University at Albany
 

Excellence in Teaching (Full Time)

Each year, the University at Albany honors special members of its community with Excellence Awards denoting exceptional contributions to the life of the campus. Three faculty members received this tribute in 2012 for Excellence in Teaching (Full Time).



Martin HildebrandMartin HildebrandMathematics and Statistics

Professor Martin Hildebrand is one of the top teachers in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. As Director of Undergraduate Advisement, he advises transfer students during the summer months, and undergraduate majors before they are assigned a regular advisor.  He directs MA theses and Ph.D. dissertations, and acts as teaching mentor to the graduate TA’s in the department.

Faculty who teach the courses that follow Professor Hildebrand’s note that the standard he sets in giving feedback and engaging students actively represents a high bar to hurdle.  Peers note that while his classroom atmosphere is relaxed, it is also business-like: “it is rare to see a class so completely absorbed in the learning experience.  I came away with a real understanding of why his students regard him so highly.  This was a masterful performance by an enthusiastic and accomplished teacher.”  Another notes: “He is an extraordinary and gifted teacher.  He loves teaching, he loves math and he loves what he is doing.  His face gleams when he is teaching! This enthusiasm is so contagious that students feel inspired by him.”  He reaches students by getting them to participate in the thinking of the course, not just to sit and ‘ingest’ a well-crafted lecture. One student wrote: “I was very nervous taking probability.  I didn’t know if I could pass it and not drop it again.  Well, this time I ACTUALLY understood what was going on.”  Others comment that he is “Kind, hilarious and helpful”, and “the most intellectual and challenging Professor I have ever had.  He stimulated my interest in Math as well as Economics.”

Experienced graduate students recommend all new TA’s attend Professor Hildebrand’s lectures to learn to be effective instructors. His department relies on him to mentor budding teachers of mathematics.  They praise his patience and kindness as he challenges and guides students toward an understanding of the theories in the field.  He leavens his interactions with an infectious sense of humor that disarms students and motivates them to learn and challenge themselves. 

Professor Hildebrand has the rare gift of being able to challenge our most outstanding Mathematics students, while, at the same time, engaging and motivating students with less mathematical preparation to reach higher.



Excellence in Teaching (Full Time)

Glenn Deane Susan Gauss Martin Hildebrand
Glenn Deane
Sociology
Susan Gauss
History
Martin Hildebrand
Mathematics and Statistics
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