2019 Inspire Award for Exemplary Ethical Action

Congratulations to April Gaydos & Macie Coker

Recipients of the 2019 Inspire Award for Exemplary Ethical Action helping another individual or group, standing up for a cause or belief, or otherwise exhibiting extraordinary ethical leadership.

April Gaydos (left) and Macie Coker (right)April Gaydos & Macie Coker

Everyone on a University campus knows that students talk about their teachers. They praise and recommend some; complain about others. April and Macie gave voice to those conversations by acting and, in the process, exhibited extraordinary ethical leadership. They spoke with their teachers, some of whom were mentors and models of professionalism, and they took their concerns to their Dean’s office, where they were received with concern and gratitude.

What April and Macie emphasized in those meetings was the need for instructors who approached their teaching with high professional standards and who exhibited those standards in their classrooms, especially:  preparedness, proper usage of teaching assistants; sensitivity to race, gender, and disability issues; timely grading and return of assignments; lack of favoritism and bias in grading; and appropriate use of language.  In short, what they desired was “bringing teachers back into the classroom.”

Dr. Warren N. Waggenspack, Jr., Ned Adler Associate Professor of Engineering, one of those mentors, nominated April & Macie for the Inspire award, using language to describe them as follows: [During their time at LSU, April and Macie] championed students’ concerns (not just their own) for fair treatment academically and outside the classroom. [They] did so professionally and responsibly . . .. [and,] they provided a student perspective to your Ethics Institute.”  Perspective, indeed, April and Macie have challenged the Ethics Institute to begin a broad discussion about ethical teaching across the LSU Campus. 

April, daughter of Scott and Shelly Gaydos and Macie, daughter of Robert and Kelly Coker graduated from LSU in the May 2019 commencement. Happily, both have positions with engineering firms in Louisiana, April is a Machine Design Engineer at Intralox; and Macie is a Reliability Engineer for Valero Energy Corporation.