This is a general call for applications for the 2022 Grisham Master Teacher Awards, the 2022 Donald Zacharias Early Career Undergraduate Teaching Excellence Awards, and the 2022 Alumni Association Graduate and/or Professional Teaching Excellence Awards. Interested faculty must submit an electronic application in PDF form to the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org) by October 21, 2021, if their teaching can only be observed in the Fall 2021 semester or by November 18, 2021, if their teaching can be observed in the Spring 2022 semester. All current full-time Faculty members at Mississippi State University with the required years of service, regardless of rank, are eligible to apply for these awards. Late applications will not be accepted.
Please note several changes from previous years. Formal nominations from persons other than the award candidates themselves are no longer required. Applicants can manage and submit their own applications. This is to lessen burdens on Department Heads or others and give applicants more responsibility and control in the process. Instead of letters of nomination, an increased number of letters of support are now required. If you wish to "nominate" someone for a teaching award, simply urge that person to apply for it and offer a letter of support. There are now two application deadlines. For applicants who can only be observed in the Fall 2021 semester, the October 2l51 deadline is necessary to allow preliminary evaluation of the application and have time for classroom observation if warranted. Normally, applicants are evaluated and observed in the Spring 2022 semester. For applicants whose classroom teaching can be observed in the Spring 2022 semester, the deadline for receiving applications is November 18th. Finally, in recognition of the rich presence of outstanding teachers in our faculty, more awards are being given. The number of Grisham awards has increased from 1 to up to 3, Early Career awards have increased from 1 to up to 3 or 4, and Graduate and Professional Awards have increased from 1 to up to 2.
- You must be teaching at least one course during either Fall 2021 or Spring 2022 to allow for in-class or online observation, which is required to be eligible for any award.
- To be eligible for the Grisham Master Teacher Award, applicants must have at least 7 years of experience already completed at MSU teaching primarily undergraduates.
- To be eligible for the Zacharias Early Career Undergraduate Teaching
Excellence Award, applicants must have 3 to 6 years of experience already completed at MSU teaching primarily undergraduates.
- To be eligible for the Alumni Association Graduate and/or Professional Teaching Excellence Award, applicants must have a minimum of 3 years of experience already completed at MSU teaching primarily graduate students or professionals.
Applicants will be evaluated on criteria such as the engagement of students in learning, assessment of teaching and learning, clarity and organization of teaching, variety of teaching methods, enthusiasm, scholarship of teaching, and professional presentation of the application. Finalists will be observed teaching their classes, in person or online, during the Fall 2021 or (usually) Spring 2022 semester. An application cover sheet and instructions may be found at provost.msstate.edu under the Announcements section.
After careful review, the UIIC will select and announce the winners before the end of the Spring 2022 semester. Strongest consideration will be given to those applicants who carefully follow the application packet requirements and succeed in clearly documenting and demonstrating their mastery of outstanding teaching. Application packets of prior Grisham Master Teacher winners are displayed in the Special Collections section in the Mitchell Memorial Library and may be reviewed by potential award applicants.
We are deeply grateful to Mr. and Mrs. John Grisham, to the Zacharias Endowment, and to the Mississippi State University Alumni Association for their support of these highly prestigious teaching awards.