The Weber award was established in 2006 in memory of Dr. Carl S. Weber, Assistant Professor Emeritus in the UMBC Department of Biological Sciences, as a tribute to his passion for classroom teaching. The annual award honors a faculty member at UMBC with exceptional dedication to teaching as demonstrated by his or her enthusiasm, up-to-date teaching materials, effective mentoring, community service in the teaching area, approachability, rigorous learning requirements, coherent teaching philosophy and inspirational teaching style. All CNMS faculty members who have been teaching in the college for the past five years are eligible to be nominated for the award
Dr. Carl S. Weber
The final selection is made by the CNMS Dean, who notifies the award winner in writing. The award includes a $1,000 prize from the Carl S. Weber Excellence in Teaching Award Endowment. The 2013 Call for Nominations with a streamlined process made at the suggestion of the CNMS Department Chairs, may be viewed from this site. Questions should be directed to Kathy Sutphin (firstname.lastname@example.org).
FIFTH AWARD RECIPIENT - SPRING 2013
Rajalaskhmi (Raji) Baradwaj is dedicated to using different teaching methods to encourage and improve student learning. Since joining the UMBC Department of Mathematics and Statistics faculty as a Lecturer in 2001, she has taught a variety of courses and has served as the departmental coordinator for algebra, precalculus, and finite mathematics courses. She was instrumental in the redesign of the algebraic and elementary functions course and coordinates the innovative Quiz O, the
preliminary quizzes given during the first week of classes to test student foundational knowledge in prerequisite topics needed for courses in the calculus sequence (MATH 150, 151, 152, 155, and 215). Ms. Baradwaj, who was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2012, actively supports a variety of initiatives on campus to enhance student academic success including SI (Supplemental Instruction) and the NSF-funded iCubed@UMBC project. Most recently, Ms. Baradwaj helped to create UMBC's Math Gym, a laboratory classroom where students have the opportunity to improve their basic mathematical skills. She advises a number of undergraduate majors in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, serves on a variety of departmental committees, and volunteers as the adviser of the Hindu Student Council on campus. Ms. Baradwaj received a M.S. in Statistics from Texas A & M University in 1990, and a M.S. and a B. S. in Mathematics from the University of Madras, India in 1987 and 1984, respectively. Ms. Baradwaj held appointments as a Lecturer and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire from 1991 to 2001.
FOURTH AWARD RECIPIENT - SPRING 2012
Mark Perks received his BS degree in chemistry at Bucknell University. After graduation, he taught A-level chemistry in Ghana as a volunteer with the Teachers for West Africa Program. Upon returning to the U.S., he taught chemistry at the secondary level at Moorestown Friends School in New Jersey. He subsequently completed his Ph.D. at the Johns Hopkins University and pursued a career in biomedical device research and development with Becton-Dickinson and then as an environmental scientist. Dr. Perks seized the opportunity to return to teaching as instructor at UMBC in 1993 and has been a senior Lectuerer since 2005. Dr. Perks remains actively involved in STEM outreach programs; including the Maryland Collaborative for
Teacher Preparation (MCTP) initiative (1995-1997), VIP K-16 Partnership at UMBC, "Chemistry Distilled" Academy for elementary and middle school teachers in Washington County, and the "Finfty-Fifty" of the USA Science & Engineering Festival. Dr. Perks adopted active, collaborative, and constructivist learning as the keystone of his pedagogical philosophy starting from his experience with MCTP. He implements active and group learning in large lecture hall classes of hundreds of students in general and organic chemistry courses. Dr. Perks earned a role on the inaugural team to advance active learning methods in introductory chemistry, the pilot effort for what has become the renowned Chemistry Discovery Center.