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Stephanie Gardner: 2024 Charles B. Murphy Award winner


Stephanie Gardner

The university’s highest undergraduate teaching honor recognizes accomplished educators across campus

This year’s recipients of Purdue’s highest undergraduate teaching honor have not only bettered Boilermakers’ educations but have influenced today’s teaching environment and tomorrow’s workforce. They’re shaping the future from their classrooms.

Approaching teaching and mentoring from a student-centered perspective is essential to supporting Boilermakers in the classroom and beyond — like in research laboratories, which make a biology student’s undergraduate experience more meaningful. “It’s so important to their education,” says associate professor Stephanie Gardner. “Research is where they strengthen interpersonal skills, spark up interests and learn how new knowledge forms.”

“What drives me is helping students feel like they belong. I want them to feel valued and like they have the capacity to master anything they’re trying to learn.”

  • Associate Professor Stephanie Gardner

Since arriving at Purdue as a lecturer in 2007, Gardner has prioritized evidence-based instructional practices and equitable access to research. She has provided for students on campus by developing Course-based Undergraduate Research Experiences, funded by the National Science Foundation, and training instructors as part of the program. As a coprincipal investigator of Partnering in Research Mentoring for Minoritized Students in STEM, she has helped mentors and mentees at Purdue and Chicago State University. In 2024, she was selected to become a fellow of the Partnership for Undergraduate Life Science Education, a national program that aims to support departments and instructors in improving undergraduate learning of life sciences and other related disciplines.

Serving students not only at the university but across the country is always Gardner’s goal, and the Charles B. Murphy Award is a message to keep going above and beyond. “What drives me is helping students feel like they belong,” she says. “I want them to feel valued and like they have the capacity to master anything they’re trying to learn.”


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Writer: Ava Kuhn

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