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Celebrating Excellence: Diana Ginn and Colin Jackson receive Schulich Law's top teaching awards

Posted by Trudi Smith on March 27, 2020 in News
Diana Ginn and Colin Jackson (Will Yang photos)
Diana Ginn and Colin Jackson (Will Yang photos)

Teaching is at the heart of Schulich Law’s mission. We are known for our committed professors who give students an outstanding legal education, while making them feel welcome and supported in our close-knit, collegial community. The winners of this year’s teaching awards are truly an inspiration to our students.

Hannah and Harold Barnett Excellence in Teaching Award - Professor Diana Ginn

The Hannah and Harold Barnett Excellence in Teaching Award is given by the Law Students’ Society to recognize a professor who teaches first-year law. Each first-year section collectively puts forward a nomination, and a winner is chosen by the Teaching Awards committee, chaired by the LSS Vice President Academic. This is Professor Ginn’s fourth time receiving the award - she was previously recognized in 2005, 2012 and 2014.

“Professor Ginn always goes above and beyond to make sure that our class is understanding the course material,” says nominator Madison Ranta, “Whether it’s going over some practice questions together in class after a particularly tricky topic or encouraging students to submit their answers to old exam questions to her for personalized feedback, she is open to working with students to improve their grasp on property law. You can tell that she empathizes with first year law students and wants to do her best to make us feel at home at Dal.”

“I love teaching, and am very grateful to be recognized for something that I enjoy so much.” 

Professor Ginn’s response to receiving the award is evidence of her caring approach. “I love teaching, and am very grateful to be recognized for something that I enjoy so much,” says Ginn. “Interacting with students is always the highlight of my job, and of course this spring, my thoughts are with all our students, as the academic year is ending so differently than expected.” 

Dalhousie Law Alumni Teaching Award - Professor Colin Jackson

The Dalhousie Law Alumni Teaching Award is given in recognition and appreciation of excellence in teaching demonstrated by enthusiasm, commitment, dedication and outstanding service to students. Nominations are made by current law students and a recipient is selected in consultation with two representatives from the Dalhousie Law Alumni Association.

Professor Colin Jackson has been on both sides of the classroom at Schulich Law, and it shows in the empathy and concern he has for his students. After earning his LLM and PhD here, he became a Professor in 2018. In 2019, he was one of the inaugural recipients of the Class of 1967 Award for Innovation in Teaching.

Schulich Law has always been a place that’s committed to excellent and innovative teaching, so to be recognized for teaching here is an incredible honour.”

“I’m thankful everyday to get to come to work and teach brilliant, thoughtful, curious law students in a building that’s jam-packed with incredible teachers who I admire,” says Jackson. “Schulich Law has always been a place that’s committed to excellent and innovative teaching, so to be recognized for teaching here is an incredible honour.”

Third-year student Maggie Day says she nominated professor Jackson because he really cares about his students. “He changes up each of his lessons so that we can learn the material in different ways. This helps keep me engaged with the material and remember it come exam time. He also makes great jokes and keeps things light and fun. He is super excited to teach all of the classes he teaches which makes me more eager to learn.”

Professor Jackson’s other nominator, third-year student Jenna Shaddock adds, “He cares about our understanding more than anything and is selfless with his time. Without the individual help he provided me I would not have gone into my exams so confidently."

Congratulations to Professor Jackson and Professor Ginn on their awards and a special thank you to all of our faculty at this time for the efforts they’ve made in recent weeks to adapt to a new mode of teaching and a new way of supporting students.