Learning to teach is one of the most important things that graduate students do as part of their professional development. In their roles as Teaching Fellows and Part-time Acting Instructors, they may be nominated for Prize Teaching Fellowships by Yale College students through a letter directed to the Yale College Dean’s Office at the end of the fall and spring terms. The content of these letters, good academic standing, a satisfactory Dissertation Progress Report, and positive remarks from their department chairs will help determine the Selection Committee’s final decision.
The Prize Teaching Fellowships are among the most important honors that Yale bestows upon graduate students. This year, 11 students were the worthy recipients of Prize Teaching Fellowships, which includes a cash prize of $3000. They were honored at a dinner on November 12, 2019, hosted by Lynn Cooley, Dean of the Graduate School and Marvin Chun, Dean of Yale College.
Congratulations go to this year’s Prize Teaching Fellows:
Samuel Bhutto (Chemistry) for his stand-out combination of “teacher, fellow scientist, mentor and friend” which he embodied with “refreshing grace.”
Joshua Gailey (Historical Musicology) for his musical intuition and leadership qualities which befit “a wonderful teacher with a contagious passion for music.”
Brandon Hubbard (Cellular & Molecular Physiology) for his enthusiasm, preparation, and willingness to “go beyond the textbook” which rejuvenated students’ “excitement for attending medical, veterinary, dental and other graduate schools.”
Lucia Hulsether (Religious Studies) a second-time prize recipient, for her “brilliant intellectual attention” and demonstrating “everything that makes for a great professor: intention, creativity, and focus on student success.”
LiLi Johnson (American Studies) for “formidable gifts as a researcher, critical scholar and writer which have also made her an excellent teacher.”
Marko Mitrovic (Computer Science) for “going above and beyond the call of duty every time” to give students extra help “without undermining the complexity of the material.”
Ahyan Panjwani (Economics) for his “excellent teaching methods, clear and precise explanations, and constant concern for student understanding.”
Javier Portillo (Molecular, Cellular & Developmental Biology) for “competence in the subject matter which was only matched by the lengths he would go to ensure students were on their way to mastery as well.”
Cera Smith (English Language & Literature) for her work on a new lecture course Love and Hate in the American South with the prediction that she “will go on to become an outstanding professor in the coming years.”
Yingqi Tang (Political Science) for combining “rigor and high expectations with an infectious sense of discovery” to create a class setting “where students are expected to be active learners and participants.”
Sarah Zager (Religious Studies) for section discussions that made Philosophy of Religion “so engaging and fascinating that they always ended far too soon. Students would continue the discussion on their way out of class and then stop on Cross Campus to stand and talk some more.”