Keith Wurtz Award for Teaching Excellence

University of Wisconsin-River Falls

Keith Wurtz Award for Teaching Excellence


Rewarding innovations in teaching and learning, the Keith Wurtz Award for Teaching Excellence endowment supports two faculty awards per academic year.  The award is designed to support innovators and those who demonstrate "trailblazing" characteristics that may include innovative approaches to teaching, demonstrated scholarship of teaching and learning (e.g. publishing a journal article or textbook), innovative use of technology, curriculum development, effective assessment approaches and results, outreach and partnerships with collaborators on- or off-campus.  


Keith Wurtz, a legacy of teaching and healing.  From his early career, as a high school teacher to retirement as a clinical surgical professor at Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago, Dr. Keith Wurtz, '41, dedicated his life to the teaching and healing professions. Named the UWRF Distinguished Alumnus in 1980, Wurtz shared his passions through an endowment that will foster and acknowledge faculty-teaching excellence at UWRF.

As an agricultural education and science major in the early 1940s, Wurtz was a bit of a renaissance man as a college debater, Student Voice reporter, Honor Society member and intramural athlete. He credited his college days at River Falls with opening doors to medicine, surgery, education and community service. Wurtz, who received his M.D. from Northwestern University, was chief of surgery and a consulting surgeon at several hospitals, including the Veteran's Administration Hospital in Hines, III.

The new Dr. Keith G. Wurtz Fund Award for Teaching Excellence will ensure that the good doctor's prescription for excellence and passion in education will continue for years to come. (Courtesy of UWRF Falcon Features, April 2007)


  • A colleague must nominate each candidate.
  • To nominate a faculty member, submit the Nomination Form and complete the online Nomination Application submission process which will include a letter from you (the nominator) and two additional support letters from other faculty members addressing the criteria and efforts that the nominee showed as a “trailblazer.”
    • Submit one copy of the Nomination Form to the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs in North Hall 116.
    • Support letters should not exceed two pages.Nomination and support letters should address “trailblazing” characteristics noted above and validation of student learning, links between the innovation and course or program learning objectives, and impact on department, college, university or regional stakeholders.
    • Nominations will be due no later than March 1 of each academic year.


Two faculty members, one junior status (teaching academic staff or assistant professor) and one senior (associate professor or full professor) will be awarded each year.   The awards will be announced at the fall opening meeting each academic year.  Each recipient of the award will receive $1,000.


Nomination Formdocument

Nomination Application (Online Submission Process)link


For More Information, Contact:

Fernando Delgado

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

o: North Hall 116

e: fernando.delgado@uwrf.edumail

t: 715-425-3700