2020 Phi Eta Sigma Professor of the Year Award Goes to Spanish Fiction Scholar

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The Colgate University chapter of Phi Eta Sigma, the national collegiate honor society, has named Assistant Professor of Spanish Marta Perez-Carbonell as its Professor of the Year for 2020. 

“Students highlighted how [Perez-Carbonell] never fails to go the extra mile,” said Phi Eta Sigma President Madeleine Simon ’20. “Whether it be booking the ALANA kitchen to teach her class a Spanish dish, or coordinating with Colgate so that one of her students gets to speak at a national conference, this professor always shatters expectations.”

Students in Professor Marta Perez-Carbonell's Short Fiction in Contemporary Spain class wrote creative works reflecting what they had read and learned throughout the semester.

Each year, chapter leaders solicit nominations for the Professor of the Year Award from the student body, asking undergraduates to identify faculty members who have “exceeded expectations in terms of teaching, motivating, and forming individual relationships with students.” Chapter leaders make their final choice based both on the number of submissions for a nominee as well as the depth of feeling that is expressed in the recommendations.

Perez-Carbonell earned her PhD at the Royal Holloway University of London, where she also taught before arriving at Colgate in 2016. Her research focuses on contemporary Spanish fiction, particularly on the work of Javier Marías. Her most recent article, “On Identity, or How Two Contemporary Spanish Novels Shape and Shake Up the Limits of the Self,” was published this year in the Anales de la Literatura Española Contemporánea and was co-authored by Renee Congdon ’20.

Presentation of the Phi Eta Sigma Professor of the Year Award typically takes place during the University’s annual Awards Convocation. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony cannot be held in person this year. Regardless, students are offering their appreciation for Perez-Carbonell and her commitment to their Colgate experience.

“Speaking on behalf of the student body I would like to pause and thank the entire University faculty,” Simon said. “It is a tremendous privilege to have educators so dedicated to our individual learning and success.”