Two faculty members from York University’s Glendon Campus were recognized with awards for teaching excellence on June 7 during Glendon’s Convocation Luncheon.
The 2019 Principal’s Teaching Excellence Award recipients are: Professor Colin Coates, who received the award in the full-time faculty with 10 or more years category; and Duncan Appleton, who was selected in the contract faculty category. The awards are given annually to honour those who, through innovation and/or commitment, enhance the quality of teaching and learning at Glendon.
“Co-Interim Principal Dominique Scheffel-Dunand and I congratulate Colin and Duncan on their well-deserved awards,” said Ian Roberge, co-interim principal and associate principal, academic, of Glendon Campus. “Although they both bring different approaches to their teaching, they demonstrate inspiring excellence as teachers, as leaders, as mentors, who engage their students with enthusiasm, creativity and a sense of humour.”
Coates is a professor in the Canadian Studies Program at Glendon. He came to Glendon in 2003 when he was awarded a Canada Research Chair in Canadian Cultural Landscapes. Prior to that appointment, he was director of the Centre for Canadian Studies at the University of Edinburgh.
Coates has taught courses in Canadian studies, humanities and history, and he is particularly dedicated to teaching the first-year course in Canadian studies, “Understanding Contemporary Canada.” A historian by training, he conducts research in the fields of early French Canada, environmental history and the history of utopias.
Coates is the founding president of the Canadian Studies Network – Réseau d’études canadiennes (2010-15), the academic association representing Canadian studies scholars in Canada, and has also served as director of the Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies at York University.
“I was very touched to receive this award, and I appreciate the efforts of colleagues and students in nominating me for it,” said Coates. “I feel very privileged to teach at our bilingual and multicultural campus. The students who take my courses constantly remind me of the dynamic nature of Canadian studies, how our understandings of Canada are constantly evolving.”
Appleton has taught in the Drama Studies Program at Glendon for many years. His courses perfectly reflect the program’s distinguishing feature in their integration of theory and practice and their emphasis on experiential education.
Appleton has been working professionally in theatre for more than 25 years. As a Dora-nominated designer, manager and technician, he has worked in several cities across Canada. Most recently, Duncan has been pursuing the rapidly developing art of interactive video and kinetic scenery, combining his passions for theatre, photography and microprocessor technology. Duncan has been the technical coordinator of Theatre Glendon since 1999, and has had the pleasure of teaching, collaborating and generally geeking with the hundreds of students who have worked on shows in their beloved black box.
“Receiving this teaching award is a real honour,” said Appleton. “Theatre is inherently collaborative and experiential, so to be nominated by my colleagues and especially my students is very special to me. I hope this means that they have enjoyed working on our projects almost as much as I have. I’m really tickled!”