University of Wisconsin assistant professor of geography Stephen Young always believed learning exceeds the confines of a classroom.
To help bring the world to UW students, Young designed the Global Madison Walking Tour. This tour is for international studies 101 students. It was designed to teach globalization’s impact on Madison’s communities and how international issues affect students.
“What I want [students] to get out of [the walking tour] is to think of Madison as a global place,” Young said. “As a place that has been shaped in very material ways by its interconnections at the local, regional and also global level by the way that it is connected as a larger constellation of social, economic and cultural network.”
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For his work on the tour, Young will be honored with the Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award. He is among 12 faculty members who will receive awards, an honor given out since 1953 to recognize the university’s most outstanding educators.
Young’s work focuses on economic change in contemporary India, the production of new kinds of markets and the role of young people, particularly young men, in facilitating this processes. He also researches histories of urban governance in relation to race and social unrest in U.S. cities.
Andrea Arpaci-Dusseau, professor of computer sciences, is another professor being honored with the prestigious award. She is set to receive the Van Hise Outreach Teaching Award for her research in making computer operating systems more efficient and reliable. Arpaci-Dusseau also founded the CS 402 course with the goal of expanding knowledge of computer science to younger students.
Arpaci-Dusseau said many young children do not have exposure to computer science but want to learn. UW students also want to be able to give back to the community and allow children to learn how to program sooner. Her program helps bring the two together.
“I wanted to connect the UW students to the community so that they could be the ones teaching computer science,” Arpaci-Dusseau said.
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Young and Arpaci-Dusseau both believe it is important for the university to recognize professors for their work. It helps bring external recognition to UW and raises public awareness on some of the special organizations it has, Arpaci-Dusseau said.
Young was hired through the Madison Initiative for Undergraduates, which focuses on giving undergraduate students a say in how funds should be directed to benefit them. He said receiving an honor like the Chancellor’s Distinguished Teaching Award suggests that he has fulfilled the initiative’s mission in terms of doing a good job teaching undergraduates.
“If you think about faculty in terms of their responsibilities, it’s around research, teaching and service,” Young said. “It energizes you to feel as though this is recognized and the kind of work you put into proving your teaching is acknowledged.”
Chancellor Rebecca Blank will present the awards March 16 at the Fluno Center.