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Recipients of 2014 Teaching Excellence Awards

English department professors honored

MILWAUKEE (October 30, 2014) – Mount Mary University announced its 2014 “Excellence in Teaching” award recipients. Andrea Hilkovitz, Ph.D., assistant professor of English, received the full-time teaching award, and Paul Gagliardi, instructor in English, received the part-time award. To earn the award, faculty must demonstrate innovative teaching techniques, current knowledge of developments, trends and research in an academic field, as well as dedication, enthusiasm and support of students’ personal, moral and intellectual growth.

Dr. Andrea HilkovitzHilkovitz began teaching English at Mount Mary University in 2009. She received her B. A. in English and French Studies from Rice University, and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of Texas at Austin. Hilkovitz teaches a variety of course in composition, literature, creative and professional writing, writing for digital media, and literary criticism. She is a frequent author and presenter on African literature and peace movements with a special focus on the roles of women.

Students who nominated Hilkovitz identified her as both supportive and tough. “She always made it clear that if we needed help with anything she was available,” stated one of her students. Another student remarked that “while tougher than many other professors, it is why I learned so much.”

Paul GagliardiGagliardi began teaching at Mount Mary University in 2011. He graduated from Penn State University with his B.H. in American Studies and a M.A. in Humanities. He is currently working on his Ph.D. in English from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Gagliardi teaches several composition courses and is noted for his creative course content in “The Jazz Age is Literature” and “Detective Fiction.” Nominators described Gagliardi as an instructor possessing dry wit and an entertaining personality that keeps students engaged even up to the conclusion of the 6:00 – 10:00 p.m. evening class. Others stated that Gagliardi “continued to challenge us to think outside of the box and understand the dynamic of the literary period.”

According to Dr. Eileen Schwalbach, President of Mount Mary University, the Excellence in Teaching awards recognize faculty members who consistently challenge themselves and their students. “We’re delighted to recognize faculty who inform and inspire students to reach their full potential,” Schwalbach said.

This year’s award winners were selected by a committee comprised of faculty, students, the past year’s award recipients and Mount Mary’s associate dean for academic affairs.