Three Bloch Faculty Earn Teaching Awards

never_b07_Cropped Brent Never, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Nonprofit Leadership, has received the Elmer F. Pierson Good Teaching Award

Awarded annually to an outstanding teacher, some of Dr. Brent Never’s contribution highlights include being an active instructor in both public affairs and business administration courses. While tailoring his courses to different audiences, he has kept experiential learning at the core of his pedagogical style. In the past two years, his business statistics and research methods courses for executive students have used the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce “Big Five” initiative as a means to focus student learning, where each student group has been tasked with collecting, analyzing, and communicating data on the initiative of their choice, resulting in statistical analysis that is meant for executive decision making. As an instructor in the Master of Public Administration, he developed the “minute-memo” assignment where students are challenged to take a multifaceted public policy case and boil it down to a memo for a supervisor within one hour. Students then swap memos, read them for one minute, and then write down all they learned in that time period resulting in students quickly learning to write for concise communication. Never has also had student groups partner with local businesses, non-profit, and government agencies in both his program evaluation and Geographic Information System courses, resulting not only in professional products for these organizations, but also strong connections for future employment.

leigh_s_14Leigh Salszeider, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Accountancy, has been named the 2014 recipient of the Chancellor’s Early Career Award for Excellence in Teaching.

This award is UMKC’s highest honor for excellence in teaching for an assistant professor. Some of Dr. Leigh Salszeider’s contribution highlights include teaching two sections of auditing and two different graduate courses during his first year. While a two-two load is typical for assistant professors, in Salszeider’s case, it represented a significantly greater teaching load than typical. The auditing course is a senior-level class that requires a great deal of reading and critical thinking for students that resulted in increased traffic through his office as the students sought help and guidance. The graduate courses were even more of a challenge, having been dormant for some time prior to Salszeider coming to the Bloch School and neither course utilizes a textbook. Salszeider recreated the classes from scratch. His greatest success began in the Fall Semester of 2012, when he began teaching the Principles of Accounting class. Required for every student in the Bloch School, it had become a roadblock for many non-accounting students. The drop rate was consistently high and test scores were low. He addressed the drop rate by instituting required labs for students. He completely redesigned the format of the class and recruited top graduate teaching assistants to be lab instructors. Salszeider’s test results provide clear and convincing evidence that students enjoy taking classes from him, as his scores are far above average for both the Accounting Department and the school.


Larry Garrison, Ph.D., Professor of Accounting, has been named the 2014 recipient of the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.

This award is UMKC’s highest honor for excellence in teaching by a UMKC faculty member with a distinguished and long-established career at the University. Dr. Larry Garrison has been a member of Bloch School faculty for more than 25 years and is an outstanding contributor. He teaches five different taxation courses each year at both the graduate and undergraduate level. Tax law changes daily and this requires constant revisions to lecture notes and course materials. Garrison produces specific packets for each of his classes that are often more than 300 pages in length. It is very important to him that his students have the latest information. Garrison’s teaching approach involves experiential learning by having the students complete tax returns and has them produce them twice: once in pencil on tax forms to ensure they understand how the forms interrelate, and then again using a computer-based tax return software preparation program. His dedication to his students is always top priority. Given that Garrison has published more than 50 peer-reviewed journal articles, he qualifies for a reduced, 2-2 teaching load. Yet, he did not want to take advantage of the reduced load and instead wanted to continue teaching a standard 3-3 load plus two courses in the summer. Garrison negotiated this workload with each newly-hired Bloch School dean and department chair until 2004, when he compromised and began teaching a 3-2 load. He has never taken a sabbatical during his career and turned down requests by four deans of the Bloch School to be the department chair because he is not comfortable with anyone else teaching his classes. Garrison’s student evaluation results speak how highly he is regarded, as they are consistently above both the Department of Accountancy average and that of the Bloch School. In addition, Garrison has received the Missouri Society of CPAs Outstanding Educator Award and has twice received the Elmer F. Pierson Teaching Award.


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