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Mullan Distinguished Teacher Award

Representatives of students, faculty and administration annually select one faculty member to receive the Mullan Distinguished Teacher Award—a plaque and stipend given in public recognition of exceptional teaching ability.

Maeve O'Donovan, Ph.D., 2013 Winner

Presented May 25, 2013

Every year since 1976, the University has selected one faculty colleague for the Mullan Distinguished Teaching Award. For the first time today, we present this award at commencement, the most formal University event in the academic year.

By tradition, the announcement of the winner is kept a surprise—even for the recipient. Both students and colleagues can nominate faculty members, on the basis of their ability to foster and assess students’ intellectual development and relate course material to the real world, as well as their contributions to the University and the community at large.

This year’s recipient represents the tradition well. As one student nomination said, she has the “ability to explain complex ideas in simple terms while drawing from multiple disciplines.” She opens her classes with the latest news issues, and students admire the combination of challenge and reflection that her courses always require.

This year’s Mullan Award winner began teaching at Notre Dame in 1999, with her Ph.D. from Boston College. Today, Maeve O’Donovan is an associate professor in the philosophy department, newly tenured for fall 2013, a Collegium fellow and vice-chair of the board of trustees at Mount Saint Agnes Theological Center for Women. Many of today’s graduates know firsthand how her influence can transform lives.

We thank you, Dr. O’Donovan, for the excellence that marks your teaching, your commitment to students and your many contributions to our community.

Congratulations on this well-deserved recognition!