DISE's Jennifer Wallace to receive Principal's Award


Published: 1Oct2015

Jennifer Wallace, Laboratory Technician in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education, has been named as winner of the Principal's Award for Administrative and Support Staff, in the 'Technical and Libraries' category.

"As members of one of the world’s top universities," wrote the McGill Reporter, "McGill students, teachers and researchers are celebrated regularly for their excellence in the classroom, in the lab and within the academic community. But none of this success – as a University or as individuals – would be possible if not for the dedication and professionalism of a small army of support staff working tirelessly behind the scenes.

"Each year as part of Fall Convocation, the Principal pays tribute the exceptional efforts of McGill employees with the Principal’s Awards for Administrative and Support Staff. This year, four individuals and one team have been named winners of the Award in their respective categories."

In addition Michael Canavan, Administrative Officer of DISE, was nominated this year in the 'Ms and Excluded' Category.

"Jennifer Wallace has an eye for detail," continues the Reporter article. "A Laboratory Technician in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education, Wallace provides support to two full-time faculty members as well as numerous course instructors – often taking care of items that instructors themselves forget.

"Her skill and enthusiasm for preparing laboratory materials for hundreds of students –as well as her ability to trouble-shoot with instructors to optimize students’ lab experiences– is so renowned that she is often mentioned in course evaluation documents even though her name is not listed on the form. In the nomination form, Wallace is described as 'extremely organized and diligent' and someone who is 'never late with a promised deliverable.'

"While the core of Wallace’s duties as a lab/course technician are to prepare activities for students, she will often work with instructors to design activities, and will take on the task of testing, trouble shooting and optimizing them herself. This often means long hours alone in the lab ensuring that activities will work effectively, and will often advise instructors on alternative products and methods to ensure cost effectiveness and efficiency.

"But her job has evolved greatly over the past decade, with Wallace taking an increasingly active role in the science education team. She is a core member of the administrative staff in the department and often organizes staff events, even hosting retreats for staff at her home. She attends meetings regularly and works to harmonize efforts towards building a coherent program for students that ensures consistent pedagogical approaches across course offerings. “She understands clearly the instructional efforts of our science education team and applies these understandings to her work in ways that make her indispensable to the team,” says her nominator. “She is the thread that binds all of the courses in our program together.”

On behalf of the Faculty of Education, we congratulate Jennifer Wallace for this distinction and thank her for her commitment and diligence throughout eleven years of employment with us. To read the McGill Reporter article summarizing all of the 2015 winners of the McGill Principals' Award, "Superior Staff Members Celebrated," please visit the appropriate Reporter page.

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