Wayne State's Fuhlhage to receive AJHA national award for Excellence in Teaching

Michael FuhlhageMichael Fuhlhage has been selected to receive the 2020 American Journalism Historians Association National Award for Excellence in Teaching. Fuhlhage is an associate professor in the Department of Communication at Wayne State's College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts.

The annual AJHA Teaching Award honors a college or university teacher who excels at teaching in the areas of journalism and mass communication history, makes a positive impact on student learning, and offers an outstanding example for other educators.

Fuhlhage expressed his gratitude to the AJHA for the award, as well as to his nominator Erika Pribanic-Smith and his Wayne State colleagues Fred Vultee and Kat Maguire, who supported his nomination. He said he is especially grateful to his graduate and undergraduate students.

In her nomination letter, Pribanic-Smith emphasized that Fuhlhage not only relays his encyclopedic knowledge of journalism history in the classroom in innovative and engaging ways, but he also has involved numerous students in historical research.

"The most important thing about teaching is to let your enthusiasm draw in your students,” Fuhlhage said. “Your joy is infectious in the classroom and in collaboration and co-creation.”

Fuhlhage added that his inspiration comes from the archives.

“I always feel a sense of wonder when I encounter things that historical figures touched and created, so I try to re-create that wonder by bringing my own collection into the classroom for my students to experience,” he said. “Share, tell, and invite them to make some meaning out of artifacts.”

Kaylene Armstrong, chair of the Education Committee, said the committee was impressed with Fuhlhage’s credentials and called him a most deserving winner.

"His colleagues and students rave about him for good reason,” Armstrong said.

Founded in 1981, the American Journalism Historians Association seeks to advance education and research in mass communication history. Members work to raise historical standards and ensure that all scholars and students recognize the vast importance of media history and apply this knowledge to the advancement of society. For more information on AJHA, visit www.ajhaonline.org.