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Above: Nuria Protopopescu Memorial Teaching Award Winner Ryan Wallace accepts his award at the SoMAS Convocation from Interim Dean Larry Swanson and Professor Bob Aller.

After consideration of several outstanding nominees, Ryan Wallace has been selected as the recipient of the 2018 Nuria Protopopescu Memorial Teaching Award.  This award is presented annually to a SoMAS graduate student based on demonstrated excellence in teaching, innovation and creativity in instructional plans and materials, and engagement with and dedication to their students.

Ryan has been involved in teaching  throughout his graduate career at SoMAS.  He has taught Marine Biology at Suffolk County Community College in Selden for the past three years, and more recently taken on teaching Introduction to Oceanography at SCCC in Riverhead and Introduction to Environmental Biology at St. Josephs College.  Letters of recommendation noted Ryan’s ability to engage and excite both science and non-science students, and three of his former students are now undergraduates at SoMAS.

In addition to teaching classes, in the past year Ryan has mentored high school students, served as a judge at the WAC Invitational Science Fair, and engaged in outreach at a citizen science coastal acidification monitoring workshop held at UCONN.

The award was presented at the May 18th SoMAS Convocation and includes a certificate, the awardee’s name on a plaque to be permanently displayed at SoMAS, and a check for $1,000.00.

Many thanks to the Award Committee: Bob Aller, Christina Heilbrun, Qingzhi Zhu, and Chair Tom Wilson for their efforts in fundraising and assistance in identifying this year’s award recipient.

Congratulations to Ryan for this recognition and many thanks for his service to the school and community!

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