V. F. Rickey

V. F. Rickey Honored as Distinguished Teaching Professor

Dr. V. Frederick Rickey, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, was appointed Distinguished Teaching Professor by the BGSU Board of Trustees at their June 26, 1992, meeting. This prestigious honor recognizes outstanding performance in the classroom.

"The Distinguished Teaching Professor is one of the three highest honors at the University and it particularly recognizes the role of faculty instruction," Dr. Eloise Clark, vice president for academic affairs, said. "Fred is generally considered to be one of our outstanding classroom instructors. It is wonderful to be able to recognize his longstanding contributions," she added. Clark added there is keen competition for the award, and it is especially meaningful because recipients are chosen by a committee of their peers.

Judith Bentley, Department of Music, chaired the committee that chose Rickey. She said in his support documents Rickey was consistently cited for his interest in students, his fairness and encouragement. In a letter of support, Dr. Andrew Glass, chair of Mathematics and Statistics, called Rickey "the best undergraduate lecturer I have ever witnessed at any university in any discipline."

Rickey joined the University staff in 1968 and has been a full professor since 1979. He has served visiting professorships at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana University at South Bend, University of Vermont, and the United States Military Academy, West Point.

He is highly regarded among students and his peers, who often cite his energy clear and interesting explanations and concern for the progress of his students. In student evaluations of his teaching Rickey consistently receives praise, especially on his fairness and excellent visual aids. One student wrote, "If high school students could be exposed to instructors of this calibre, we would have no problem with math in our schools."

For 25 years Rickey has been active in the Mathematical Association of America and has participated in the organization's Visiting Lecturer Program. He was on the program committee of the Ohio section of the MAA. He was also the chair of the Americas section of the International Study Group for the Relations between History and Pedagogy of Mathematics and is the American Mathematical Society's representative to the History of Science section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

He is widely published in a variety of mathematics journals and has lectured extensively. He has served in an editorial capacity for Newsletter of the International Study Group on the Relations between the History and Pedagogy of Mathematics, The Philosophers Index and the Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic. Rickey has received many honors. He received the first statewide Distinguished Teaching Award from the Ohio section of the Mathematics Association of America and one of the first national MAA awards for Distinguished Teaching. He is a four-time recipient of the Kappa Mu Epsilon honorary society award for Excellence in Teaching Mathematics (1991, 1988, 1975, and 1971). He received the Outstanding Civilian Service Medal from the Department of the Army in 1990 for performance while serving as the visiting professor of mathematics at the United States Military Academy. He has also won the George Polya Award for Mathematical Exposition from the Mathematical Association of America.

Nominations for the BGSU Distinguished Teaching Professor come from faculty and the recipient is selected by a faculty committee, the vice president for academic affairs, the president and the Board of Trustees. Previous recipients of the honor are Dr. M. Neil Browne, economics; Dr. Chan K. Hahn, management; and Virginia Marks, music.

Monitor, June 29, 1992.