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Showcase Awards

President’s Distinguished Teaching Award for Career-Track Faculty


Recognizing outstanding educators

This award recognizes up to two non-tenure track faculty members who epitomize the highest levels of performance and excellence and who provide a vital role in teaching WSU students.

Kenneth Faunce

Associate Professor (Career Track), Department of History

Not only is Ken Faunce passionate about teaching, he is masterful at it. He organizes lectures to help students make connections across disciplines, cultures, and time frames—essential to understanding complex issues. He draws students into discussions, encouraging them to share ideas, fueling their curiosity, and making each individual recognize their own connection to the questions at hand. His student evaluations, always at the top of the numeric scale, are filled with comments about his depth of knowledge and unflagging enthusiasm. Faunce developed one of WSU’s most popular history courses: History of Organized Crime in America. He authored a history textbook that students laud as engaging. He has contributed to the First Year Focus and Common Reading programs since their inception.

Faunce exhibits genuine concern for students themselves. He is an advocate for and ally of those who feel marginalized or threatened, and those who face prejudice and intolerance.


Phillip Morgan

Associate Professor (Career Track), Kinesiology and Education Psychology

“Dr. Morgan changed my life,” is a common refrain from alumni in the health sciences. Phillip Morgan has inspired thousands of students through his innovative instruction. He teaches human anatomy—a course with notoriously difficult subject matter. Morgan works creatively to engage students and help them remember key concepts. He uses skits and student demonstrations. He embeds humor into lessons—for instance, pouring a cup of water over his head before asking why hydration matters to tissues. His high energy alone holds students’ attention. 

Morgan’s course evaluations are consistently stellar. Students often say that they would have not been successful in their teaching, pre-medicine, or pre-physical therapy programs if it were not for Morgan’s outstanding instruction. When students face academic or personal challenges, they often turn to him for help. His dedication inspires them to work hard, be role models, and strive for excellence.

Previous recipients

2021Rebecca L. Cooney, Strategic Communication
Dave Torick, School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering
2020Janet Peters, Psychology
Chris Dickey, Music
2019Clif Stratton, History
Renee Petersen, Civil and Environmental Engineering
2018Leann Hunter, English
Jason B. Peschel, School of Design and Construction
2017Xiaopeng Bi, mechanical and materials engineering
Debbie Brinker, nursing
2016Lisa Carloye, biological sciences
Karl Olsen, civil and environmental engineering
2015Nicholas Cerruti, physics
Kate McAteer, biological sciences
2014Andrew S. O’Fallon, software engineering
Samantha Swindell, psychology
2013Pamela Awana Lee, fine arts
Judy Meuth, critical culture, gender, and race studies

Award criteria, application process, and video of previous recipients