Dr. Jeffrey Miller named Liberal Arts and Sciences 2011-2012 Teacher of the Year at SUNY New Paltz

NEW PALTZ – The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the State University of New York at New Paltz has selected Dr. Jeffrey Miller as its 2011-12 Full-Time Teacher of the Year. Miller, an associate professor of political science and international relations, was nominated by Joel Lefkowitz, his department chair.

“In all the ways we measure success in teaching—curricular development, quality of teaching materials, peer reviews of teaching, quantitative and discursive student evaluations, work with students outside the classroom, and successful outcomes—Professor Miller has compiled a stellar record,” said Lefkowitz.

Hired as a specialist in political theory, Miller has taught numerous sections of ten separate courses ranging from classical and medieval political thought, modern political theory, political obligation and punishment and honors course, the individual and society, as well as special topics courses like theatre and politics, 20th century political thought, liberalism and its critics, and Greeks, Romans, and barbarians.

James Schiffer, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, stated, “Peers who have observed Miller’s classes praise his ability to challenge and engage his students, especially through close readings of specific passages and through the use of Socratic dialogue. He establishes excellent rapport with his students without sacrificing rigor. His student evaluations are consistently among the very best at the College, and student comments about his teaching are filled with superlatives,” he added.

Miller has directed more than 30 independent studies, more than half of them in the last five years. Fifteen of his students have presented papers at statewide and regional professional conferences.

In honor of his achievement, Miller’s name will be added to the Teacher of the Year plaque located in the Jacobson Faculty Tower lobby on the campus. He will also receive $1,000 to be used for professional development, and will present a talk or lead a workshop on pedagogy for interested faculty in the Center for Teaching and Learning.

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences hosts the largest and most diverse academic unit at New Paltz. It is home to 16 departments and programs, primarily in the humanities and social sciences.