Abigale O'Reilly, recipient of the Amit and Meena Chakma Award for Exceptional Teaching by a Student, 2023

Abigale O'Reilly, Chemistry

Abigale O'Reilly standing in the laboratory

Abigale O’Reilly is an undergraduate student in the department of Chemistry, recognized by students and faculty members for her enthusiasm, capability to create a supportive environment and dedication to teaching. It was highlighted that she can deliver content efficiently to her students allowing them to have a clear comprehension of the content, her students indicated that they would leave her labs understanding the content on a deeper level, not just “knowing the answer”. Abigale has also demonstrated that she goes above and beyond for her students, one student recalling, “during my roughest times, she was there to help me plan what to do and support me through my academics, without needing extensions or excessive accommodation.” Abigale is said to differentiate herself from some other TA’s by consistently putting the students first and being able to empathize with them. Abigale makes the teaching environment welcoming, and students can come as they are and ask questions without feeling belittled. Abigale’s supervisor highlights her work as impactful: “Attendance at these voluntary drop in sessions has increased over the term (from about 10 per day to 20-30 per day) as students hear from their friends about the value of the drop in sessions”. 

Abigale held a teaching assistant position for CHEM 121L and as a laboratory assistant for CHEM 125L and CHEM 123L.