Professors in Social Work and Thanatology receive annual teaching award
June 7, 2018
Of the 21 exceptional faculty members nominated, two were chosen by careful consideration from the Award Selection Committee. Dr. Rick Csiernik and Dr. Carrie Arnold will receive the King’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2018.
Full Professor, Dr. Csiernik will receive the award for full-time faculty member. He has been a member of the King’s faculty for 21 years in the School of Social Work.
Praise from students in the nomination for Dr. Csiernik is abundant. They state that Dr. Csiernik went above and beyond his role as a professor. For example, he frequently takes time to help students find resources for potential grants and he happily agrees to be a reference for graduate school applications.
“This was the most alive I have felt in a long time” wrote one student in a teaching evaluation. Another stated that Dr. Csiernik is “great at pulling us out of our comfort zones and challenging us to think in new ways, and with creative approaches.”
“His courses on addiction, group work, research and applied social work practice are about critical thinking, about intentionally pushing his students creatively, theoretically, and practically and about ensuring that the thousands of lives they will touch as social workers are well served,” says Dr. Sauro Camiletti, Interim Principal and Academic Dean. Dr. Csiernik is the author of over 140 academic publications including six books.
Dr. Arnold will receive the award for part-time faculty. She has been teaching at King’s for 13 years on consecutive contracts and has taught both Psychology and Thanatology courses. She will begin her full-time appointment as an Assistant Professor of Thanatology at King’s starting July 1.
Various students emphatically exclaim that she is the best professor they’ve ever had. “Dr. Arnold is very effective at providing an environment in which you can and want to grow, both academically and personally. This class goes beyond the typical university class experience and provides a new learning environment. It is by far the best course I have taken,” stated one student in the nomination.
It is clear from student feedback that Dr. Arnold teaches with passion and sincere caring about each of her students. “I honestly would never have applied to Teachers College with the confidence that I did if I had not enrolled in Grief Counselling and had her endless support,” said one.
“I have taken many, many courses throughout three different disciplines, and I do not think I have ever had such a dedicated instructor, or learned as much. I am so glad I ended up taking the course because I know it will stick with me as I move on next year into medicine. My goal is to go into psychiatry/neurology and integrate and build on what I learned from your class, which opened my knowledge base far beyond just a medical perspective, “said another.
“Dr. Arnold conveys difficult concepts using a style that is personally stimulating and professionally appropriate. Her lectures are always well thought out, structured, impactful and designed to maximize student engagement,” explained Dr. Camiletti.
During the 2018-2019 academic year she will teach Survey of Thanatology, Principles of Palliative Care, Bereavement and Grief, Children and Death, Suicide: Theory and Interventions, and Grief Counselling and Support. Dr. Arnold published “Understanding Child and Adolescent Grief: Supporting Loss and Facilitating Growth” which is the textbook for THAN 2232.
Annually since 1996, two teaching awards are presented at the spring Convocation. One award recognizes a full-time member of faculty with a minimum of five years of teaching experience at King’s. The second recognizes a part-time member of faculty with a minimum of three years of teaching experience at King’s.
The Award Selection Committee is comprised of the President of King’s University College Students’ Council, the Principal, the Academic Dean, two members of Faculty Council, two alumni, two faculty, one Professor Emeritus, and the Registrar.
Both professors will receive their awards at Convocation on June 12, 2018 at Alumni Hall, Western.
Congratulations Dr. Csiernik and Dr. Arnold on being recognized for your commitment and dedication to student success at King’s.