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Midland University’s Manish honored with top faculty award

Midland University’s Manish honored with top faculty award

May 26th , 2017

Midland University has announced the latest recipient of the Stephen E. Fritz Excellence in Teaching Award. Dr. Chintamani S. Manish was honored with the university’s top faculty award during an academic year-end reception.

Established in 2010 by Fremont residents Dr. Thom and Barbara Christensen, the award recognizes excellence in teaching as personified by Fritz, a former Midland president. The award is based on comprehensive criteria that recognize all aspects of a faculty member’s job.

In an earlier ceremony, two faculty and one staff members were honored with awards voted upon by students. Dr. George Conrad, Education instructor, received the Excellence in Teaching Full-Time award, and Cindi Dodd, Education instructor, received the Excellence in Teaching Adjunct award. Connie Bottger, Coordinator of Academic Program Support, received the Helping Hands award.

Leading up to eight different courses each year, Dr. Manish teaches a wide range of students – from “Principles of Biology” for non-biology majors to “Biology Capstone” for seniors who are Biology majors.

“Dr. Manish treats every student with respect, regardless of their individual talents, abilities and needs,” said Dr. Susan Kruml, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “He goes out of his way to assist students in their learning outside of the classroom, making himself readily available beyond any posted office hours. This is just one of the reasons Dr. Manish is known amongst students as someone who puts them first.”

Well respected by students, Dr. Manish consistently receives praise in course evaluations. Examples of student comments include:

“Dr. Manish is an absolutely incredible professor. He cares about each and every student and is very approachable.”

“He was honest and also very caring when I asked for help. He has given me many opportunities to be successful.”

“He is the best, most energetic teacher here. He cares and enjoys teaching and laughs with the students.”

“I can honestly say I have never had more respect for a professor than I do for Dr. Manish. He not only respects us as students, but as human beings. He has made me realize the significance of truly learning subject material, rather than just memorizing to pass. … Not only has he been an inspiration in the classroom, but he has taken the time to make sure we have learned many valuable life lessons.”

One of the more popular courses Dr. Manish teaches in “Experiencing Biomes at the Zoo,” an Interterm course that provides a behind-the-scene look at the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Omaha. He also assisted in developing the Luther College Honors Program and team-taught “Experiential and Service Learning” for students in the program.

In addition to his work in the classroom, Dr. Manish is active in assisting the Admissions Office. He regularly meets with students during campus visits and, along with Dr. Lance Johnson, has organized the popular “Zombie Apocalypse” experiment during the annual Junior Jumpstart Day for high school juniors.

“When we are passionate about what we do, we are better at what we do,” Dr. Kruml said. “Dr. Manish’s passion for helping all students become the best version of themselves is seen in his involvement in student-focused activities on campus.”