By Jack Goods, communication specialist in the Office of Marketing and Communication
Four Marquette faculty members were honored with the university’s highest teaching honor, the Teaching Excellence Award, and one faculty member received the Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award at the 64th Annual Père Marquette Dinner, Thursday, May 4, in the AMU Monaghan Ballrooms.
In recognition of their demonstrated ability to inspire students to grow in knowledge and scholarship for the glory of God and the good of others, the 2023 Teaching Excellence Award winners are:
- Dr. Kathleen Lukaszewicz, clinical associate professor of physical therapy
- Dr. Bryan Rindfleisch, associate professor of history
- Dr. Melissa Shew, teaching associate professor of philosophy
- Dr. Albert Rivero, professor of English
Marquette’s Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award was established to recognize one faculty member and one staff member who each demonstrate exemplary leadership and have shown an ability to put the ideals of diversity, equity and inclusion into practical action. The Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award faculty winner is Dr. Lillian Campbell, associate professor of English.
Teaching Excellence Awards
Dr. Kathleen Lukaszewicz, clinical associate professor of physical therapy in the College of Health Sciences
Dr. Kathleen Lukaszewicz is praised for her adaptability, displaying an ability to teach to a multitude of learning styles in a rigorous academic environment. She additionally is known to go above and beyond for her students, as displayed by her efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic that maximized one-on-one instruction. Lukaszewicz’s commitment has helped her students’ score one standard deviation above the national average in her specialized content areas.
“Our students leave for clinical practice with a knowledge base in Dr. Lukaszewicz’s areas of expertise in pathophysiology and cardiopulmonary function that is competitive with the highest ranked programs in the country,” said Dr. Allison Hyngstrom, professor and chair of physical therapy, “and this confers an extra advantage for our students in the clinic.”
Lukaszewicz serves as director of graduate studies for the Department of Physical Therapy’s master’s and Ph.D. programs and is a major reason Marquette’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program is ranked No. 13 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
“I feel incredibly honored to be recognized for my role in the education of future physical therapists,” Lukaszewicz said. “I find daily inspiration from the individual student who suddenly finds clarity in the complex. To aid and witness these light-bulb moments is absolute magic. This award widened my lens so I could see that these small moments have made a big impact. Thank you to all my colleagues, students and former students who contributed letters and other forms of support for this award. I am so lucky to be at Marquette doing what I love.”
Dr. Bryan Rindfleisch, associate professor of history in the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Bryan Rindfleisch’s work is guided by his desire to bring attention to those who have been not just marginalized in — but even erased from — our society. For example, with the Educational Preparedness Program, Rindfleisch is part of a collective that aims to bring together groups who have experienced an array of diverse and difficult life experiences through a lens of pain, vulnerability and healing. Similarly, through the Indigeneity Lab, he is a part of a team thinking beyond the research to what projects could mean for present and future generations of Native students at Marquette and Native communities in Milwaukee and throughout Wisconsin.
“He is committed to helping students, faculty and the wider public understand how the past continues to shape our present, and thus act to address historical wrongs,” said Dr. Lezlie Knox, chair and associate professor of history.
Rindfleisch is involved in several public history projects, including an app that provides a walking or biking tour of Indigenous Milwaukee, and has contributed to the university through work with Indigenous student groups, the YMCA Unlearning Racism program, University Academic Senate and department committees, and many other similar such service activities.
“Receiving this award is incredibly humbling and an honor that I do not altogether deserve, in my opinion,” Rindfleisch said. “I am the product of so many different teachers and mentors, all of whom have modeled what it is to be a good human being in life and how to respectfully but critically engage other people in the histories and ideas of the many communities that make up our world today.”
Dr. Melissa Shew, teaching associate professor of philosophy in the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Melissa Shew’s teaching style is defined by a core principle: talking with, not at, students in her class. She aims to create an environment that both welcomes and challenges students from all backgrounds to enter into philosophical conversations and leave her class as empowered learners. Her commitment to letting students know that what they think, who they are and what they do matters has led many to praise her engagement in the classroom.
“Dr. Shew represents the epitome of Ignatian pedagogy,” said Dr. Lezlie Knox, associate professor and interim chair of philosophy. “Her teaching embraces Marquette’s mission, with human flourishing serving as her guiding principle throughout an array of classes that are constantly student-centered.”
Shew has taught a variety of courses throughout her 12 years at Marquette, ranging from introductory to upper division — including courses within the Executive MBA program — in addition to serving as a senior faculty fellow in the Center for Teaching and Learning, faculty director of the EMBA program and co-director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership.
A quote from Brazilian educator and philosopher Paulo Freire particularly resonates with Shew: “I teach because I search, because I question, and because I submit myself to questioning. I research because I notice things, take cognizance of them. And in so doing, I intervene. And intervening, I educate and educate myself.”
Dr. Albert Rivero, professor of English in the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Albert Rivero has taught at Marquette for 41 years, transforming generations of students’ appreciation of art, literature and film. Throughout the decades, Rivero’s course content has remained fresh — helped by the fact that he discards his notes at the end of each term to start afresh. As noted by Dr. Gerry Canavan, associate professor and chair of English, Rivero is an institution within the department.
“Dr. Rivero’s commitment to Marquette and to our students is visible in everything he does,” Canavan said. “Over the course of his career here he has been an embodiment of the teacher-scholar model we use at Marquette, using his research to direct his teaching and using his teaching to guide his research.”
Rivero is commended for his championing of women’s writing and feminist approaches to literature, as displayed in his popular and long-running Jane Austen course.
“I’m overwhelmed with gratitude to my family, my colleagues in the English Department, and, most of all, the students I have taught for the last 41 years at Marquette for this award,” Rivero said. “I have been fortunate to have a job that I love and to have spent my life surrounded by amazing human beings. Because late in coming, this award means more to me now than it would have earlier in my career. Thank you!”
Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Faculty Award
Dr. Lillian Campbell, associate professor of English in the Klingler College of Arts and Sciences
Dr. Lillian Campbell has garnered a reputation as a successful instructor and mentor for both undergraduate and graduate students, especially with respect to matters of diversity and inclusion. Her commitment has been displayed through her work co-designing the Foundations in Rhetoric course — the only course that nearly every first-year student at Marquette must take — alongside Dr. Cedric Burrows to meet the ever-changing lived experiences of students.
“Through her management and mentoring of the courses’ graduate and NTT instructors, and her redesign of the Foundations in Rhetoric course trajectory to incorporate a timely Black Lives Matter module, Dr. Campbell has helped transform this course into an absolutely life-changing experience for our first years,” said Dr. Gerry Canavan, chair and associate professor of English.
Campbell also serves as a faculty fellow with the Institute for Women’s Leadership and has worked to increase on-campus resources during times of pain for members of the campus community and developed summer reading communities devoted to anti-racism and pedagogy. Her efforts are guided by a lens of helping students, colleagues and herself recognize the ways that language and communication have always been and will continue to be sites of both oppression and resistance.
“I am incredibly grateful for Marquette’s recognition of our work in Foundations in Rhetoric to foster student understanding of the relationship between language, race and culture,” Campbell said. “In the process of developing and revising this curriculum and supporting instructors over the last three years, I have continued to grow in my own understanding of anti-racist practices, and I recognize everyday how that work is ongoing and incomplete. I am honored to accept this recognition on behalf of all of the instructors and students in our program who do the daily work of navigating difficult conversations, challenging prior beliefs and striving for a more equitable future.”
Marquette Core Curriculum Teaching Excellence Award
Dr. Bin Wang, associate professor of finance in the College of Business Administration
Dr. Bin Wang stood out from the excellent slate of 2023 nominees for the numerous nominations submitted by his students. The nominators praised him for his substantive contributions to their growth as “Global Problem Solvers,” one of the MCC’s six learning outcomes that focuses on “cooperative and cross-disciplinary problem-solving” via “innovative solutions” meant to “address the increasingly blurred lines between local and global challenges.”
Students specifically highlighted Wang’s ability to translate complicated concepts in international finance into approachable lessons, his carefully curated roster of engaging guest-speakers, and his creative incorporation of real-world examples. As one nominator concluded, Wang “truly exemplifies the Marquette motto ‘Be the Difference.’”
“This award means a lot to me!” Wang said. “I really appreciate my students nominating me. I’m grateful to have such amazing students at Marquette! This award will spur me to continue trying different things in classrooms and prepare students for the challenges in the world.”
Way Klingler Teaching Enhancement Award
Faculty team from the Department of Physics, Klingler College of Arts and Sciences:
- Dr. David Haas, assistant professor of practice in physics
- Dr. Andrew Kunz, professor and chair of physics
- Dr. Jax Sanders, assistant professor of physics
- Melissa Vigil, laboratory supervisor in physics
The team is currently working on a project titled “Improving Student Outcomes in Calculus-based Introductory Physics,” which will improve upon and expand changes to the introductory calculus-based physics sequence meant to decrease DFW rates and improve overall student success. This initiative will help improve upon and expand the Department of Physics’ implementation of course-embedded tutors and its newly commissioned Physics Help Room.
Committee on Teaching members praised the strong project rationale based on national research and potential contribution to the university student success initiative to reduce high-DFW rates. Committee members also praised the potential for this project to be adapted across campus by different programs.