Howard Armitage (2004)

armitageAffiliation at the time of the award: University of Waterloo, Accounting and Finance.

Citation: Howard Armitage is the quintessential educational entrepreneur. He was a driving force in creating an intensive team project – called WATcase – in which fourth year accountancy classes are cancelled for three days and students work on a real-world problem for a real organization. Howard’s focus on integration, creativity, and problem-solving skills runs through his pedagogy and curriculum development. Recently, he championed the development of Waterloo ‘s new Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology, a development designed to provide business skills to young entrepreneurs. Since 1993, he has led the Gordon H. Cowperthwaite Centre for Accounting Education.

Howard engages students in debates, simulations and even storyboarding to solve problems and to integrate real-world problems in the classroom. His courses require students to confront troubling issues in accounting and management, such as the Challenger disaster and the events that underlie recent accounting scandals. His educational initiatives and classroom skills have already earned him Waterloo ‘s Distinguished Teaching Award and the L.S. Rosen Outstanding Accounting Educator Award. His students praise his ability both to motivate them and to challenge them, and in the words of one, “his devotion to teaching his students to read, write, and think critically is the greatest gift a professor could give.”