Six inspirational West Virginia University faculty members have been honored with the 2016 WVU Foundation Award for Outstanding Teaching. This year’s honorees are:

Nicholas Bowman, associate professor of communication studies
Ordel Brown, teaching assistant professor of fundamentals of engineering
Joshua Hall, associate professor of economics
Karen Kunz, associate professor of public administration
Dennis Ruscello, professor of communication sciences and disorders and
Arif Sarwari, associate professor of medicine.

“These six professors truly go above and beyond in the classroom, inspiring our students to attain new and exciting knowledge and reach for achievements beyond the ordinary,” said Provost Joyce McConnell. “Their passion for teaching is the rock-solid foundation supporting the exceptional education offered here at WVU.”

The WVU Foundation established the awards in 1985 as a way to celebrate faculty who have established patterns of distinguished teaching and exceptional innovation in teaching methods, course and curriculum design and instructional tools.

“The WVU Foundation is privileged to be able to annually provide these awards due to the generosity of our donors,” said Cindi Roth, Foundation president and CEO. “WVU is fortunate to have such high caliber faculty. We salute this year’s recipients who are truly super stars in their fields of study.”

Nicholas Bowman empowers student voices. His approachable yet rigorous teaching style
allows students to gain feedback and learn to fail in constructive ways through the presentation and discussion of their own work. He distinguishes himself with an emphasis on contact over content, allowing his students to discover their own paths to learning success.

Ordel Brown uses her unique energy and creativity to guide her students in becoming excellent and ethical engineers. She cultivates an exciting and engaging learning environment. This passion carries over into her extensive program development, material improvement and advising – all in service to the students she cares for so deeply.

Joshua Hall sets himself apart by his emphasis on instruction outside of the classroom. He has co-authored 51 publications with dozens of his former undergraduate and graduate students. He is also a leader and innovator who is committed to reshaping and transforming how economics is taught. He has published extensively in the field of pedagogy research, establishing him as one of the nation’s leading scholars on economic education.

Karen Kunz commits fully to her students on every level. Her teaching goes beyond readings and lectures to encompass contemporary, real-world applications. She excels at helping students discover who they are and what they want to be when they grow up – staying with them past graduation through research collaborations and professional networking. She brings the experience full circle by soliciting former students to share their expertise in her classroom.

Dennis Ruscello’s mentorship is invaluable to the aspiring clinicians he trains. He leads by example, sharing his knowledge, professionalism and warm, respectful patient interactions with the students clamoring to learn from him. He is so unmatched in disciplinary expertise and generosity with his own time that some of his former students write him daily for his opinion on their most challenging cases. His 37-year career shows unwavering dedication to teaching and training the next generation of speech-language pathology professionals.

Arif Sarwari kindles the flame of curiosity to engage his students as they learn to perform patient exams, take patient histories and make proper health assessments. He respects his students and pays close attention to their needs. He has earned numerous institutional and national awards recognizing his skillful teaching in the classroom, at the bedside and in his practice.

The six honorees will receive a $5000 honorarium from the WVU Foundation and be recognized by WVU President Gordon Gee, Provost McConnell and Cindi Roth at the April 6 faculty and staff awards dinner at Blaney House.



CONTACT: University Relations/News

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