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College of Pharmacy's Marwaha, Tejada-Simon Receive UH Faculty Awards

Faculty Members Honored for Excellence in Teaching, Undergraduate Research Mentoring

Houston 05-15-13 - UH College of Pharmacy pharmacology faculty members Aditi Marwaha, Ph.D. (’05), lecturer, and Maria V. Tejada-Simon, Ph.D., M.Ed. (’07), assistant professor, were honored by the University of Houston in April for excellence in teaching and mentorship.


Marwaha was among the recipients of the UH Teaching Excellence Award for Instructor/Clinical level faculty by the UH Office of the Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs & Provost. A past recipient of the college’s Teaching Excellence Award and the Rho Chi Teaching Award, she has taught and coordinated several Pharm.D. courses as well as an undergraduate course for non-science majors since joining the faculty seven years ago. 

Marwaha was recognized by UH for her success in the classroom as a result of embracing new teaching methods and instructional aids to increase student engagement and provide an active learning environment, including use of audience-response devices, virtual classrooms and interactive, web-based content; eagerly inviting student and peer feedback on her presentations; and inspiring students to consider becoming teachers.

"When students get personal attention and feedback from their teacher, they get motivated to do better," Marwaha said. "They feel good that, in a class of 300 students, my teacher remembers what I do."

One of Marwaha's students noted, "Dr. Marwaha’s teaching is about more than just knowledge of the subject; it is also the kindness, consideration and respect she shows each and every day."

Tejada-Simon was honored as the inaugural recipient of the Early Faculty Award for Mentoring Undergraduate Research from the UH Office of Undergraduate Research

Tejada-Simon has mentored nine undergraduate students in her lab since joining the faculty in 2008, with seven peer-reviewed publications and more than two dozen presentations with at least one undergraduate coauthor. Several of her undergraduate students have received competitive extramural travel awards to present at major conferences, support at the local level through UH and international undergraduate research scholarship/fellowship programs, and/or local and national recognition awards for the high quality of their presentations.

"To acquire research skills, a broad laboratory and scientific experience will allow a student to increase not only his/her talents and confidence, but also be more competitive in the global marketplace and perhaps open his/her eyes to the pursuit of graduate studies," she said.

Students in her lab are not only required to complete training in research ethics, safety, animal welfare and basic lab research techniques, but also participate in sessions on scientific writing, effective presentation skills and teaching methods.

"MariVi views each student that works with her as a diamond in the rough – to be pressed hard, nurtured, criticized when appropriate, gently and empathetically encouraged when needed – all with the objective of creating a lifelong learner skilled in the art of discovery, regardless of their chosen future pursuit," noted Doug Eikenburg, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the college’s Department of Pharmacological & Pharmaceutical Sciences.

(Thomas Campbell/UH photos)