Elsie Hood Award Nominations Due March 1

Honor is university's top teaching accolade

OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Mississippi is seeking nominations for the 2020 Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teacher Award, the highest teaching honor the university bestows upon its professors.

Faculty, staff, students and alumni are encouraged to submit nominations by March 1 for this year’s honoree. Assistant, associate and full professors are eligible, except previous recipients of the award. The winner receives a $5,000 prize and a personal engraved plaque, and their name also goes on a permanent display in the J.D. Williams Library.

The selection committee is made up of previous recipients, along with the director of Alumni Affairs and a student representative. Criteria include nomination letters that describe examples of exceptional teaching, and letters submitted for nominees in previous years will be considered.

“Great teaching is common at the University of Mississippi,” said Ann Monroe, assistant dean, associate professor of teacher education and chair of this year’s selection committee. “We ask students to nominate their favorite professors and to be specific about how these professors have positively impacted their lives.

“Students are the most important people on our campus, and we want to hear from them.”

The Faculty Senate submitted a proposal to then-Chancellor J.D. Williams in 1965 to create a program of recognition and awards for superior teaching. The following spring, a committee solicited nominations for an Outstanding Teacher Award from faculty, students and alumni.

Then-Vice Chancellor W. Alton Bryant suggested that the award be presented on Honors Days and announced during Commencement exercises, and this has remained the policy.

Previous winners of the award include John Rimoldi, Mark Wilder, Laurdella Foulkes-Levy, David Willson, Gregory Schirmer, Kelly G. Wilson, Ethel Young-Minor, John O’Haver, Ann Fisher-Wirth, William Berry, Bob Brown and John Young.

Young reflected upon his own recognition.

“Knowing that people not only learned, retained and thought about what we covered in class, but then took the time to nominate me for something on that basis, said that it meant something to them, which was very fulfilling)” the associate professor of psychology said.

“If someone’s class provoked thought, shook your belief or cultivated an expansion of your intellectual, academic or cultural horizons, consider nominating them for this award.”

Nominations can be submitted by faculty, students and alumni online at http://cetl.olemiss.edu/faculty/teaching-awards/elsie-m-hood-outstanding-teacher-award/, by email to chancellor@olemiss.edu or by mail to the Office of the Chancellor, Lyceum 123, University, MS 38677.