Campus News

'Behind the Blue': 2019 Great Teacher Award Winners, Part 2

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 17, 2019) — The University of Kentucky Alumni Association started the Great Teacher Award program in 1961 to honor excellent teaching at the university. There have been 296 awards given since that first year. Nominations may only be submitted by current students.

To receive the award, a candidate must:

  • hold the rank of full-time lecturer or above and have been a member of the faculty for the past three years at UK;
  • have superior knowledge of the subject matter;
  • have original and innovative classroom presentations;
  • demonstrate concern for students, both inside and outside the classroom setting; and 
  • not have been a recipient of the award for the past 10 years.

A committee of 17 members of the UK Alumni Association Board of Directors and a representative from the student organization Omicron Delta Kappa select the recipients based on objective rating and ranking of the eligible nominations submitted.

On this episode of "Behind the Blue," UK Marketing’s Amy Jones-Timoney talks with two of the six Great Teacher Award winners for 2019. Margaret Rintamaa is an associate professor in the College of Education's Department of Curriculum and Instruction, and Mel Coffee is in associate professor in the College of Communication and Information's School of Journalism and Media.

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The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion two years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. The Chronicle of Higher Education judged us a “Great College to Work for," and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for three straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.