AUSTIN, Texas—A. Mechele Dickerson, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at The University of Texas School of Law, has received the 2006–2007 Texas Exes Faculty Teaching Award. Dickerson, a bankruptcy scholar, joined the university's law faculty as the Fulbright and Jaworski Professor in January 2006.
Dickerson was first given the award on Nov. 20 in front of her bankruptcy class. A formal ceremony honoring Dickerson and the other award recipients is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 6, at 5:30 p.m. at the Etter-Harbin Alumni Center.
Each year, the Texas Exes ask UT students to select the teachers who have had the greatest positive influence on students' educations. In each of UT's 14 schools and colleges, a $1,000 Texas Exes Teaching Award is presented through the Association's Eyes of Texas Annual Giving Club.
In the Law School, a Student Bar Association committee selected Professor Dickerson for the award. SBA President Brandon Crisp said the selection process included reading the nominations that were submitted, observing each of the nominees teach one of their classes, and interviewing students who had taken their classes before.
"Although Professor Dickerson has only been with the faculty for a short time, she has already had a significant impact on the lives of students here at UT Law," Crisp said. "In the classroom, she presents the subjects in an interesting way and encourages meaningful participation from the students. But more importantly, she acts a mentor and advisor to students outside the classroom, and that is what makes her a special teacher," Crisp said.
"The Texas Exes Teaching Award is a good reminder that in addition to being a great colleague and the best Associate Dean a dean could wish for, Mechele Dickerson is a superb teacher," said Dean Lawrence Sager. "We are very lucky that she is a member of the UT Law community," he said.
"I love teaching," Dickerson said. "I am tremendously honored to have been selected to receive this award. I was also quite shocked when the students presented the award to me, given the extraordinary teachers at the UT Law School," she said. "One of the things that attracted me to the UT Law School is the effort that the community places in the teaching endeavor. I remain happily impressed both with my faculty colleagues' commitment to teaching and also with the enthusiasm and zeal our students bring to class," Dickerson added.
Dickerson's scholastic interests include a commitment to commercial empirical legal research, dedication to law classroom learning experience, and equity in law.
She received her law degree from Harvard Law School. After graduation, she clerked for Judge Nathaniel R. Jones of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. She then practiced law in Washington, D.C., and Norfolk, Virginia. In 1995, she joined the faculty at William and Mary School of Law and was the Cabell Research Professor of Law from 2003–2004. During her tenure there, she was the recipient of the Alumni Fellowship Award in 2000 and the Walter L. Williams, Jr. Teaching Award in 1998 and in 2005. In the fall of 2005, she was a visiting professor at UT School of Law.
At UT Law, Dickerson is a member of the faculty for the Texas Center for Law, Business and Economics where she teaches and writes in many areas of the law including bankruptcy, corporate organization, and empirical analysis.
In addition, she is an active member of the following organizations: Association of American Law Schools, American Law Institute, American Bankruptcy Institute, and the American Bar Association. She also conducts workshops for bankruptcy judges for the Federal Judicial Center and is a frequent speaker at bankruptcy conferences.
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2005–06 Recipient of the Texas Exes Faculty Teaching Award, Robert Peroni: