Philip Smith (2003)

smithAffiliation at the time of the award: University of Prince Edward Island, Psychology.

Citation: More than 300 students flock each year to Philip Smith’s 8:30 am Introductory Psychology class at UPEI and it’s easy to see why. He makes an effort to know each of them; he encourages a “service-learning” assignment in which students work with community organizations; he believes in “learning to write and writing to learn” and devotes time daily to student writing; his WebCT bulletin boards let students talk through their fingers and respond to issues raised by their peers; and a volunteer student feedback team keeps him in touch with the needs of all his students. As one of those students put it, “this Dr. Phil deserves at A+!”

These efforts to reach his students have already been celebrated both with the UPEI Award for Teaching and the CASE Canadian Professor of the Year Award in 2000. As Dean of Arts, he championed new programs for students, such as a writing-across-the-curriculum initiative, an office to assist learning-disabled students, and a university writing minor. He volunteers with the First-Year Advisement Centre, mentors in the Teaching Partners Program for new faculty, and developed an Arts Seminar course using student peer educators. In the classroom and among his peers, Philip is a model educator.