TA prize awarded to Maryn Carlson and Adam Zmyslowski

The 2018-2019 Dean’s Outstanding Teaching Assistant Prize for the best performance by a BSD graduate student who is TAing in fulfillment of the Divisional Teaching Requirement was awarded to both Maryn Carlson and Adam Zmyslowski. In addition, a Divisional Teaching Assistant Award went to Xiaolin (Lindsay) Huang.

Maryn Carlson is a third-year student in the program in Genetics, Genomics, and Systems Biology. She receives the prize in recognition of her work as a TA in HGEN 48600, Computational Biology I, in Winter 2019. She is cited because of the very strong support from the Computational Biology class, who commended her for her passion, enthusiasm, clarity, patience, dedication, and knowledge of the material; her terrific lecture; her preparation for her exceptional discussion sections which were instrumental in clarifying material from class, her ability to answer questions both specific and conceptual in office hours, her ability to weave background material with course material so her students gained a broad understanding of the course material, and her ability to show her students how to use the course material to approach more general questions beyond the scope of the course.

Adam Maciek Zmyslowski is a sixth-year student in the program in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics. He receives the award in recognition of his work as a TA for BCMB 30400, Protein Fundamentals, in Autumn 2018. He received solidly convincing support from the class for this award, with the class citing his approachability, kindness, and enthusiasm; deep and comprehensive knowledge of the subject matter; the attention he gave to each student; his speedy, thoughtful, and thorough grading; providing additional material to the students to help them to better understand the course material; his ability to explain concepts during discussion section while tying the course material to other related and interesting topics; and his willingness to meet with students outside of class when requested.

Xialin (Lindsay) Huang, fourth-year in the Neurobiology program, was given an Honorable Mention for her efforts as a teaching assistant for NSCI 22400, Neuroscience of Seeing in Winter 2019. She was cited for her ability to help the full range of students in the class, from undergraduates to graduate students, and students in neuroscience degrees as well as psychology graduate students. She prepared reading guides for the journal-club style discussion sections; was swift responding to emails from students; was dedicated, organized, professional, and patient; and went out of her way to ensure all her students had access to understanding the material.    

The BSD teaching prize was established in 1996 by the faculty Committee on Teaching Assistants in appreciation and recognition of the enthusiasm and effort that graduate students put into their early teaching experiences. Award of the prize is based on nominations by the students in the course taught by the TA. This year, well over 100 teaching assistants were nominated by their students for the Prize, with over 400 total votes: a tribute to the dedication of our graduate students as they take on the role of teaching assistant, and illustrating the value placed on teaching in the BSD. Congratulations to all winners!