Carol Loeffler, associate professor of biology at Dickinson College, has received the Distinguished Teaching Award from her peers.
Loeffler, who received the honor at a recent faculty meeting, was described by Neil Weissman, provost and dean at Dickinson, as a professor whose “classes are the stuff of legend” and whose students “are convinced she knows every individual plant on a first-name basis, in Latin nomenclature of course.”
The recipient of this annual award and its cash honorarium is determined by the faculty and then approved by the college's president to recognize outstanding teaching. It is the highest honor given to a Dickinson faculty member.
“Mosquito swarms, poison ivy patches, and snowdrifts are no obstacle to her engaging pedagogy,” Weissman said. “A simple – or so it looks – walk through the woods with this year’s awardee restores students’ intellectual and emotional connection with the natural in ways fundamental to our efforts toward a sustainable future.”
Loeffler credited her colleagues and students for the award.
“Receiving the award is a tremendous honor and I’m deeply grateful to the other faculty, not only for their recommendation for this award but also for all that they have taught me about teaching over the years,” she said. “We all help each other, and I’ve benefited by paying attention to the wisdom that they’ve shared with me. I’m also inspired daily by the students’ eagerness to learn and especially by those who put great effort into learning, and who love the process of learning.
Loeffler earned a Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology from Cornell University and a bachelor’s degree (summa cum laude and with highest honors) in the biological sciences at Smith College.
Published June 1, 2009