Center for Excellence Honoree: Kathleen SimioneKathleen Simione is never far from her students. She has an uncanny ability to break down complicated material in a way that stays with them, making them feel confident as they tackle complex tasks on their own.
Simione, associate professor and chair of accounting in the School of Business, has been recognized for her efforts with the University's most prestigious academic honor, the Excellence in Teaching Award. She was honored at the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Service to Students Ceremony on Oct. 13 in the Recreation Center on the Mount Carmel Campus.
"Not only did I gain so much accounting knowledge from Professor Simione, but I also gained confidence in myself because I understood what I was doing," student Caitlin Ziegler wrote in her nomination. "It is clear that Professor Simione puts her students first and genuinely cares about their success."
To that end, the enthusiastic 27-year veteran of the university can often be found in her Lender School of Business Center office from just after sunrise to long after the sun sets. And when not on the Mount Carmel Campus, Simione is never more than a few keystrokes away.
"While she has her regularly scheduled office hours, Professor Simione is in her office more than she is probably at her own house during the week...Professor Simione is always around at night, as well as from early on in the day," said Ziegler, a work-study student who works the late shift. "I receive emails from her throughout the night. Last semester, I emailed her with a homework question around 4 a.m., expecting her to reply hours later when she was back in the office. I was wrong. Ten minutes later, there was a response."
But Simione's commitment to students does not stop there.
"In addition to being in her office, Professor Simione holds numerous study sessions on Sundays to prepare students for tests," Ziegler said. "Her dedication to her students is outstanding."
Simione's influence extends far beyond accounting.
"She is an incredible teacher, adviser, mentor and truly an inspiration to the Quinnipiac community. She exemplifies the attributes of an individual who goes beyond the requirements for students, faculty and those around her," said Hannah Leech, a senior who attended the Beta Alpha Psi national conference in August with Simione. "She is a remarkable individual who is confident, driven and dedicated. She cares so much for her students and this community. She would do anything to support anyone."
However, it's not just students who recognize Simione's commitment to the community.
"She is a phenomenal teacher. For a number of years, my office was adjacent to hers. I was able to see the time and effort she spent with her students," said David Cadden, professor of management in the School of Business. "She was interested not only with their mastery of the course material, but also with their personal and professional development. She has worked with students through the accounting department's student organizations. Kathy never stinted with her time to help her students and they recognized her devotion."
And equally as important, Simione never lost her commitment to scholarship, Cadden said.
"She has never forgotten the need for academics to add to their discipline's body of knowledge," Cadden said. "Her productivity has been impressive in its depth and wide-ranging in interest. Anyone who has even passing familiarity with Kathy knows of her commitment to her department, school and university."
However, even with all of these accolades, the recognition surprised Simione.
"I was so delighted," she said. "I've always considered it to be an honor to teach. I put so much of myself into my teaching because I just love it."
She said she enjoys being inside the classroom and stimulating minds. In her role as chair of the accounting department, Simione meets many new students each year.
"I enjoy having the chance to mentor students and help provide them with the tools to succeed," she said.
In addition to Simione, the following individuals will be recognized at the awards dinner: Dwayne Boucaud, associate professor of biomedical sciences in the School of Health Sciences; Lisa Delaney, staff nurse in the Health and Wellness Center; Jill Ferrall, assistant dean for career development, School of Business; Lisa Kaplan, associate professor of biology and Linda Sink, payroll manager in human resources.