Trio of Penn College faculty members win teaching awards

Three members of the full-time faculty at Pennsylvania College of Technology were honored with teaching awards during commencement ceremonies held May 17 to 18 at the Community Arts Center, Williamsport.

As part of the Distinguished Teaching Awards program, Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour presented a Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award to Gerri F. Luke, associate professor of business administration/management and marketing.

Excellence in Teaching Awards were bestowed upon Ryan P. Good, instructor of welding, and John D. Maize, instructor of speech communication-composition.

The Distinguished Teaching Awards are presented to full-time faculty at Penn College who have been nominated by their students and colleagues for excellence in instructional performance. Since 1982, Distinguished Teaching Awards have been presented to 92 honorees.

Luke, who began her employment with Penn College in 2004, holds a doctor of education in higher education administration from the University of Massachusetts; a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Massachusetts, Lowell; and a bachelor’s degree in English from Salem State College.

Previously, she worked as an administrator at Curry College, Milton, Mass; Daniel Webster College, Nashua, N.H.; and Franklin Pierce University, Rindge, N.H.

Of Luke, a nominator said: “Nearly anyone can stand in front of a group of people and talk about what they know; that’s easy. However, not everyone can effectively transfer their knowledge to others. Dr. Luke has this gift. Her lectures, which are a blend of textbook materials, her experiences, current trends and student discussions, evoke interest and the sharing of opinions among all who are in her classroom.”

Other comments from Luke’s nominating materials include:

• “The epitome of an excellent instructor.”
• “One of the most knowledgeable professors I’ve had at Penn College.”
• “Never one to use putdowns or to criticize a student in front of others.”
• “Always available and more than willing to offer guidance.”
• “Provides a great deal of insight and knowledge.”
• “It doesn’t take knowing her very long to realize how passionate she is about her students succeeding in life.”

Good, an alumnus of Penn College, earned an associate degree in welding technology and a bachelor’s degree in welding and fabrication engineering technology. He has been on the full-time faculty since 2009. Before coming to the college, he worked in industry for companies in Philadelphia, Reading and Williamsport.

His nominators had this to say about Good:

• “Should be the gold standard for faculty at Penn College.”
• “He keeps courses fresh and pushes students hard and fair.”
• “He is very excited about teaching and routinely shows that he is truly passionate. He expects his students to work hard and be passionate, as well.”
• “Inspires students – if not directly, through his confidence in each person’s ability, then most certainly through his intensity and interest in his subject.”
• “A positive motivator that knows how to connect with students. He makes you think, learn and work hard.”

Maize has been employed as a full-time faculty member at the college since 2004; he worked as a part-time instructor from 2001-04. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree in communication studies, both from Bloomsburg University, as well as state certification in communication from Susquehanna University.

He also has worked in academic-support roles for Penn College, and he taught technical English to high school students in the Milton Area School District and was a part-time communications instructor at Bloomsburg University.

Comments about Maize from his nominators include:

• “He gleans what is most important from his course content and shares the wheat, the germ, the seed of learning with his students.”
• “Always willing to try something new, to discard what does not work, and to embrace what does – even if it is not his idea.”
• “Focuses on the ‘constructive’ in ‘constructive criticism,’ always offering an observation of strengths before a recommendation for improvement.”
• “Accessible to students in all senses of the word – they can find him, they can reach him, they can speak to him and they can understand him.”
• “One of the most influential teachers I have had.”

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Last Updated May 21, 2013