UH Announces Recipients of the 2002 Frances Davis Awards

University of Hawaiʻi
Posted: Sep 16, 2002

The following University of Hawaiʻi faculty were named recipients of the 2002 Frances Davis Award For Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.

Colette Higgins is an instructor of Hawaiian history at Kapiʻolani Community College. According to her colleagues, she has genuine passion for the subject and allows students to experience history through her detailed and fascinating stories. As a graduate of Kapiʻolani CC, Higgins values the community college experience and conveys that to students, to whom she relates with enthusiasm, humor, patience and commitment to their success.

Gordon Scott Lee is an associate professor of ceramics at Hawaiʻi Community College. His reputation as an artist draws students of all ages and backgrounds to his classes, and he is known to invite local artists into his classroom every semester to give students a wider perspective of their studies. Lee also started the Christmas and Mother‘s Day ceramics sales to develop confidence in his students and encourage their talent, and he orchestrated an annual Student and Teacher Art Exhibit.

Leslie Lyum is an assistant professor at the Employment Training Center and believes that students will learn if given appropriate instructor support and materials. She uses hands-on exercises to teach mathematics to at-risk adults who have been unsuccessful in traditional academic settings.

Drue Narkon is an instructor in the College of Education‘s Department of Special Education at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, and has been dedicated to the field for 28 years. She is responsible for coordinating dual preparation cohorts in undergraduate certificate programs in elementary and special education, and assists students in acquiring teaching positions with the state Department of Education. Narkon is also the faculty advisor for the student service activities with Special Olympics and the Ronald McDonald House.

Yoshiko Okuyama is an assistant professor of Japanese at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo. Her enthusiasm for teaching and ability to simplify complicated concepts with an enriched learning experience motivates, inspires, and empowers her students to excel. Her concern doesn‘t end with the class bell—she helped students, who wanted a course in conversational Japanese, establish a two credit class at night.

Mark Panek is a graduate assistant in the College of Languages, Linguistics, and Literature‘s Department of English at UH Mānoa. He was selected from 28 teaching assistants as the recipient of the Graduate Teaching Assistant Award for his dedication and fresh approach to undergraduate instruction. As an apprentice in English 100, Panek translated his interactive model to the university classroom by teaching students how to respond to one another‘s written work through directed reading circles.

The Frances Davis Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching is a memorial to the late Frances Davis who taught mathematics at UH Mānoa and Leeward Community College. Davis was also responsible for the establishment of the math and science division at Leeward CC. This award honors faculty members in the UH system for their dedication to teaching and demonstrated excellence as teachers of undergraduate students.