Heroism comes in many forms and is especially needed in uncertain and challenging times like these. The contribution of this individual during the COVID-19 pandemic has made a positive impact on others – an outcome that is heroic by many measures. We are proud to name Associate Teaching Professor Justin Hicks a Big Cat Hero.
Nomination Statement: I wanted to nominate Professor Justin Hicks for the Big Cat Hero award; he has helped me a lot during my limited time at UC Merced and I think he deserves it. I joined the campus last year as a transfer student and I knew I wanted to make the most of my two years at UC Merced but had no idea what to do. After talking to my fellow econ students, all of them recommended I talk to Professor Hicks. I showed up at his office hours, not even in one of his classes yet, but he was nevertheless willing to help.
Now, during quarantine, he still manages to make his classes as enjoyable as they are in person. His lectures never fail to create a narrative that truthfully shows the material, all the while making it easy to understand and entertaining. Many students trip and fall over the way, struggling with the difficult math or amount of reading required. However, Professor Hicks is always present for office hours to offer a helping hand to any who arrive, even a random transfer student.