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UTSD Students Select Three for 2014 Teaching Awards

Friday, May 30, 2014 - 1:18pm

Shalizeh Patel, DDS

Trevor Treasure, DDS, MD

Donna Warren-Morris, RDH, MEd




Students at The University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston have chosen three faculty members to receive awards for outstanding teaching in 2014. The winners are:

•    The John H. Freeman Award for Faculty Teaching:  Shalizeh “Shelly” Patel, DDS
•    The John P. McGovern Outstanding Teaching Award:  Trevor E. Treasure, DDS, MD
•    The Lorna J. Bruning Award for Outstanding Teaching:  Donna Warren-Morris, RDH, MEd

Other finalists for the Freeman Award were Drs. Asneiry Aponte, Raymond Koeppen, Carla Rogers and Gena Tribble. Finalists for the McGovern Award were Drs. Dan Bentley and Amity L. Gardner. Dental hygiene faculty members Joanna Allaire, RDH, MDH, and Darla McKitrick, RDH, MS, were finalists for the Bruning Award.

The Freeman Award recognizes outstanding teaching in the first two years of the dental curriculum, with first- and second-year dental students choosing the winner. Third- and fourth-year dental students choose the McGovern Award winner for outstanding clinical teaching.  Dental hygiene students choose the Bruning Award winner on the basis of teaching excellence, mentoring and being a positive role model. 

Freeman Award-winner Patel is an assistant professor in the Department of Restorative Dentistry and Prosthodontics.  She is a graduate of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio Dental School. The students who nominated her noted that she is “a dynamic student advocate and sounding board for student struggles, ideas and innovations. Her leadership, personal investment and attention to detail foster a professional environment where students learn to see themselves as colleagues, and are continuously challenged to grow.”

McGovern Award-winner Treasure is an assistant professor in the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. He earned a DDS from the University of Toronto, an MD from UT Southwestern Medical School and an MBA from Texas Tech University. 

In nominating him, students wrote, “Dr. Treasure is more than happy to meet with students in his office if they have questions about a case. He has even come to the upstairs clinic to take a look at our patients in the restorative bays. He goes above and beyond to help us learn. If a student makes a suggestion during a consult that isn’t the right course of action, he respectfully gives you a very thorough explanation of why you wouldn’t do that, and what would be a better alternative.”

Bruning Award-winner Warren-Morris is a professor in the Department of Periodontics and Dental Hygiene. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina and earned a master’s degree in education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

One of several students who nominated Warren-Morris wrote, “She not only makes her class interesting, but always gives many real-life examples that help us remember what she teaches. She understands that not all students learn at the same pace or level, so she makes her topics easy to learn and keeps things hands-on. She is very receptive and gives great feedback and criticism to her students in a way that helps encourage, empower and motivate, rather than be demeaning.”