MISSOULA – The Montana University System has selected four University of Montana faculty members for its 2020 Teaching Scholars program, which strives to enhance student success and recognize faculty who have made exemplary contributions to teaching and learning at their institutions.
This year’s scholars are Monte Mills, associate professor and director of the Margery Hunter Brown Indian Law Clinic; Salena Beaumont Hill, adjunct professor in Native American Studies and the Rural Institute and Rising Native Graduates program manager at the American Indian Graduate Center; Andrew King-Ries, professor in the Alexander Blewett III School of Law; and Kate Brayko, associate professor in the Phyllis J. Washington College of Education’s Department of Teaching and Learning.
“The fact that four UM faculty members were chosen for this year’s Teaching Scholars program is a testament to UM’s commitment to teaching excellence,” said Acting Provost Reed Humphrey. “UM’s Office of Organizational Learning and Development has promoted faculty learning communities for a number of years. We’re excited that this MUS program is using this successful model to address societal inequities in the learning environment.”
Each year, the MUS Teaching Scholars program focuses on a selected theme that speaks to innovative approaches to teaching and that aligns with MUS teaching and learning priorities. As the nation grapples with social and racial injustices and MUS seeks to continue to address the ways that these injustices show up in the classroom, this year’s program is focused on “Equity-Minded Pedagogies.” Teaching scholars were chosen for their commitment to narrowing these gaps and to serving the MUS’s larger vision of making Montana public higher education accessible, valuable and equitable for all students.
“This year’s theme aligns with the Montana University System’s strategic goals around college access and success for all,” said Dr. Brock Tessman, deputy commissioner of academic research and student affairs for the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education. “We want to recognize the work being done in these areas and support the scholars as they lead their colleagues in building a community of excellence around equitable teaching practices.”
Scholars will receive a $1,500 award and a $500 stipend to design and facilitate a faculty learning community at their institution. This year’s cohort of Scholars is funded through support from the National Association of System Heads and the Lumina Foundation.
“We’re bringing together innovators from across the university system to share, learn and grow together,” said Tessman. “While the program celebrates and supports outstanding faculty, the true beneficiaries are our students, who will benefit from innovative teaching strategies that make learning more exciting and meaningful.”
Contact: Nathan Lindsay, UM vice provost for Academic Affairs, 406-243-4689, firstname.lastname@example.org.