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    Three Political Science Faculty Members Win Teaching Awards

    teaching awardsThere was a lot of excitement at the Dean Dome on Saturday, February 2.  The men’s basketball game between UNC and Virginia Tech was a nail biter with the Heels winning in overtime 72-60.  Among the fans cheering on the Heels were three Political Science faculty members.  During halftime, Professors Donna LeFebvre, Andrew Reynolds, and Mark Crescenzi made their way to center court, not to try and impress Tar Heel fans with three-point shots, but rather to be recognized for their outstanding contributions to undergraduate teaching at UNC-CH.

    Donna LeFebvre and Andrew Reynolds are recipients of this year’s Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. Each year, five faculty members are selected for this award, which was created in 1952 with a bequest by Kenneth Spencer Tanner, class of 1911, and his sister, Sara Tanner Crawford, (on behalf of their deceased brothers, Simpson Bobo Tanner, Jr. and Jesse Spencer Tanner, and in memory of their parents, Lola Spencer and Simpson Bobo Tanner) to recognize excellence in inspirational teaching of undergraduate students, particularly first- and second-year students.

    Donna LeFebvre, Senior Lecturer, who teaches law-related classes to undergraduates, has won her third Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. She is to date the only faculty member at UNC-Chapel Hill to win three Tanner Awards.  For LeFebvre, her Tanner Awards are among the fourteen undergraduate teaching awards she has received at UNC-Chapel Hill. "I love teaching undergraduates, and I feel so honored and grateful for this award. In my work, nothing means more to me,” offered LeFebvre when asked to reflect on her teaching career at the University.

    Andrew Reynolds, Associate Professor and chair of Global Studies, when asked to comment on his Tanner Award, said that “Teaching Carolina students is one of the great joys of being at UNC, I am consistently blown away by the intelligence, curiosity and maturity of our students. To be awarded the Tanner is clearly one of the greatest highlights of my twelve years at UNC."

    Mark Crescenzi, Associate Professor, was selected as the recipient of the prestigious 2013 Chapman Family Teaching Award. Max Carrol Chapman, Jr. ‘66 on behalf of the Chapman family created the Chapman Teaching Awards in 1993 during the Bicentennial Campaign through a generous gift. The awards were established to honor distinguished teaching of undergraduate students. "I'm very happy about winning this award,” said Crescenzi. “I enjoy teaching our students, and am constantly amazed at what they can accomplish.” Crescenzi has also been appointed as the Bowman and Gordon Gray Term Associate Professor, beginning July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2018.

    When asked to comment on the news that several faculty members were being recognized for their significant contributions to undergraduate education, Chair Evelyne Huber said that the “Department of Political Science is very happy to add no fewer than three winners of prestigious teaching awards in one year to our proud list of previous award winners. We congratulate our colleagues, and thank them for the honor they bring to the Department!!"


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