  • Karen Dittrick (Werklund School of Education)

Hall of Fame

  • Zenaida Roxas Boerhave (Faculty of Nursing)