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TEA Award Winner Nicole Klein To Address SIUE August Grads

Nicole Klein

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville announced today that 2012 Teaching Excellence Award winner Nicole Klein, Ph.D., will present the August commencement address. The summer ceremony will celebrate 572 graduates and take place at 10 a.m. Saturday, August 4, in the Vadalabene Center.

Klein is an assistant professor of kinesiology and health education in the School of Education. The TEA for tenure track faculty is the most prestigious teaching award a faculty member can receive at SIUE. She now will be nominated for the Advancement and Support of Education for the National Professor of the Year Award. Klein was spotlighted for her ability to help students become critical thinkers and reflect on their own performances, and to develop their understanding of important course concepts.

"I plan to focus on acknowledging their accomplishments, encouraging them to find what they love to do and have fun doing it," Klein said. "My opinion is that many memorable commencement speeches are humorous. So, I've titled my address 'Never Squeeze Your Fungus and Other Words of Advice from an Award-Winning Professor.' If they end the day's festivities with a smile, I will have achieved my goal."

The student speaker will be Syed Rashed Zaman, who is graduating Saturday with his master's in finance and economics from the School of Business. Zaman arrived at SIUE in August 2011 after graduating magna cum laude from North South University in Bangladesh with a bachelor's in business administration. He completed his master's requirements in a single year with a 4.0 grade point average. He expects to return to his native country, become involved in the financial sector and focus on portfolio and risk management.

"The exposure that I have received at SIUE has provided a more diversified knowledge of how businesses work in the world's largest economy," Zaman said. "This financial knowledge has equipped me with the ability to bring positive change to the lives of my country's people. My SIUE experience was short but could not have been any more eventful."

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