School of Health Professions professor receives UT System regents’ teaching award

Trophy in front of stack of books with apple on top.


Department of Occupational Therapy Chair and Professor Bridgett Piernik-Yoder, PhD, OTR, has been awarded the 2023 Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Award from The University of Texas System.

Piernik-Yoder is one of 14 UT System honorees who will be recognized during the Board of Regents’ quarterly board meeting on November 16.

Dr. Piernik-Yoder writing on white board.
Bridgett Piernik-Yoder, PhD, OTR, chair and professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy.

“It is a tremendous honor to receive this award because I truly love teaching and learning,” Piernik-Yoder said. “I am very grateful to be part of the educational mission of the School of Health Professions, UT Health San Antonio and the UT System.”

The Board of Regents established the annual award program in 2008 to recognize exemplary classroom performance and innovation. Each award recipient receives a medallion and a  $25,000 cash award. Recipients are showcased on the UT System’s ROTA website.

“Dr. Piernik-Yoder strives to ensure students pair deep clinical knowledge with compassion,” said UT Health Science Center San Antonio President William L. Henrich, MD, MACP. “This prestigious award is an honor befitting her commitment to a high standard of excellence.”

UT Board of Regents Chairman Kevin Eltife noted the impact this year’s honorees have on Texas’ future.

“UT faculty members guide our students’ success and prepare Texas’ future leaders, job creators and innovators,” Eltife said. “The Board of Regents is proud to recognize their excellence through the Regents’ Outstanding Teaching Awards program.”

“The UT presidents and I are grateful to the regents for their continued investment in this important program,” said UT System Chancellor James B. Milliken. “The impact that exceptional faculty have on our students’ lives, both professionally and personally, is immeasurable.”

Award nominees undergo a series of evaluations by peer faculty and external reviewers. The review panels consider a range of activities and criteria, including classroom expertise, curricula quality, innovative course development and student learning outcomes.

“We are very fortunate to have Dr. Piernik-Yoder leading our Doctor of Occupational Therapy program,” said School of Health Professions Dean David Shelledy, PhD, RRT, FASAHP, FAARC. “She inspires faculty and students alike with her passion for teaching and her dedication to excellence while preparing students to be highly skilled and compassionate practitioners.”

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