Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Award

Since 2001, The Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor Award annually recognizes four SMU faculty members for their notable commitment to and achievements in fostering student learning. These are teachers whose concerns for higher education go beyond classroom boundaries and often the boundaries of their own disciplines. In student mentoring, in discussions about teaching, and in continuous reflection about their own successes and ways to improve, they represent the highest achievement in reaching the goals of higher education.

Recipients receive a $10,000 award and membership in SMU's Academy of Distinguished Teachers. For two years following the award, they participate actively with other members of the Academy in providing campus-wide leadership in teaching and learning.

For nomination and selection guidelines, click here.

2022 Altshuler Recipients

Dale Carpenter is a Professor of Law and the Judge William Hawley Atwell Chair of Constitutional Law in the Dedman School of Law. The committee noted the number of students who said he made them learn how to think as lawyers. Professor Carpenter uses a variety of efficient engagement tools to cater to his large courses and students consistently rate him as one of the best teachers in the law school. Student evaluations illustrate that sentiment by sharing comments like: “Professor Carpenter’s teaching style is incredible. I am in awe of how he can bring the most stimulating conversation out of people” and “Professor Carpenter was a great teacher and I think he has utilized the Socratic method the bets of any classes I have been.”

Sandra Duhé is an Associate Professor and Chair of Corporate Communication and Public Affairs in the Meadows School of the Arts. Her letter of recommendation included several superlatives and characterized her “the most effective scholar/teacher/administrator” in the Meadows School. That thought was echoed by the committee, that highlighted their very own experience with Sandy being a “team player and good citizen of the university.” The committee noted her very strong teaching philosophy statement that highlighted her theoretical framework to deliver her courses. That framework included a 5-point mantra (be early, follow directions, get to the point, be grateful, and show what you know), practice labs, business simulations, writing assignments, and comprehensive strategic communication plans for a client.

Virginia DuPuy is a Professor of Voice in the Meadows School of the Arts. She has had a very long tenure with the university and is described as “the anchor” of the faculty. She stood out to the committee for bringing up how she assists the school in creating new programming based on the current job market in music. Her letter of recommendation highlights that she has been consistently good for many years. Of note, the committee emphasized the importance of her work with schools in the South Dallas and acquainting her SMU students with the realities of gross inequalities in the public education system.

Hervé Tchumkam is an Associate Professor of French in the Dedman College of Humanities & Sciences. Hervé teaches very sensitive courses including post-colonial trauma and racism and the impact his courses have in his students is visible. A very large number of students refer to what they have learned in his classes way after they are done taking the course, illustrating the palpable effect of his teaching. His student mentoring work is of note, including several research and engaged learning projects. While he is a faculty member in the World Languages & Literatures Department, a lot of his courses are co-listed with the Embrey Human Rights program and he also teaches in the Simmons School of Education’s Graduate Liberal Studies program, which underlines how his work broadly impacts the university.