04/24/2020 ASHLAND, Ohio -- Dr. Deleasa Randall-Griffiths, professor of communication studies and director of the online Communications Studies Program in the Ashland University College of Arts and Sciences, is the recipient of AU’s 2020 Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award.
Finalists for the award were Dr. David McCoy, associate professor of journalism and digital media, and Dr. Rosaire Ifedi, associate professor of doctoral studies and advanced programs.
The Taylor Excellence in Teaching Award was endowed by the late Edward and Louaine Taylor as a way of supporting high quality teaching at Ashland University. All full-time faculty with a minimum of three years of teaching experience at AU are eligible for the award. The award committee selects the recipient after reviewing nominations from students, faculty and department chairs.
Randall-Griffiths was nominated by Dr. Daniel O'Rourke, her colleague of more than 25 years. "From the first time I observed Dr. Randall-Griffiths in the classroom, I knew that she was a passionate advocate for the art of communication who most effectively shares her message with students,” O’Rourke wrote in his nomination. “I have learned much from Dr. Randall-Griffiths as a colleague, co-author and friend. (She) lives to teach. She teaches in the classroom, her office, online, in the community, the state and recently she has added a national component to her educational work."
Elaborating on her passion for the classroom, O'Rourke said, "Dr. Randall-Griffiths actually listens to her students. Teaching is an interactive conversation for Dr. Randall-Griffiths. In her classes, students become co-authors in the lesson plan. No two classes are exactly alike because each collection of students create a new dynamic in the classroom."
Randall-Griffiths has developed 10 courses for both the seven- and 12-week corrections format and also has taught the courses, recruited top scholars/teachers in the field to teach for Ashland online and trained those faculty in the successful methods of online instruction.
In addition, Randall-Griffiths is a lay leader in her church, is a driving force in the two-decade success of Ashland Chautauqua, has offered programs celebrating the centennial of the women's suffrage and also was the recipient of the Ohio Communication Association’s Innovative Teaching Award.
Randall-Griffiths will be recognized publicly at the Academic Honors Convocation in the fall of 2020 and will offer a brief speech on engaged teaching and learning in higher education. She also will receive a medal to be worn with academic regalia and a stipend.
Ashland University is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.###