April 13, 2022 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Congratulations to Dr. Thomas Tieku, Associate Professor of Political Science, who received a Teaching Excellence Award from the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA). The award was made even more special because he was nominated by students.

Dr. Tieku says this award means a lot as he sees teaching as not just a profession but an opportunity to positively influence the lives of his students. “It is good feedback and a great honour, especially given that it is an external award and from a large pool of students who could have given the award to any of the outstanding professors in Ontario. I cannot thank enough the students who nominated me, and OUSA for the recognition,” says Dr. Tieku.

Eunice Oladejo, Vice President of External Affairs, Western University Students' Council, made the presentation to Dr. Tieku via Zoom. She said Dr. Tieku received the recognition because his “dedication to students has been life changing to a number of individuals starting their professional careers.”

This dedication did not go unnoticed by the number of students that Dr. Tieku worked with and helped along the way. Dr. Tieku was one of six teachers, including those from Brock University, Trent University Durham, Laurentian University, McMaster University and University of Waterloo, to receive awards. (Wilfred Laurier University and Queen’s University recipients are still to be announced.)

Oladejo added that Dr. Tieku “intentionally invests into his students' professional development,” pointing to his Informal International Relations Lab where students can engage in a number of research opportunities. She says Dr. Tieku has provided many opportunities for students to evolve within their undergraduate career and as they prepare for a professional degree or to enter the workforce.

In receiving the award, Dr. Tieku said he had always had a wonderful connection to his graduate students because they inspire him.

“I really appreciate this award and I'm really glad to be working with you on your journeys to imagine different futures for yourself,” said Dr. Tieku.

Dr. Tieku is currently working on several active learning courses focusing on some of the most pressing issues of our time, including a second-year course that will explore how to end violence, poverty, and suffering in the world; a third-year course that seeks to help students develop their diplomatic skills and to begin to develop a career in global affairs; and an experiential learning course to Ghana where students will examine global governance from bottom-up perspectives. He is also working to expand the International Relations Lab to ensure more students, especially those who have interest in pursuing graduate education, can gain valuable research skills and mentorship.  

You can see the presentation of the award to Dr. Tieku beginning at 20:36 of the video on the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) Facebook page.