Physics’ Fatuzzo top teacher in sciences

Assistant professor wins annual McDonald Award for outstanding teaching in the sciences | April 24, 2003

Marco Fatuzzo, an assistant professor in the physics department, is the recipient of the 2003 Joan G. McDonald Award for outstanding teaching in the sciences. Fatuzzo, in just his third year at the University, received the award from University President Michael J. Graham, S.J., and Dr. Robert H. McDonald Jr. during a ceremony in the Conaton Board Room on Tuesday, April 22. James Snodgrass, chairman of the University’s mathematics and computer science department, headed the selection committee. He points to Fatuzzo’s work in curriculum development and record of scholarly work with students as factors in the selection. For his part, Fatuzzo is quick to share the credit for the award with his colleagues. “This is not an individual job,” he says. “We do this as a community. We all learn from one another. You really can’t succeed in this job without good advice and good mentorship, which I surely have received and for which I’m very grateful.” The annual award is endowed by McDonald, a 1955 graduate, in memory of his late wife, Joan, and is limited to instructors in biology, chemistry and physics. It carries a $10,000 prize, half of which goes directly to the recipient and half of which is held in a fund earmarked for support of the recipient’s work. McDonald also sponsors a companion bi-annual award given to an outstanding lab instructor. That award will be presented again next year. There were five nominees for this year’s award. Nominations may come from an instructor’s peers, from students or from staff personnel. The winner is chosen by a five-member committee comprised of the chair, a student representative and one professor from each of the three science departments. This committee considers a number of criteria, including student evaluations, peer evaluations, evaluations from the dean of the nominee’s department, scholarly activities with students, the outcomes of those activities, involvement in curriculum development and community service as it relates to teaching.