Department of Mathematics names instructional award winners

Three individuals honored for teaching excellence in 2022–2023

In the 2007–2008 academic year, the Department of Mathematics established three instructional awards to honor faculty for outstanding efforts in teaching. The department has chosen winners for these awards annually, with only one exception. The height of the pandemic during the 2020-2021 school year created obstacles to naming recipients, according to former members of the awards selection committee.

The Department is pleased to announce instructional award winners for the 2022–2023 school year.

Kim Whittlesey has been named the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty. Whittlesey has been teaching in the department since 2001 and has taught a range of undergraduate courses, for which she has received excellent ratings from students. During the COVID-19 pandemic she took on the task of converting Calculus I to an online course. The awards selection committee says that Whittlesey has distinguished herself as “a master at teaching large lecture courses,” noting the high quality of her lectures, her skill in supervising large teams of TAs and managing the logistics of these courses, and her persistence in treating everyone she works alongside with humanity and respect.

Rui Loja Fernandes received the Distinguished Teaching Award for Tenured Faculty. Fernandes is the Lois M. Lackner Professor of Mathematics and has been with the mathematics department since 2012. He has distinguished himself by teaching a wide range of undergraduate and graduate courses. He consistently receives outstanding student ratings, leading to his many appearances on University of Illinois List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent. He currently serves as a faculty liaison on a project committee within the Mathematics Development Advisory Board (MDAB). He has also taught precalculus and calculus courses through the Education Justice Project.

The N. Tenny Peck Teaching Award in Mathematics is an award given annually to recognize exemplary teaching by tenure-track faculty. This year’s recipient is Daniel Berwick-Evans, who has been an assistant professor in the department since 2018. According to the selection committee, Berwick-Evans has distinguished himself by taking on difficult and impactful assignments including large courses on differential equations, linear algebra, and engineering calculus. During the pandemic he made substantial contributions toward the project of converting Calculus III to an online course. His efforts are recognized by his students, who have consistently given him enthusiastic reviews.

The Department of Mathematics congratulates all instructional award recipients and thanks them for their contributions to the world-class educational experiences of Illinois students.


Scott Ahlgren and Shelby Koehne