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On April 4, the Medical School announced its 2017 Teaching Awards. Fifteen faculty members were honored across 11 award categories.

Headlining the recipients was professor of clinical medicine David Jaffe, who received the Leonard Berwick Memorial Teaching Award. Established in 1981, this award recognizes professors adept at “fusing the scientific basics with their clinical medicine instruction.”

“I am continually amazed by the curiosity, the enthusiasm and the genuine desire for learning on the part of the Penn medical students,” Jaffe, who has taught at Penn since 2005, said in an interview. “It’s a given that they’re all very bright, but beyond that the spirit of inquiry and thirst for knowledge is something that makes it easy for me to come back every year and energizes me from a teaching point of view.”

The awards also seek to honor professors working at hospitals affiliated with Penn. The Dean’s Award for Excellence in Clinical Teaching, which recognizes a commitment to medical education at partner hospitals, was awarded to four recipients this year.

Kyle Kampman, a professor of psychiatry, is one of them. He credits much of his success to his experience in the U.S. Navy, where he served as a medical officer for five years in the 1980s.

“I ended up on that path because I probably watched one too many John Wayne movies,” Kampman said of his time in the Navy. “I learned a lot of primary care medicine that I probably never would have learned otherwise, and also learned how to deal with people.”

Kampman said he strives to bring lessons from the Navy into his teaching.

“I really try to stress a team approach with the students,” Kampman said. “I hope I stress to the medical students how important it is to work with the staff, be respectful and value input from other members of the treatment team.”

Two other recipients of this award are Wanjiku Njoroge and Kathleen Zsolway, both of whom have experience in pediatric medicine. Njoroge is the current medical director of the Young Child Clinic at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, while Zsolway is a clinical professor of pediatrics at CHOP.

These are just some of the professors who were honored; 10 other teachers across nine other categories — from addiction treatment to bedside manner — were recognized for their work.

Nominations for the teaching awards were gathered from Medical School faculty, house staff and students. Recipients will be celebrated at the annual Penn Medicine Awards of Excellence banquet in the fall.

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