Finalist for Prestigious Cherry Award Will Lecture at Baylor University

Michelle Hebl
Michelle Hebl courtesy photo.
Oct. 16, 2015

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Media contact: Terry Goodrich, (254) 710-3321

WACO, Texas (Oct. 16, 2015) – Michelle Hebl, a finalist for Baylor University’s Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching, will present a lecture titled “Mindbugs and Gorillas and White Bears, Oh My!” at 3:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 19, in the Baylor Science Building Room D110.

Hebl, professor of psychology at Rice University, will address subtle biases. She will demonstrate how even the most high-intentioned and educated people hold biases, possess skewed beliefs about themselves and express discrimination toward others.

“I will be talking about a subtle form of discrimination and how many of us fall prey to it because we have biases, often unbeknownst to us,” Hebl said.

The Cherry Award honors outstanding professors in the English-speaking world who are distinguished for their abilities to communicate as classroom teachers. Each of this year’s three finalists will lecture on Baylor’s campus as part of the selection process.

“We are thrilled to have three excellent finalists visit our campus during the month of October,” said Michael Thompson, chair of the Cherry Award selection committee. “All of the finalists are accomplished and inspiring teachers, and we encourage the Baylor community to take advantage of this opportunity to interact with these great teachers by attending their public lectures.”

Before her time at Rice University, Hebl taught psychology at Stanford University and Dartmouth. She is a recipient of many awards, including the Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Prize, the George R. Brown Award for Superior Teaching and the Julia Miles Chance Prize for Excellence in Teaching.

“Sometime in their lives, most students encounter teachers who are simply inspirational and have dramatic influence on our lives. Few of the students, however, act in such magnanimous ways as did Robert Cherry Foster, who bequeathed a significant portion of his estate to honor teachers,” Hebl said. “I am humbled by his actions and I further am humbled to be a Cherry Award finalist.”

This event is free and open to the public. The Baylor Sciences Building is located at 101 Bagby Ave.

For more information, contact Michael Thompson or visit the Cherry Awards website.

by Bethany Harper , student newswriter, (254) 710-6805


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution, characterized as having “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions. Baylor sponsors 19 varsity athletic teams and is a founding member of the Big 12 Conference.

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