WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING
Below are excerpts from a few letters and notes about Megan's teaching from students, supervisors, and colleagues.*
"I wanted to thank you for being an amazing teacher this semester. Even though I'm transferring to a different university, I will always remember your class and how well you taught it. As someone who wants to pursue my doctorate and later become a professor, I was truly inspired by your class. Thank you for creating a safe atmosphere which allowed my classmates and I to be ourselves and discuss our ideas."
- Annie B., former UK undergraduate student
"As a student, I learned a lot and developed a lot of skills. We had a few speeches, writing projects and research projects which are significantly important for a university student. Furthermore, I lost my stage fear and developed my public speaking skills and communication skills a lot. I believe Ms. Davis’s teaching tactics and strategies were significant for this change in me. Ms. Davis was a passionate instructor. Her determination and commitment towards students was very clear....Ms. Davis is one of the best instructors I have had the opportunity to study with."
- Kaneel S., UK undergraduate student and International Student Ambassador
"Megan I just wanted to tell I greatly enjoyed your class and having you as a teacher. I am very upset I couldn't get into your class next semester. I also believe you truly cared about each one of us and that's what was so important to me because otherwise I felt like I was just a number at a large university....You really have helped me a lot this semester both personally and in my writing....I just want to say thank you for making my first semester of college a much more meaningful and enjoyable experience."
- Mattea R., UK undergraduate student
"I was a student of Mrs. Pillow Davis about a year and a half ago and I still think of her from time to time because she made such an impact on me. I was new to the University of Kentucky and new to the state itself, feeling completely out of place all the time, except in her class. I had an exceptionally hard time at UK, which in turn made me feel lost and unmotivated in my studies. In her class, however, it was completely the opposite. Her projects and workshops were so directed that it made me completely forget how uncomfortable and out of place I felt. These projects gave me little goals when I couldn't set any for myself....Mrs. Pillow Davis is truly a gem of a teacher....She truly cares about others and is passionate about her work, which shines through the daily hum drum we as students seem to go through. Most importantly, that passion is what is necessary to motivate students to produce quality work, something that I've noticed is becoming harder and harder to come by."
- Diana B., former UK undergraduate student
"When I was in Whitehall a few weeks ago I overheard a professor angrily speaking to his class about how Trump has no beliefs of his own and how he is not fit to be president. I saw you wearing a scarf one day that said pro-choice on it, therefore, I assume you have a political stance, no matter how slight. I am a conservative and I wanted to thank you for conducting the class in a very productive manner unlike the professor I heard in the hallway. Because of my friend from Nigeria, I am even more determined to help solve political issues on our campus. Looking at both sides of an arguement from a factual standpoint is very professional and beneficial and I appreciate what you are doing. I just wanted to thank you for addressing this topic of politics in a worthy manner and for encouraging people of all political backgrounds to come together to talk productively about different issues. I have somewhat strong beliefs but now that I might lose my best friend it has become very important to me to have meaningful conversations about our world. I'm sorry for rambling on, but what I'm trying to say is that it gives me hope to see college professors willing to talk productively about politics without forcing their agenda on their students."
- Bryce A., UK undegradute student
"As an instructor and mentor, Megan is highly organized, clear, student-oriented....Perhaps the clearest testament to the trust and respect I have for her as an instructor (and person) is that she is still the first person I reach out to when I’m teaching a new course."
- Anna Stone, UK Ph.D. student and WRD instructor (read Anna's full letter here)
"Megan was my mentor when I was beginning to teach for the (WRD) Department. As such, I spent a considerable amount of time observing her teaching....It was amazing how much her students responded to her teaching style....whenever a student came across a problem, she always led them in the right direction without simply telling them the answer. To me, that is invaluable because students always learn better whenever they are able to find answers for themselves....I can honestly say that I believe that Megan's teaching, in the classroom and as a mentor, are top-notch."
- Nathan Hardymon, former UK linguistics master's student, current UK law student (read Nathan's full letter here)
"I was Megan's faculty mentor the first year she taught for the WRD department. When I observed her teaching I could not help but be amazed at the level of confidence and poise that she displayed to her students. She presented herself as a seasoned teacher, maintaining control of the classroom while giving students the opportunity to explore and question. In other words, she was able to guide her lesson plans in a way that allowed her students to own their own learning....Megan is a fantastic teacher, the kind that students will remember years after they graduate, the kind that inspires even veteran teachers to recommit to the well-being of their own students."
- Dr. Joshua Abboud, Assistant Professor, Writing, Rhetoric and Digital Studies
(read Dr. Abboud's full letter and classroom observation report here)
"In addition to the impact she has had on students at the University of Kentucky, (Megan) has also provided a wonderful educational experience for students in a genetics course at the University of Maine....Megan helps my course think about the idea that no one is truly “normal” and how hurtful it can be to call one group of people normal and another group diseased or disabled. Thanks to Megan we now use the term differently-abled and talk about people having a range of phenotypes....I really appreciate her innovative approach to education."
- Dr. Michelle Smith, Assistant Professor, C. Ann Merrifield Professorship in Life
Science Education, The University of Maine (read Dr. Smith's full letter here)
*To preserve student privacy, only excerpt of student statements without last names are used here. Original copies of student feedback and course evaluations available upon request.