Exeter Law School

Students’ Guild Academic of the Year Award

Posted by The Law School

20 June 2023
Photo of award recipient Natalie Ohana, Academic of the Year, Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

We’re delighted to announce that Dr Natalie Ohana from Exeter Law School has won the Students’ Guild award for ‘Academic of the Year 2023 (HASS)’.

This award is given to an academic member of staff who excels in all areas with a student-centred and tailored approach to teaching and/or supervision. They will also have made a positive impact on the overall academic experience, engaging students in their learning and encouraging a passion for the subject.

The nomination from one of the Law, Testimony and Trauma module students reflected the criteria in many ways:

What I found unique about the teaching was that it incorporated different approaches to law, especially when it came to mental health. As we were doing very heavy topics in Natalie’s module, she really understood how hearing about traumatic events may take a toll on us and drain us. So the fact that she took precaution by dedicating some of our lectures to mindfulness, and giving us tips on how to ground ourselves after reading very hard testimonies was so great. I actually ended up using these techniques as I read testimonies for my project, which were very graphic and saddening. I became more passionate about the topic and research giving me inspiration for my future career path.

Natalie says she is over the moon to receive the award and that it feels amazing to receive this recognition:

I am grateful to my students, who approached the module and their projects with heart and sensitivity even though they were under the enormous pressure of being in their third year, and for the ongoing support from my colleagues in the law school and the law office. With thanks to colleagues including Imogen Moore, Lee Snook, Leanne Smith, Ben Hudson, Karen Walsh and Raawiyah Rifath. Without their support the teaching would be isolating and too difficult and thanks to it I love and enjoy the teaching of Law, Testimony and Trauma very much. I also would like to thank Arts and Culture Exeter who funded the collaboration with artist Tom Stockley which encouraged me to include more creative methods in the teaching.

Head of Law School Professor Clair Gammage, said of Natalie’s award:

Many congratulations to Natalie. This is a fantastic achievement and I am delighted to see that her commitment to teaching and research has been recognised.

For more information about the module Law, Testimony and Trauma look on our website here.

You may also be interested in this article about how this module provided inspiration to artist Tom Stockley.

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