From the 2007 News Archive
Prof. Robert Percival, Director of the Environmental Law Program, Named UMB Teacher of the Year
Professor Robert Percival
, the Robert F. Stanton Professor of Law and the Director of the School of Lawís Environmental Law Program, has been named Teacher of the Year by fellow University of Maryland, Baltimore faculty and staff and will be recognized during UMBís Oct. 8-11 Founders Week
"Founders Week is a time for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends to recognize the accomplishments and advances made in our classrooms, research labs, and community," said University President David J. Ramsay. This yearís celebration also marks the bicentennial of the creation of the university.
"Bob Percival is recognized across the country and around the world as an authority in environmental law. He is helping shape national and international policies that are protecting the planetís health," said Dean Karen Rothenberg. "As a teacher, Bob is known for taking an innovative approach. Students consistently praise his knowledge and command of the environmental law subject matter, his enthusiasm for teaching, and his accessibility and quick response to student inquiries."
Dean Rothenberg cited the annual Environmental Law Film Festival
as an example of Prof. Percivalís use of nontraditional materials to make classes more interesting, and his good nature both inside and outside the classroom.
In one of Prof. Percivalís classes, small groups of students select an environmental issue they care about and make a short documentary film about it. The assignment challenges the students by forcing them to confront the difficulty of translating complicated legal and policy issues into a form the average audience can understand. It also yields some remarkably powerful films, with the best receiving recognition at an Academy Awards-style celebration.
"The creativity these documentaries help to unleash has long-lasting benefits as the students leave law school and pursue their legal careers," said Dean Rothenberg.
Professor Percival is internationally recognized as a leading scholar in environmental law, and is the principal author of the countryís most widely used casebook in environmental law, Environmental Regulation: Law, Science & Policy
, now in its fifth edition. He has written extensively on several topics, including environmental law, regulatory policy, federalism, presidential powers, and legal history. Professor Percival has taught as a visiting professor of law at Harvard Law School and Georgetown University Law Center, and has served as a J. William Fulbright scholar at Comenius University Law School in Slovakia. He has presented environmental workshops in several countries, including Japan, Russia, Mongolia, Iran, China and Uganda.
In 2002, Professor Percival was a visiting professor of law at the University of Chile where he helped establish South Americaís first environmental law clinic. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Environmental Law Institute and as co-chair of the steering committee of the D.C. Barís Section on Environmental, Energy and Natural Resources Law. He is also the contributing editor for Environment and Natural Resources for the Federal Circuit Bar Journal.
Since 1996, the University has recognized three categories of excellence during its Founders Week celebrations: Teacher of the Year, Research Lecturer of the Year, and Public Servant of the Year. Other Founders Week 2007 activities include the black-tie gala, a Research Lecture, presented by the Research Lecturer of the Year, the Student Cookout and the Staff Luncheon.