The 2008 recipient of the Graduate School of Education’s Excellence in Teaching Award, presented by the GSE Student Affairs Committee, is Dr. Marybeth Gasman, an assistant professor in GSE’s Policy, Management and Evaluation Division.
GSE singles out for this award those who have “a strong commitment to teaching and learning,” who demonstrate an interest and enthusiasm for both the course material and for the students, and who are intellectually challenging and stimulating.
A historian of higher education, Dr. Gasman explores issues pertaining to philanthropy and historically black colleges, black leadership, and African-American philanthropy. Students cited her innovative approach to issues of diversity in American education. Said one, “Dr. Gasman’s diversity class, now in its fourth year, has brought students from across GSE and the rest of the University to talk about issues that are not normally discussed out in the open within a ‘safe’ class room environment. Issues of race, gender, sexuality, class, and religion are investigated through readings and invigorating class discussion.”
In addition to citing her high-quality research and inspiring teaching, the student nominations routinely alluded to Dr. Gasman’s generosity as a mentor. Her students praised her accessibility as an advisor, engagement with their intellectual interests, and commitment to advancing their academic careers. “Put simply,” said one student, “I hope to emulate Marybeth in my faculty career. Marybeth Gasman has taught me that a successful professor moves his or her research agenda forward while helping students reach their full potential (inside and outside of the classroom), giving them opportunities to engage in research, encouraging them to present at conferences, and publish their own research.”
Dr. Gasman received her BA in political science from St. Norbert College, and both her MS and PhD in higher education, from Indiana University.