West, Liebenberg win Alumni Effective Teaching awards


Julia Park

Teaching Associate Professor Leon Liebenberg and Professor Matt West were named the 2023 MechSE Alumni Effective Teaching Awards. Liebenberg was named the winner of the Two-Year Effective Teaching Award, and West was named the winner of the Five-Year Alumni Effective Teaching Award. Liebenberg won this award in 2022.

Leon Liebenberg
Teaching Associate Professor Leon Liebenberg

For more than 30 years the MechSE Alumni Board has sponsored two Alumni Effective Teaching Awards. The awards were established so that alumni two and five years into their professional careers have the opportunity to honor faculty whose teaching they now perceive as having had the greatest impact on their careers. They are voted on by former undergraduate students – this year, the classes of 2018 and 2021 – to recognize truly outstanding teaching in the department.

Liebenberg teaches a variety of subjects, including: Innovation; Statics; Dynamics; Thermodynamics; Fluid Dynamics; Automatic Control Systems; Design for Manufacturability; Mechanical Design; Energy Conversion Systems, Heat Transfer; Aerodynamics; Aeronautics; and Advanced Heat and Mass Transfer. He has been recognized in previous years for his impact on teaching, with the 2021 Grainger College of Engineering Rose Award for Teaching Excellence and as an Outstanding Advisor by Engineering Council.

Matt West
 Professor Matt West

West is well known as the creator of PrairieLearn, a first-of-its-kind online skill training system to help provide more individualized education and support to students. He is also the co-director of the Computer Based Testing Facility and has co-created and directed summer camps for teens. West has won numerous awards at the campus and college level for his work, including the Grainger College of Engineering Collins Award for Innovative Teaching.

They were recognized at the MechSE Awards Banquet last month.