Kerry Redican, M.S.P.H., M.P.H., Ph.D.
Professor of Public Health and Director of the Undergraduate Public Health Program
Excellence in Teaching Award from the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at Virginia Tech
The award, presented by the center to approximately nine Virginia Tech faculty members each academic year, recognizes a faculty member's effective, engaged, and dynamic approaches and achievements as an educator.
Among the goals of the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning are advancing experiential learning at Virginia Tech and improving student learning through research-based instructional practices and student-centered design. According to Redican, his approach to teaching focuses on forming meaningful relationships with his students: “I view teaching as not just classroom-based. I spend a large amount of my time meeting with students one-on-one to answer course-related questions, ‘navigating’ their university related questions and discussing career opportunities. At the end of the day, I believe teaching is about relationships and how big an investment one wants to make in that relationship. The bigger the investment the better the outcomes.”
Relatedly, Redican described that his most meaningful experiences as a teacher are when students keep in touch with him and share their personal successes. “I feel a personal sense of accomplishment when my students are successful,” he explained.
Rohan Shah, a former student, stated that Redican is “an outstanding professor but an even greater individual.” Shah further explained that taking Redican’s class as an upper-division student led him to pursue a master's degree in public health.
Another former student, Eric Ramos said: “… Dr. Redican has been an advocate for my growth as a future healthcare professional and individual by pushing me to pursue every endeavor that comes my way. Even as a postgraduate, I know I can always reach out to Dr. Redican for any help or advice….”
Aside from being an excellent teacher to his students, Redican also had the special opportunity to develop the Bachelor of Science in Public Health program. “It took three years to develop the degree proposal, move it through university governance, BOV approval, and SCHEV approval,” Redican said. The BSPH program is the only undergraduate degree program in the College of Veterinary Medicine.”
Redican provided the following advice for new college teachers: “As you progress in your teaching career I think you'll find over time it becomes more difficult to relate to your students. So, try to understand their world and the many uncertainties and distractions (especially technology) they face. Take advantage of the university resources to help you in your teaching. Finally, enjoy your students. We are really fortunate to work with such an amazing group of young adults.”