2015-16 Graduate and Professional Teaching Award Winner
Ann M. Burkhart, with bookshelf in background.
Ann M. Burkhart

Professor, Law School

A widely recognized expert in real estate law who frequently delivers lectures before national and professional organizations, Ann Burkhart has earned a reputation as a professor who is both demanding and encouraging in her teaching practice.

In her time at the University, she has taught some 5,000 students, who remember her for her long-term impact on them as lawyers. One former student has observed that she inspires learners to “look beyond technical and legal analysis and think deeply about what is practical and equitable.”

Despite being known as an instructor with high standards, Burkhart declares that “creating a sense of community is an important first step in getting the students comfortable with each other and involved in learning.” This is especially true, she observes, since her classes often enroll more than 50 students—a testimony to the high regard in which she is held, but also a challenge when it comes to engaging so many students at such a high level.

Even after so many years, students still surprise me with their insights and questions. They make me question my assumptions, and their questions can send me back to treatises and journals to provide an adequate answer.Ann M. Burkhart

In turn, students uniformly express enthusiasm about her classes and her commitment to mentoring students, citing the way in which she brings the curriculum to life by relating even obscure issues of the law to everyday experience.

“She inspired loyalty and dedication, as every student I know felt compelled to participate and study [in her class],” says another former student. “…[H]er classroom was one of the safest and most productive spaces in the Twin Cities.”

College/school: 
Law School