College of Business Administration Faculty Listed as Finalist for Outstanding Teaching Award
Kent State University’s Outstanding Teaching Award (OTA), sponsored by the University Teaching Council, honors full-time, nontenure-track and part-time faculty who consistently demonstrate extraordinary skills in classroom teaching. Each year, three finalists are presented the award.
The University Teaching Council presents this year’s finalists:
Greg Blundell, Department of Management and Information Systems, Kent State University at Stark
During his time as an instructor in higher education, both in South Africa and with Kent State, Greg Blundell’s proudest accomplishment is the meaningful and enduring connection he established with his students each and every semester. This connection is affirmed by the fact he has been nominated by his students for the Distinguished Teaching Award every semester since he started at Kent State Stark, and was named a finalist for the award in 2011/2012. Blundell has students who purposefully choose his classes from the freshman level all the way through to their senior year and beyond into graduate school. Students regularly seek his counsel well into their careers, which reinforces his belief that he truly does make a difference in their lives while achieving his own personal goals of imparting as much knowledge and wisdom as he can to his students.
Beth Campbell, Department of Sociology, Kent State University at Stark (Not Pictured)
Beth Campbell’s most noteworthy teaching accomplishment would be when one of her criminal law students attended orientation for law school at the University of Akron. The instructor who was speaking to them asked a legal question regarding a particular case, which is a case that Campbell requires her students to brief and discuss as well. Campbell’s student raised her hand and answered the question correctly. The instructor commented “That is absolutely correct. Who did you have for criminal law? They did an excellent job instructing you!” Campbell’s student called her and relayed the incident and thanked her for helping her attain her goal of attending law school and for preparing her so well. The student has just passed the Michigan State Bar Exam and will be working for a State Supreme Court Judge. Campbell is so proud of her and keeps in contact to celebrate her continuing achievements as she does many of her students.
Melissa Dyer, College of Nursing, Kent Campus
Melissa Dyer is a Kent State alumna and College of Nursing lecturer and course coordinator. Dyer’s background is in obstetrics. She lobbies and advocates for healthcare policy issues and led nurses as a hospital administrator. She eagerly shares her passions for nursing, leadership and professionalism with her students. Dyer teaches parent newborn nursing, healthcare policy, leadership, research, nursing informatics and online methods of education. Dyer is an innovator. She was the first College of Nursing faculty to employ a blended-learning environment. Dyer uses active teaching methods to engage students and promote critical thinking, including high-fidelity simulation and case studies. These techniques increase competence, confidence, problem solving and promote evidence-based practice. She continues to expand her knowledge base and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in the College of Public Health at Kent State. Dyer is a College of Nursing leader, having served as an American delegate to China to study that country’s education and healthcare systems. She currently is an education Leadership Policy Fellow and received the Barbara Donaho Distinguished Leadership in Learning Award.
Laurie Pesarchick, Department of Modern and Classical Languages, Kent State University at Trumbull (Not Pictured)
Dan Ross, Department of Geography, Kent Campus
Dan Ross believes his most noteworthy teaching accomplishment is assisting his students. Ross’ main goal as a teacher is to provide the student with real-life experiences happening in the workplace today. He takes all his classes to the field to apply the tools that they learn in lecture and put them into action. When Ross hears from his students, they always share that the real-life experiences of the courses helped them get a job. He remembers one example where during the interview a student was asked, “Have you ever written a Wildlife Management Plan?” The student answered that she did and she brought the example with her. That is his accomplishment: let the students have confidence in their education. Teaching is a symbiotic relationship. Ross feels that he has gained as much, and sometimes more, from the students as they gain from him.
James Trebing, School of Communication Studies, Kent Campus
James Trebing cites several teaching accomplishments. He regularly receives positive feedback from former students about how high professional speaking skills are highly applicable to real-world environments. In addition to students in the communication discipline nominating him for Distinguished Teaching Awards, at least two students from outside the discipline also have done so. A favorite story of Trebing’s is the time that then Cleveland Browns special teams player and Kent State alumnus Josh Cribbs called to thank him after successfully defending his brother in court. Cribbs cited the lessons he learned in his argumentation class as a reason for his win. As a result, Trebing received two tickets to a Browns versus Steelers game.