Honoring the Best in Teaching

Provost Tim Tracy, honoring remarkable teaching and deep commitment to student success, presented nine individuals with the Provost Outstanding Teaching Award at the 2017 University of Kentucky Outstanding Faculty Awards Ceremony.  

This annual award recognizes both faculty and graduate teaching assistants who demonstrate special dedication and outstanding performance in the classroom or laboratory.  Recipients were selected via nomination and reviewed by a selection committee based in the UK Office of Faculty Advancement.

“Now – more than ever – the success of our students is fundamental to the success of our society,” Tracy said. “Not just their economic success, but their cultural, artistic and social success as well. That’s why outstanding faculty members play such an integral role in what we do. They are helping students build competencies for navigating an increasingly complex world, and they are ensuring our students leave here prepared for more than a job, but for life.”

The Outstanding Teaching Faculty Award recognizes regular and special title series faculty for outstanding teaching performance. The 2017 recipients are:

Christia Spears Brown, Department of PsychologyCollege of Arts & Sciences. Brown’s research focuses on children's perceptions of and experiences with gender and ethnic discrimination, the development of gender and ethnic stereotypes and identity, and the impact of discrimination and stereotypes on youth's academic outcomes. She is the Associate Chair of Psychology and Director of Center for Equality and Social Justice.

Melanie Beals Goan, Department of History, College of Arts & Sciences. Goan’s research focuses on U.S. twentieth century, history of women, Appalachia, and medicine. She is a Special Title Series appointment focused on undergraduate teaching.

Jeffrey R. Seay, Department of Chemical & Materials EngineeringCollege of Engineering. Seay’s research focuses on Process Systems Engineering, Sustainability, Appropriate Technology, Alternative Energy and Green Chemistry. In addition, he is a Fulbright Specialist Program grantee and a Visiting Associate Professor, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.

Ruth Brown, Department of Hispanic StudiesCollege of Arts & Sciences. Brown’s research focuses on service-learning, second language acquisition, migration, Latino culture in Kentucky, literature and visual culture. Currently, her teaching emphasis includes instructional design and service-learning curricular development.

Stephanie J. Fugate, Department of Nursing InstructionCollege of Nursing. Fugate’s research focuses on System Organizations and Transition into practice with an emphasis on engagement, clinical reasoning, and virtual simulations. She is currently enrolled in the Doctor of Nursing Practice program, Executive Leadership Tract at the University of Kentucky.

Shannon Plank, Department of AnthropologyCollege of Arts & Sciences. Plank is engaged in active archaeological research on the ancient Maya of the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico with the Uci-Cansahcab Regional Integration Project, and have recently initiated work on a set of Plains Indian objects (warbonnets, pipes, shields) housed in the collections of the Department of Anthropology's Webb Museum.

The UK Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award recognizes teaching assistants for exceptional performance in the classroom or laboratory. The 2017 recipients are:

Sy Bridenbaugh, Department of Policy Studies and EvaluationCollege of Education. Bridenbaugh’s research focuses on motivation, self-efficacy, self-concept, instructional techniques, diversity competency, adaptive athletics, education policy studies and evaluation, academic performance of college athletes, college readiness, and disability resources.

Laura Nagy, Department of PsychologyCollege of Arts & Sciences. Nagy’s interests include mindfulness, borderline personality disorder, self-criticism, self-injury, and rumination. Her dissertation is an experimental study of the effects of self-criticism on implicit attitudes about self-injury.

Jasper Waugh-Quasebarth, Department of AnthropologyCollege of Arts & Sciences. Waugh-Quasebarth’s research focuses on anthropology of craft, anthropology of work, material culture, Appalachian studies, museum anthropology, environmental anthropology, and political ecology.

“On behalf of the UK family, I extend my deepest gratitude to the award recipients for their outstanding efforts and commitment to academic excellence,” Tracy said. 

Now, more than ever, the success of our students is fundamental to the success of our society. That’s why outstanding faculty members play such an integral role in what we do.