Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Accountancy Instructor Named Inaugural Recipient of Teaching Award

By Clara Turnage

University of Mississippi

The St. Amand Outstanding Teaching Award honors the late Wilbrod St. Amand, who taught biology at the University of Mississippi for more than 25 years. UM photo

After nine years of teaching in the University of Mississippi’s Patterson School of Accountancy, Louise Burney still wakes up with a smile on her face. 

She has her dream job; why wouldn’t she be smiling? 

“This is the end of year nine and I can truly tell you I still wake up with a smile on my face, jump out of bed and get ready,” Burney said. “I’ve never been able to say that about another job. This is just fun.” 

At the Honors Day Convocation on April 14, Chancellor Glenn Boyce announced that Burney, an accountancy instructor, is the inaugural winner of the St. Amand Outstanding Teaching Award, which honors nontenure track faculty members for their excellence in the classroom. 

The award honors the late Wilbrod St. Amand, a well-loved World War II veteran and Ole Miss biology professor of more than 25 years who died in January 2022 after making a lasting impact on the campus and the community. 

“We are known for being a very student-oriented faculty, and no one does it better than Lou,” said Mark Wilder, dean of the accountancy school. “She’s a phenomenal teacher and makes learning accounting fun. 

“We are so fortunate to have her on our team. She’s an unbelievable asset.” 

Students echoed this sentiment in reviews read aloud at the ceremony, calling Burney a passionate and caring mentor who “is so enthusiastic about the course, but more importantly, she cares about her students and their experience personally and academically.” 

Although Burney teaches several hundred students each year, she makes an effort to get to know each one personally. Having a connection with a professor who cares about their success and happiness can greatly influence a student’s academic career, she said. 

“I love seeing them grow and learn and find their path in life,” she said. “Getting to know them is the most rewarding part of my job.”