Katia Passerini, professor in NJIT's School of Management, received the Excellence in Innovative Teaching on Sept. 15, 2010 at the NJIT University Convocation, an awards ceremony with a special welcoming ceremony for the freshman class. The event was held on Lubetkin Field at J. Malcolm Simon Stadium, on the NJIT campus. A reception for the award winners followed.
Traditionally, this event honors select NJIT faculty, staff, and students who have demonstrated the highest level of excellence over a sustained period. "We reward them not only for their achievement, but because their leadership serves as a testament to NJIT's commitment to excellence," said Ian Gatley, PhD, provost.
C. Stephen Cordes, managing director and member of the executive board of ING Clarion Partners, a leading investment advisory firm specializing in real estate, in New York City, delivered the keynote address. Cordes, who received NJIT's Edward F. Weston Medal for Professional Achievement last fall, graduated from NJIT in 1972 with a BS in industrial engineering. He heads the private equity real estate portfolio management group with assets under management of $23 billion. He holds a master's degree in public administration from Rutgers University and is chairman of the NJIT Albert Dorman Honors College Board of Visitors.
The citation read as follows:
Katia Passerini is a true polymath, with degrees in political science, international business, economics, and information and decision systems. These diverse disciplines are meshed through her focus on knowledge management and her conviction that student engagement is the key to learning. In this pursuit, Professor Passerini has employed a variety of contemporary digital tools-among them WebCT, Moodle, podcasts, and Wimba-and emphasized collaborative techniques such as peer evaluation in a manner that garners rave reviews from entering freshmen to seasoned professionals in the Executive MBA program.
Her philosophy of higher education is to provide all students with the tools for continuous learning. Her dual emphasis on contemporary management information systems and team-based learning strategies make her courses relevant, accessible and challenging, including large classes and distant learning formats.
Professor Passerini's dossier brims with powerful letters from colleagues who have also learned by observing her teaching. She has further shared her approach by discussing the outcomes of her teaching strategies in refereed and professional journals through published papers in the areas of computer-mediated learning, wireless technologies and knowledge management. Her course assignments include service learning opportunities with not-for-profit New Jersey clients. She thus engages her students in both the professional world of business and the broader society where their skills are also needed.