A Kansas University professor who teaches classes on sex has been named this year's winner of the HOPE Award, Honor for the Outstanding Progressive Educator.
Dennis Dailey, professor of social welfare, is this year's winner.
He will be honored today in Memorial Stadium in the pregame ceremony at the KU-Missouri football game.
"I was very pleased," Dailey said of being named the recipient. "It's nice to have one's work recognized, particularly by students."
Dailey teaches one of the most popular undergraduate classes on campus, "Human Sexuality in Everyday Life."
About 500 students are enrolled in the class this semester.
Dailey said his best teaching experiences occur each day.
"When the students understand what I am trying to say, and they take that and apply it to their own lives ... that's just really, really rewarding," he said.
For example, Dailey said students have come to him with personal questions following class talks on topics such as bad relationships and date rape.
"Having those things happen are very rewarding," he said. "Those are powerful moments for me."
Dailey, 55, came to Lawrence and KU in 1969. He originally is from northern Minnesota.
He received a Chancellor's Distinguished Teaching Professor award in November 1990 and the Outstanding KU Social Welfare Faculty Award in 1989.
He is listed as "one of the most popular professors on campus" in the 1994 Fiske Guide to Colleges.
Each year, senior class members select the HOPE award winner by ballot and interviews.
"(Dailey) seemed like the person that gives a second effort to help students out," said Benjy Schwartz, senior class president. "He's very enthusiastic."
The HOPE Award was established by the KU class of 1959 to recognize the recipient's outstanding teaching and concern for students.
It is the only KU award for teaching excellence bestowed exclusively by students.
In addition to Dailey, this year's finalists were Jeff Aube, associate professor of medicinal chemistry; Timothy Bengtson, Clyde M. Reed teaching professor of journalism; Greg Shepherd, assistant professor of communication studies; and Barbara Woods, instructor of pharmacy practice.
The winner receives a $250 award, and his or her name is engraved on a permanent plaque displayed in the Kansas Union.
This year's other senior class officers are Danny Staker, vice president; Kristy Able, secretary; and Todd Adams, treasurer.