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Walkiewicz's ability to inspire recognized with Regents Distinguished Teaching Award

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

by Alex Denkinska

A professor described as one of the most innovative and inspiring faculty members in the English department was honored with the Regents Distinguished Teaching Award for his research and teaching accomplishments.

“I feel flattered to receive this award and consider it a milestone in my career,” Walkiewicz said.

For 16 years, OSU has annually recognized eight faculty members with the Regents Distinguished Teaching Award for longtime, significant contributions to academic excellence.

Walkiewicz received the award, which includes a permanent salary increase of $1,000 per year, during the OSU Fall Convocation at the ConocoPhillips OSU Alumni Center.

Carol Moder, associate professor and head of the English department, said Walkiewicz is one of the department’s most dedicated and talented teachers.

“He is a master at facilitating lively classroom discussions, which enable students to internalize the course concept and to take responsibility for their own learning,” Moder said.

Walkiewicz has worked for the university for 26 years teaching modern and contemporary literature and science fiction. Walkiewicz’s works include: John Barth; Ezra Pound and Senator Bronson Cutting: A Political Correspondence, 1930-1935; “Ulysses, Order, Myth: Classification and Modern Literature” and “Poetry: 1900 to the 1940s.”

Walkiewicz earned his bachelor’s from Yale University, a master’s from Columbia University and a doctorate from the University of New Mexico.

He has served as head of the English department, editor of the department’s Cimarron Review magazine and as a special assistant to the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Kara Cook, George Mitchell scholar, said she won the national scholarship because of Walkiewicz’s mentoring.

“He has Distinguished himself as a professor both through his dedication to teach within the classroom and through his accessibility to undergraduate students outside the classroom,” Cook said.

Walkiewicz said teaching, learning and students have significantly changed since the first time he taught an undergraduate class.

“I had to make adjustments in the classroom,” he said. “Today, I assign fewer texts and spend more time teaching the craft of close reading and analysis.”

Walkiewicz said he is proud of OSU’s English program. Seeing students accomplish their dreams makes his job gratifying.

“I try my best to bring students to the realization that they possess agency, can affect the nature of things,” he said.

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