Last night the AMS Academic Affairs Commission’s Teaching Awards Committee presented the 2007-08 Frank Knox Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Christopher Knapper Award of Excellence in Teaching Assistance.
Twenty-three professors and five teaching assistants were nominated for the awards. The Teaching Awards Committee attended each teacher’s class and had students fill out surveys to make their decision.
English Professor Robert Morrison, who teaches two classes on British Romanticism, was given the award for the fall term.
Professor Morrison has been teaching at Queen’s for five years now. This is the second time he has won the award. Next year he’s going on sabbatical to work on a biography.
Morrison said he’s very humbled to receive the award, but he thinks his nomination is really thanks to the students he teaches.
“I would say that I’m deeply flattered, and I hope that the four months following the nomination have been justified,” he said.
“It’s hard to feel this grateful and not know who to thank. … Queen’s students rock.”
Rick Jackson is a human resources professor at the School of Business in his final year of teaching and the winter term award winner.
“It’s a wonderful retirement gift,” he said, adding that he’s teaching his last class today. He’s staying for part of the summer to help with the Queen’s/Cornell Executive MBA program.
“After that, I don’t know,” he said.
Jackson said it’s important to recognize all professors for their efforts.
“We have a great quality in students and that means we need to recognize quality teaching.”
Greg Potter, a chemistry TA and PhD candidate, won the Knapper award for the winter term. He has been a TA for about seven years and is finishing at Queen’s this year.
“It’s time for me to get out of here,” he said, adding that he’s now looking for a job.
He said although he’s honoured to receive the award he’s happy just to be able to teach.
“It’s nice to be recognized by your students,” he said. “I do it because I enjoy teaching.”
Ryan Marien, ArtSci ’08, won the fall term TA award. Marien, who also won the Tricolour Award, has been a TA for three years now. Marien said he has done teaching assistantships in chemistry and applied science, but he hadn’t heard of the Knapper Award before this year.
“My last tutorial over three years is tomorrow,” said Marien, who was nominated for teaching in a chemistry class.
“I feel amazing—what can I say? It’s a great honour. It’s really something special.”
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