Ben Murphy, a 2014 humanities and writing graduate of Houghton College, recently received the Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching by Graduate Teaching Assistants from the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill.
The Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching was first established in 1952 to acknowledge excellence in teaching of undergraduate students (especially first- and second-year students). In 1990 this award was expanded to the Tanner Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching by Graduate Teaching Assistants, which seeks to include the recognition of graduate teaching assistants who aid in instruction of undergraduate students. The award is accompanied by a $5,000 stipend.
Murphy is humbled and honored to be recognized. His past experiences at Houghton have continued to be an example for him, from classes to the frequent campus-wide discussions that still take place. “I do try as much as possible to replicate in my classroom some measure of the liberal arts model that so benefitted me,” he remarks.
Murphy is currently working towards a doctorate in English with a focus in American literature from the 1830s-1914. In addition to being a graduate student, Murphy is also a teaching fellow at UNC, where he regularly leads courses in composition and rhetoric.