CLU faculty honored by Class of 2013

Education, religion professors inspire students

Rahuldeep Gill, Michael McCambridge

Photo: Brian Stethem

(THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – July 22, 2013) The California Lutheran University Class of 2013 honored two professors for the impact they have on students.

The CLU Senior Committee selected Michael McCambridge as Professor of the Year and Rahuldeep Gill as the Cultural Diversity Professor of the Year.

McCambridge, an associate professor of education and director of the liberal studies program, also had been named Professor of the Year by the Class of 2009 and received the President’s Excellence in Teaching Award in 2008. Students laud the Sherman Oaks resident, who joined the faculty in 2002, for motivating them, giving them confidence and helping to shape their futures. McCambridge creates opportunities for teachers-in-training to explore how good teaching practices can result not only in academic achievement but also personal, social and moral growth. He has researched and written about the role of teachers in raising good citizens.

“His openness and professionalism inspire me to become a teacher just like him,” said one of his students.

Using a $1 million U.S. Department of Education grant, McCambridge worked with the Moorpark Unified School District to develop a model for using drama to teach all subjects. The dynamic professor also developed arts outreach programs in local schools and a drama ministry at CLU. He has 44 years of experience teaching at every level from elementary to graduate school in public and private settings. In addition to teaching and advising students this summer, he is directing the Kingsmen Shakespeare Company Summer Theatre Camp for the third year. A graduate of Ohio University with a master’s degree from Pepperdine University, McCambridge received his doctorate in education from the University of San Francisco.

Gill was honored as Cultural Diversity Professor of the Year for the second time. He joined the faculty in 2009 and is an assistant professor of religion and associate director of CLU’s Center for Equality and Justice. By sharing his background as a Sikh and Indian-born native of Boston and encouraging discussions in his classes, he broadens students' perspectives, deepens their appreciation of diversity and inspires them to be more understanding and compassionate.

“He is by far the most influential professor I’ve had,” one student said. “His teaching style is demanding and engaging, and he opened my eyes to a world way beyond Cal Lutheran.”

The Winnetka resident, who launched CLU’s Asian studies minor, is an expert on the evolution of Sikh institutions and the interaction of Sikhs, Muslims and Hindus. He is currently working on translations of seminal 17th-century Sikh texts and plans to research the Sikh congregations of Southern California. His classes include Introduction to Christianity, Religion in South Asia and Introduction to the Study of Global Religions. Gill has a bachelor's degree from University of Rochester and a master's and doctorate in religious studies from University of California, Santa Barbara.