Psychology Professor Wins University's Annual Teaching Award

Over the past year, the psychology department has increasingly been filled with students wearing lab coats and surgical masks. They're busy studying the behavioral traits of mice. They're conducting more animal research than any other time in recent history.

Prouty Winner Frank FerraroPsychology faculty and students say the increased interest can be traced to psychology professor Frank Ferraro.

“Dr. Ferraro excels in the category of professors who raise the standards of the environments within which they work,” said fellow psychology professor Jerry Bockoven. “His work ethic, professionalism, collegiality and consistent effort to improve his already high level of teaching excellence has inspired his colleagues as well as his students.”

Ferraro was recognized May 7 with the University’s Margaret J. Prouty Teaching Award. The award recognizes and rewards faculty for the pursuit of excellence in teaching. Students nominate deserving professors for the award based on the following:

  • Communicates high expectations
  • Encourages intellectual curiosity within and across disciplines
  • Inspires students to do their best work
  • Holds students accountable
  • Engages students in the class
  • Encourages cooperation among students
  • Respects diverse talents and ways of learning
  • Encourages faculty-student contact
  • Uses variety in instruction

“Dr. Ferraro is able to teach material in a way that captivates his students,” wrote one student.

“Dr. Ferraro shows a true passion for teaching and is always willing to meet with students and provide assistance,” wrote another student.

Ferraro was hired at Nebraska Wesleyan University in 2006.

Bockoven said his colleague is deserving of the annual teaching award because of the way he challenges students.

“Students work harder in Dr. Ferraro’s classes than they do in most of the other classes that they take, and I suspect that this is because of Dr. Ferraro’s calm and accepting social demeanor, his communicated belief in the students’ capacity to be responsible, and his dedication to engaging students in the wonder of discovery,” said Bockoven.

Previous Prouty Teaching Award winners are:

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