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Teaching award-winner Salem encourages active learning
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Aliasger Salem, an associate professor in the Division of Pharmaceutics and Translational Therapeutics, recently was named the 2011-2012 University of Iowa College of Pharmacy Teacher of the Year in recognition of his demonstrated commitment to excellence.
Salem has been nominated for the award each year since joining the college in 2004. He was awarded P1 Teacher of the Year for 2005, given to teachers of first-year pharmacy students, and in 2008 he received a Council of Teaching Award, a university-level award for faculty involved in teaching innovations.
His nominators say Salem encourages his students to take an active approach to learning and that he’s skillful at keeping them engaged during classes by polling them.
“He has a wealth of knowledge, and is still able to communicate at an appropriate level to students,” says Breanna Sunderman, a student in Salem’s pharmaceutics class.
Salem also works to help students succeed in their required service projects.
“He goes above and beyond his obligations as a professor to help at service learning events,” Sunderman says.
Madelyn Yassen, a current pharmacy student, says, “I believe Dr. Salem is driven by how much he cares about his students and his passion for learning and teaching others. There was no doubt in my mind he truly wanted us to understand the material and to succeed.”
In addition to teaching, Salem operates a research group that focuses on applying nanotechnology (engineering of functional systems at the molecular level) in drug delivery and cancer vaccines that aim to train the body’s immune system to attack tumors. His group targets three of the most common cancers: melanoma, lymphoma, and prostate cancer.