NMU professor honored with distinguished award


Computer Information Systems professor Sandra Poindexter has received the Michigan Distinguished Professor of the Year Award for her exemplary teaching.

Poindexter was nominated because of her amazing innovation and teaching style in the classroom, said Susan Koch, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

“She goes to extraordinary lengths to know every student in every class by name, focuses her research on learning in the undergraduate curriculum and serving as an extremely proactive academic adviser for students majoring in Computer Information Systems,” Koch said.

It is great news not only for Poindexter, but for the college of business and NMU as well, said Rajib Sanyal, the Dean of the Sisler College of Business.

“We are all delighted; this is a high honor for professor Poindexter, to recognize her contributions. It’s good news for the college of business that we have such a distinguished faculty member,” he said. “It’s also good news for NMU where we embody high quality teaching, so we are simply thrilled and delighted.”

This shows other schools what a great business department NMU has and will attract potential business students, Sanyal said.

“It validates the high quality of teaching that takes places in the college of business,” he said. “I hope [high school students] will notice this and can be assured when they come to Northern for a business degree, that they can get high quality instruction from very dedicated and innovative faculty members such as professor Poindexter.”

One of Poindexter’s prominent teaching techniques is her involvement with students, advocating hands-on experience, Sanyal said.

“This is very distinctive; we all know that when you actually do something you actually remember it, versus reading a book or listening to a lecture,” he said. “In some ways she has been a leader in experiential learning, which is a very effective way of teaching.”

Koch agrees that Poindexter’s receiving this award will encourage people to see what an incredible teaching staff Northern has.

“This award gives further evidence to the fact that NMU has always placed great teaching at the center of what we do. And I think sandy represents that,” Koch said.

Poindexter works hard to provide the best quality education she can to her students, Koch added.

“Professor Poindexter has been repeatedly recognized for her outstanding commitment to students and for her remarkable contributions to undergraduate education, besides receiving the NMU Distinguished Faculty Award,” Koch said.

Poindexter winning the Distinguished Professor of the Year Award was well-deserved, she added.

“I was very pleased for her and the university, because it’s a major honor for the university,” Koch said.

Poindexter is a great professor to have on staff, Sanyal said, and he said he is very proud that she won this award.

“She is certainly an asset to the college and the university,” he said.