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Feb. 1, 2017

2017 President's Distinguished Teaching Award

Colleen Tremonte
James Madison College

Colleen Tremonte entered James Madison College as a teacher in the Humanities, Culture, and Writing Program but rapidly became enamored with the possibilities connected to joining her humanities interests with the social science mission of James Madison College. One of her biggest legacies is as an architect of a new interdisciplinary major in the college that realizes that possibility, Comparative Cultures and Politics.

Tremonte is an exceptional educator who uses cutting-edge pedagogy in her teaching. Generations of students have testified to her life-changing classes, from first-year writing to courses on nationalism and film, post-colonialism, and women and power. Tremonte has also made substantial scholarly contributions in the field of teaching and learning, and created and directed the Interdisciplinary Inquiry and Teaching Fellowship for graduate students.

“In my experience, there are very few people in our lives who exert such a profound effect that we can trace back entire patterns of thinking and working to their influence,” said Greta Stahl, a former student of Tremonte. “I say, without a doubt in my mind, that Dr. Tremonte has been one of these people, and I feel deeply grateful to have known her and to have learned from her. She is a unique and important asset to MSU.”

Tremonte is a past recipient of MSU’s Lilly Teaching Fellows Program (1997-1998), an MSU Teacher–Scholar Award (1998-1999), and the Mid-Michigan Alumni Club Quality in Undergraduate Teaching Award (2001). She is also a fellow in the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (elected 2000). Since 2008, Tremonte has been director of the MSU Interdisciplinary Inquiry and Teaching Fellows Program, a joint initiative between James Madison College and the MSU Graduate School. She was also a member of the MSU team on Preparing Future Faculty to Assess Student Learning, a grant from the Council of Graduate Schools that is funded by the Teagle and the Sloane Foundations (2012-2013).

Tremonte has published in the areas of interdisciplinary teaching and learning, on film, gender, and visual rhetoric, and on improving graduate education. Her most recent publications include “Cartographies: Graduate Education, SOTL [Scholarship of Teaching and Learning], and the Third Space” (2012) and “Window Shopping: Fashioning a Scholarship of Interdisciplinary Teaching and Learning” (2011). She has also co-published articles on cultural politics and the body in post-cold war James Bond films and is currently working on a book-length study, Darkness Visible: Gender, Genre and Cinematic Madness.