A dedicated teacher in the Emergency Medical Sciences Department (EMS) has been awarded the 2019 Faculty Teaching Excellence Award in the Faculty of Health and Wellness Sciences.
Ryan Matthews, a lecturer and Year Coordinator for the third year of the Bachelor of Emergency Medical Care programme, says he didn’t enter CPUT thinking of himself as an educator “but education has become an important part of my identity”.
“I have experienced most working environments paramedics can experience and am able to bring this to bear in the classroom. I have applied some diverse teaching techniques to the classroom, such as authentic assessment and reflective practice which are different to the standard teacher-centred lecture.”
Matthews, who started at CPUT in 2012, said he volunteered for the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) after school and was trained as an Ops Medic.
“I studied for a National Diploma Emergency Medical Care at the then Technikon Witwatersrand and went on to complete the BTech Emergency Medical Care at the University of Johannesburg.
He has since completed an MPhil in Emergency Medicine at UCT and a postgraduate diploma in Higher Education in Teaching and Learning at CPUT.
After leaving the SANDF he worked as an operational paramedic and remote site medic in South Africa, elsewhere in Africa and Afghanistan.”
He said the desire to help people was central to him remaining in the EMS.
“I enjoy new and unexpected things and the EMS offered this. I entered education as I wanted a new environment and new challenges which were different to my experiences to that point. The Department Emergency Medical Sciences is anything but mundane and I enjoy the challenges presented. What keeps me going is the potential for research as well as the opportunities being a member of staff offers. A very important part of my day and which keeps me getting up in the morning is the interaction I have with the student body.
Matthews is currently enrolled for a PhD at UCT.
Valdiela Daries, a lecturer in the Medical Imaging and Therapeutic Services Department won the Departmental Teaching Excellence Award.