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Goldsmith Inaugural Winner of VFIC Teaching Award

Arthur Goldsmith, the Jackson T. Stephens Professor of Economics at Washington and Lee University, has won the new H. Hiter Harris Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching from the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges (VFIC).

Goldsmith will receive his award at a luncheon in Richmond on Thursday, Nov. 6.

The Harris Award was endowed at the VFIC by the family of the late Hiter Harris Jr., a leading Virginia banker who was a member of the VFIC’s board from 1973 to 1998. The award is based on the faculty member’s impact on and involvement with undergraduate students, along with his or her scholarly approach to teaching and learning.

Goldsmith joined the W&L faculty in 1990 after having taught at the University of Connecticut and the University of North Carolina. He also held visiting professorships at Wake Forest, Victoria University in New Zealand and Bond University in Australia. He was promoted to full professor at Washington and Lee in 1996 and was named to the Jackson T. Stephens Professorship in 1997. He chaired the department of economics from 1998 to 2003.

Supporting Goldsmith’s nomination, Alice Shih, a 2008 graduate of W&L, wrote the VFIC that Goldsmith’s “teaching and guidance extends well beyond the classroom, helping his students develop as civic-minded citizens and not just students.” She praised Goldsmith as someone who exemplifies what a teacher should be — “one who not only helps you believe you are destined for great things, but helps you achieve those goals.”

“I cannot imagine a more worthy candidate for this new award than Art Goldsmith,” said Washington and Lee President Ken Ruscio. “Art is an energetic, enthusiastic and effective classroom instructor. He is a distinguished economist. He has earned the respect and admiration of students, professional colleagues and university administrators.”

Goldsmith received the Ph.D. from the University of Illinois. His areas of specialization include labor economics, the economics of race and ethnicity, macroeconomics, and economic psychology. He has published extensively and lectures widely at economic and academic conferences. He belongs to the American Economics Association, is currently vice president of the Southern Economic Association, serves on the Board of Directors of the Society for the Advancement of Behavioral Economics, and is a member of the National Economic Association.

The Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges, founded in 1952, supports the 15 small private liberal arts colleges and universities in Virginia by securing grants and gifts for the consortium.