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UH Hilo presents teaching awards

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Date: Monday, May 16, 2016
Contact: Alyson Kakugawa-Leong, (808) 932-7669

For Immediate Release

The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo honored members of its faculty with excellence in teaching awards during this year’s spring commencement held on May 14.

Dr. Mazen Hamad , associate professor of chemistry, is the recipient of the University of Hawai`I Board of Regents Excellence in Teaching Award. Described as a “superior teacher, researcher and departmental colleague,” Hamad ‘s classroom presentations bring the chemistry content to life and enable him to teach difficult subjects to a wide spectrum of students. Faculty and students alike say his strength in teaching lies in his keen ability to connect the theoretical with the practical, the lecture with the laboratory, and the conceptual with the skill-building as he applies the course material to real-world scenarios.

The Frances Davis Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching is presented to Computer Science Instructor Barbara Meguro. Her dedication and success in helping all of her students reach their full potential earned her the title of “Master-Teacher” from one noted colleague. Students describe her as enthusiastic, supportive, organized, knowledgeable about the subject matter and easy to understand as she excels in teaching both rigorous and introductory topics in the computer science curriculum. Her approach individualizes instruction for each of her students to maximize their chances for success.

Receiving the Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence is Celeste Staton, dance instructor. Staton has been considered the de facto head of the Dance program since joining the University in 1986. She is described as a consummate teacher and artiste extraordinaire, who works avidly with students and colleagues to maintain and guide the dance program, training neophytes to reach beyond the basics and inspiring advanced students to excel in new and challenging ways. Staton also worked with senior tenured faculty in shaping the Performing Arts major through two challenging reconfigurations, and collaborated with music and drama faculty to enhance performance opportunities for all performing arts majors.


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