Indian-American associate professor Preethika Kumar, at Wichita State University in Kansas, US has been selected for the prestigious Outstanding Teacher Award for demonstrating special dedication and creativity in her teaching.
Preethika, an electrical engineering associate professor would receive the national honour – 2015 C Holmes MacDonald Outstanding Teacher Award – on November 19 in New Brunswick, New Jersey, the university said in a statement yesterday.
This national honor is awarded to one electrical engineering professor a year who demonstrates special dedication and creativity in their teaching.
“The award means a lot to me because, to begin with, it was completely initiated by the students,” says Preethika.
Kumar says teaching has always been her calling. Her greatest strength, she says, is creating relationships with her students.
“Over the years, I have learned that to be a good teacher, in addition to being able to communicate the subject matter effectively, one needs to be able to build and sustain a relationship with one’s students based on trust, mutual respect and care,” Kumar says. “It shows students that I care and that they are individuals to me. It also shows me that students care.”
The award is intended to recognize the central and crucial role of college professors in training and motivating future electrical and computer engineers.
The program attempts to identify and give national recognition to electrical engineering professors who have demonstrated, early in their careers, special dedication and creativity in their teaching responsibilities.
Dr Kumar, who has completed her BS in Electronics and Computer Engineering from Bangalore University in the year 2000, has been teaching at Wichita State since fall 2007 along with three semesters prior as she earned her PhD.