AS&F honors ASC faculty and staff

(04-28-2009)

Shirley Atencio, Dr. John Taylor, Peggy Filer, and Dr. Mari Centeno

Many professors at Adams State College make an effort to assist their students in everything from instruction to advisement, and that commitment is recognized and appreciated. Now in its fifth year, the Associated Students and Faculty Senate (AS&F) held its Faculty and Staff Recognition Awards Banquet April 17. The students of Adams State are given the opportunity to nominate and vote for exceptional faculty and staff.

Awards were presented to: Dr. John Taylor, professor of theater, Excellence in Student Engagement; Peggy Filer, instructor of American Sign Language, Excellence in Student Center Instruction; Armando Valdez, assistant professor of business, Excellence in Student Academic Advisement; Gina Willis, administrative assistant for Student Affairs, Outstanding Classified Staff Member; Dr. Mari Centeno, associate professor of government, Outstanding Professional Staff Member; Shirley Atencio, campus minister, Excellence in Student Extra-Curricular Advisement.

Erica Holmes, sophomore sociology major and senator of education for AS&F, greeted the award recipients and guests. She said she arriving on campus her freshman year she was "scared and excited." However, a month later, she was immersed in the community. She thanked all Adams State professors for their guidance and dedication to the students.

The AS&F academic committee organized the event; members included Holmes, Nicole Shock, sophomore sociology major and senator of education, and Robin Pryor, junior theater major and vice president of external affairs. Pryor said three different students nominated Taylor for his award. In a letter Emily Stiles, senior theater major, wrote about Dr. Taylor's passion and drive in the classroom and his commitment to all students.

Micah Anderson, sophomore English major and AS&F executive secretary, is minoring in American Sign Language. She praised Filer for teaching a language that is "so much more than words" and inspiring her students. Howard Johnson, a senior business major from Jamaica, said Valdez made him feel welcome on campus and has the ability to encourage students to "go beyond expectations."

Atencio was honored by Roxanne C Delorenzo, senior English, Secondary Education and Spanish Liberal Arts major; for her service and compassion. Delorenzo said Atencio helps organize the annual ASC Cares Day, AIDS Awareness Week, and Alternate Spring Break trips. "She (Shirley) opens her home for students on the holidays. Because of Shirley my faith has grown so much."

Ashlie Cogburn, junior elementary education and special education major, said she admires Centeno for the passion and effort she puts into her work. Centeno recently organized a trip to the Netherlands with the Model United Nations club members.

As with many administrators, Ken Marquez, dean of student affairs, appreciates his assistant, Willis. "She knows the answers to questions and has such a warm heart."

By Linda Relyea