The recipient of the 2018 Ohio Section’s Award for Distinguished College or University Teaching Award in Mathematics is Dr. Adam Parker of Wittenberg University. Dr. Parker was presented with the award at the spring 2018 meeting at Miami University.
Dr. Parker has been an active member of the MAA since 2006 and is also a member of the AMS and the AWM. He has chaired numerous contributed talk sessions at sectional meetings as well as presenting contributed talks himself. He was a member of CONCUR from April 2006 – 2009, serving as Chair during his last two years. In April 2010 he was elected to a three year term on the Ohio Section Program Committee serving as Chair during the 2012 – 2013 academic year. He also assisted in the planning and hosting of two Ohio Section meetings held at Wittenberg.
Dr. Parker is the recipient of several other awards both for teaching and research. In fact, he received the Wittenberg Alumni Award on the same day as receiving the Ohio Section Teaching Award. In 2014 he was the recipient of the MAA George Pólya Award for his article “Who Solved the Bernoulli Differential Equation, and How Did They Do it?”, an award given for articles of expository excellence published in The College Mathematics Journal. In 2007 he was the recipient of the Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK) Excellence in Teaching Award. Nominated by the student members of Omicron Delta Kappa, the National Service Fraternity, the winner is a faculty member with less than 5 years teaching experience. He was also an Excellence in Teaching Award Winner, Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE) in 2008.
His interests in excellent teaching extend beyond the bounds of campus. In the fall of 2008, along with six other faculty members from the science departments, Dr. Parker proposed and successfully funded a Saturday Science Outreach program aimed at area high school and home schooled students. Each month a participant would organize a Saturday morning program around their discipline. As a result of this work he was a 2010 winner of the Wittenberg Faculty Recognition Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Springfield Community.
Some insights into Dr. Parker’s teaching and mentoring can best be expressed through student comments. One student commented,
“Now in my senior year, He has been nothing but supportive and helpful …. When I get stuck on an approach, or lack the vision for my next step, He is there with a new perspective or insight into how I might go about figuring it out on my own. He never simply gives me the answer, but guides me in the way of figuring it out for myself.”
Another student writes that, “Without his guidance I would be months behind and lost behind mountains of material. He taught me how to read papers and textbooks more effectively and formalize my own mathematical ideas.”
Dr. Parker is an outstanding teacher and leader. I look forward to his talk at the spring 2019 meeting.
Submitted by Katie Cerrone
2017 – 2018 Teaching Award Committee Chair