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University of California Santa Barbara
Academic Senate Awards

Prior Year Recipients

2012-13 Distinguished Teaching Award

Maria Isabel Bueno Cachadina - College of Creative Studies and Mathematics

Dr. Maribel Bueno-Cachadina has been an Academic Senate lecturer since 2006, and she currently holds a joint appointment in Mathematics and the College of Creative Studies.

One of her students writes, "I've not had a teacher yet who left a larger impact on my education and life than Maribel. This is not an empty statement. I've had quite a few important teachers. But no others stayed with me as persistently as she did. And no others personally attracted great students to learn with and from as much as she could. I know her role in this because we were all convinced to come to UC Santa Barbara for the same reason."

Another of her students offers a description of her teaching: "Maribel Bueno's linear algebra class is unlike any other undergraduate math class here. The meetings are interactive and lively. A third of each class is devoted to students' presenting at the board. Her students learn to think about difficult problems, to solve them, and to communicate those solutions clearly. I have no doubt at all that two quarters in the class advanced my education by an amount that otherwise would have taken years. And it is only part of Maribel's contribution to my success."

Her letter of nomination highlights that in addition to her "outstanding teaching in the classroom…. she has also had an extraordinary impact on undergraduate education through her efforts on recruitment, curriculum development, mentoring, advising, and outreach." In her personal statement Dr. Bueno-Cachadina writes, "Being a teacher is not enough. We need to be teachers, mentors, and advisors … for our students." Dr. Bueno-Cachadina contacts the top 10% of the students applying to UCSB who express interest in being Math majors. Each is provided with information via email and the web, with follow-up contacts in person if the student becomes interested. Often this results in Dr. Bueno-Cachadina personally meeting with prospective students and often their parents as well during campus visits, providing a tour and answering questions.

She has a long list of educational activities that she is involved with outside the classroom. "Dr. Bueno-Cachadina has been the advisor for the Math Club, assisting students to organize a variety of activities including a colloquium for undergraduates every spring quarter in which faculty, visiting professors and graduate students give a talk about an interesting topic related with their research area. She has coordinated several panels with professors and has invited speakers from other universities. She organizes a problem-solving seminar each year and organizes a competition locally." She has also received a grant to increase awareness, visibility, and interest in women in mathematics.

For her hard work and dedicated teaching Dr. Maribel Bueno-Cachadina is awarded a Distinguished Teaching Award. Congratulations!