Beyond his skills in the classroom, Professor Sumida has made a tremendous impact on the curriculum by introducing courses in Asian-Pacific literature and by promoting the study of ethnic literatures. Asking us to think about what it means to be an American, he designed the core course for the Program in American Culture as an introduction to the plural realities of our society. He also worked with great efficacy in developing and teaching the undergraduate requirement on race, ethnicity, and racism. His steadfast open-mindedness and willingness to discuss controversial issues has been essential in legitimizing this course academically, helping to obliterate suspicion that such a course might simply bow to current political demands.
Professor Sumida also inspires students with his dedication and humility as a mentor. Working with undergraduates in the Summer Research Opportunity Program, his efforts lead to rewarding intellectual and personal experiences. One of his students recently concluded, I respect, admire, adore, and ultimately trust Professor Sumida and his judgment. When I become an educator, I can only hope my students are able to say the same about me. Recognized by students and colleagues alike as the consummate teacherone who leads one to oneselfwe are proud to bestow upon Stephen Sumida the Amoco Foundation Faculty Teaching Award.