The American Journalism Historians Association announced today that Dr. Mike Sweeney of Ohio University has won the organization’s 2018 National Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Sweeney has been on faculty at Ohio University since 2009, having previously worked from 1996-2009 at Utah State. He will receive his award at the AJHA National Convention, which will take place Oct. 4- 6 in Salt Lake City.
“I am honored to join the ranks of some truly great teachers of journalism history – the ‘Mount Rushmore’ of professors -- previously recognized with this award,” Sweeney said. “In accepting, I would like to say that an effective professor recognizes the rich, two-way nature of communication required for deep learning in the classroom, and so I would like to say ‘Thank you’ to my excellent students.”
AJHA’s education committee, the members of which judged all entries, noted Sweeney’s consistently strong course evaluations, creative course and project designs, and engagement with his students. Sweeney’s work with aspiring media historians has also translated into several of his doctoral students participating in annual AJHA national conventions. “The level of mentoring it takes to guide student research projects, and then to oversee the presentations of the projects at a major professional conference, seems to me to separate out Sweeney’s accomplishments," one of the judges’ ballots read.
Kaylene Armstrong, chair of the education committee, said the committee received excellent applications for the award, making the job of the judges particularly difficult this year. "I think we would have been comfortable awarding this honor to any of the applicants," she said.