|James Oliver (on right), Painting faculty|
As the new year starts, we have one more bit of news from 2011. Congratulations again to James Oliver. James was one of the two recipients of the 2011 PSU Arts and Sciences Excellence in Teaching Award.
" James Oliver has been on the faculty of Pittsburg State University’s Department of Art since 2000. His time at Pittsburg State University has shown him to be an educator of exceptional ability and character. James’ excellence in teaching goes far beyond the confines of the classroom. He provides thoughtful academic advisement and mentoring, strong long-term planning related to his duties as an Undergraduate Advisor and as Graduate Student Coordinator, and a personable approach to students, his fellow faculty and contemporaries.
He is the perfect model for a faculty in the College of Arts & Sciences. He is a highly dedicated and dynamic communicator who knows how to motivate his students to strive for excellence. James is committed to making art and always conveys an excitement about being able to share his extensive knowledge of the subject with others, his students in particular. The student comments often describe him as an outstanding teacher with the ability to grab their undivided attention and leave them with the satisfaction of, in the words of one student, “having truly learned and understood the material thanks to the accessibility of his lectures”.
Innovative teaching and mentoring requires continuous advancement of a faculty’s current discipline specific knowledge and also investigating new methods of teaching and learning. From the use of smart media in his studio courses to taking additional coursework that expand his knowledge of advisement; James is always seeking new ways to grow as an educator
I do hope that the foregoing will give you and your committee some indication of the pure excellence, which James Oliver brings to our University. He is most worthy of the award for which he is being awarded."
- Rhona Shand, Department of Art Chair