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November 02, 2017 : Professor of the Year Kaylor Named Finalist for Teaching Award

by Kylee Holbrook

pamDr. Pamela Kaylor is a first-generation college student who earned degrees in multiple fields and teaches communication studies and women's, gender, and sexuality studies at Ohio University Lancaster. She received OUL’s Professor of the Year for 2017 and was just named one of thirteen Ohio University faculty honored for their accomplishments in research and teaching.


Kaylor, an associate lecturer at Ohio University Lancaster, has taught at the regional campus since 1998. She said her students and colleagues made her feel at home.


“I really enjoy the students at OUL,” she said. “They are hard-working and driven. I think I identify with students here because I was a first-generation college student who worked my entire college career.”


Kaylor advises several on-campus student groups and finds it “fulfilling.” One group is Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) which organizes events that promote equality during the academic semesters. The group helps organize several events each year including Take Back the Night and the Celebrate Women conference.


“I think we share a social justice vision and that creates connection,” she said.


Kaylor has qualifications in several fields ranging from computer programming to sociology to the areas she instructs now. She taught at a few campuses before coming to OUL including Ohio State University and the Athens campus.


Her classes in communication and women’s studies share more similarities than one would think being that they’re in two different departments.


“I have always been interested in communication studies that focus on power dynamics and the role of communication in creating power differences,” Kaylor said.


This topic of power dynamics was was a major area of study for Kaylor throughout her time at college. She focuses on advocacy in her courses by discussing political, intercultural, and gender elements of communication. Women’s, gender, and sexuality studies courses take a more direct approach concerning power dynamics and activism through feminist discourse and studies of masculinities and sexualities.


Kaylor said some careers show the real-life implications of those two areas intersecting.


“Many students who major in the advocacy track of communication may end up working with marginalized groups in domestic violence shelters, with sexual assault prevention organizations or other non-profits,” she said.


She understands the positive impact she’s making in her students’ lives whether she meets them in class or as the advisor for their student organization.


“I have a ‘door is always open policy’ even after graduation,” she said. “Nothing gives me more joy than catching up with students about their lives.”


Kaylor said she’s extremely “grateful,” “humbled,” and “blessed” for the Professor of the Year award and being named a finalist for excellence in teaching and meritorious academic pursuits.


The Professor of the Year award is selected annually by Ohio University Lancaster students who are members of the national honor society Phi Theta Kappa. They conduct a rigorous selection process to recognize a faculty member for excellence in teaching and the promotion of learning both inside and outside the classroom.  The student selection committee solicits nominations, gathers supporting materials, and may visit classrooms as they make their choice.


Learn more about the the winners and finalists of the Presidential Teacher Award and the Provost’s Award for Excellence in Teaching.