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Summer Faculty Innovation Grant Recipients 
Congratulations to the Summer Faculty Innovation Grant Recipients! As part of USC Upstate’s commitment to excellence in teaching and learning, the Office of Academic Affairs, through funding from the USC Upstate Foundation, awarded ten $5,000 summer teaching and learning innovation grants to stimulate experimentation and collaboration around designing more engaging and effective learning environments. The 2015 recipients come from diverse disciplines and areas of specialization:  

  • Lola Bradley and Bree Kirsch – Turning LIBR 201 into a hybrid course using a flipped classroom model and incorporating service-learning
  • Chase DeHan – Developing a flipped classroom for Finance 363
  • Samantha Hauptman and Lynn McMillan – Childhood Trauma: Potential Pathway to the Criminal Justice System (interdisciplinary course)
  • David Marlow – International ESOL Service-Learning for Diversity and Understanding
  • Allison Pingley – Developing political behavior course as service-learning course
  • Araceli Hernandez-Laroche and Samantha Hauptman – The Twin Ills of Terrorism and Torture: A Global Perspective (interdisciplinary course)
  • Tom Rogers – Creating a fully asynchronous lab for EMTG 320L: Engineering Cost Analysis Lab
  • Sharon T. Smith – Integrating second life into the Childbearing and Women’s Health Curriculum
  • Rachel Snow – Spartanburg Art Museum Service-Learning Seminar                  
    Lola BradleyBreanne KirschChase DeHan 1Samantha Hauptman
    Lola Bradley Breanne Kirsch Chase DeHan Samantha Hauptman
    Lynn McMillanDavid MarlowAllison PingleyAraceli Hernandez-Laroche
    Lynn McMillan David Marlow Allison Pingley Araceli Hernandez-Laroche  
     Tom RogersSharon SmithRachel Snow 
     Tom RogersSharon T. Smith Rachel Snow  


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    USC Upstate Excellence in Teaching and Advising Award
    The USC Upstate Excellence in Teaching and Advising Award at USC Upstate recognizes excellence in undergraduate instruction and academic advisement. The overriding criterion for selection is sustained excellence in undergraduate teaching and academic advisement. That is, consistency in quality of performance in the classroom and academic advisement are emphasized. Click here for previous award recipients.

    2015 Award Recipients

    Lisa Johnson Headshot
    Lisa Johnson, Ph.D.
    Director, Center for Women's and Gender Studies

    Teaching is not just about introducing students to new subject matter. It is also about addressing student fears and anxieties that may be standing in the way of learning. Excellence in teaching, for me, means equipping students to tolerate uncertainty, to sit with the anxiety of not understanding something, and to develop trust in themselves that understanding will come eventually, if they keep working with a text or new idea. It is a matter of instilling a mixture of confidence and humility toward the vastness of a single academic field, and providing opportunities to apply course subject matter to everyday life. I also strive to generate an inspirational dimension to my work as a professor by revealing excitement about my own scholarly research to students and by supporting their undergraduate research in turn. Students who present papers at local and regional Women’s and Gender Studies conferences grow as learners by conducting independent research and by conceptualizing and addressing these broader audiences.  

    Jeff Smith Headshot
    Jeff Smith
    Instructor of Management 
    George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business and Economics

    My teaching philosophy has evolved to one centered around the "three 3s." I attempt to
    incorporate three main concepts, or takeaways, into each class period. When standing up front in a college classroom, I consider myself working for three entities.

    • First, the student, who is my customer. My job is to expose the student to concepts and their applications that assist our students in preparing for opportunities and careers.
    • Second, the university, where being productive in my job. I contribute to the value of a USC Upstate degree.
    • Third, is our community, where I have the responsibility of aligning the concepts on my classes to the demands of the market.

      Learning is comprised of listening, watching and (mostly) doing. Therefore, teaching should align with speaking, showing and coordinating the application of the concept(s). I focus on efficiently exposing the concepts with the emphasis being the application of the concepts (doing).

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