Posted 2:35 p.m. Monday, Aug. 17, 2020

Megan Strom, assistant professor of Global Cultures & Languages, is one of six to earn the Eagle Teaching Excellence Award. Read more →

Megan Strom emphasizes compassion toward Spanish speakers

The best educators have a profound impact on students, in and out of the classroom. This year, UWL’s Provost Office received more than 500 nominations from students hoping to recognize their favorite professors and instructors.    

From these nominations, a university committee selected six educators to receive 2020 Eagle Teaching Excellence Awards. The winners will be highlighted on the university’s homepage in the coming weeks, along with being honored during Chancellor Joe Gow’s opening remarks for the fall semester. 

They are:     

  • Lisa Kruse, Sociology & Criminal Justice    
  • Christa Kiersch, Management     
  • Greg Ormes, Communication Studies     
  • Barrett Klein, Biology    
  • Megan Strom, Global Cultures & Languages    
  • Tushar Das, Mathematics & Statistics    

This is the fifth in a series of stories profiling the winners.  

Megan Strom, Global Cultures & Languages  

Megan Strom, assistant professor of Global Cultures & Languages.

Started at UWL: Fall 2017

Courses: “I teach in the Spanish section of the Department of Global Cultures & Languages. I work in Hispanic Linguistics to focus specifically on the Spanish-speaking and Latinx communities in the United States: how the media represent them, their experiences in the health care and legal systems, and what their everyday experiences are in general terms.”

Background: “I taught Spanish for four years as a visiting assistant professor at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. That is where I learned how to be a medical and legal interpreter, skills that have become integral parts of my classes at UWL. Before that, I completed my Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota and my M.A. at the Universidad de las Américas-Puebla.”

Favorite part of teaching: “One of the main goals of my teaching is to promote more compassionate and ethical treatment of Spanish speakers and Latinxs in the United States. In order to do this, we need to explore very difficult concepts that can cause discomfort as we realize that most of us are complicit in these situations. The reason I love stepping into the classroom every day is because students are willing to do this work together – with me and with each other – and because I learn so much from them in the process. I am consistently impressed with the connections they make between our class material, what they are learning in their other classes, and their own life experiences. ¡Gracias, estudiantes!”

Previous articles in this series:
Incredibly fortunate to be a teacher’: Lisa Kruse wins 2020 Eagle Teaching Excellence Award

‘The human side of the business’: Relationships, challenges fuel Christa Kiersch’s love of teaching

‘Teaching inspires me’: Greg Ormes says connecting with students ‘brightens my days’

Sharing his passion for insects, discovery: Barrett Klein pushes students to ‘harness their superpowers