Professor Miriam Shrager won the 2020 Mentor of the Year award, given to a faculty member selected by the graduate students. We are pleased to announce our 2020 graduate mentor, chosen particularly for her scholarly and professional guidance. As a scholar, she introduced many of us to the academic world of linguistics. We are all enthusiastic about our interests, and at times it takes an extra effort to get others interested in our topics. Her passion for linguistics is indubitable and she knows how to make its exploration an exciting journey even for those whose knowledge of and interest in this field is limited to some basic knowledge about language. For those already specializing in linguistics, she is enthusiastic in her support. For all of her students, she constantly makes connections to our own specialties and demonstrates genuine interest in our projects.
We are particularly grateful to her for providing us with space and opportunities to bring our various professional interests to her classes. Through her generous feedback, she helps us explore how to articulate and deepen our research, and, most importantly, how to push the boundaries of our academic challenges. Many of us have participated in regional and national conferences since we were accepted into the department’s graduate programs, and her help with and participation in preparation for conference papers and general professionalization cannot be overestimated.
As a pedagogue, our mentor demonstrates high standards of professionalism and academic perseverance. In the rapidly changing world of academia, it is essential for our future careers to be able to continue developing our skills and our knowledge. Moreover, it is important to learn how we better connect with our students. We learn from our mentor how to develop and finetune our teaching skills which will let us establish a productive academic and pedagogical communication with our future students. Effective communication with students and understanding of their priorities are our mentor’s professional strengths which we value and appreciate.
This year the Graduate Mentor of the Year Award goes to Miriam Schrager.