Two GMIT lecturers have been honoured with national ‘Teaching Hero’ awards after being nominated for the accolade by their students.
Anne O’Leary and Tom Conlon were among 37 teachers from Ireland’s higher education sector to receive the awards at a formal ceremony in Dublin recently, organised by the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education in partnership with the Union of Students in Ireland (USI).
Tom, from Mountbellew and living in Salthill, lectures in Law, and Anne, from Gorey in Co Wexford and living in Tynagh, Loughrea, lectures in culinary arts in the Department of Culinary Arts and the Services Industries, GMIT College of Tourism & Arts.
Over 800 higher education teachers were nominated nationally, with students describing their most impactful teachers as outstanding, knowledgeable communicators, as well as innovative, creative and inspiring. The award recipients came from universities, institutes of technology and private colleges.
“GMIT students value our teachers and the impact they have on their lives, and have acknowledged this by submitting testimonials to the National Forum,” said GMIT VP for Academic Affairs and Registrar Michael Hannon.
“This is the second year of the National Teaching Heroes Award competition and on each occasion GMIT had two staff members honoured, John Carty and Richie Hoare last year and this year Anne O’Leary and Tom Conlon. I congratulate the worthy winners and I am delighted to see the Forum establish an alumni network for this unique group of professionals,” he added.
Gerry Talbot, Head of Department of Culinary Arts and the Services Industries, paid tribute to the two GMIT lecturers.
“We are exceptionally proud of Tom Conlon and Anne O’Leary who have been recognised for outstanding excellence in their teaching and learning here in our Department, and we thank our students for nominating them for this prestigious accolade,” he said
And GMIT Students Union President Amy Kelly said they were also delighted for Tom and Anne in receiving their awards for excellent teaching and engagement.
“It shows that students really care about the standard of teaching they receive and value when a lecture goes above and beyond for their students benefit,” she added.