Outstanding Teachers 2022
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Outstanding Teachers 2022

Among the highest forms of recognition that TU can bestow on a member of the faculty is the Outstanding Teacher Award. Initiated in 1980, it is limited to three faculty members per year – less than 1% of the resident faculty. The winners are nominated by students and the selection is made by the elected Faculty Affairs Committee of the Faculty Senate. Thus, the award represents recognition by both students and fellow faculty. The winners of this prestigious award will be honored at the 2022 commencement with a monetary award and a medallion. Past winners can be recognized by this medallion worn on a ribbon about the neck as part of their academic regalia.

Ido Kilovaty, Frederic Dorwart and Zedalis Family Fund Associate Professor of Law

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Ido Kilovaty

Ido Kilovaty began teaching at TU in 2018 and was promoted to associate professor in 2021. His excellence in teaching extends to the mentoring and professional development he provides outside the classroom, which enhances the excellence of his many students. Kilovaty’s fluency with many languages and cultures extends to his teaching practice, which takes a creative and flexible approach both to in-person and online instruction.

Kilovaty’s courses offer the fundamentals of legal practice, such as evidence and criminal procedure, as well as cutting-edge topics in cyber security and computer crime. In that way, his teaching has ensured that TU College of Law graduates alumni whose solid foundation exhibits the forward-thinking flexibility needed today and tomorrow. This is clearly reflected in student evaluations that praise his clarity and attentiveness.

Selected student comments

  • “Professor Kilovaty provided exceptional instruction via online platform. In my opinion, there was no difference between Professor Kilovaty’s in-class instruction and his online lecture delivery. Professor Kilovaty also provided flexibility in course delivery that helped tremendously in overcoming some of the challenges of going to school online.”
  • Professor Kilovaty “was very good at taking student responses and pointing out what was good about them and where they applied, even when they weren’t as directed as he would have liked for the specific question he asked. This was very helpful in understanding more about what was being discussed.”
  • “Professor Kilovaty is incredible. You can tell he really considered the best interests of students in designing this course and in his overall approach to teaching. He is always kind, very approachable, knowledgeable, and actively removes obstacles to learning. I wish every professor would approach in the way he does.”

Angus Lamar, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry

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Angus Lamar

Angus Lamar began teaching at TU in 2015 and was promoted to associate professor in 2021. During that time, he has consistently demonstrated innovative teaching practices and a dedication to student learning, aspects that have made him an effective and popular instructor. At present, he directly supervises 67 undergraduate students and three graduate students in a research laboratory. His approach combines rigor with an engaging and personable manner that helps students to understand incredibly difficult subject matter.

Lamar’s courses service several majors, including chemistry, biochemistry, biology, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering, physics and psychology. It is little wonder that he has been able to reach so many different students, who praise the clarity of his expectations and his manner of organizing lectures and course material. However, the excitement he generates is one of the characteristics that stands out most.

Selected student comments

  • “Dr. Lamar contributed to my learning in this class by giving lectures that were detailed yet understandable. He gave tests that challenged students on their understanding of the concepts and of how to apply them, rather than just testing rote memorization. Additionally, he made an effort to provide examples to help further illustrate concepts and connect them to things we have discussed in other classes or have encountered in real life. I thoroughly enjoyed this course and believe that it has already helped me in other chemistry classes though the skills that were developed, which was made possible due to Dr. Lamar’s excellent teaching.”
  • “I have learned so much from this course. The topic was well covered and I feel like I’m walking away with a lot of knowledge about medicine that I never learned before in my entire 4 years in my major (even though I’m a pre-med major).
  • “I’m taking this as a minor course and I’m so glad I did. The way Professor Lamar teaches the class really helps me to understand the content. I understand chemistry best when Professor Lamar is teaching it.”

Kristen Oertel, Mary Barnard Professor of 19th-Century American History

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Kristen Oertel

Kristen Oertel began teaching at TU in 2010 and was promoted to full professor in 2016. Her excellence in teaching stems from a deft combination of rigor, ethical vision and inspiration that extends beyond the walls of the classroom. She has also demonstrated a flexible creativity in maintaining engaging, discussion-based courses since the COVID-19 pandemic forced faculty to teach online and in a hybrid manner. For many years, Oertel’s teaching has consistently developed student excellence.

Students seek out Oertel’s courses in order to engage with the biggest questions of today through study of the past — and they are amply rewarded. Her inclusion of innovative projects, such as skits and debates, as well as a variety of study materials, such as film and podcasts, complements the traditional critical writing and reading assignments that are the hallmark of liberal arts education at TU. By their own telling, students emerge from her courses well-informed and capable of seeing the big picture with critical acumen.

Selected student comments

  • Professor Oertel “has energized and emphasized my desire to study history, specifically African American history. . . . She made the history come alive, which is the mark of any great history teacher.  It was never just names, dates and facts – it was learning about how interconnected the world was through the lives of African Americans. [Professor Oertel] has been a major help in figuring out which path is right for me in my studies post-graduation.”
  • “Lectures and readings complemented each other extremely well. Dr. Oertel communicated things at the perfect level – not too complicated or not too simple. Brilliantly navigated sensitive subject matters.”
  • “This course has broken down a lot of stereotypes or common misconceptions that many of us have on groups of people or topics that originated in colonial times. This class encouraged an understanding of broad concepts at play during the period of America’s colonial history. The course engaged in discovering how these concepts related to each other, the people of the time and how both people and cultures changed over time.”