Provost's Teaching Awards

Nominations for the 2023 Provost’s Teaching Awards are Now Closed

The Provost’s Teaching Awards are at the core of the University of Miami’s commitment to supporting and recognizing exemplary teaching. The Office of the Provost is pleased to invite your faculty nominations for the 2023 Provost Teaching Awards by Friday, March 10. Complementing the Faculty Senate Teaching Award, which honors a distinguished record of teaching, the Provost’s Teaching Awards recognize outstanding faculty teaching within an academic year.

This year’s teaching awards focus on the categories of mentorship, experiential teaching, collaborative teaching, discussion-based learning, and innovation in teaching. Specifically, we will recognize faculty who have (1) provided outstanding mentoring to students, (2) demonstrated a commitment to student learning outside of the traditional classroom, (3) collaborated across departments to provide innovative teaching experiences, (4) employed discussion-based teaching methods that enrich the learning experience and prepare students for addressing complex challenges, or (5) overcome a difficult course-related problem with a novel and enduring approach that will benefit others.

There will be one award for each category. All full-time faculty are eligible for these awards, which will include a celebratory recognition and a monetary prize to support the awardee’s academic efforts and professional development.

Luis Glaser Mentorship Award

The Luis Glaser Mentorship Award will recognize a member of the faculty who has demonstrated an exceptional commitment to mentoring students. Exceptional mentoring can include offering advice, feedback, guidance, or coaching; providing professional opportunities for mentees; or assisting in the development of life skills.  The winning faculty member will receive $1,000 to be used to support their teaching, research, or professional development.

Excellence in Experiential Teaching Award

The Excellence in Experiential Teaching Award will recognize a member of the faculty who demonstrates an outstanding commitment to the student learning process, integrating excellent teaching with opportunities for experiential learning through curricular and co-curricular activities, and actively promoting and guiding learning outside of the classroom. Nominees should excel at developing students’ “practical intelligence.” The winning faculty member will receive $1,000 to be used to support their teaching, research, or professional development.

Collaborative Teaching Award

The Collaborative Teaching Award will recognize a team of faculty from different departments who are collaborating to provide unique courses and learning experiences that transcend individual disciplines. Such experiences provide students with multiple perspectives and ways of thinking that can lead to deeper understanding, creative problem-solving, and innovation.  The winning team will receive $3,000 to support faculty teaching, research, and/or the needs of the course.

Discussion-Based Learning Award

The Discussion-Based Learning Award will recognize a member of the faculty who has created engaging educational experiences that leverage dialogue and discussion-based techniques, such as the Harkness Method, flipped learning, and problem-based learning. These methods enrich the learning experience and prepare students to address complex problems through dialogue and collaboration. The winning faculty member will receive $1,000 to be used to support their teaching, research, or professional development.

Innovation in Teaching Award

The Innovation in Teaching Award will recognize a member of the faculty who has overcome a difficult course-related problem with a novel and enduring approach (novel meaning that it is new to the University of Miami or new to a discipline).  The innovation may be made through technology or involve adopting a new teaching format, a novel engagement with content, the creation of new learning activities, or engagement with external entities. There should be evidence that the innovation made a demonstrable difference in learning outcomes. The winning faculty member will receive $1,000 to be used to support their teaching, research, or professional development.

Nomination Process

Nominations may be submitted by staff, undergraduate or graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, and faculty.

The nomination process is simple and straightforward.

1. Nominators will complete a form which notifies the nominee.
2. Nominees will be asked for additional details via a request for information that will be emailed to them.

As educators, innovators, and mentors, our faculty are an inspiration to our community of learning, and the Provost’s Teaching Awards shine a light on your extraordinary commitment to student success.

2021 Award Recipients

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  • Luis Glaser Mentorship Award

    • Amiethab Aiyer, associate professor in the department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He focuses on the treatment of disorders of the foot and ankle. Amiethab has won multiple teaching and mentorship awards and was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) in 2017. Recently, he was named a top 10 faculty educator across the medical school and was named UM Faculty Council Educator of the Year in 2019.
    • Joy Beverly, has been a part of the University of Miami College of Arts and Sciences faculty since 2001, and, as a Senior Residential Faculty member living in the Hecht Residential College, she engages with students on a daily basis. Going above and beyond her role as a mathematics lecturer, she hosts an array of formal programming and organizing events such as “Math Mondays” in the Hecht Residential study room for students seeking help with their math courses. 
    • Hilit F. Mechaber, Dr. Hilit Mechaber is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Sr. Associate Dean for Student Affairs whose professional interests lie in the areas of medical student career development and work-life integration. In her current decanal role, she creates and oversees programs and resources available for all areas of medical student support and career guidance. She is a national leader in student affairs with a passion and commitment to medical student well-being. Dr. Mechaber has broad national involvement as she currently serves as the Vice-Chair of the National Group on Student Affairs (GSA), recently completing her term as past-Chair of the GSA Committee on Student Affairs (COSA) and previously as the Southern Region’s Chairperson. She also represents the GSA as a member of ERAS National Advisory Board. She has also worked to support women in medicine locally and collaboratively with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion as her medical school’s advisor of AMWA, and also served as the UMMSM faculty institutional representative to the AAMC GWIMS for 8 years.
    • Imelda K. Moise, is an assistant professor in the College of Arts & Sciences Department of Geography and Regional Studies. Her overarching program of research focuses on families and communities at risk, often using mixed-method study designs including geospatial analysis to examine the sociocultural and contextual factors associated with health inequities. Her goal as a teacher and scholar is to integrate research, teaching and mentoring with community outreach. She achieves this goal by linking students to class content and research through her Geography and Inequalities Lab (GaIL) where students engage in research projects that is directly relevant to solving community problems. She finds that this enhances the training of students beyond the classroom.
    • Carol-Anne Phekoo, is associate professor of professional practice in the School of Education and Human Development department of Educational and Psychological Studies. She joined the University of Miami faculty in 2000 and serves as coordinator of the Higher Education/Enrollment Management Program. Her teaching specialization is higher education administration, including courses on the nature of the college student and administration of student affairs, and her research focuses on the influence of college experience on students’ social and occupational values. For the last 21 years, she has provided both master’s and doctoral programs in mentorship that connect with students before they arrive on campus and continue long after graduation as they face career decisions and continue to seek her advice.
    • Jonathan West, is professor of Political Science and the director of the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) programs at the University of Miami. His research interests include public policy and administration, human resource management, productivity, local government, and ethics. For more than 40 years, he has focused on ensuring students have the resources to succeed and to develop professionally, especially through internships, scholarships, research projects, international student competitions, and job placement.

  • Innovation in Teaching Award

    • Margie Oleksiak, is associate dean of Undergraduate Education and professor in the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science department of Marine Biology and Ecology.  Her research focuses on the importance of biological variation and how populations adapt to environmental change, addressing the fundamental importance of the variation among individuals and populations and how species adapt to environmental change. She developed a Saltwater Semester course that incorporates “authentic research”” to bridge the disconnect between reading about science and doing science. The courses use practical laboratory experiences integrated into brief lectures, ensuring students are involved in experimental design, data collection and analysis, and communication of results.
    • Andrew Porter, is assistant professor of Clinical at the University of Miami School of Nursing and Health Studies. His current research involves looking at how health promotion and harm reduction messages in college classrooms are disseminated through peer groups and intimate partners and how social media and podcasts change sexual health beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors. He made significant and novel pedagogical changes to his courses to help engage students in constructive and interdisciplinary dialogue in the classroom and through an educational-edutainment podcast he developed that addresses gaps in sexuality education and health disparities in the U.S. and fosters student interaction as teams and with world-wide audiences through social media.
    • Derin Ural, is professor of practice in the department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering and associate dean of student affairs in the College of Engineering. She specializes in engineering education, geotechnical engineering, earthquake engineering and disaster management. Dr. Ural has led efforts to address the need for innovative teaching and learning in the College of Engineering (CoE) by implementing programs that support professional development for faculty and TA's; re-structuring traditional classrooms into “active” classrooms; and fostering a culture of excellence in teaching.

  • Excellence in Experiential Teaching Award

    • Melissa Jane Barnes, a lecturer at the University of Miami School of Communication, puts her wide range of experiences to use, relying on real-world, agency-style techniques to empower and enable communication students to be their best professional selves. She is managing director of the University’s first-ever student-run communication consultancy, Orange Umbrella, and her work in connecting with students through immersive experiential teaching, advising, mentoring and service roles ensures that students are bridging the gap between the traditional classroom and the workplace and preparing for their professional life.
    • Sonia Chao, is research associate professor in the School of Architecture and director of the Center for Urban & Community Design. She writes and teaches in the area of sustainable architecture and urbanism, resilient design, and historic preservation in the subtropics. Her scholarship explores the intersection between historic preservation, historic places, and resilient design. In collaboration with colleagues from the department of Geography and Regional Studies, Ms. Chao helped create the interdisciplinary Master of Professional Science in Urban Sustainability & Resilience program, which she co-directs. Students gain invaluable experience through real-world projects, tapping into local expert and leaders in government, community development and preservation to name a few, as well as integrating colleagues from other University of Miami academic units.
    • Valerie Coleman-Page, is assistant professor of performance, chamber music, and entrepreneurship at the Frost School of Music. She is an internationally acclaimed, Grammy® nominated flutist, composer and entrepreneur. As part of a recent residency at the University of Louisville, she brought the Stamps Distinguished Fellows Woodwind Quintet senior class for their very first tour, where they visited and performed at top high school music programs and performed live on radio and television, allowing them to use their long studied repertory in the professional field. She also engaged students to interact with world class musicians from the Philadelphia Orchestra in a series of recording sessions via zoom, allowing them to view the entire process of professional efficiency, from the rehearsals to recording in as few takes as possible.
    • Rebecca Sharpless, is professor of law and the founding director of the Immigration Clinic at the School of Law. She teaches immigration law and researches and writes in the areas of immigration law, progressive lawyering, and the intersection of immigration and criminal law. Through their work with the Immigration Clinic, students engage in advocacy and litigation on behalf of immigrants and represent people facing deportation. Her teaching outside the Immigration Clinic is infused with experiential learning. She brings her experience as an immigration lawyer and litigator into the classroom through case examples, guest speakers involved in immigration policy work, organizing, and litigation, and other events that promote the human rights of migrants.