Alex Reed, associate professor and director of the Legal Studies Certificate Program, was one of three UGA faculty members to receive a Richard B. Russell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching on April 16 at the 2018 Faculty Recognition Banquet. Russell Awards recognize outstanding teaching by faculty early in their academic careers. Award recipients receive $7,500. The Richard B. Russell Foundation in Atlanta supports the program.
To engage students in learning about the law, Reed uses real-life examples and role-play simulations to help them understand new concepts.
Since joining the UGA faculty in 2010, Reed has revised and updated his lesson plans continuously to foster student learning. For example, in his Legal and Regulatory Environment of Business course, he monitors media to identify timely, real-world examples of the concepts being covered in class. He believes the open-ended nature of these examples encourage critical thinking because students are less concerned with identifying “right” answers and avoiding “wrong” answers than they are with analyzing and exploring the relevant legal concepts.
In 2015, Reed attended a Harvard Program on Negotiation workshop at Harvard Law School. He found the Harvard workshop beneficial and to administer these simulations, he rescheduled his Negotiation and Alternative Dispute Resolution Systems course into a single two-and-a-half-hour class that affords students sufficient time to engage with the materials and with one another.
Reed is a member of the university’s Program Review and Assessment Committee. He has been the director of the Legal Studies Certificate Program, which he helped create, since July 2015. The program currently has approximately 300 students pursuing the certificate, with more than 300 students having already completed the program. He has been the department representative for the Specialty Certificate Programs Committee for the business college since January 2014.
During his time at UGA, Reed has written 10 refereed journal articles for academic publications, including the Harvard Journal on Legislation.
A UGA alumnus, Reed received a bachelor’s degree in real estate in 2003 and his Juris Doctor from the School of Law in 2006. Before joining UGA, he was an associate attorney with Alston & Bird LLP in Atlanta.
“Alex is precisely the type of professor we strive to create here at UGA. He is absolutely dedicated to his subject matter and to bringing to his students the best educational experience he can give them in their law courses,” said Dawn D. Bennett-Alexander, associate professor of employment law and legal studies. “In all things teaching, Alex has been exemplary. He expects the best from his students, takes seriously the fact that we are the flagship university of the state and are responsible for those we teach being the best, and in so doing, brings out the best in them.”
In addition to Reed, faculty members Christine Albright, assistant professor of classics, and Michael Cacciatore, assistant professor of public relations, were also honored with Russell Awards.