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Friday, January 15, 2016

AAVMC Names Recipient of the Most Prestigious Teaching Award in Academic Veterinary Medicine

 
 Dr. Robert (Pete) Bill

Washington, D.C., January 15, 2016
  – The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) has named Dr. Robert (Pete) Bill from the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) as the recipient of the 2015 AAVMC Distinguished Teacher Award, presented by Zoetis.

The award, which is considered the most prestigious national teaching award in veterinary medicine, recognizes excellence in professional veterinary medical education and is presented to an educator whose sustained record of teaching excellence and ability, dedication, character and leadership has contributed significantly to the advancement of the profession.

"The AAVMC is always pleased to recognize outstanding educators in academic veterinary medicine," said AAVMC Executive Director Dr. Andrew Maccabe. "These are extraordinary people who exemplify excellence and inspire others through their commitment and visionary dedication to academic veterinary medicine."

Dr. Bill teaches pharmacology and toxicology to Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) and veterinary technology students and also serves as Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs, Teaching and Learning.  He is the recipient of numerous teaching awards and, for over 25 years, students have consistently recognized his outstanding teaching ability, infectious enthusiasm, and engaging teaching style through both unsolicited feedback and course evaluations.

He earned all of his degrees—a bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate and DVM—from Purdue University. While working on his PhD in veterinary pharmacology, he pursued training in educational theory and applies that pedagogical knowledge to his course design and classroom presentation techniques, with an emphasis on problem-based learning.

Dr. Bill previously served as the Director of Purdue’s Veterinary Technology Program, where he pioneered an innovative distance learning program. He served as president of the American Veterinary Technician Educators Association and served on the AVMA’s Committee for Veterinary Technician Education and Activities, where he played a role in the effort to revise accreditation standards and procedures for accrediting veterinary technology programs.

A textbook he authored, Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics for Veterinary Technicians (4th edition to be published in 2016), is used extensively in veterinary technology training programs and he also authored the widely used textbook Medical Mathematics and Dosage Calculation for Veterinary Professionals (3rd edition to be published in 2016).

Dr. Bill’s teaching philosophy is built upon the premise that he is “a stepping stone for others’ greatness.”  In an address to new Purdue University faculty in 2015, he said, “When we walk into the classroom, we have to remember we are not really there to convey information. We are there to inspire and help mold the future leaders, poets, scientists, artists, and professionals that will, in turn, shape the world we and our children live in. We do nothing less than create the world of tomorrow by what we do in the classroom today.”

“Dr. Bill genuinely cares about his students' experience both inside and outside the classroom,” wrote Purdue’s Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Dr. S. Kathleen Salisbury in nominating Dr. Bill for the award. “He captures their attention and makes complex concepts clear and relevant.”

Students described how, “If you take a moment to scan the room during one of Dr. Bill's lectures, you can almost see the lightbulbs switch on over students' heads,” and how he infuses wit and humor into a “uniquely refreshing” teaching style.

Dr. Bill’s award will officially be presented at the AAVMC's 2016 Annual Conference, March 4-6, 2016, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C., where he will also address attendees. This year’s conference, themed Fifty & Forward, is a special conference commemorating the AAVMC’s 50th anniversary.

The Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC) is a nonprofit membership organization working to protect and improve the health and welfare of animals, people and the environment around the world by advancing academic veterinary medicine. Members include 49 accredited veterinary medical colleges in the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia.

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AAVMC MEDIA CONTACTS:                                                                                             
Jeff Douglas or Jeanne Johnson                                                                                       
Phone:  202/371-9195, x144                                                                                           
Email: jdouglas@aavmc.org or jjohnson@aavmc.org