Impact in Education: Pamela Carmines, Ph.D.
From left, Dele Davies, M.D., vice chancellor for academic affairs, Pamela Carmines, Ph.D., and Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, M.D., at the Impact in Education Awards.
Pamela Carmines, Ph.D., was one of the recipients of the Office of Academic Affairs' 2019-20 Impact in Education Awards. She received the Visionary Leadership in Education Award.
- Name: Pamela Carmines, Ph.D.
- Title: Professor, UNMC Department of Cellular & Integrative Physiology; and executive associate dean, UNMC Graduate Studies
- Joined UNMC: July 1993
- Hometown: Poquoson, Virginia
Visionary Leadership in Education Award
This award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated the ability to skillfully establish or administer an educational initiative or role at UNMC or a national organization.
You are the recipient of the Visionary Leadership in Education Award, which is given for establishing or administering an educational initiative. Tell us about the benefits of the initiative you oversee.
In the past decade, I have been involved in establishing and administering several educational initiatives at UNMC, including Dissertation Boot Camp, the Writing Center @ UNMC and the Graduate Studies Professional Development Lunch & Learn series. These initiatives benefit our students by contributing to a high-quality learning environment outside the classroom and promoting student success. I also led the team that developed SeguidorTM-- a secure, online student information system designed specifically to meet the needs of M.S. and Ph.D. students, and a key component of UNMC's infrastructure to foster degree completion by graduate students.
Describe your proudest moment as an educator.
A previous student struggled tremendously with coursework during his first year at UNMC and was on the verge of dismissal. After helping him find and receive appropriate help (he ultimately was diagnosed with test anxiety) and providing encouragement as he continued his studies, I was extremely proud to see him walk across the stage to receive his degree at commencement. He worked incredibly hard to earn that degree as a prelude to pursuing a career in medicine, and I am happy to say that he is now a medical student well on his way to achieving his career goal.
What advice would you give other faculty members who want to have an impact in education?
Continually strive to balance student perceptions and expectations with your understanding of their needs. This is a never-ending tug-of-war. Students usually focus on short-term challenges -- "Will this be on the exam?" Rely on your experience to recognize their long-term needs, and do your best to provide the information and tools necessary to satisfy those needs.
Do you have a favorite quote or philosophy on teaching?
Actually, related to leadership in education: Show up every day ready to be proactive and accountable and to influence students and the university in a positive direction.