Associate Professor of Hispanic Studies Adela Borrallo-Solis, Ph.D., recently earned recognition for her ambition and excellence in the classroom.
Borrallo-Solis received the 2020 H. Hiter Harris, Jr. Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award on Nov. 5. She is one of three faculty recognized for the award by the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges’ (VFIC) consortium of schools. The awards recognize an individual’s dedication to higher education and student success.
I am honored and humbled by this incredible recognition. Even though my name is on the award, I find that successful teaching is the work of many people. In my case it is the work of our administration and my colleagues in the language department for always encouraging me to take risks and experiment in class. But most importantly, my success in the classroom is attributable to my students who bring so much energy, creativity, generosity and willingness to experiment in my classes. Teaching such a group of talented individuals is fun and easy.”
Borrallo-Solis graduated from Spain’s Universidad de Extremadura with a Bachelor of Arts in English philology in 1998. She then went to Michigan State University and earned her Master of Arts in Spanish Literature in 2000. In 2005, Borrallo-Solis earned her Ph.D. in Spanish from the University of Colorado-Boulder. Her teaching experience began in 1998 at Michigan State University as a teaching assistant. She has also taught at the University of Colorado-Boulder and Georgetown College in Kentucky.
She began teaching at Shenandoah University in 2015. During her time here, Borrallo-Solis has helped grow and cultivate the school’s Spanish program through new courses, student-engagement initiatives, and enhancements to the curriculum. Along with being an instructor and advisor, Borrallo-Solis holds a university-wide leadership role as the director of the Quality Enhancement Program called Shenandoah Conversations. This program gives faculty and students the tools necessary to engage in civil dialogue around complex and sometimes controversial topics. For the 2020-2021 academic year, Borrallo-Solis is serving as one of the university’s 10 Transformative Teaching and Learning Fellows.
The two other award recipients were Amber Peacock and Lily Zang, who earned the H. Hiter Harris III Rising Star Award and the H. Hiter Harris III Excellence in Instructional Technology Award, respectively. Both are from Randolph-Macon College. Recipients of each award receive a stipend to support their scholarly research and professional development.
The Harris awards were created through endowments by the Harris family to recognize faculty members “whose professional history reflects a strong, clear and abiding commitment to excellence in classroom teaching within the undergraduate liberal arts and sciences.”