Pair of events to celebrate faculty, teaching excellence

April 22, 2010

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Numerous faculty awards will be presented next week at two celebratory events.

Many of the awards, along with those for outstanding students, were given in past years at Honors Convocation, which will not be held this year. Outstanding students will be recognized during their respective commencement ceremonies.

On Tuesday (April 27), faculty teaching awards will be presented at a merged event also honoring the best teaching by graduate students. It will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the South Ballroom, Purdue Memorial Union.

On Wednesday (April 28), named and distinguished professors will be honored in a special service that  recognizes outstanding faculty who have received national and Purdue awards this year. This event begins at 3:30 p.m. in the West Faculty Lounge at the Union.

Faculty award winners will be honored also by President France A. Córdova at a reception at Westwood on Monday evening.

The decision to move student awards to commencement  led to the change, says Christine Ladisch, vice provost for academic affairs.

"The motivation was to find a venue that most appropriately recognizes student and faculty accomplishments," Ladisch says. "Also, we know that because Honors Convocation has been held in mid- to late April, parents were having to plan two trips to see their students honored. Often they were having to decide between Honors Convocation and commencement.

"We also wanted to bring more attention to excellence in teaching, so  we are changing the name to Celebration of Teaching Excellence, and we're going to celebrate both faculty and graduate student teaching."

Juan Velasquez, instructional and assessment specialist in the Center for Instructional Excellence, is organizing the Celebration of Teaching Excellence.

"It's a celebration just about teaching, and we think that's fantastic," Velasquez says.

According to Beverly Davenport Sypher, associate provost, who is coordinating the event, the Faculty Awards Convocation is designed to recognize the current and ongoing excellence of Purdue’s outstanding faculty. 

Collectively, they constitute a testimony to Purdue's preeminence in advancing quality education, research and engagement that is nationally and internationally recognized, she says. All of these faculty have provided exceptional leadership for Purdue in their various areas of expertise.

Faculty and graduate teaching awards to be presented at the Celebration of Teaching Excellence on Tuesday include:

* The University's Charles B. Murphy Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Awards.

* Excellence in teaching awards given by the colleges and schools of the University. Recipients of these awards are recognized also at college/school events.

* Provost's Award for Outstanding Faculty Mentors.

* Class of 1922 Helping Students Learn Award.

* Award for Excellence in Distance Learning.

* Graduate School Excellence in Teaching Awards.

* CETA teaching awards (Committee for the Education of Teaching Assistants).

* CIE's graduate teaching certificates and advanced graduate teaching certificates.

The following awards will be presented Wednesday at the Faculty Awards Convocation:

* American Council on Education Fellows.

* Committee on Institutional Cooperation's Academic Leadership Program fellows.

* Faculty Scholars.

* Fellowships for Study in a Second Discipline.

* Jefferson Science Fellows.

* Provost Fellows.

* Distinguished and named professors.

Tim Sands, executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, will welcome guests and honorees at both events.