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HBS Class of 2020 Selects Four Faculty Teaching Award Recipients

Harvard Business School’s MBA Class of 2020 has marked the end of their studies with the school’s annual commencement ceremony – virtually, of course.

As part of the occasion, the class voted to select four recipients of this year’s HBS Faculty Teaching Award.

HBS’s two-year MBA program includes a “required curriculum” in the first year followed by an “elective curriculum” in the second. Accordingly, two of the teaching award recipients were nominated for classes from the required curriculum and two from the elective curriculum.

The two recipients representing the required curriculum are Josh Margolis and Ting Zhang, both for teaching Leadership and Organizational Behavior.

Margolis, who has now won the Faculty Teaching Award four years in a row, was described by students as a professor who “led by example” and “emphasized the importance of truly listening to others.”

As one student wrote: “I can honestly say that the time I spent with Professor Margolis is the greatest highlight of my academic experience at HBS.”

Zhang, meanwhile, is in her second year teaching at HBS. Students saw her as a professor “with the kind of energy that kept you excited all-through class, racing around the room, asking pointed questions, and making sure to bring in diverse perspectives.”

She also stood out in the time commitment she made to the class, “hosting unlimited office hours” and attending events called MyTakes where students shared personal stories in small groups.

Representing the elective curriculum, the students chose Kristin Mugford and Sophus Reinert as recipients of the teaching award, for the courses Creating Value Through Corporate Restructuring (CVCR) and Globalization and Emerging Markets (GEM) respectively.

Mugford’s students recalled how her “mastery of course content, her infectious enthusiasm and dedication was inspiring.”

They also appreciated her “commitment to helping women and other minority groups enter and find success in investing.”

Reinert’s students noted how he “inspired and challenged us to grapple with the deep struggles and staggering successes of some of the most prominent to most peripheral nations in the world,” doing so with “energy and passion” that was “contagious.”

In voting on recipients for the Faculty Teaching Award, students were asked to consider various criteria, such as professors’ ability to inspire, provide constructive feedback, offer career guidance, and contribute to campus life.

The quality of faculty is one factor that sets top MBA programs like HBS’s apart – and one factor, consequently, that makes those programs highly competitive.

If you’re wondering how your profile stacks up at a school like HBS, we’re here to provide that perspective based on our extensive experience with the MBA application process. Contact us and ask for a free MBA application assessment!


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Chioma Isiadinso

Chioma is a former Harvard Business School admissions officer and the CEO and Co-Founder of EXPARTUS, the first MBA admissions consulting company to use personal branding as a key part of the b-school application process. Chioma is the author of The Best Business Schools' Admissions Secrets, one of the leading books on how to successfully navigate the MBA admissions process.