Metcalf Awards for Excellence in Teaching: Past Awardees

2018 Metcalf Award Recipients

Elizabeth Co

College of Arts & Sciences, Biology

Elizabeth Co is winner of the 2018 Metcalf Award for Excellence in Teaching (Photo by Cydney Scott for BU Photography)

Elizabeth Co is winner of the 2018 Metcalf Award for Excellence in Teaching. (Photo by Cydney Scott for BU Photography)

A Senior Lecturer in the Boston University Department of Biology, Elizabeth Co is recognized as a talented educator and an advocate for using technology in the classroom to improve learning outcomes.

She has transformed the lecture hall into a beehive of engagement and discussion through her use of innovative technology in presentation and class participation and raised the quality of office hours by providing students immediate feedback on exams. Colleagues frequently seek her advice on the use of technology to improve their own courses. She brings a scientist’s acuity and methodology to her own teaching methods, constantly refining her classroom technique in order to promote her students’ intellectual curiosity, absorption of material, and self-awareness of preferred learning style.

Her areas of interest include science education, human immunology, and reproduction. She often teaches large introductory classes for freshmen and sophomores—courses not known for glowing student evaluations.  For this reason, her consistently outstanding reviews are all the more remarkable.

Students describe a “knowledgeable,” “enthusiastic” instructor who is “very good at explaining difficult and confusing topics” and makes students “passionate about learning.” They especially appreciate her use of “personal stories and real-life examples” that “deepen understanding of topics.”

In the words of her nominator, “she furthers the mission of a research university by creating students who are able and empowered to lead many fields of research and healthcare for years to come.”

Elizabeth Co holds a Bachelor of Arts, with high honors, in Biology and Education from Mount Holyoke College and a Doctorate in Biomedical Sciences from University of California, San Francisco. She joined Boston University in 2012 after teaching at University of California, Berkeley, and University of California, San Francisco.

James A. Wolff

School of Public Health, Global Health

James A. Wolff is winner of the 2018 Metcalf Award for Excellence in Teaching. (Photo by Cydney Scott for BU Photography)

James A. Wolff is winner of the 2018 Metcalf Award for Excellence in Teaching. (Photo by Cydney Scott for BU Photography)

James A. Wolff is an Associate Professor of Global Health at Boston University School of Public Health (SPH). Colleagues hail him as “a phenomenal educational innovator and a dedicated advocate for significant learning in the classroom.” Dr. Wolff is an enthusiastic early adopter of new technologies, equipping students with the practical technical skills of the modern workplace. He also studies how technology can help solve some of today’s most troubling public health problems.

He embraces practice-based learning and engages students with activities such as role-playing, client presentations, student-led workshops, proposal development, and simulated job interviews. His students work on challenging assignments related to human resources management, drug supply management, financial management, quality improvement, and digital technology—often for real clients. Students remark about “practical,” “thought-provoking,” “hands-on” courses in which they “learn  a new and valuable skill every day.”

Words such as “dedicated,” “passionate,” and “approachable” recur throughout his evaluations. Students describe Dr. Wolff as “a wonderful instructor who takes time to answer questions,” who is “always in high spirits,” and “willing to help you day or night.”

His influence reaches far beyond our campus. A practicing physician, he has also been a consultant with USAID, the World Health Organization, the World Bank, and numerous private organizations, and helped establish collaborative faculty partnerships to promote innovation in teaching in India and Tanzania.

Dr. Wolff holds a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard College, a Master of Arts in Teaching from Harvard Graduate School of Education, a Bachelor of Medical Science from Dartmouth Medical School, a Doctor of Medicine from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and a Master of Public Health from Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Wolff has received fifteen teaching awards from SPH, including the school’s highest honor for an educator, the Norman A. Scotch Award for Excellence in Teaching.

2017 Sophie Godley, SPH
Gary Lawson, LAW
2016 Manher Jariwala, CAS
Erin Murphy, CAS
2015 Binyomin Abrams, CAS
Pamela Templer, CAS
2014 Terry Everson, CFA
Alan Marscher, CAS
2013 John Finnerty, CAS
Carol Jenkins, SED
2012 Marisa Milanese, CAS
Robert Lowe, MED
2011 Wayne LaMorte, SPH
David Walker, LAW
2010 John Caradonna, CAS
Sandra Nicolucci, CFA
2009 Peter Edward Busher, CGS
2008 Andrew Kull, LAW
T. Jefferson Kline, CAS
2007 Penelope Bitzas, CFA
2006 Peter Hawkins, CAS
John T. Matthews, CAS
2005 Akahiro Kanamori, CAS
John Straub, CAS
2004 David Marchant, CAS
Anatoly Temkin, MET
Rosanna Warren, CAS
2003 Robert L. Devaney, CAS
Ann Howard Jones, CFA
2002 Theo de Winter, ENG
Fred S. Kleiner, CAS
Diana Wylie, CAS
2001 Lisa Sullivan, SPH
2000 Dan Clemens, CAS
Maureen O’Rourke, LAW
1999 Raymond J. Nagem, ENG
David Roochnik, CAS
1998 M. David Eckel, CAS
Loren J. Samons II, CAS
1997 Igor Lukes, CAS/UNI
John Daverio, SFA
1996 Dick A. Brown, MED
James Johnson, CAS
Frederick M. Lawrence, LAW
1995 Robert G. Feldman, MED
Tracey Maclin, LAW
1994 Bonnie Costello, CAS
1993 S. Hamid Nawab, ENG
Mark Pettit, Jr., LAW
1991 Theodore Antoniou, SFA
Robert G. Bone, LAW
1990 Carolyn Dillon, SSW
Solomon Eisenberg, ENG
1989 Katheryn Pfisterer Darr, STH
John Snyder, CAS
1988 Nagagopal Venna, MED
1987 Jeffrey Coulter, CAS
Misia Landau, CAS
1986 James Purvi, CAS
Anna Deane Scott, SAR
1985 Alicia Borinsky, CAS
Jules Schwartz, SMG
1984 Peter F. Arenella, LAW
William R. Keylor, CAS
Lester F. Williams, Jr., MED
1983 D. Allen Rogers, SFA
Carolyn Williams. CAS
1982 Steven Molinsky, SED
1981 Katherine O’Connor, CAS
N. Paul Rosman, MED
1980 Roselmin Indrisano, SED
John R. Russell, SMG
1979 Louis Low, SSW
Murray R. Yaeger, COM
1978 Freda Rebelsky, CAS
Samuel Stern, MET
Alfred Prock, CAS
1977 Celia Millward, CAS
David Wheeler, CAS
1976 Muriel A. Poulin, SON
Arnold A. Offner, CAS
Robert H. Sproat, CAS
1975 Charles P. Fogg, CGS
Paul D. Berger, SMG
1974 Gerald P. Fitzgerald, CAS
Nancy L. Roelker, CAS
Paul A. Wallace, LAW