Clive Newstead Wins Carnegie Mellon’s Graduate Student Teaching Award-Mellon College of Science - Carnegie Mellon University

Monday, April 25, 2016

Clive Newstead Wins Carnegie Mellon’s Graduate Student Teaching Award

Clive Newstead isn’t teaching a math class this semester, but that doesn’t stop students from flocking to his office to get his help with difficult mathematical concepts. Newstead, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Mathematical Sciences and this year’s winner of Carnegie Mellon’s Graduate Student Teaching Award, is a bit of a legend. Students often attend his recitations even though they aren’t assigned to his section, and many of his former students still seek out his help long after they have had him as a TA in class.

“Clive is the type of TA that I wish I could have for every class,” wrote sophomore Olivia Cannizzaro.

Newstead is known for going above and beyond to make sure his students understand complicated and often confusing mathematical concepts. He gives students careful feedback on homework problems, holds numerous office hours, is always available to answer questions by email, and hosts his own review sessions before exams. He has a natural ability to explain extremely complex ideas in a way that makes them simple to comprehend. And his passion for math has a profound impact on his students.

“His enthusiasm for and love of math reminded me each day why I came to CMU and why I want to continue studying mathematics,” wrote first-year student Allison Klenk.

Newstead, who is pursuing a Ph.D. in Pure and Applied Logic, has taught several courses in the Department of Mathematical Sciences, including Mathematical Concepts and Proofs, Concepts of Mathematics, Calculus in Three Dimensions, Multivariate Analysis, and Differential and Integral Calculus. No matter the class, “he does a superb job quietly, with no bells and whistles—he makes it seem so natural and effortless,” wrote Deb Brandon, associate teaching professor of mathematical sciences and teaching assistant supervisor.

In addition to his TA duties and his own coursework and research, Newstead is exploring the science of teaching and learning. He is a Graduate Student Teaching Fellow at the Eberly Center and has enrolled in its Future Faculty Program.

“Clive will almost certainly go on to write several books, develop new courses and teach at the highest level,” wrote John Mackey, teaching professor of mathematical sciences. “He is the most unique and talented young educator of mathematics that I have had the good fortune to meet.”