On Friday, Sept. 8, hundreds of UNC Charlotte faculty gathered Uptown to celebrate their finest. Each year, the University bestows its highest teaching honor, the Bank of America Award for Teaching Excellence. This year celebrates the 50th anniversary of the award’s founding – and UNC Charlotte literally rolled out the red carpet.
This award is all about impact – both within and beyond the classroom. This year’s finalists are among some of the most dedicated talent across the University. From French and sociology to education, anthropology and English, this year’s finalists are stellar achievers.
Bank of America Excellence in Teaching Award Finalists
Scott Fitzgerald is an associate professor of psychology and led the department’s efforts to expand service-learning opportunities. Fitzgerald also was instrumental in developing the Sociology Department’s Global Learning Community. (Pictured: Scott Fitzgerald)
Amy Good is an associate professor in the Department of Reading and Elementary Education. Good incorporates field-based (clinical) components throughout her courses that enables teacher candidates to observe and demonstrate effective teaching skills. (Pictured: Amy Good)
Kirk Melnikoff is an associate professor in English with an expertise in 16th-century English literature and has taught 23 different courses at UNC Charlotte. He puts special focus on genre, drama, performance and print culture, as well as academic writing to catalyze classroom work. (Picutred: Kirk Melnikoff)
Coral Wayland, an associate professor of anthropology, focuses on developing students’ 21st century skills through collaboration, critical thinking, creativity and communication. She also has served as a Faculty Fellow in the Center for Teaching and Learning, helping faculty create innovative programs. (Pictured: Coral Wayland)
Bank of America Excellence in Teaching Award Winner
Michèle Bissière is the golden jubilee recipient of the Bank of America Teaching Award for Excellence. Since joining UNC Charlotte in 1990, Bissière, a professor in the Department of Languages and Culture Studies in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, has developed 12 courses with most in the French curriculum, including language, advanced literature, culture, civilization and film.
According to her colleagues, it is what is not listed on paper that makes Bissière a truly exceptional teacher. Colleagues frequently state that because of her enthusiasm, integrity and work ethic, Bissière has supported every major programmatic initiative during the last two decades. Her outreach has been so diverse and extensive that she is the face of French at UNC Charlotte.
As a leader in the Department of Languages and Culture Studies, Bissière founded the French Club and established the internship program, which regularly places students in area schools to assist instructors teaching French; she encourages students to volunteer within local schools and for the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. Finally, she single-handedly started the International Film Festival. (Pictured: Michèle Bissière)