President's Teaching Award
Dr. Christopher Perumalla is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physiology and Director of the Division of Teaching Laboratories in the Faculty of Medicine. Chris has received several teaching awards for his sustained excellence in both undergraduate didactic teaching in large classes and in hand-on teaching in laboratory courses.
Chris has also been an innovative leader in education. He has led the design, development and delivery of the Faculty of Medicine’s first online course in Basic Human Physiology with the School of Continuing Studies. Several hundred students have taken his course. His online format has been a model in developing other online courses in the Basic Medical Sciences. Chris has also been instrumental in creating the highly successful Faculty of Medicine’s Youth Sumer Program (MED YSP) – one of its kind in Canada. The MED YSP provides high school students with an exclusive glimpse in to the world of medical research and health science programs. MED YSP has impacted over 3000 high school students who have attended this program from 15 countries in the past six years. Chris has been recognized for creating the MED YSP by Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) with Synapse Mentorship Award 2014. This award is given to an individual researcher for his exceptional contribution to the promotion of health research among Canadian secondary school students.
Chris is quoted as saying that “I endeavor to foster critical thinking, facilitate the acquisition of life-long learning skills, and help students develop problem-solving strategies. I am committed to introducing my students to current technology by incorporating cutting-edge research technology into our existing labs. In essence, I believe that my primary mission as an educator is not merely to “fill the pail” but to “light a fire” which will keep burning in my student’s lives and make them life-long learners.”
Chris has also been recognized as an exemplary advocate for student engagement. In 2010, he was the recipient of the University of Toronto Alumni Association’s (UTAA) Joan Foley Award, presented annually to a member of the University of Toronto who has made a distinctive and lasting contribution to enhancing the quality of the undergraduate or graduate student experience at the University of Toronto. In the same year, under his leadership, DTL was the recipient of the prestigious UTAA Northrop Frye award for linkages between teaching and research.