2020 Provost’s Scholar-Teacher of the Year Award Winner
Matthew Fox, of the Department of Epidemiology
Professor Matthew Fox’s role as a scholar-teacher is best exemplified by the self-defined feedback loop that connects his teaching and research. He pushes his students to challenge him, and frequently returns to his own scholarship to help answer their questions. As a result, his courses change as students pose new questions and the methods to answer them evolve.
When students challenged Professor Fox to explain the methods being used in his Advanced Epidemiology class, he developed statistical simulations as an explanatory tool. Rather than stop there, he went on to create a new course where students would be able to replicate the simulation methods themselves. Professor Fox’s doctoral students uniformly praise his knack for rendering complex concepts accessible in ways that push their thinking and dissertation work to the next level.
Professor Fox’s scholarship is equally far-reaching. Since beginning his doctoral studies, he has published 246 articles, and in 2019 alone, was invited to share his research in six countries. Much of Professor Fox’s work on HIV treatment has taken place in South Africa, where his successful clinical trials to achieve viral suppression and adherence to treatment have been put into practice. Beyond this, Professor Fox has harnessed the power of media, from textbooks and Twitter to a pair of popular podcasts to help bring epidemiology to the mainstream. His combined scholarship, teaching, and gift for communication make Professor Fox a major influencer in his field and beyond.