Damon Williams, a senior lecturer in the H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE), has been selected to receive the 2022 Georgia Tech Women in Engineering (WIE) Teaching Excellence Award, which will be presented at the organization’s annual banquet on April 14.
The award is selected by polling current female undergraduate students in the College of Engineering about who they consider to be their best engineering professor thus far in their academic careers. Williams, also the Director of the Center for Academics, Success, and Equity, is one of two receiving the award along with Aerospace Engineering Lecturer Kelly Griendling.
“I am humbled and honored that the effort my teaching assistants and I put into creating an engaging environment for learning are being received positively by students,” said Williams, who also graduated from ISyE in 2002. “We believe in active learning, and it appears that belief is allowing all students to learn in my course, which is a great thing.”
Williams’ teaching interests lie in engaging a diverse set of learners in larger classes, and his research interests involve the development of analytical models to solve large-scale operational problems.
One of Williams’ largest contributions to the school remains the Center for Academics, Success, and Equity (CASE). Launched in 2021, the center aims to encourage academic growth, professional development, and inclusivity for all ISyE students. The goal has been to leverage the extensive resources of ISyE, the largest and No. 1-ranked program of its kind in the United States, to provide students with industry collaborations, networking and career opportunities, and access to cutting-edge research.
“We created the Center to foster connection and interaction,” Williams said in Fall 2021 when the center was launched. “There are so many points at which our various groups need to interact with each other, so we really wanted to build community – with this great push that Georgia Tech has for diversity, equity, and inclusion – while supporting students academically and professionally, and bring all our programs together into one place.”
The Georgia Tech WIE program, a part of the office of College of Engineering Dean Raheem Beyah, helps to recruit and retain more women engineering students at Georgia Tech. Georgia Tech is one of top universities in the country, having graduated more women engineers than any other institution in the United States since 2009.