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Lindback and Provost's Awards
Sketches of the 2006 Winners

Lindback Reception: Thursday, April 20

The Lindback Society
cordially invites all members of the University community
to
a reception honoring the
recipients of the
Provost’s and
Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation Awards
for Distinguished Teaching

2005—2006

Thursday, April 20
4–6 p.m.
Bodek Lounge
Houston Hall

 

Non-Health Schools
  • Daniel Lee
  • Gary Molander
  • Nicholas Souleles
  • Sharon Thompson-Schill
  • Provost's Award: Louis Rulli
  • Health Schools
  • David Asch
  • Emma Elizabeth Furth
  • Catherine Manno
  • Thomas Sollecito
  • Provost's Award: Michael Baime
  • Non-Health Schools

    Daniel Lee

    Daniel Lee

    Daniel Lee, Associate Professor, Graduate Chair, Departments of Electrical and Systems Engineering and Bioengineering, received his B.A. from Harvard and his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He joined the Penn faculty as an assistant professor in 2001 in the departments of electrical and systems engineering and bioengineering.  His impact on a wide group of students goes well beyond classroom education. Since he joined the Penn faculty, he has been the most sought-after advisor in his department for the senior design projects all undergraduate students must perform. As a result, he single-handedly advises more students than anyone else in the department. Quantity does not, in this case, decrease the quality of advice;  projects he supervises have regularly won the award for best senior design project.  His classroom teaching is equally well-regarded. One student describes his class as being “as challenging as it was fun,” since it allowed students to re-examine some fundamental concepts from a fresh perspective.  Another described him as “one of our outstanding professors,” because he is “very passionate about his work and cares about his students.” He is also known for being “creative and interested in exploring many avenues” in his  teaching, rather than “playing it safe.”  Many students mentioned his accessibility and willingness to be helpful. As one said, “He has in a true sense been a Guru for me, one who shows the path towards light and success and also helps in attaining it.”

     

    Gary Molander

    Gary Molander

    Gary Molander, Allan Day Professor of Chemistry, received his B.S. from Iowa State University and his Ph.D. from Purdue University. He joined the Penn faculty in the chemistry department in 1999. One of his colleagues has characterized him as “a great teacher and a brilliant chemist.” He works with both undergraduate and graduate students. For graduate students, “his well-earned reputation as a cutting-edge researcher makes his one of the most highly sought-after groups in the department.”  He is also known as a mentor, who goes “above and beyond the call of duty in helping his graduate students to write their letters, make contacts and find the best possible positions.” On the undergraduate level, he teaches one of the most difficult courses: Organic Chemistry. It is a testament to his skill as a teacher that students describe him as “phenomenal,” “fantastic,” “amazing,” and “the best professor I have had at Penn.” One said, “I’ll be sad to lose this class next fall.” Another called him, “the Dalai Lama” of Organic Chemistry, remarking that the course is “massively tough, but ultimately satisfyingly challenging.” In particular, many students focused on his ability to express “complicated concepts with a distinct clarity and defined simplicity.” Students also commented on his accessibility and his willingness to help them outside of class. One student concluded:  “Molander rocks!”

     

    Nicholas Souleles

    Nicholas Souleles

    Nicholas Souleles, Associate Professor of Finance, received his B.S.E. from Princeton University in 1988 and his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1995, whereupon he joined the Finance Department in the Wharton School at Penn. One colleague described him as a “teacher, scholar and leader whose generosity with his time, insight and judgment has greatly benefited generations of students.” At all levels (undergraduate, M.B.A. and Ph.D.), his course evaluations are outstanding.  Students at all of these levels spoke highly of his “personal qualities and leadership skills,” as well as his “talent for simplifying very complex subject matter into coherent, understandable segments.” One student reported: “I learned so much from Professor Souleles and find that his teaching had a permanent effect.” Another described his class as “one of the academic high points of my college experience.” And his influence extends outside the classroom. One student called him, “not only an incredible source of knowledge but also a role model for his students.” Many referred to his passion for the subject matter, and his ability to kindle a similar passion in those who take his classes. As one student said, “When a professor is truly dedicated to his subject, it is evident in the fierce drive and passion with which he delivers his lecture. Professor Souleles possessed this quiet intensity.”

     

    Sharon Thompson-Schill

    Sharon Thompson-Schill

    Sharon Thompson-Schill, Class of 1965 Endowed Term Associate Professor of Psychology and Neurology, received her B.A. from Davidson College and her Ph.D. from Stanford University. She joined the Penn faculty in the Psychology Department in 1999.  One colleague has described her as being, “as close to being a perfect teacher as anyone I have seen,” and “a superb undergraduate lecturer,” as well as “a highly popular and effective supervisor of independent undergraduate research,” and her department’s most popular graduate student mentor. In addition, she single-handedly created the Psychology Department’s new Honors Program.  One graduate student spoke of her as, “very possibly . . . the most influential teacher and mentor I have had here,”  and went on to call her proseminar, “the most challenging class I have taken in the graduate program here, but it was also the most rewarding.” An undergraduate student commented on her lecture: “Energetic and articulate, she transforms a multitude of details into a coherent and startlingly thorough understanding of a difficult topic.”  Students also remarked on her availability outside the classroom. “She encourages students to come to her office with questions and stays up late on nights before exams replying to e-mailed questions.” In short, “Dr. Thompson-Schill stands out due to her undying commitment to engage students throughout their time in her class and well beyond.”

     

    Louis Rulli

    Louis Rulli

    Louis Rulli, Practice Professor of Law,received his B.A. from Rutgers University and his J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law. He joined the Penn Law School faculty as an associate practice professor of law in 1995, and was promoted to practice professor in 2001. The Dean of the Law School describes him as having had, “a fundamental impact on the educational programs at the Law School as well as a profound influence on the professional and personal goals of a generation of students.” By developing and teaching courses in legislation and public interest law, he broadened the spectrum of educational options available to Penn law students. Many of these students have been profoundly affected by these courses and his teaching of them. As one student said about his class, “I will never forget this course or the lessons I learned during the semester.” She reported that Professor Rulli, “made me ponder much deeper questions,” than she otherwise would have. Another called his classroom, “a vibrant learning environment; a  space for exploration and examination of each student’s goals and achievements.” Students remarked upon his attention not only to each individual case but also to each individual student, challenging them to produce their best work.  One student stated of his class: “I believe that every student at Penn should have this immense learning opportunity before they graduate.”

    Health Schools

    David Asch

    David Asch

    David Asch, Robert D. Eilers Professor of Medicine and Health Care Management and Economics, received his A.B. from Harvard University, his M.D. from Cornell University, and his M.B.A. from the Wharton School at Penn. He joined the Penn faculty as an assistant professor of medicine in 1989. Dr. Asch currently holds a joint appointment between the Medical School and the Wharton School’s department of health care systems. He has developed innovative and enduring educational programs at multiple levels of training and spanning multiple parts of the University. Known as a “phenomenal” teacher, his commitment and skill as a mentor are “legendary,” characterized by selflessness and a keen sense of judgment. For his work in this area, he received the inaugural Arthur K. Asbury Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award from the School of Medicine. His students have called his guidance “fantastic,” and “amazing.” One student highlighted his “ability to captivate the class,” and said he often wished class would last longer than the allotted time.  Another called him “an extraordinarily gifted and creative communicator, guide and mentor.”  He pointed out that Dr. Asch “can influence 18-year-old freshmen as well as 58-year-old healthcare executives.”  This influence is indicated in one student’s letter when he says: “It would be impossible to overstate the impact of David’s teaching on my development as an independent scientist.”

     

    Emma Elizabeth Furth

    Emma Elizabeth Furth

    Emma Elizabeth Furth, Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, received her B.S. and M.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and her M.D. from the University of Chicago. She joined the standing faculty of the Penn School of Medicine in 1991 as an assistant professor of pathology and laboratory medicine. Currently, she plays an enormous role in resident training, both as a key senior pathologist and as associate director of the surgical pathology section within the department’s division of anatomic pathology. In the course of her clinical service commitments, she is exposed to virtually every trainee in the department’s residency program. When working with these trainees, Dr. Furth is noted for her ability to explain ideas conceptually, to pose thoughtful questions, and thus to help students integrate knowledge, rather than emphasizing memorization. Her students also noted that she “communicated a genuine passion for the material, for her teaching and for her students.” One called her, “one of the most dedicated teachers of Pathology I have ever met.” Another noted that she, “spends countless hours working with the residents, encouraging their skills [and] challenging them to ask questions.” Her long-term impact is demonstrated in the fact that a student remarked:  “I really believe Dr. Furth has given all of us a huge advantage in understanding pathology for the rest of our careers.”

     

    Catherine Manno

    Catherine Manno

    Catherine Manno, Professor of Pediatrics, Associate Chair, Clinical Activities, Department of Pediatrics, CHOP, received her A.B. from Duke University and her M.D. from Hahnemann Medical College. She joined the Penn School of Medicine faculty in 1988 as assistant professor of pediatrics. Since her appointment, she has devoted herself to teaching and mentoring. Although her administrative duties have expanded over the years, her commitment to education has never wavered. In recognition of this, she has received teaching awards from the School of Medicine, including the Blockley-Osler Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching and the Robert Dunning Dripps Memorial Award for Excellence in Graduate Medical Education. One student reports that she has “an uncanny ability to make the most complex and demanding subjects both accessible and memorable,” and calls her “an ideal role model.” Another characterized her as “an exemplary clinical mentor and teacher,” noting that however busy the clinic is, “she always takes the time to educate her fellows, residents and medical students.” Her course evaluations have been consistently outstanding. She is known for her enthusiasm and for embracing the most challenging cases as an opportunity to teach. One student said she was inspired by Dr. Manno because she is, “the most knowledgeable, caring and committed physician I have had the pleasure to work with.”

     

    Thomas Sollecito

    Thomas Sollecito

    Thomas Sollecito, Associate Professor of Oral Medicine, received his B.S. from Villanova University and his D.M.D. from Penn.  He joined the faculty of the School of Dental Medicine in 1993 as clinical assistant professor of oral medicine. Since starting at Penn, Dr. Sollecito’s teaching has been multifaceted, including not only work in the classroom but also in the clinic, the operating room and grand rounds.  His classroom teaching evaluations by pre-doctoral dental students have consistently been stellar while teaching a diverse set of disciplines.  One student stated: “his lectures are especially coherent and because of his great skill to have interactive lectures the information conveyed to us becomes lasting knowledge.” Another said of his lectures that they are, “focused to his topic, concise, practical, well organized, dynamic, fun, creative, interesting.” Dr. Sollecito is also revered as a mentor by many dental students.  One said, “as a result of the time I spent with Tom, . . . I decided to focus my interests on oral medicine.” He called Dr. Sollecito “the model clinician-educator.” Another reported that, “Dr. Sollecito has proven a dynamic teacher, with the ability to not only change the way students and residents view a particular subject, but more important to energize them and motivate them to learn it with an unparalleled zeal.”

     

    Michael Baime

    Michael Baime

    Michael Baime, Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, received his B.A. from Haverford College and his M.D. from Penn. He joined the Penn standing faculty as a clinical assistant professor in 1998. During his career at Penn, Dr. Baime has developed courses devoted to helping people deal with stress through meditation and other alternative methods. These courses have affected people outside the School of Medicine as well as inside it. He co-directs a course for medical students on spirituality and medicine. He also teaches in Penn’s Psychology Department, so he has the opportunity to interact with undergraduate students.  In addition, he worked with the Graduate School of Education to develop a course for schoolteachers, so the influence of his work is felt off the Penn campus. Those who have taken his courses report that they are truly transformative.  One student said:  “He is passionate about teaching and about the subject he teaches.” Another reported that, “he is an outstanding teacher, not the least because he has an exceptional capacity to listen and then engage the class with meaningful and considered responses.” This student called the spirituality and medicine course, “one of the most rewarding of my medical school career, largely because of Dr. Baime.” One of the students in a course he co-taught with the Nursing school said: “Quite simply, for me, Michael and this program were outstanding and will be a part of my life from this point forward.”

    Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Awards
    at the University  of Pennsylvania:
    Awarded for Distinguished Teaching

    The Lindback Awards for Distinguished Teaching at the University  of Pennsylvania were established  in 1961 with the help of the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation. Christian Lindback was president and principal of Abbotts Dairies  Inc. and a trustee of Bucknell University. The Foundation established Lindback Awards for Distinguished Teaching at colleges and universities throughout the Abbotts Dairies Inc.’s service area in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and Virginia.

     The University of Pennsylvania normally gives out eight Lindback Awards each year, divided evenly between health-related disciplines and all other departments and divisions. Award winners are determined by nominations and recommendations made by faculty and students in December based on certain guidelines. Two separate committees, one in the Health Schools and one in the Non-Health Schools, consisting of six previous award winners and four students, carefully decide among the nominees. Winners receive a Lindback Foundation scroll and a cash award of $3,000. During the 1960s, Lindback Awards were presented at Commencement.

     During the 1970s, previous winners of the Lindback Award organized themselves into a Lindback Society  which supported efforts to improve teaching and hosted an annual reception for Lindback Award winners after the actual presentation of the awards at Hey Day (April 21) Ceremonies. Currently, the Provost presents Lindback  Awards at a reception  in late April. The Lindback Society was revived in the late 1980s and sponsored, in conjunction  with the College of Arts and Sciences, essays by faculty members on teaching that are published as “Talk About Teaching and Learning” in Almanac, the University’s journal of record.

      —Adapted From the University Archives  and Records Center website,
     
    www.archives.upenn.edu/histy/notables/awards/lindback.html

    The Provost’s Awards

    In October of 1987, the Office of the Provost announced the establishment of two additional Penn teaching awards—one in a Health School and one in a Non-Health School—to be given annually in recognition of distinguished teaching by associated faculty or academic support staff. The guidelines for the selection of the award recipients are the same as those given for the Lindback Awards, and the selection processes and deadlines are the same. The first recipients for the Provost’s Awards were Nora Magid of SAS and Paul Orsini of Veterinary Medicine (Almanac April 5, 1988).

     

     



     
      Almanac, Vol. 52, No. 29, April 11, 2006

    ISSUE HIGHLIGHTS:

    Tuesday,
    April 11, 2006
    Volume 52 Number 29
    www.upenn.edu/almanac

     

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