UK’s Michael Toland Finds Inspiration in His Students

Teaching is fun and, you know, I never thought
I would be a teacher at the graduate level ever, but I appreciate the opportunity to
teach new and inspiring researchers each and every day.
He goes beyond what we can learn from the textbook and he sees your strengths. He makes
sure you meet your goals, whatever it is, and I think that’s what makes him a great
teacher. It’s really just very sweet, very thoughtful,
you know, recognition that, you know, while all this time and effort that I put into,
you know, teaching and prepping and answering student questions that I love, I have a passion
for it and it just meant wow people notice it, not just me, my wife and my kids.
Dr. Toland finds a way, especially with such a hard field, such as statistics and psychometrics,
finds a way to make you feel like you’re not the dumbest person in the room and in an environment
where it can be so intense and there can be so much pressure for you to show that you’re
successful every time. He allows you to be vulnerable, he allows you to make mistakes
and he really allows you to grow in that way. I would like to tell him thanks for the time
that he spent, not every advisor would spend numerous hours a week making sure their students
are not only on track academically, but that they feel like they belong, that they feel
like they have a place in our department and that their goals are just a few steps ahead
of them. So, thanks for that.

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