By Megan Hayes
BOONE—Six members of Appalachian State University’s faculty were honored with excellence in teaching awards at the university’s opening meeting for faculty and staff for the fall semester. Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Darrell Kruger recognized the recipients Friday, Aug. 26, at the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts on Appalachian’s campus.
“The commitment to teaching has always been the heart and soul of Appalachian’s mission, and has, over the years, served as the foundation of its overall success,” said Kruger. “Our mission statement is clear in this regard, and reads in part: ‘with instruction as its primary mission, the university is committed to excellence in teaching and the fostering of scholarship.’”
The Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching was presented to Dr. Lisa Runner. Recipients of this award must be tenured faculty members who have taught a minimum of seven years at Appalachian, demonstrate excellence in and commitment to teaching over a sustained period of time and are teaching in the academic year in which they are selected. The award includes a cash award for $12,500, a citation, statewide recognition and university-wide recognition.
Runner is an associate professor of music education in Appalachian’s Hayes School of Music. She came to the Appalachian campus in 1999 as a doctoral student in the Reich College of Education, joined the Hayes School of Music as an adjunct faculty member in 2000, and became assistant professor of music education in 2006.
Acknowledging Runner’s accolades, Kruger read from a letter submitted by one of Runner’s former students. “Dr. Runner goes beyond telling her students information or even showing them how to teach. She involves students every single day in activities, in discussions, in every process of learning, and the things she teaches stay with them.”
One award of $1,500 is given to the first runner-up for the Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching. The first runner-up award was presented to Dr. Lisa McAnulty, professor, Department of Nutrition and Health Care Management.
In addition to the system-wide award, each UNC campus receives a further annual allocation for teaching excellence awards as determined by a selection committee. Awards of $1,000 awards are presented to faculty members who teach at the baccalaureate lower division, and who receive the most votes from the committee.
Four faculty members were presented with campus teaching excellence awards: Dr. Nancy Bargerstock, professor, Hayes School of Music; Dr. Anita Kitchens, professor, Department of Mathematical Sciences; Dr. Erik Rabinowitz, associate professor, Department of Recreation Management and Physical Education; and Dr. Gregory Rhoads, associate professor, Department of Mathematical Sciences.
The granting of the awards is an annual process that stems from a 1993 decision by the University of North Carolina Board of Governors and the General Administration of the University of North Carolina system calling for a review of mission statements, tenure policies and criteria for making personnel decisions at its campus institutions. The review asked that each institution recognize “teaching as a core function” on each campus.
Awards are granted each year by a selection committee. For more information on the awards, visit http://teachingawards.appstate.edu/bog-excellence-teaching-awards.
About Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system, Appalachian enrolls about 18,000 students, has a low faculty-to-student ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.