Teaching requires a stance combining the grounding of a sumo wrestler and the grace of a ballet dancer, says education professor Finney Cherian. He will join history professor Robert Nelson as recipients of the Alumni Award for Distinguished Contributions to University Teaching during celebrations of the University’s 101st Convocation this week.
“I want my students to be passionate seekers of knowledge rather than content proprietors of it,” Dr. Cherian says. “I want them to have more questions in hand than answers.”
In conferring the award Wednesday morning, Alumni Association president Mike Bates said Cherian is known for his dedication to his students and his discipline.
“He is known to provide an environment for learning that is student-centred, with a teaching style that is dynamic and insightful,” Bates said.
Dr. Nelson won praise from his nominators for his excellent relationships with students.
“His welcoming and enthusiastic demeanour sets him apart from his colleagues,” wrote one nominator. “If to be truly an extraordinary teacher you must have something special, something personal, something a wee bit extra, then Dr. Nelson eminently qualifies.”
Nelson will receive the alumni teaching award at the afternoon session of Convocation on Thursday, June 12. The awards recognize excellence in all areas of teaching, including classroom presentation, curriculum development, versatility, teaching methods, and student support. Click here for a list of past recipients.