Eastern Michigan University
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Sharon Vance wins PTL Distinguished Teaching Award

Sharon VanceThe Chemistry Department is very proud of Sharon Vance, winner of the EMU Part-time Lecturers Distinguished Teaching Award.  Sharon is a home-grown EMU alum, having earned both her BS and MS degrees in our department.  While a graduate student, Sharon worked as a laboratory teaching assistant, where she received excellent evaluations from both students and faculty.  She developed great rapport with students with her down-to-earth approach.  As a sign of things to come, she won our Graduate Teaching Award in 1994. 

            Sharon’s fondness for teaching led her to join the department as a lecturer in 1996.  Her instruction assignments have become quite varied in the past few years, from general education courses to the allied health course in organic and biochemistry (these are particularly difficult introductory courses---students come in terrified about chemistry, and Sharon is able to allay their fears without lowering her standards), to majors courses in general chemistry and most recently, the biochemistry survey course.  She has excellent teaching evaluations, and we hear only positive comments from her students. 

            Sharon is an all-around caring person who is sensitive to the needs of her students and friendly with her coworkers.  She also is an excellent role model for young women with an interest in science. She regularly volunteers for outreach activities that require her time on weekends and over breaks, one example being “Digital Divas”, exciting middle school girls about science.  She has run a forensic science summer camp, and has participated in CSIE training, further demonstrating her commitment to teaching, even outside the classroom.  With her great sense of humor and laid back nature, unexpected situations in the lecture or laboratory do not phase her; she handles them all professionally and never complains.  She is willing to accept any assignment, even a course that meets late in the evening.

Prof. Nord, one of her nominators, stated: “I have assisted with the department’s course scheduling for over 25 years. As such, I pay close attention to…ensure that we have the right people teaching the right courses. We can put Sharon into any introductory course (or more advanced course, within her area of expertise) and we know that she will conscientiously do an excellent job, students will be happy with the quality of instruction received and they will be prepared for the next step of their educational journey. That's as good as it gets.”

Congratulations, Sharon!

- Posted 3/28/18

 

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The Department of Chemistry is part of the College of Arts & Sciences, 214 Pray-Harrold