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Andreas Luescher awarded Professor of Teaching Excellence distinction

Professor and department chair in the Department of Architecture and Environmental Design is strong proponent of treating education as a collective pursuit

Dr. Andreas Luescher has been a strong proponent of treating education as a collective pursuit and he is passionate about joy being “the engine of learning.” Luescher’s students at Bowling Green State University have benefitted greatly from his melding of innovative in-class involvement with valuable field experiences.

Luescher, professor and department chair in the Department of Architecture and Environmental Design, School of the Built Environment in the College of Technology, Architecture and Applied Engineering, has been awarded the Professor of Teaching Excellence distinction.

Luescher, who takes pride in his teaching approach that has its foundation in the relationships between people, ideas, shapes and colors, as well as a focus on what has come before and what is coming next, has been a member of the BGSU faculty for nearly two decades.

 “If you get the relationship right with students, then the learning occurs naturally,” Luescher said. “To achieve those relationships, I try to foster a shift in seeing learning as a solitary activity to one in which learning is understood as being embedded in social relationships.”

In his relentless effort to expand the learning platform, Luescher organized the first Mediterranean Architecture and Design Study Abroad Program for 2019 and he hopes to have more than 20 students from a variety of majors enrolled in that endeavor in the near future.

“It is a personal mission of mine to bring diverse individuals together by pushing against the isolating tendencies of a college and/or school,” he said. “Attracting women and minority students — and also retaining these students — is an ongoing priority of mine.”

In his letter endorsing Luescher for the University honor, Dr. Sujata Shetty, professor in the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Toledo, stressed the emphasis Luescher puts on critical thinking, inter-disciplinary collaboration, grounding urban design in research and community engagement.

“In his research and teaching studios, Dr. Luescher has questioned the conventional focus on growth and has argued for educators to train architects and urban designers to work in communities facing population and economic decline,” said Shetty, who has collaborated with Luescher on numerous published writings, at professional conferences and to develop and co-teach urban design studios.

Shetty also stated that Luescher takes great pride in seeing his students move on to top graduate schools, having them recognized for their work and take their place in the profession.

“He is an exacting teacher who demands excellence, and gets it,” Shetty said. “Many of his students have produced such good work under his guidance that they have been accepted at prestigious graduate schools of architecture.”

Luescher, whose highly detailed personal teaching manifesto includes entries such as “the learning process is more important than the outcome,” “make experiments happen” and “be open to changing your curriculum,” also received a strong recommendation for the award from Dr. Jennie J. Gallimore, dean of the College of Technology, Architecture and Applied Engineering.

“He recognizes the need to work with students to allow them the flexibility to bring their individuality into their work, which the students seem to appreciate,” she said while citing his skills as a teacher, scholar and facilitator. “Andreas’s reputation as a teacher-scholar shines far and wide. He deliberately brings his passion for his chosen discipline, architecture, into his teaching, which is easily recognized by his students.”