September 6, 2002
Outstanding Teachers Named at UW-RF
Three faculty members of the College of Arts and Sciences at UW-River Falls were recently honored with Outstanding Faculty Awards for 2002. English Professor Jennifer Brantley, Chemistry Professor Magdalena Pala and Geography Professor Charles Rader were selected for the distinction by UW-RF graduates.
For this year's nominations, approximately 1,875 ballots were sent to May and December graduates from the years 1998 and 2000. Graduates were asked to nominate two faculty members in each division, focusing on excellence in teaching; understanding and helpfulness as advisors; and ability to motivate students. Comments were also invited.
Brantley's enthusiasm and insights into literature were applauded. "She is outstanding!" one former student remarked. "I wish my course with her had lasted longer than one semester." Another cited "the personal attention she gave me and the amount of intellectual growth she provided me."
Of Pala, nominations included, "She helped students learn organic chemistry on her own time with a weekly study group;" "She was funny. She made organic chemistry easier to learn;" and, "She was friendly and a good teacher. She always made me smile!"
Respondents appreciated Rader's "patience and quirky humor," and observed, "Charlie could have 14 things to deal with and would stop on a dime to assist a student. He is committed to his students and to the department."
Said Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Gorden Hedahl, "It is important to recognize and celebrate outstanding teaching, as that is the heart of our mission and one of the primary motivations for the faculty who have chosen to make their careers at UW-River Falls.
"This award is especially significant as it is chosen by students who have graduated and entered the workforce. They are able to reflect on their entire University experience and recognize those who have made lasting impacts on their lives and careers.
"Jenny , Magdalena and Charlie are all exemplary teachers. I am pleased that their dedication and ability to inspire have been acknowledged by their former students. They serve as role models for the large number of faculty members in the College who work as effective educators and mentors for our students."
Outstanding Faculty Awards have been given annually since 1985, one in each division of the College of Arts and Sciences: arts and humanities; sciences and mathematics; and the social sciences. Recipients are eligible to receive the award only once in 10 years.
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