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Arts & Sciences Announces 2009 Teaching Awards

October 30, 2009

Congratulations to the winners of the 2009 major teaching awards from the College of Arts & Sciences! These professors exhibit extraordinary passion and effectiveness not only in conveying ideas but also in mentoring and supporting students. The winners are: Stephen Esposito, Philosophy (Frank and Lynne Wisneski Award for Excellence in Teaching); Maurice (Mo) Lee, English (Neu Family Award for Excellence in Teaching, endowed by Richard Neu, CAS’61, and his family); and Dana Bauer, Geography and Environment (Gitner Award for Distinguished Teaching, endowed by Gerald Gitner, CAS’66).

Stephen Esposito, associate professor of classics, has taught classes in Greek civilization and in Ancient Greek at CAS for twenty years. His contributions to the intellectual life of Boston University have been various and deep, from his scholarly work on Sophocles and Euripides, to his role as faculty in residence in the Honors House, to creating and administering the scholarship based on the Boston University Latin Contest (and a similar scholarship in Greek), to his work as faculty advisor in the Taylor Advising Center. However, it is as a passionate and inspiring teacher and mentor that he has generated the most enthusiasm among his students.

Maurice Lee, associate professor of English, teaches the English Department’s freshman seminar course and upper-level courses in American literature, with a particular focus on poetry and poetics, pragmatism and skepticism, transcendentalism and transatlanticism, and slavery and freedom. Professor Lee combines intense standards for student writing and discussion with exceptional knowledge and insight and a sincere interest in helping students succeed.

Dana Bauer, assistant professor in the Department of Geography and Environment, teaches undergraduate and graduate classes in environmental modeling and resource economics as well as directed studies and internships. Inside and outside class, Professor Bauer has a talent for inspiring students to master the details of her subject with her enthusiasm, making what could be boring and dry in lesser hands into an absorbing intellectual adventure. She is truly a professor who has never met a “teaching moment” she doesn’t like, and her office is nearly always filled to capacity with students in animated discussion.

The awards were selected by an advisory committee comprised of associate deans, past award winners, and involved students. The awards recognize excellent and distinguished teaching in the broadest sense, including classroom performance, course and curriculum development, advising, and enhancement of the scholarship of teaching and learning. Although excellence in undergraduate teaching is essential, excellence in graduate-level teaching strengthens nominations.

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