The Charles Sturt University (CSU) Faculty of Science received two World Teachers' Day awards in recognition of its teaching and academics on the NSW Mid North Coast.
Award recipient Associate Professor Rylee Dionigi (pictured), a lecturer and researcher in the CSU School of Exercise Science, Sport and Health in Port Macquarie, was recognised for her teaching style that challenges and encourages her students to think critically, reflect on biases, question content, and find academic evidence to support their claims.
"It was an honour to be recognised for my teaching and the work that the University has done in offering students on the Mid North Coast an opportunity to learn about sport, health and well-being," Professor Dionigi said.
"Teaching across undergraduate and masters programs internally and online from the School of Exercise Science, Sport and Health in Port Macquarie is a challenging, but rewarding experience.
"It can be a complex teaching environment, but irrespective of the delivery method I encourage discussion with students and connect theory to research and learning," Professor Dionigi said.
CSU student Mr Jesse Hyson, a Port Macquarie local and personal trainer, said Professor Dionigi's teaching style created a supportive atmosphere.
"Rylee has been amazing for our class here in Port Macquarie, she has taken great care of us, and having studied previously at several other universities, I can say that I've never had a lecturer that has been so supportive and accessible," Mr Hyson said.
The other World Teachers' Day Award recognised the Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science at CSU in Port Macquarie for its contribution to the region and providing local students with formal study in exercise and sports science.
Head of CSU's School of Exercise Science, Sport and Health, Professor Frank Marino, said the recognition was a strong achievement considering the course was in its first year at CSU in Port Macquarie.
"Charles Sturt University is committed to providing regional students with opportunities and world-class education close to home," Professor Marino said about the university's decision to teach exercise and sports science on the Mid North Coast.
"Subjects covered include healthy lifestyle, disease prevention, fitness, and the physiology, psychology and sociology of sports.
"The emphasis on transferable skills such as communication, project work, organisation and team work are key to enabling graduates to gain employment in the industry," Professor Marino said.
Mr Hyson said CSU was the only university on the Mid North Coast that offered internal teaching of exercise and sports science.
"As a Port Macquarie local who runs his own personal training business, being able to study locally and work has been great," Mr Hyson said.
Now in its twelfth year, the World Teachers' Day Awards presented by the Australian College of Educators recognise teaching across early childhood learning through to university lecturers and programs.
The award ceremony was held on Friday 27 October in Port Macquarie.