Ernst receives second George R. Brown Award for Superior Teaching

Center for Teaching Excellence award recognizes outstanding faculty as determined by the votes of alumni.

Headshot of Philip Ernst

For the second time, Philip Ernst, professor of statistics (STAT), has received a George R. Brown Award for Superior Teaching from Rice University’s Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE).

In 2021, he was given the same honor and last year received the George R. Brown Award for Excellence in Teaching.

“Teaching for Philip is a high priority. It’s clear that his students value his teaching skills, but also his personal care and attention to every student in every class,” said Rudy Guerra, professor and chair of STAT.

The George R. Brown Teaching Awards honor outstanding faculty as determined by the votes of alumni. All current faculty members are eligible except immediate past winners and lifetime honorary recipients. Alumni are asked to select their top five faculty members. A CTE committee reviews the nominees and determines nine Superior winners and one Excellence winner.

Ernst joined the Rice faculty in 2014 after earning his M.A. and Ph.D. in STAT from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 2010 and 2014, respectively. Last year he was named chair and professor in statistics at Imperial College London.

In 2018, he received the Tweedie New Researcher Award from the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, often considered the highest honor for excellence in research for an early-career statistician. In the same year, he received the Young Investigator Award from the Mathematical Sciences Division of the Army Research Office.

He has also won the Nicolas Salgo Distinguished Teacher Award, the Sophia Meyer Farb Prize for Teaching and the Graduate Student Association Teaching/Mentoring Award. In 2020, Ernst was named the inaugural winner of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) Don Gaver, Jr. Early Career Award for Excellence in Operations Research, the first institute-wide early-career award.

Ernst was last year named to a visiting international research chair in the Department of Mathematics at the Université Libre de Bruxelles. He was also elected to the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies’ Leadership Academy. Most recently, he was appointed a 2023 Lebesgue Chair at the Henri Lebesgue Center in Roscoff, France. The Lebesgue Chair is a temporary international professorship position that hosts scientific leaders in mathematical research.

Ernst’s research interests include applied probability, exact distribution theory, mathematical finance, mathematical statistics, operations research, optimal stopping, queueing systems, statistical inference for stochastic processes and stochastic control.