James and Mary Ross Provost's Award for Excellence: Erik Grumstrup, Founders Day Faculty Awards, Academic Year 2022-23. Portrait of Erik Grumstrup.

Erik Grumstrup

Erik Grumstrup, an associate professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, is the recipient of the James and Mary Ross Provost’s Award for Excellence. The award recognizes superlative teaching and scholarship, particularly in faculty teaching core or freshman-level courses. Sponsored by James and Mary Ross and the Office of Academic Affairs, the award includes a $2,500 honorarium. 

Grumstrup has taught College Chemistry I along with advanced courses in chemistry and materials science. Feedback from students continuously recognizes him as an engaging educator who is deeply invested in his students’ success. Grumstrup is also the director of the new Montana Collaborative Materials Science doctoral program, through which he teaches courses not only in-person at Montana State but also virtually to students at Montana Tech and the University of Montana. Students on those other campuses describe him as “brilliant and enthusiastic” and someone who teaches with “care and professionalism.” 

“Dr. Grumstrup is a gifted teacher who excels over the broad range of courses taught in Chemistry and Biochemistry,” wrote Michelle Miley, an associate dean of the MSU College of Letters and Science, in a nomination letter. “He has been an outstanding teacher and mentor of research students in his lab, providing them with the support, encouragement, and inspiration to reach their goals.” 

“The positive influence Erik has had on me, as his student, has led me to achieve more than I ever thought possible for myself,” wrote Casey Kennedy, a recent MSU graduate. “He is patient and careful, and his excitement about science is infectious.”