A couple of weeks ago, we held this year’s Transforming Education Awards. Through these awards, we get to recognise and celebrate the dedication of our academic staff to their students, something which is often overlooked but can really have an impact on student experience. We can now announce all the winners, along with some quotes from their students and colleagues letting us know just how wonderful they are!
Advisor of the Year: Anna-Marie Fuller (CHE)
This award is to recognise the pastoral support that advisors provide to students, enabling them to feel supported in decisions of academic or welfare areas and who help students when in need.
“Anna has helped this year as a constant source of support, with no judgment or questions to students who may suffer from physical or mental health issues. She helps students prepare for and manage their deadlines and workload, whilst providing honest advice which the students find helpful.”
Advocate for Students Award: Owen Warnock (LAW)
The Advocate for Students Award is here to recognise a member of staff who goes above and beyond to put the students’ interests at the centre of what they do. This may be continuing a message from students up through the School, or be someone who fights for the student experience at every step.
“Owen goes above and beyond in his role as a lecturer, supporting the Law Society with careers events as a judge and mentor, as well as supporting students one on one with careers advice and mock interviews to help them progress.”
Equality and Diversity in Teaching Award: Helen Warner (PPL)
This award is for teaching which is most inclusive of equality and diversity values. This could be taking into consideration different learning needs and styles or by creating a diverse and socially conscious curriculum.
“Helen has introduced the module Gender and Power as well as promoting gender diversity at UEA and in projects around UEA in Norwich about this topic. She is continually open to feedback on the module to try and make it more inclusive despite already addressing issues of gender, race, sexuality and class.”
Innovative Teaching Award: Paul Mcdermott (PHA)
The award for most Innovative Teaching recognises teaching which involves creative and new ways of using technology or teaching methods, including new and exciting forms of assessment and feedback.
“Paul works in Pharmacy, lecturing in the Life Sciences Chemistry module. One nomination said he consistently uploads lectures and interactive videos in order for students to prepare for lectures as well as uploading short videos to Instagram to answer the more difficult chemistry questions he receives. He’s given everyone an individual report on their learning style and potential weak areas to develop.”
Postgraduate Research Director of the Year Award: Laura Camfield (DEV)
This award for PGR Director of the Year is to recognise those staff who go above and beyond their usual workload in order to support PhD students within their school, whether this be through academic or pastoral support, and help to build a community with a group of students who may otherwise be isolated.
“Laura has been nominated due to the DEV postgraduate research students believing she is an exceptional director and one who provides a rationale in examining issues and suggesting ways forward.”
PhD Support Award: Kenda Crozier (HSC)
This award recognises staff members who have shown dedication, enthusiasm and support to PhD students. This can include supervisors, or any other staff member a PhD student feels has strongly supported them.
“Kenda was nominated due to her being instrumental in enabling the PGR students’ voice within the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences to be heard. She was also pivotal in the development of the Bitesize PhD seminar series run by students for students and in securing high profile external speaker for the inaugural lecture.”
Best Associate/PhD tutor Award: James Woods (CHE)
The award for Best PhD/Associate Tutor recognises visiting staff or those teaching as part of their PhD who have made a particular impression on their students.
“James has been an inspiration in Chemistry, engaging students in topics that they usually may not. He provides essential support as a demonstrator taking students through advanced labs with the right amount of reassurance. Students have said that they are now considering a PhD in their future due to James’ inspiration and other claim they would not have got through their degree without James developing their confidence in pressured situations.”
Student Partnership Officer of the Year Award: Joel Halcomb (HIS)
This award is to recognise the work of Student Partnership Officers in each area. Reasons could include whether they have gone the extra mile to encourage representation from all levels and courses in your School or regularly help students engage with representation and encourage to use the Student Voice.
“Joel has been extremely conscientious in having student involvement in the agenda enabling a meaningful and appropriate agenda for the meetings. He seeks out reasoning and evidence behind the agenda items and invites related staff members to the committees to address certain topics. Joel has been an approachable, kind-hearted and truly selfless member of staff, and this is best shown through the adoration that students have for him.”
Support Staff of the Year Award: Scott Brown (LDC)
The award for Support Staff Member of the Year recognises non-academic staff who are friendly, helpful and supportive of students and who work with students to improve their service.
“Nominations for Scott, showed that he doesn’t just wait for students to go to him, but actively engages and encourages individuals. He makes time for pastoral needs often acting as a friend whilst maintaining a professional manner as well as providing opportunities and events for the area of Drama.”
Inspirational Teaching Award: Martin Scott (DEV)
The award for Most Inspiring Teaching recognises passionate teaching that encourages and inspires students to believe in their abilities and to strive for the most out of their education.
“Martin has been praised by students for constantly encouraging students to engage with a wide range of perspectives and matters. The videos and readings he uses in his lessons are sources from a range of academics from diverse background and he consistently asks for feedback from students about the modules he teaches. He sends weekly email updates outlining the topics of week as well as any readings or questions students may like to consider when preparing with teaching.”
Transforming Education Award: Joel Halcomb (HIS)
The overall Transforming Education Award is for those exceptional teachers who have been nominated across the board and should be recognised for their general contribution to teaching.
“There was one nominee that stood out across all the categories and nominations. This person received nominations across five of the award categories and received high praise from students who had contact with him. Student nominations stated that this person has helped their academic area have a proactive approach to student feedback on common issues such assessment and feedback and encouraging new mechanisms in response such as a new assessment feedback form.? He has also helped to foster a PhD community in his school creating opportunities to discuss and promote a student led Postgraduate Group as well as advocating for Associate Tutors to be further supported. In his lectures students have said he is engaging and enables them to achieve their full potential, whether by helping students when finding something difficult or by helping to potentially approach their studies in a different way to fit with University life. ?Student nominations also said that makes it feel like he really cares about each individual student having the best possible experience and is a real asses to the School of History.”