Chris Godsil receives the Award of Excellence in Graduate Supervision

Friday, June 12, 2015

Chris Godsil
Professor Chris Godsil is a winner of a University of Waterloo Award of Excellence in Graduate Supervision. The award, established by the Graduate Studies Office and the Graduate Student Association, recognizes exemplary faculty members who have demonstrated excellence in graduate student supervision.

Chris has been a faculty member in the Department of Combinatorics and Optimization since 1987. He has served the department very well over the past 28 years, as instructor of a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate courses, as a researcher and student supervisor, and as Associate Chair for Graduate Studies.
Chris's research area is algebraic combinatorics. He is one of the very best in the world in his speciality, algebraic graph theory, and has authored two of the standard textbooks on the topic: Algebraic Graph Theory and Algebraic CombinatoricsMore recently, he has been a pioneer in using techniques from algebraic combinatorics to tackle some fundamental questions in quantum information theory.
Chris has been the department's most active graduate student supervisor, and has also supervised 16 undergraduate research assistants since 1998. He has extremely high standards and demands the best from his studentsAt the same time, he is encouraging, supportive, and very conscientious about developing his students into capable and independent research mathematicians.
The nomination file for Chris included testimonial letters from many of his graduate students. Here are some excerpts from the letters: "...he is a genius at coming up with problems that are at the right level for a student at a particular stage of their progress through their program", "He guides us along the way, but ultimately lets us retain control of the direction of our research", "I always feel that Chris is deeply interested in what I am working on", "Beyond his professional abilities, Chris has an excellent personal touch with students", "I mattered to him, my mathematical ideas mattered, and my mathematical development was of real importance to him".