Awards & Showcases
***Following Trent's decision to cancel all events, we're postponing the Celebration for Teaching Excellence. We'll reschedule -- and be sure to let you know our plans to recognize Trent's excellent teachers.***
One of Canada's top universities, Trent University is consistently recognized nationally and internationally for award-winning faculty who are committed to the success of the individual student. As dedicated mentors and teachers, Trent faculty pride themselves on making their classes and lessons both challenging and enjoyable for their students.
At a University renowned for teaching excellence, faculty members are honoured on an annual basis with a number of distinguished teaching awards. For taking the student experience to the next level, Trent’s teachers have also been recognized provincially and nationally with the most prestigious teaching awards and honours.
OUSA Award Celebration of Teaching Excellence
[From Left: Scott Henderson (Head of Trent Durham), Daniel Travers, Amanda Paxton, Jim Cosgrave, Joel Baetz, Alba Agostino, Cathy Bruce (Dean of Education, Teaching & Learning)]
On November 27, 2019, we held the inaugural OUSA Award Celebration of Teaching Excellence at Trent University Durham. The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) Teaching Excellence Award recognizes educators who excel at unlocking the potential of Ontario’s young people and successfully engaging individuals in the learning experience so as to spark the desire to learn in students.
This year, we celebrated these exceptional recipients of the OUSA Award for Teaching Excellence:
- Daniel Travers, History (2019)
- Alba Agostino, Child and Youth Studies (2018)
- Amanda Paxton, English Literature (2017)
- Joel Baetz, English Literature (2016)
- Jim Cosgrave, Sociology (2015)
- Ben Bauer, Psychology (2014)
Recent Award Recipients
SYMONS AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING (2019)
Wesley S. Burr (Mathematics)
Wesley Burr is recognized as a thoughtful, approachable, and attentive educator who stimulates curiosity and inspires and challenges students to do their best work in mathematics and statistics. Prof. Burr is lauded for his warmth, wisdom, compassion, and humour; his dynamic and interactive approaches to teaching; his demonstrated commitment to the success and wellbeing of every student; and his innovative development and use of technological tools and learning supports. His students also appreciate his kindness, patience, and humility; his concern, care, and respect for students; and how he regularly adapts his teaching style and the content of his courses to the individualized learning needs of the students.
AWARD FOR EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP AND INNOVATION (2019)
Sheldene Simola (School of Business)
Sheldene Simola is recognized as an inspiring educator and role model that has influenced and inspired past, current, and future generations of business leaders. She is highly regarded for creating learning environments that are active, interactive, reflective, and experiential, and that recognize and flexibly engage with the particular needs and goals of individual students. Prof. Simola is lauded for her ongoing innovation in course development and renewal, her care for the development, well-being, and success of her students, her dedication to helping students improve their awareness and understanding of ethical dilemmas, and her commitment to equipping her students to become life-long learners.
AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING ASSISTANCE (2019)
Sarah McNeilly (Cultural Studies and Media Studies)
Sarah McNeilly is recognized as a dedicated and dynamic educator whose authenticity, kindness, and enthusiasm create open, respectful, and supportive learning environments that enhance student confidence and success. She is highly regarded for consistently providing direct, meaningful, and encouraging feedback, and for helping students understand and apply challenging and abstract concepts. Her students also appreciate Ms. McNeilly’s strong sense of compassion, fabulous sense of humour, and insightful approach to fostering and facilitating rich and interactive discussions.
CUPE 3908-1 AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING (2019)
Sam Grey (International Development Studies)
Sam Grey is recognized as a dedicated and generous instructor and advocate for student success. The transformational learning communities that Ms. Grey creates are praised for fostering mutual respect and support amongst students while simultaneously inspiring students to excel as scholars in and beyond the classroom. Her students also appreciate how Ms. Grey focuses on facilitating individual and collective learning experiences; how she helps students gain comprehensive understandings of challenging concepts and theories; and how she provides extensive and empowering guidance, feedback, and mentorship.
AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN ONLINE TEACHING (2019)
Susan Yates (Biology)
Susan Yates is recognized as an outstanding online instructor whose passionate teaching is rooted in a deep commitment to student engagement and success. She is highly regarded for her clear and motivating expectations; her availability and responsiveness; and her well-organized learning environments that include weekly check lists, regular updates, and recommended timeframes for completion of course work. Her students also appreciate how Dr. Yates communicates challenging content in accessible and understandable ways using a variety of teaching approaches including learning modules, instructional videos, and live online tutorials.