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Dec. 5, 2017
Staff members representing Northwest Missouri State University’s Learning and Teaching Center (LTC) surprised Professor of Chemistry Dr. Ahmed Malkawi yesterday when they arrived, unannounced, at his classroom in the Garrett-Strong Science Building and presented him with the center’s Excellence in Learning, Teaching and Technology Award.
Malkawi had just begun to teach his 1 p.m. section of organic chemistry when the LTC staff members, joined by a couple of his students, Anthony Helou and Ross Johnson, stepped in with the award. Provost Dr. Jamie Hooyman; Dr. Mike Steiner, the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences; and Dr. Greg Haddock, the dean of the Graduate School; also were present.
Malkawi said he was surprised, humbled, honored and overwhelmed by the recognition.
“Our renewable reward for learning and teaching and the source of much Bearcat pride is the success of our students as they apply knowledge, concepts, understanding and profession-based problem-solving skills toward individual career goals,” he said. “Seeing our students progress from first year to graduation and then make the transition to graduate school, professional school, or employment and significant contributions to society is very rewarding to all of us.”
Malkawi is the third Northwest faculty member to receive the award, which the LTC launched last year to recognize outstanding educators at the University. Assistant Professor of History Dr. Robert Voss received the inaugural award last fall, and Dr. Ajay Bandi, an assistant professor of computer science and information systems, received the award last spring.
The LTC partners with Student Senate and solicits nominations from students using Northwest Online. Students are encouraged to nominate faculty with a few sentences supporting their nomination, and the nominees are then presented to students through Northwest Online for a vote to select the recipient. The LTC received nominations commending 80 unique faculty this fall.
Johnson, a junior chemistry major from Maryville, said he enjoyed having Malkawi as an instructor for organic chemistry, and he is enrolled in a special topics course with Malkawi this fall.
“Dr. Malkawi opened my eyes to the wonderful world of organic chemistry,” Johnson said. “He fundamentally demonstrates the principles of teaching and science – patience, persistence, perseverance and proficiency.”
Helou, a senior chemistry major from Kansas City, Missouri, added that Malkawi “goes above and beyond for students to make sure they succeed.” Undergraduate research opportunities provided by Malkawi have helped Helou and other students further develop their skills and be career-ready.
“Dr. Malkawi is a spectacular professor who puts his students first, and he is willing to go above and beyond to assure their success,” Helou said. “He inspires innovation and creativity that, in turn, helps students grow and excel to new levels of personal and academic achievement.”
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
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