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Skidmore College
Faculty Development Committee

The Ralph A. Ciancio Award for Excellence in Teaching

Closing date: Friday, February 17, 2023

The Ralph A. Ciancio Award was established in 2000 in honor of this distinguished faculty member in the English Department of Skidmore College. This annual award recognizes a faculty member at Skidmore College for excellence in teaching. The FDC welcomes nominations and will evaluate the qualifications of nominees on the basis of criteria such as teaching rigor, effectiveness, motivation, knowledge of subject matter, and overall dynamism. Nominees must have at least five years of teaching experience at Skidmore College. Though recipients of this award should be selected primarily on the basis of individual merits, consideration may also be given to issues of diversity and inclusion. These might include diversity of discipline, gender and/or ethnic background.

Past recipients include:

  • 2001–02: John Anzalone, Professor of French
  • 2002–03: Carolyn Anderson, Professor of Theater
  • 2003–04: Gregory Pfitzer, Professor of American Studies
  • 2004–05: Tadahisa Kuroda, the David H. Porter Professor
  • 2005–06: Ronald P. Seyb, Associate Professor of Political Science
  • 2006–07: Penny Jolly, Professor of Art History
  • 2007–08: Giuseppe Faustini, Professor of Italian
  • 2008–09: Beau Breslin, Professor of Political Science
  • 2009–10: Mary Lynn, Professor of American Studies
  • 2010–11: Katherine Hauser, Associate Professor of Art History
  • 2011–12: Grace Burton, Associate Professor of Spanish
  • 2012–13: R. Daniel Hurwitz, Professor of Mathematics
  • 2013–14: Erica Bastress-Dukehart, Associate Professor of History
  • 2014–15: John Brueggemann, Professor of Sociology
  • 2015–16: Barbara Black, Professor of English
  • 2016–17: Masako Inamoto, Professor of Japanese
  • 2017–18: Susannah Mintz, Professor of English
  • 2018-19: Jeffrey Segrave, Professor of Health and Human Physiological Sciences
  • 2019-20: Beck Krefting, Associate Professor of American Studies
  • 2020-21: N/A
  • 2021-22: Hassan Lopez, Professor of Psychology
  • 2022-23: Rodrigo Schneider, Assistant Professor of Economics

To facilitate the nomination process, a nomination form is now available online. Please submit your nomination using the following link:  If you prefer, nominations will be accepted if submitted directly to the Office of the DOF/VPAA (to the attention of Debbie Peterson). If you choose this alternative option, we ask that you be sure to address the guiding questions provided on the online form in your nomination letter.

As you report the qualifications of the candidate, please speak to the following:

1. Cite evidence that demonstrates the nominee’s excellence in teaching according to the guidelines set forth in the Skidmore Faculty Handbook (“Evaluative Criteria for Continued Service”);

2. Report on the nominee’s exemplary performance in areas such as:

a. developing lectures and facilitating discussion at levels appropriate for the students’ experience, knowledge and ability to grasp material;

b. clarifying the context and goals for the proceeding of the course and the daily classroom;

c. stimulating and challenging students to learn, to interact with the substance of the course and to move beyond the classroom in the acquisition of knowledge and the solution of problems;

d. interacting with students in the classroom and in the office, encouraging curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, inviting, between faculty and students, collaborative learning and scholarship; and

e. providing teaching excellence at different levels of the curriculum (e.g. introductory classes, advanced classes, etc.).

Depending on the number of nominations received, FDC may first narrow the pool of nominees.  Only the finalists will be asked to submit supporting material for further consideration to help provide as full a picture as possible of the nominee's contributions as a teacher at Skidmore.

Each selected nominee should submit the following items to the FDC:

  1. current CV;
  2. teaching statement;
  3. syllabi of the last three years (please submit only the most recent version of a syllabus, if you have taught the course mutiple times);
  4. favorite assignments;
  5. peer observations letters;
  6. last three years of student evaluations.

Please email the supporting material to Debra Peterson at