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Gary Ferland

Headshot of Professor Gary Ferland

The Albert D. and Elizabeth H. Kirwan Memorial Prize
2016 University of Kentucky Faculty Awards Ceremony

At the risk of putting you on the spot, what contribution to teaching do you believe led to your award recognition during the 2015-2016 academic school year?
My contributions to graduate education and research.

In your opinion, what are the qualities of a great teacher?
To be understood by students.

What do you find most gratifying about teaching?
Long-term relationships with students.

What makes teaching challenging?
Apathy.

How have you navigated those challenges?
Try to make connections with students.

What are your interests outside of teaching (i.e., hobbies)?
Dog walking, bike riding, music.

What is your favorite book and/or author?
George MacDonald Fraser’s Flashgun series.

What would want to be if you weren’t a teacher?
Airline pilot.

What advice would you give to faculty at the beginning of her/his teaching career?
Understand your student’s perspective.

In your opinion, how can faculty be most effective in the classroom?
Be engaging.

Gary Ferland is Professor of Physics and Astronomy in the College of Arts and Sciences.