ICCTA Outstanding Faculty Member Award

2003 Nominees


ICCTA's 2003 Outstanding Faculty Member Award is sponsored by
Schiff Hardin & Waite's Labor Employment Group

John Hoagland
Biological sciences
Danville Area Community College

I believe education and hard work are the only ways most people are able to both get ahead in life and fully enjoy life. I know learning is a challenging endeavor that requires a lot of hard work, but it has many rewards, not the least of which is pure enjoyment. I try to help my students see the need for the information they learn and the practical value of such knowledge. I try to present materials in a challenging, thought-provoking, but always attainable way, and I try to keep learning fun.

Dorothy Becker
Office careers
Morton College

We know that education as a whole changes slowly. Is it fear of the unknown that makes change so difficult? I think that the community college is the perfect place to make changes happen. It can be a leader in the education process and has a golden opportunity to meet that challenge.

Amy Blumenthal
Oakton Community College

I like my students. While this at first might seem like an obvious statement . . . this is, in fact, at the core of who I am and what I do as a teacher. Liking my students means having high expectations of them and myself within a context of care and camaraderie. Successes are celebrations to be developed; failures are challenges to meet together through creativity, humor and determination.

Claudette Burchett
Communications and fine arts
Malcolm X College

Students have untapped talents that are waiting to be released. Therefore, I give them an opportunity to get in touch with their creative side. All students have at least one story or poem within them, so I create a non-threatening environment, which allows them to tap into their imagination and share their experiences with others.

Dr. Madie Cannamore
Business and information technology
Kennedy-King College

An educator must leave the comfort zone of the familiar to assist students in reaching their purpose and destiny. Commitment to service means being motivated to help students, to have the initiative to seek out information, to be open to change, to introduce new processes, or to follow innovative methods and procedures.

Bette Chilton
Kishwaukee College

Role modeling is one of the most important components to teaching. Educators are continually "on stage" and the students are watching one aspect of their life performance. Students yearn to hear real-life experiences that relate to their field of study. When an educator continues to practice in their field of education, it can only add credibility to the student audience.

Laura Duvall
Heartland Community College

I believe learning is a life-long endeavor; thus, as an educator my goal must be to prepare and encourage my students to be effective learners. In all of my courses I hope to do much more than just present facts and information, but also to encourage real cognitive and intellectual growth. I believe the most effective way to achieve these goals is for the teacher to take on the role of facilitator, and to actively involve students in their own learning.

Dr. Brenda Erickson
John A. Logan College

Along the way, each semester for each of the 20 years I have been an educator, I have also been the learner. I continue to learn about life and the phenomenon called human behavior. I am so fortunate to be at this point in my career and still feel this way. I think I have received as much as I have given.

Samuel Fiorenza
Highland Community College

I hope to help my students learn how to become self-sufficient writers and critical thinkers. . . . If my students can recognize the value of good writing and clear thinking, and if they can write well and think clearly out in the "real world," I am satisfied that I have provided for their educational needs.

Dr. Alan Friedman
Southwestern Illinois College

Students should always have a "What can I learn?" attitude, rather than one of "I already know everything!" Students should never view themselves as customers in a business, with a right to get everything they want or they'll talk to the manager (or dean). College is not Wal-Mart. Students don't purchase high grades – they must earn them.

Susan Galloway
McHenry County College

My teaching philosophy gets simpler every year: Teach happily and enthusiastically, expect a lot but be patient about getting it, and give a hundred percent. Keep learning.

Nancy Gammons
Allied health
Shawnee Community College

Education is the process of assessing individual learning styles and creating a student-centered classroom environment, in addition to promoting a desire to learn. Our hope in education is that this desire to learn will extend beyond the classroom and have an impact not only on the individual, but also the community as a whole.

Janet Garretson
Kaskaskia College

I believe that education is life's work. This is not just my life's work as the faculty member but also all individuals as they participate in society. We learn and acquire knowledge along a continuum that becomes more complex as we add to our body of knowledge. Individuals do not expand their depth of knowledge in a vacuum but increase their knowledge with the assistance and persistence of others.

Dr. Marvin L. Johnson
College of Lake County

A personal concern for the student's progress and a caring attitude create an environment in which success is possible. Caring and concern are the bricks and mortar of good teaching. They hold everything together.

Kathy Kopelousos
Lewis and Clark Community College

In my classes I function as a guide to discovery for my students instead of a dispatcher of information. Every day I involve my students in their own learning, as opposed to involving them in my teaching.

Ralph Krauss
Coordinator, Industrial electricity program
Prairie State College

Many of my new electrical students have never been to college. A few are just out of high school, but most are sent by companies for an electrical education when they are 30, 40 or 50 years old. Many are nervous and some are terrified. Yet for most, their study at Prairie State College will be one of the best times of their lives. My work is to make their dreams come true.

Dr. Werner Krieglstein
Philosophy and religious studies
College of DuPage

Humanistic education provides the foundation of my world view and fills me with an appreciation for the lessons learned from history and a deep respect for the classical values of harmony and excellence. It shows me that teaching requires a trust in progress, which allows for the belief that human history is steadily evolving into something better.

Anita Lendway
Wilbur Wright College

"If one aspect of her teaching stands out, it is that she wants her students to understand the material and how it can be used. She doesn't want her students simply memorizing and then regurgitating material back to her. She focuses on students' understanding of how things interact, why they do, and what may be a result of that interaction. It is the best way to teach, and my favorite way to learn." – student Timothy Rog

Heidi Leuszler
Natural sciences
Parkland College

I think of the teachers who challenged and motivated me the most and hope to bring to the classroom what they brought to me. . . . At the same time, I hope to remain humble, as my students can teach me far more than I could possible teach them.

Michael Maher
Spoon River College

Great teachers care about what they teach and are passionate in their effort to communicate it to others. What teachers must do is create a classroom environment that is conducive to the possibility that education may occur. If teachers are excited about the possibility of learning, then this attitude becomes contagious.

Diane Metzger
Rend Lake College

My belief is that all students can learn mathematics, given the correct placement, guidance, instruction and encouragement. That is, of course, if students are also willing to put in their time and effort . . . . I hope my love of mathematics and teaching is conveyed to my students. I feel very fortunate to have a profession that I truly enjoy.

Carol Petersen
Carl Sandburg College

There is a spark of recognition in students' eyes when they make connections and learn something new. I suspect my students see that flash in my eyes as often as I see it in theirs.

Susan Phelan
Chair, Health sciences and public safety department
Moraine Valley Community College

Albert Einstein once wrote, "To me, the worse thing seems to be for a school principally to work with methods of fear, force and artificial authority . . . the only source of the pupil's respect for the teacher is the human and the intellectual qualities of the latter." This is the philosophy that I try to follow with my students.

Ralph Pifer
Psychology and social science
Sauk Valley Community College

Many of our students arrive at college immature, unfocused and unknowing of their capabilities. If we do our jobs well, these students leave college knowing where they are going, what they are going to do, and why. They pursue their lives in a more mature and responsible way.

Martin Quirk
Social sciences
Rock Valley College

In a two-year postsecondary setting, I believe it is important to make learning relevant to student experiences as well as to his/her future goals, whether these goals include entering the workforce or transferring to a four-year institution. The open dialogue between student and teacher is essential to ensuring the success of both in the academic environment.

John Shultz
Life and physical sciences
Southeastern Illinois College

Education should provide opportunities for the free exchange of ideas, attitudes and opinions on potentially any topic of interest or concern. . . . Education is a lifelong journey of discovery in which we learn about ourselves, our society, and our environment.

Brent Steel
Computer information science
Elgin Community College

I consider myself a vocational educator. My mission is to put "tools" into the student's "tool box" so they can find entry-level employment. I firmly believe that "the wise man builds his house on a rock." My goal is to provide as strong a foundation as possible for a student to build on.

Tim VanDyke
Lake Land College

Education is a very rewarding career. There is no greater satisfaction than observing the learning process. The experience of watching a student develop a skill and apply it or comprehend a concept and use the same technique to solve a problem is simply indescribable.

Maggie Hahn Wade
Developmental reading
Triton College

Students must be convinced that each class is a fresh start, and that a past history of failure or underachievement must be set aside to create an opportunity for success. Students have to buy into the message that they control the outcome of their educational experience.

Carolyn Warren
Early childhood education
John Wood Community College

To achieve an excellence in teaching, I must be the role model that radiates a positive force in molding what the students can become. I must feel caring and concern for my students as individuals with varied, unique lives inside and outside the classroom. . . . When the students feel that they have a special place in my classroom, I can begin to make a difference in their lives.

Jolene Wiegard
Business and office technology
Richland Community College

Why teach? What an opportunity! Teachers can give students encouragement, confidence, and tools to create and accomplish goals. It is so addictive! I am fed every day I walk into that room filled with students expecting a new experience. . . . What a privilege, the opportunity to influence so many lives – to teach!