Leila Brammer, 2010 Carlson Award Winner, Communication Studies Department

Posted on October 24th, 2016 by

2010 Carlson Award Winner, Leila Brammer, Communication Studies Department

Leila Brammer

The Gustavus Adolphus College Board of Trustees established the Edgar M. Carlson Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1971 to honor former President Edgar Carlson for his years of distinguished leadership, and in recognition of his commitment to academic excellence. Gustavus students, faculty, staff, and administrators nominate professors for this award, and each year at Commencement a faculty member is recognized for his or her exceptional skill and effectiveness as a teacher. This year’s award goes a faculty member who is, in the words of one nominator, is “passionate about teaching and research and dedicated to both”-Dr. Leila Brammer.

Students and faculty members write that Leila “is a wonderful mentor to new faculty”; “cares as deeply about the success of first-year students as senior honors students”; “effectively uses humor in the classroom”; “inspires students to exceed their expectations, reach their true potential, and view learning as a life-long process”; “promotes a collaborative and experiential learning environment”; “is innovative”; and “blends excellence with opportunity.”

Leila Brammer arrived at Gustavus in 1997 and has attained the rank of associate professor. A native of Aberdeen, S.D., she holds a B.A. in speech communication and political science from Northern State University in Aberdeen, an M.A. in communication studies from Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, Ill., and a Ph.D. in speech communication with an emphasis in rhetoric from the University of Minnesota.

Brammer’s scholarly work has focused on social movements, rhetoric and argument, and civic engagement. She is the author of Excluded from Suffrage History: Matilda Joslyn Gage, Nineteenth Century American Feminist. She has taught a variety of courses in the Department of Communication Studies, from Rhetorical Criticism to Communication in Fiji, from Feminist Criticism to Public Discourse. (I suppose one should not say that she has taught dis-course to dat-course. Sorry. . .) Actually, Lei has been a major force behind the significant curricular change from Public Speaking to Public Discourse with an emphasis on civic engagement. A faculty colleague writes, “This new course represents a clear articulation of [the] Gustavus Mission, blending excellence in education with the opportunity for students to truly embrace their individual potential by way of leadership and service in their community.”

A student writes, “Lee is the fairest, caring, entertaining, intelligent, and encouraging professor I have had at Gustavus.” A faculty colleague states, “Lee emphasizes the importance of reaching every student, especially those who are struggling.” This colleague quotes her as saying, “It is easy to teach the best students.”

In this community of learning, excellence in teaching is at the center. As a faculty member of this liberal arts college, I am proud to call her my colleague.

Presented by Rick Orpen
Professor of Music
2009 Recipient of the Edgar M. Carlson Award

 

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