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Three professors to receive Goergen Awards for teaching excellence

September 18, 2019
portraits of three professorsFrom left, Ryan Prendergast, in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures; Matthew BaileyShea, in the College’s Department of Music and the Eastman School of Music; and Katherine Schaefer, in the Writing, Speaking, and Argument Program are this year’s teaching honorees. (University of Rochester photo / J. Adam Fenster)

Three University of Rochester professors are winners of the 2019 Goergen Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.

A ceremony will take place at 5 p.m. Tuesday, October 22 in the Hawkins-Carlson Room at Rush Rhees Library, to recognize Matthew BaileyShea, an associate professor in the College’s Department of Music and the Eastman School of Music; Ryan Prendergast, an associate professor of Spanish in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures; and Katherine Schaefer, an associate professor of instruction in the Writing, Speaking, and Argument Program.

BaileyShea received his PhD in music theory from Yale University with a dissertation on the music of Wagner. He joined the University in 2003 and has published research on musical form, chromatic harmony, and narrative analysis. He is currently working on a book for Yale University Press entitled Lines and Lyrics: An Introduction to Poetry and Song.

Prendergast holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Spanish from Rutgers University-New Brunswick and received his doctorate in Spanish from Emory University. A faculty member at Rochester since 2003, Prendergast researches the literary and cultural production of early modern Spain, with a focus on the importance of non-canonical texts in understanding Spain’s “Golden Age.” He teaches courses in medieval and early modern Spanish literature and culture as well as Colonial Latin American literature.

Schaefer earned a bachelor of science degree in biochemistry from the University of Illinois, and a PhD in biological sciences from Carnegie Mellon University. She joined the University of Rochester Medical Center in 2005 and transferred to the Writing, Speaking, and Argument Program in 2010. She teaches introductory composition, upper-level writing in biology, and courses on genre theory and application. She also supports writing instruction in the majors as a Writing in the Disciplines specialist.

Established in 1997 by University trustee and Board Chair Emeritus Robert Goergen ’60 and his wife, Pamela, the annual awards recognize distinctive teaching accomplishments of faculty in Arts, Sciences & Engineering.

Nominations for the awards come from students, faculty, staff members, and administrators. The winners are chosen by Jeffrey Runner, dean of the College; Gloria Culver, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences; and Wendi Heinzelman, dean of the Hajim School of Engineering & Applied Sciences.

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