Ullica Segerstrale, professor of sociology, has been named the 2017 recipient of the Board of Trustees Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award. Segerstrale was recognized by Provost Frances Bronet at the Faculty Recognition and Awards Reception on Thursday, April 27.
Segerstrale’s teaching has educated and inspired both students majoring in social sciences and students across several other departments. In her courses she encourages students to engage important sociological theories and apply them to practical matters creatively. Although many of her students take her classes as part of their core curriculum, they find her courses relevant, enlightening, and a valuable complement to the work they do in their majors.
Students find her teaching style to be a nice balance between formal instruction and informal, student-driven discussion and exploration of ideas and applications. And students find her to be generous with her time and attention to their particular needs as well as understanding of the variety of personal experiences and challenges they face.
Segerstrale has mentored many students through her role as advisor to the Camras Scholars program. Her courses on the sociology of the built environment have added a necessary dimension to the training of future architects and planners. As a result she is in demand as a member of graduate committees and as a mentor for students who anticipate careers that include university-level teaching.
In sum, students across Illinois Tech hold Segerstrale’s teaching in high esteem. She is sought after as an instructor and mentor. She is generous with her time and energies. Students value the intellectual content of her courses; her sensitivity and responsiveness to their needs, interests, and cultures; and the contribution that her courses make to their professional and personal development. Her teaching is an important part of the contribution that Social Sciences and Human Sciences make to the broader mission of Illinois Tech.