SOE faculty and instructors were nominated by their students for the 2020 Golden Apple Award:
- Diane Aretz, Lecturer
- Peter Riley Bahr, Associate Professor
- Angela Calabrese Barton, Professor
- Nell Duke, Professor
- Donald Freeman, Professor
- Nicole Garcia, Lecturer and Chief Program Officer at Teaching Works
- Maisie Gholson, Assistant Professor
- Simona Goldin, Lecturer and Director of Instructional Design for Seminars and Special Programs for TeachingWorks
- Rachel Rennie Klingelhofer, Field Instructor and Elementary Education Lecturer
- Liz Keren Kolb, Clinical Associate Professor
- Vilma Mesa, Professor of Education and Professor of Mathematics, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts
- Pamela Moss, Professor
- Don Peurach, Associate Professor
- Chris Quintana, Associate Professor
- Susan Santone, Lecturer
- Kerri Wakefield, Lecturer and Director, Engineering Advising Center
- Camille Wilson, Professor
This honor is the only campus-wide award for faculty that is organized and decided upon by students to recognize exceptional faculty at the University. More than 1,000 students submitted nominations this year.
Diane Aretz's nomination letter stated, "She purposefully created an atmosphere in which we felt compelled to share our experiences, thoughts, and ideas, both from our own daily lives and in general, as they pertained to our curriculum. Furthermore, Diane equipped us with a thorough, working knowledge of how to engage students deeper in their own literacy practices by creating meaningful pre-, during, and post-reading activities for the texts we teach to our students. My learning from Diane's class has become very important in my current work. This semester I am student teaching at Hartland High School nearly full time (30 hours a week) and the strategies that I learned in Diane's class have been immeasurably helpful in this context."
Peter Bahr's nomination letter stated his commitment to encouraging student growth: "Having experience as a teacher, I know how hard it is to differentiate learning when a class is as diverse as an introductory to quantitative research methods. I know it is hard to keep everyone engaged and encourage students to continually push themselves to do better. Dr. Bahr did just this and it amazed me. Not only did he keep me engaged and his students motivated to push themselves, he was personable and I knew he cared about us, quantitative researchers. Thank you for pushing me Dr. Bahr and more so thank you for getting me to push myself out of my comfort zone!".
One of Angela Calabrese Barton's nominators said, "Angie Calabrese Barton created one of the most important learning spaces I’ve ever experienced as a student and an aspiring teacher. She carved out time each class and designed meaningful activities that oriented each student to each other, creating professional partnerships that will ensure beyond our time at UMich. She was responsive and adaptive, creating time for rich dialogue that moved into deeply personal territory, absolutely essential for the academic content we were engaging. Her feedback on essays and proposals were robust, substantive, and dialogical. The amount of in-text comments was truly humbling, knowing that a teacher so thoughtfully engaged my work like she did."
Nell Duke's nominator wrote, "Nell worked hard to help all students succeed, she was always working and changing the class to make it more equitable using our feedback that she collected several times and things that she noticed. She truly cared about each student and their needs. She is absolutely amazing and so knowledgeable. I wish I could take all of my classes with her!"
A student wrote of Donald Freeman, "Donald Freeman has an outstanding approach to deliver the knowledge of the content and has a very impressive personality dealing with students from diverse backgrounds, cultures and countries."
Garcia's nomination letter stated, "Nicole taught material that solidified my understanding of modern pedagogical philosophy, engaged with each students' learning, and gave timely and meaningful feedback to students on each assignment and in class."
Students nominating Maisie Gholson wrote, "Dr. Gholson has been an amazing instructional lead in the teaching program in the School of Education. Having learned from her in the capacities of student and colleague, I can honestly say that Dr. Gholson is such an amazing mentor who pushes your thinking and also allows you to develop your own ideas with her support. She has been incredibly invested in her student's learning as instructors and it has been such an amazing experience to learn under her." Other comments included, "Prof. Gholson helped push my understanding of multicultural education with a very engaging and important course. A very approachable person and I am lucky to have had her as my teacher!" and "They are extremely dedicated and passionate about their field, and work hard to share this passion and love for learning with others."
One of Goldin's nominators said, "She is a phenomenal educator who teaches others also to be phenomenal educators, or at least to recognize the pertinence of sound pedagogy, regardless of the profession you go into. She is the reason why I am going into education." Another student wrote, "Dr. Goldin is an exceptional teacher. She takes the time to learn each student's name, give personal and meaningful feedback and engage her students in a variety of ways. Her classes touch on hard topics that can be difficult to discuss but she creates a welcoming space and invites everyone to share their opinion. Her passion and devotion for helping others is what has inspired me to pursue a career helping others and it has sparked my interest in education."
A student who nominated Klingelhofer said that Rachel is extremely kind, down to earth, and a knowledgeable professor who puts her heart into helping students become the best educators they can be. “You can tell she is passionate about what she does. She is so supportive and helpful,” said another student.
Liz Kolb's nomination letter says, "Dr. Liz Kolb fosters a welcoming learning environment that makes everyone feel valued and validated. Her passion for edtech is contagious. I appreciate that she does work both within the university and in the local community. She has significantly supported my learning and her insight has contributed to my academic and personal growth. Her research positively impacts the field of education and technology and her efforts to support how these fields impact adolescents and children are indispensable."
One of Vilma Mesa's nominators said she is "supportive, brilliant, inclusive, intellectually brave, always teaching in all contexts, curious." Another student said that Mesa is "highly intentional and puts a lot of effort in the course that she is teaching and provides constructive feedback."
Students who nominated Pamela Moss said, "Dr. Moss was an exceptional instructor. She employed effective pedagogical practices, including scaffolding and qualitative research skills, in our introductory methods course. Beyond being a brilliant scholar and patient instructor, she was incredibly personable and kind. She is perhaps one of the best instructors I have had in my graduate school experience." and "Pamela goes above and beyond to ensure that each student is learning the course content and able to apply it to their own work. She makes time to meet with each student outside of class multiple times throughout the semester, provides insightful comments on written work, and incorporates student feedback into her class structure each week."
Don Peurach's nomination letter said, "Don's approach to teaching prioritizes scholarship, meaning that he supports us in making sense of complex systems (i.e., education) through thoughtful study, reflection, questioning, and writing. Don explicitly presents scholarship as the goal of graduate school and therefore centers our collective efforts on making progress toward this goal. This has been unique and important for me, and one of the qualities that makes Don an outstanding teacher." Another student wrote, "Don works incredibly hard to ensure that all of his students achieve success. His genuine care for his students shows throughout everything that he does. When speaking with other students who know him well, the most common descriptor of Don is that of a dad—the highest praise for a teacher that I have ever heard. I so appreciate all of his support through my graduate career, and know that it would not have been the same without him, and will miss him when I'm no longer a student!"
Susan Santone's nomination letter said, "Professor Santone is the most energetic, organized and passionate teacher I've had at Michigan! She always makes an effort to make her classes engaging, meaningful, and practical for the future (I've taken her classes as a grad student in the school of education)."
One student nominating Kerri Wakefield said, "Kerri was the best instructor I've had during my time here at Michigan. She was incredibly responsive to student needs and feedback. She was engaging and focused on developing our skills in real time with many class activities. She was incredibly committed to DEI efforts in class and also when choosing readings." Another stated, "Kerri's assignments for Advising Approaches and Skills included diverse viewpoints and represented students from many different backgrounds. The design of the course blended having conversations with professionals in the field, role-play, and a flipped classroom in it's structure. This course was universally accepted among my peers in our cohort as the best class to take in our master's program. Kerri modeled good practice as an academic advisor through her teaching methodology and in instances where students needed help. Personally, I had issues completing a major assignment and she worked with me to understand the process with both extending the assignment and providing an opportunity to take an incomplete for the course."
Camille Wilson's nominators stated, "Dr. Wilson is truly invested in her student's growth and learning. As a student in her class my thoughts have been pushed in important and critical ways and I learned so much from her. She is an engaging professor and provides amazing and critical feedback." Another student wrote, "Dr. Wilson is a skilled and knowledgeable pedagogue who selects readings and class activities that are well scaffolded and help students understand course concepts within the field."
Due to the spread of COVID-19, the Golden Apple committee has postponed their annual award ceremony—held traditionally in April—to October 5.