Dr. Syrulwa Somah named “Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2006-2007”



Dr. Syrulwa Somah named “Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2006-2007”


Dr. Somah
Dr. Syrulwa Somah




Director of Publications & Media Relations - LIHEDE



Greensboro, NC-3/14/2007: The Executive Director of the Liberian History, Education & Development, Inc. (LIHEDE), Dr. Syrulwa Somah, has been named “Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2006-2007” for the School of Technology at North Carolina A & T State University (NCAT) here in Greensboro. Dr. Somah is Associate Professor of Environmental and Occupational Safety & Health in the Department of Construction Management and Occupational Safety & Health, one of four departments in the University’s School of Technology.

In a letter confirming Dr. Somah’s selection, NCAT Chancellor Lloyd Z. Hackley congratulated Dr. Somah on his preferment as “Outstanding Teacher of the Year 2006-2007, and informed him that he will be officially honored during the University’s Spring Convocation on March 22, 2007, at which time he will receive a “plaque and monetary stipend” from the university as a token of appreciation.

Chancellor Hackley also informed Dr. Somah that “this award is presented to you in recognition of your commitment to teaching excellence” at NCAT, and assured him that “the entire North Carolina A&T State University family applauds your achievement and wishes you continued success.”

Dr. Somah, a recipient of the 2002 and 2003 “Outstanding Teacher Award” in the Department of Construction Management and Occupational Safety & Health at NCAT, was also honored earlier this year by NCAT University as “Innovator/Researcher of the Year 2006-2007” for inventing a multipurpose professor’s desk. Dr. Somah’s invention, dubbed the “Millennium Professor Desk,” is aimed at eliminating the many health risks that may occur from standard one-size fits all desks being used in many colleges and universities classrooms across the United States and the world today. Dr. Somah’s invention has already been patented, and the university is currently consulting with manufacturers to secure mass production of this high-tech “Millennium Professor Desk.”

For proprietary reasons, not much detail is given about the “Millennium Professor Desk,” but An abstract written by the University on Prof. Somah's invention proclaimed that "in a one-size -fits-all approach to professor desk, the differences between individuals are ignored or seen as barriers to be overcome and universal design leaves the professor without choice but to adopt himself or herself to undue improper furniture or non-adjustable desk that contributes to various forms of tenosynovitis, radicular pain, shoulder problems, neck discomfort and other adverse health effects." But this latest invention by Dr. Somah, the University said in the abstract, “allows for healthy positioning and will also eliminate the need for multiple desks, tables, and podiums,” adding, “this desk enables the user to make adjustment to meet their personal anatomical specifications."

Immediately after sharing the good news with colleagues of LIHEDE, Dr. Emmet Dennis, Director of Health and Social Welfare of LIHEDE, commended Dr. Somah for the award and patent, adding: "That is incredible; I and all Liberians are proud and you are in deed a credit to your country." Dr. Somah, in his reaction, said he is grateful for the recognition from the University and considers the award a proud for all Liberians and his country, adding, "It is not easy to win such an award and patent, but with the determination of all Liberians I will not be the last to bring such honor to Liberia."

The LIHEDE boss, who was very humble, noted that the project and research took several years and sleepless nights, but the hard work has finally pay off and he wants to thank his wife, Mary Somah, and his friends and family for the support while he was working on the concept to bring it into fruition.

“I am not only thankful for physically producing the concept, but for the recognition it has received in the academic arena and we will forever be grateful to our God for the knowledge and opportunity “he said with a tear- choke voice in an emotional tone. Signed:

Sam Togba Slewion
Director of Publications & Media Relations-LIHEDE


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