Teaching Awards

The Wisconsin Medical Alumni Association (WMAA) presents annual teaching awards to individuals who are highly regarded by students for outstanding teaching efforts in these three categories:

  • Clinical teachers in each of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health’s teaching locations: Green Bay, La Crosse, Madison, Marshfield and Milwaukee
  • An outstanding resident
  • A distinguished instructor in Phase 1 of the School of Medicine and Public Health’s ForWard Curriculum
Laughter, joy and connection at graduation
WMAA Clinical Sciences Teaching Award winner and faculty graduation speaker, Sam Lubner, with student graduation speaker, Nasser Lubega

2024 Teaching Award Recipients

Outstanding Resident Award: Alma Farooque

Alma FarooqueAlma Farooque, MD
Obstetrics & Gynecology, UW School of Medicine and Public Health

Students say why:
Dr. Farooque epitomizes kindness, inclusivity, and mentorship. Juggling numerous responsibilities as an Ob/Gyn intern, she thoughtfully integrates students into patient care, creating a sense of value and belonging within the team. She often finds opportunities to discuss difficult topics, articulate her reasoning, and actively seek students’ input, enriching their learning experience. Dr. Farooque is a wonderful example of a resident teacher that all students can strive to be!

Clinical Science Teaching Award – Madison: Mary Westergaard

Mary WestergaardMary Westergaard, MD
Associate Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, UW School of Medicine and Public Health

Students say why:
Dr. Westergaard demonstrates her commitment as an educator not only in the emergency department teaching students on shift, but as an Academic and Career Advising Program mentor. She continuously advocates for inclusivity in medicine. She has shared profound insights on academic, professional and personal development. She is both an accomplished and thoughtful mentor that exemplifies many qualities for learners to look up to.

Clinical Science Teaching Award – Green Bay: Chung Chen

Chung ChenChung Chen, MD
Hospitalist, Aurora BayCare Medical Center

Students say why:
Dr. Chen is an incredibly supportive attending who makes all students feel supported and heard during rounds. He particularly excels with students who are just beginning their clinical medicine rotations. An area he does very well with is giving students an appropriate amount of autonomy and taking their suggestions into consideration when developing the plan of care.

Clinical Teaching Award – La Crosse: Paul Bergl

Paul BerglPaul Bergl, MD
Critical Care Physician, Gundersen Health System

Students say why:
Dr. Bergl was one of the first physicians to teach our UWSMPH class diagnostic reasoning during our Acute Care block of clerkships. This award highlights his effort on our ICU rotations, where we watched him work tirelessly for his critically ill patients while making the time to ensure that we were taught core ICU bedside procedures along with instruction on how to safely manage ICU patients. Dr. Bergl was also an inspiration on our non-ICU rotations where we watched him respond to MRTs on the regular floor by bringing his calm, thoughtful, well-reasoned, and confident approach to each clinical encounter with grace and humility. Gundersen is lucky to have him in their ICU, La Crosse area patients are lucky to receive care from him, and we were lucky to have him as our teacher.

Clinical Teaching Award – Marshfield: Stephen Holthaus

Stephen HolthausStephen Holthaus, MD
Family Medicine Physician, Marshfield Clinic Health System

Students say why:
Dr. Holthaus is an excellent attending, WARM site director, family physician, and most of all, an outstanding person. He makes an effort to get to know each of his students, helping us to develop the skills necessary to succeed both in medical school and in our future careers as physicians. He takes time out of his already-busy day to go through case studies and also involves us in hands-on procedural skills. Dr. Holthaus has invited us to join him and his family for dinner while we rotate through Rice Lake, where his practice is located. He is not only a fantastic mentor and teacher, but a role model that has undoubtedly influenced the lives and careers of each of us in a very positive way.

Clinical Teaching Award – Milwaukee: Michelle Buelow

Michelle BuelowMichelle Buelow, MD, MPH
Family Medicine Physician, Sixteenth Street Community Health Center

Students say why:
Joining Dr. Buelow in clinic at Sixteenth Street was one of the highlights of my medical school training. She is an outstanding clinical preceptor who is deeply committed to the patients she serves. Through her constant support, encouragement, and constructive feedback, she helped instill in me further confidence in my clinical abilities.

All Teaching Award Recipients