Sept. 12, 2019

Engineering faculty recognized for teaching excellence


The NDSU College of Engineering has honored three faculty members for their outstanding work in the classroom.

Long Jiang, associate professor of mechanical engineering, was named the 2019 recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award for his ability to explain difficult concepts in understandable terms, his willingness to spend time with students outside of the classroom and his passion and enthusiasm for teaching.

Jiang, who joined the NDSU faculty in 2010, also earned high marks from students for incorporating discovery-based learning into his courses. The approach allows students to work in teams to complete hands-on research projects.

“The class was wildly successful, with students highly engaged and motivated to continue their projects after the end of the semester,” said Alan Kallmeyer, department chair for mechanical engineering.

The 2019 Early Career Excellence in Teaching Award was presented to Ravi Yellavajjala, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering.

Yellavajjala is known as an enthusiastic teacher who strives to provide the best possible learning environment for his students. He consistently receives excellent evaluations for both teaching and advising and was awarded the NDSU Student Success Impact Award for advising in 2017.

“Our students love Ravi’s teaching style, his digital class notes, use of technology, grading transparence and more than anything else his extreme availability to help students address issues in a timely fashion,” said David Steward, department chair for civil and environmental engineering.

The College of Engineering also recognized the role graduate students play in advancing NDSU’s student-focused mission.

Dayakar Lavadiya, a civil engineering doctoral student, was named the 2019 Graduate Teaching Assistant of the Year.

Students say Lavadiya’s ability to use hands-on experiments and real-world examples helps them understand the concepts they are studying.

Jiang, Yellavajjala and Lavadiya were honored at the College of Engineering Scholarship and Awards Reception Sept. 6 in the NDSU Memorial Union Great Plains room. The event was a celebration of student scholarship recipients, scholarship donors and faculty and staff award winners.

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