Each year, the Office of Undergraduate Studies recognizes two faculty members for excellence in teaching: one faculty member teaching in an Undergraduate Studies Program, and one faculty member teaching in a General Education Program.

To choose the recipients, we ask UMD undergraduates: Has a faculty member been a mentor or role model for you?

Changed or reinforced your career direction?

Improved your understanding of challenging material?

Made a difference in how you view the world?

This year's recipient of the Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in the Office of Undergraduate Studies Programs is...

Susannah Washburn

Program Director, Public Leadership, College Park Scholars

CPPL 100/PLCY 201/CPPL 101

"Prof. Washburn's influence extends far beyond the classroom, leaving an impact on me that will last into my career and future. Her dedication to fostering a culture of critical thinking and collaboration instilled the importance of lifelong learning and active citizenship; I know I will continue to apply the skills and knowledge in my personal and professional life... Moreover, her mentorship and support have empowered me to pursue my passions and strive for excellence in everything I do."
"One of her most impactful teachings was the importance of leading with empathy and considering diverse viewpoints, even those we may not personally agree with."

This year's recipient for the Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in General Education is...

Archana Khurana

Senior Lecturer, Department of Mathematics

STAT100/ MATH120

"Professor Khurana helped me understand and appreciate challenging material by reminding us not to be fearful of challenging concepts but to be confident in our abilities... We learned how to fall and get right back up and try to solve the problem differently until we got it right. Professor Khurana's methods of teaching and support shaped me into the person I am today - a student excited for the failures and successes that come with learning something new."
"She is the best teacher at UMD. There are no amount of words I could say about Ms. Khurana to encapsulate how much of an impact she left on me... She showed how easy math can truly be and that practice makes perfect. She has truly raised the bar on what a teacher should look like."

About the Awards

Based on undergraduate student nominations, the awards are named in honor of Donna B. Hamilton, former Associate Provost for Academic Affairs and Dean for Undergraduate Studies.

A Professor Emerita in the English department and previous Associate Dean in the College of Arts and Humanities, Dr. Hamilton was the 2015 recipient of the President's Medal.

The two recognized faculty will receive $1,000 cash awards. The awards ceremony will be held in May this year.

Thank you!

The Office of Undergraduate Studies received scores of nominations from students. Thank you to each person who took time to write notes about the faculty members who have enriched the undergraduate experience at UMD. Thank you to each faculty member who taught and mentored students with dedication and distinction. We are grateful for your contributions. Learn more at