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K-State Today

November 15, 2021

College of Arts and Sciences announces Stamey and Gaches Teaching Award winners

Submitted by Malorie Sougey

The College of Arts and Sciences announces the 2021 winners of the William L. Stamey Awards for undergraduate teaching and the Ronald N. Gaches Teaching Awards. All awardees are being recognized for outstanding teaching practices within the college.

Ron Gaches Lifetime Teaching Award

  • Lisa Tatonetti, English

Ron Gaches Teaching Award:

  • Kara Northway, English
  • Jessica Falcone, anthropology

William L. Stamey Award for Undergraduate Teaching:

  • Anne Longmuir, English
  • Rachel Levitt, gender, women, and sexuality studies

William L. Stamey Award for Graduate Teaching Assistant:

  • Billy Croslow, history
  • Elizabeth Hale, math

Ron Gaches Teaching Awards

Ron Gaches, former chair of the College of Arts and Sciences Alumni Council, established two teaching awards to acknowledge excellence in undergraduate teaching in the College of Arts and Sciences at Kansas State University.

The Ron Gaches Lifetime Teaching Award recognizes an outstanding teacher of undergraduate courses, who has taught at Kansas State University for a minimum of five years. The 2021 Ron Gaches Lifetime Teaching Award was awarded to Lisa Tatonetti, English.

Lisa Tatonetti
Students sing Tatonetti's praises: "She is a professor who cares about the well-being of her students, and she helps them to succeed both in and out of the classroom by offering herself up as a mentor in any way that she can," said one student.

"Her passion and thoughtfulness surrounding the content in her courses invites students to also become engaged with what they are learning about. Despite challenging us to think in new ways, it is in her classes where I have been the most comfortable to share my thoughts about the content and able to engage with my professor and classmates on a more personal level, knowing that what I say matters."

Karin Westman, head of the English department, said of Tatonetti: "From innovative course design to high impact pedagogies to campus programming to civic outreach, Lisa Tatonetti offers students life-changing experiences, prompting them to ask difficult questions about themselves and others on race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class as they navigate well-known and new literatures and histories. We're so pleased that her contributions could be recognized by the Gaches Lifetime Teaching Award."

The Ron Gaches Teaching Award recognizes tenured and tenure-track faculty who teach upper-level undergraduate classes — courses numbered 300-600 — and who engage in teaching innovations that improve pedagogical practices. Jessica Falcone, anthropology, and Kara Northway, English, have been awarded 2021 Ron Gaches Teaching Awards.

Jessica Falcone
Nominators said of Falcone, "She has certainly inspired countless undergraduate students across our campus. Dr. Falcone is a true example of a scholar-teacher, and her extensive research outputs also inform and drive aspects of her teaching. Dr. Falcone is recognized as an energetic and talented instructor, and she is a natural public speaker who brings a combination of exceptional knowledge, approachability, and interaction to her courses. Her teaching skills are routinely evaluated as exceptional by students. You could not ask for a more suitable professor for this award as she takes a strong interest in student development beyond her courses."

Kara Northway
Of Northway, nominators said "An expert in early modern literature, Shakespeare, the history of the book, and writing instruction, Kara for nearly 15 years has prioritized undergraduate learning and research. She has a long and distinguished record as a leader in pedagogy and innovative teaching practices at K-State. Dr. Northway is playful, clever, creative, and intentional in her pedagogy. Alongside her evident caring and compassion for students, Kara expects great things from them, nudging and spot-checking and insisting that they learn, grow, and value the work of becoming educated. In her practice and her essence, she embodies the ideal of a Gaches Undergraduate Teaching Award recipient."

William L. Stamey Awards

William L. Stamey is a mathematician and served as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences for 17 years from 1970-1987. In recognition of Stamey's outstanding record in recruiting excellent faculty to Kansas State University and in recognition of the continuing need to foster excellence in teaching and advising, the College of Arts and Sciences established the William L. Stamey Awards.

Stamey Undergradate Teaching Awards have been awarded to the following faculty members: Anne Longmuir, English and Rachel Levitt, gender, women, and sexuality studies.

The Stamey Awards for Graduate Teaching Assistant have been awarded to Billy Croslow, history, and Elizabeth Hale, mathematics.

To see a portion of what nominators said about these awardees, see below.

Anne Longmuir
"Beloved by peers and students alike, Longmuir has long labored to provide high-quality educational opportunities. A specialist in British Victorian literature and a faculty member who has contributed in significant measure to the advancement of teaching and learning across campus, Anne furthers the mission of K-State through her award-worthy instruction. She complements her classroom practices with close attention to the welfare of her students, who express profound appreciation for the amount of time and energy Anne has invested in their welfare."

Rachel Levitt
"Dr. Levitt has established themself as a supportive, challenging, and engaging teacher in both in-person and online formats, as well as outside the classroom. Moreover, they have become an important resource across campus for improving the climate for LGBTQ and gender-non-conforming students, as well as for improving pedagogy. Dr. Levitt's ability to welcome students into analysis of difficult, painful, and/or controversial topics has been developed through their sustained and reflective effort. They are not satisfied with a static level of achievement in their teaching, but rather continually seek out continuing opportunities to grow."

Billy Croslow
"Croslow holds his students to high standards while fostering an environment where students enjoy the fluid exchange of ideas in a safe space. Billy's independently taught courses combine compelling topics in U.S. history with a pedagogical style he has worked hard to refine over his years of teaching. Billy exceeds expectations for a graduate student at his level — or, for that matter, for a junior, tenure-track professor."

Elizabeth Hale
"Hale is an outstanding GTA in mathematics who goes well beyond what is expected in supporting all students. She shows students that they can succeed not just in solving a particular assignment but in mastering mathematics and being able to use it to succeed in other classes and in the rest of their life."

The College of Arts and Sciences congratulates all Stamey and Gaches awardees.

The awardees will be recognized at the College of Arts and Sciences commencement ceremony at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 11, in Bramlage Coliseum.

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