School of Communication Alumna Margot Susca Wins 2022 Outstanding Teaching Award from American University

CCI Alum Margot Susca was recently recognized for her exemplary hands-on work with students.

Susca, who currently works as an Assistant Professor at the American University, instructing students on topics like journalism ethics, understanding media, and reporting, was the recipient of a 2022 Outstanding Teaching Award from her university. 

Susca’s wealth of expertise spans several decades. Before obtaining her Ph.D in 2012, she worked as a reporter.. Susca went on to join American University full-time in 2013, eventually joining the tenure track in 2020. In addition to her work inside the classroom, Susca also mentors graduate and doctoral students outside of class. In 2019, she was chosen as a Maynard 200 fellowship mentor in the Storytelling/Investigative Reporting track. She also works as an Associate Editor with Investigative Reporting Workshop, a non-profit investigative news organization. 

She explained how she values a hand-on approach with students, and that she wants them to gain tangible knowledge about the field before embarking on their professional journey. 

This unique approach is reflected in the feedback of her students. When asked about her experience, one former student wrote, “I credit so much of my professional foundation to Margot’s classes. Her popularity stems from the reputation she’s garnered as one of the smartest, most challenging and exciting professors at American University.” 

Susca credits her time at FSU with giving her the foundation for a successful teaching career. “I credit my teaching success here in Washington, D.C. to what I learned as a teaching assistant at FSU. During my doctoral program, I served as a TA for Laura Arpan, Jennifer Proffitt, and Art Raney,” she saidI. “That training and observation was invaluable. It helped me to build courses rooted in academic inquiry and scholarly exploration and to create a classroom environment with vibrant discussions centered on respect and civility. I was then–and still am–in awe of them.” 

Susca also said that receiving this award was a special recognition of all the new challenges she had to overcome through the COVID-19 pandemic. “I’ve been teaching at American University for almost nine years, and Covid posed new challenges at a time media and journalism are evolving rapidly. Winning this award is recognition of all the time and effort I have dedicated over the years to teaching, to mentoring, and to curriculum development with a students-first approach.” 

To read more about Susca and her work with American University, check out