Oct. 24, 2019

Faculty members recognized with Killam award for excellence in teaching and learning

Winners are mentors to undergraduate and graduate students on campus
2019 winners of Killam award for excellence in teaching and learning

2019 Killam award winners for teaching excellence, from left, Ebba Kurz, Jennfer Lock, Donna Slater.

Recognizing excellence in mentorship and teaching is an important activity at the University of Calgary.  Every day, instructors and faculty members contribute to building high-quality learning environments on campus. This year, three exceptional faculty members are being recognized with Killam awards for their work with undergraduate and graduate students.

“Continuing to recognize teaching excellence through the Killam awards is so important to ensuring we have a strong culture of support for teaching,” says Dr. Leslie Reid, vice-provost teaching and learning. “I am pleased our Killam program recognizes teaching, mentorship and educational leadership through these prestigious awards.”

The 2019 recipients are:

McCaig-Killam Teaching Award: Dr. Ebba Kurz, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine)

Ebba Kurz’s enthusiasm for leadership in teaching and learning on campus, as well as her teaching and mentorship of undergraduate and graduate students, were recognized with the 2019 McCaig-Killam Teaching award. In addition to engaging students in research, developing and delivering inquiry-based courses and acting as mentor, Kurz serves as the associate dean (undergraduate health and science education) in the Cumming School of Medicine, and director of the O’Brien Centre for the Bachelor of Health Sciences Program. Through her many roles, she challenges students in both classroom and research settings by creating learning experiences that help them to think critically and to integrate complex information, while also supporting them in developing core transferable skills in oral communication, teamwork and academic writing.

Killam Graduate Supervision and Mentorship Award: Dr. Jennifer Lock, PhD (Werklund School of Education)

Jennifer Lock has a remarkable reputation with graduate students she has mentored over the last 15 years. She has mentored and supported the supervision to completion of six PhD students, 14 EdD students, and 36 master's students. Her research program in distributed learning and online learning communities led her to design courses for graduate students on how to use best practices for online teaching and learning. Lock is the vice-dean at the Werklund School of Education, and previously was the faculty’s associate dean, teaching and learning. In her teaching and learning role, she designed an eight-month program that provides professional development for Werklund School of Education graduate students who wish to engage in teaching assistantships.

Killam Undergraduate Mentorship Award: Dr. Donna Slater, PhD (Cumming School of Medicine)

Donna Slater has a passion for both education and research that shows in her mentorship of undergraduate students in the Bachelor of Health Sciences and other programs. Many of the students she has mentored have gone on to pursue graduate studies and other successful ventures. In her teaching and mentoring of students, she engages them in multiple opportunities in experiential and inquiry-based learning. Based on individual interests and learning goals, she encourages student independence within a supportive learning and research environment. Slater is an associate professor at the Cumming School of Medicine and co-director of the biomedical sciences major in the Bachelor of Health Sciences program.