About the Stanley J. Drazek Teaching Excellence Award
Each year, UMUC recognizes the highest teaching accomplishments by bestowing the Stanley J. Drazek Teaching Excellence Award to outstanding faculty members in the United States, Europe and Asia. Another faculty recognition award—the UMUC Teaching Recognition Award—is also given to other exceptional faculty with notable teaching achievements.
The objectives of the awards are to:
- Emphasize UMUC's commitment to high-quality adult education
- Recognize faculty members who consistently show exceptional skill in promoting student learning and providing a quality education to UMUC's adult learners
- Encourage students to recognize and reward teaching excellence
- Identify a pool of talented, dedicated faculty members who can serve as faculty mentors and support other faculty development initiatives
Nomination and Selection Process
The nomination and selection process for faculty awards is handled by the respective UMUC divisions.
For UMUC stateside, nominees and their supervising academic administrators are informed of the nominations after the nomination period ends and are invited to participate in the selection process. To participate, nominees must submit current curriculum vitae and a two- to three-page teaching philosophy statement to Faculty Development by the August 31 deadline.
In the fall, Faculty Development oversees the selection process and works with undergraduate and graduate school deans to determine their respective selection criteria and committees. Each committee consists of one student, a prior Drazek award winner, a faculty representative and one or two academic administrators. The committee is chaired by Faculty Development's director of faculty development.
Each selection committee meets in early November for the first round to review the materials collected for each nominee. Up to 10 graduate faculty finalists and up to 20 undergraduate finalists are chosen. All nominees are notified of the finalist decision. Insofar as possible, Faculty Development schedules faculty peer observations for all finalists. These visits can be either on-site or online. Each peer reviewer submits a report to the award selection committee highlighting the teaching and facilitation skills of the assigned finalist.
The committee meets again in early December for a final review of the finalists' files. The committee recommends award winners to each dean and the provost and chief academic officer, who give their final approval of all winners.
Award Compensation and Recognition
The Stanley J. Drazek Teaching Excellence Award is presented during commencement ceremonies in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Up to two award winners are chosen in each region and school, and each recipient receives an honorarium of $1,000 and an engraved plaque.
The UMUC Teaching Recognition Awards are presented at the Academic Achievement Dinner held prior to commencement. Up to four graduate faculty award winners and up to six undergraduate faculty award winners are chosen. Up to three award winners are chosen in both Asia and Europe. Each recipient receives an honorarium of $500 and a certificate.
All award winners are acknowledged at the next fall semester's General Faculty Meeting.