Dr. Singh, Ferne Kotlyar, Alvin's mom, and Dr. Short

Ferne Kotlyar Wins The Alvin Singh Graduate Teaching Assistant Excellence Award

For her outstanding work as a Teaching Assistant for BIO153 Diversity of Organisms, Ferne Kotlyar wins the 2022 Alvin Singh Graduate Teaching Assistant Excellence Award.

Ferne was [...] instrumental in drawing the students into the course and lab materials. Ferne created her own slides for the sessions and used a range of tools - Youtube videos, polls and Kahoot - to engage the students with the content and each other. Many students commented not only on her thorough preparation and expertise, but also on her ability to incite their interest in topics and content that they had never thought about before.
Ferne was such a supportive and crucial contact for the students in her lab section. Students commented on Ferne’s ability to connect with them and create a fun, inspiring and safe atmosphere in her sessions. As one student commented “Anyone with Ferne as a TA is in good hands”!
As someone who had worked closely and for many years with Alvin, and who very much
appreciated the utter dedication to his students, the courses and his colleagues in the teaching team, as well as his huge generosity and never-ending drive to improve, I consider Ferne as a perfect recipient for the award named after Alvin. She has the same admirable attitudes, focus, and dedication, and I have no doubt that Ferne will continue to contribute to the excellence of teaching in our department!
Excerpts from Prof. Christoph Richter nomination letter