Faculty of the Year Award

The Division of Academic Affairs recognizes the extraordinary contributions and quality service of faculty members supporting the mission of the South Texas College. The Faculty of the Year award honors faculty who are committed to student success and teaching effectiveness; provide college service and leadership; are engaged in professional activities; are involved in community service, and who have demonstrated commitment to creating a college going culture. The faculty member is recognized during the Fall Academic Affairs Convocation.


The purpose of this award is to recognize the extraordinary contributions and quality service of faculty members supporting the mission of the South Texas College. The Faculty of the Year award honors faculty who are committed to excellence in the five main areas of faculty performance.


  • Committee formation:
    • Each division will nominate two representatives for the FOTY selection committee. One student representative from the Student Government Association will also serve on the committee.
  • Committee chair:
    • The Office of Professional and Organizational Development will lead the recognition efforts with the Associate Dean acting as the Committee chair.
  • Committee membership:
    • The FOTY committee membership may include faculty and students.
  • Committee responsibility:
    • The FOTY selection committee will have the charge to review and evaluate the nominations. After reviewing all nominations, the committee will submit their final recommendations in writing to the Division of Academic Affairs.
  • Selection Timeline:
    • The committee will finalize their selection by the end of April and forward the names of the recommended faculty along with nomination forms to the Division of Academic Affairs.


  • The Faculty of the Year will be recognized during the Academic Affairs Convocation at the beginning of each fall semester and receive a plaque of recognition.
  • Academic Affairs web page will highlight the FOTY award recipient.
  • FOTY award recipients will give a short speech on teaching excellence at the follow year’s Academic Affairs Convocation and become part of an instructional resource group.
  • FOTY award recipients will qualify for another nomination after five years.


  1. The OPOD will open the nomination period from the beginning of the spring semester until mid-February. No self-nominations will be accepted.
  2. After collecting nominations, the OPOD will reach out to the nominated faculty members and collect additional information including:
    • Current CV
    • Syllabus (from most recent academic year)
    • Responses on criteria listed below (Responses will be limited to 500 words per criteria).
    • Nominated faculty will submit their materials electronically to the OPOD by the end of February. The OPOD will forward materials to the FOTY selection committee. Faculty who fail to submit the required documentation will no longer be eligible to receive the award.
  3. The FOTY selection committee will meet, review nominations, and finalize the nomination and selection process by mid-April.
  4. The chair will inform the VPAA about the information regarding the FOTY recipient
  5. The chair will develop a one-page recommendation memo, based on the related documents submitted about/by the nominee, and submit it along with the nomination forms to VPAA in the last week of April.
  6. The Office of the VPAA will notify the Faculty of the Year by the end of May.

Criteria for Selection

  • Teaching and Learning - A record of superior accomplishment in the area of excellence in teaching and learning should contain clear and compelling evidence related to
    • Instructional quality and contributions to curricular development;
    • Success and effectiveness in student development and learning;
    • Contributions as a teacher outside the classroom leading to student success; and
    • Meaningful connections between the nominee’s participation in the discipline and teaching.
  • Student Success – A record of superior accomplishment in the area of outstanding
    commitment to student success should contain clear and compelling evidence related to
    • Demonstrated commitment to student advising and mentoring;
    • Strategies implemented to guide students to become more active learners;
    • Methods developed to help students understand their majors and professional
      opportunities; and
    • Methods implemented that have motivated students to learn.
  • Professional Development - A record of superior accomplishment in the area of
    professional development should contain clear and compelling evidence related to
    • Activities taken to stay current in the discipline;
    • Faculty development activities engaged in during the last year;
    • Opportunities to observe a peer’s teaching other than through the official
      classroom observation process.
  • Leadership and College Service - A record of superior accomplishment in the area of
    excellence in leadership and college service should contain clear and compelling
    evidence related to
    • Faculty involvement in committee work and student clubs at the College,
      regional, or national level, and role in these committees;
    • Participation in the revision or development of a new program in the faculty’s
      discipline; and
    • Scholarly pursuits including publications, journals, books, performances, or
  • Community Service and Creating a College-Going Culture - A record of superior
    accomplishment in the area of excellence in community service and creating a college-going culture should contain clear and compelling evidence related to
    • Participation in outreach activities with the community including visits with area school districts, colleges, or universities; and
    • Speaking engagements at community events regarding STC programs and services.

2018 Faculty of the Year

Jenny ChamberlainJenny Chamberlain grew up in poverty on Bureau of Indian Land next to the Navajo Reservation in Utah. She is the oldest of 8 children, and the first in her family to go to college. Even as a child, Ms. Chamberlain worked, and worked hard. Her work history is eclectic, as she has been a newspaper reporter, botanical research assistant, wildland fire fighter, park ranger, and she has worked in academia for 25 years.

Ms. Chamberlain coordinated the Women's Studies Program at Brigham Young University (BYU), where she earned both a bachelor and a master degree. She taught as a graduate student, and then as an adjunct faculty member at BYU. Ms. Chamberlain coordinated the Gender Equity Center at Utah Valley University (UVU) for 8 years and taught in the Sociology and the Education departments. She also taught Sociology at the Ivy Hall Academy of Nursing.

After sending several of her own students who were deeply committed to social justice to participate in Teach for America, she decided to leave UVU to teach middle school in the Rio Grande Valley. Working for Donna ISD, she had the opportunity to coach several middle school boys basketball teams, girls basketball teams, track teams, and was an honorary football coach. After teaching middle school in Donna ISD, she accepted a 1 year appointment at UT-Pan American (now UTRGV). During that time, she learned about South Texas College and was impressed by the commitment to education and outreach. She was hired at South Texas College about 11 years ago and has been at the Mid-Valley Campus for 10 years. With tremendous amounts of support from other faculty, Ms. Chamberlain has organized several Girls' Days, Boys' Days, and Family Days at the College.

For Ms. Chamberlain, teaching is all about giving students the tools they need to change their lives. Her teaching practices are based on research, focused on engagement, and fueled by love. Her students actively participate with community groups who work to address community challenges. They come to understand their own strengths, areas of expertise, and are motivated to strengthen their academic and professional arsenal by gaining degrees and then careers where they can make a positive impact. Seeing her students succeed and thrive motivates her and brings deeper meaning to her life.

Previous Awardees

2017 Reynaldo Sanchez III Design and Building Technology
2016 Delia Magdaleno World Languages
2015 Rachael Brown Art
2014 Rene Zuniga Education
2013 *
2012 *
2011 Victor Gomez, Jr. History
2010 Dr. Mehrzad Mahmoudian Geller Biology
2009 Paul Wendland Culinary Arts
2008 Adalia Reyna Developmental Reading
2007 Charles M. Robinson History
2006 Ludivina Avila Chemistry
2005 Mohammad Kazerani Mathematics
2004 Jayaprakash Ramanujam Economics
2003 Dr. Morteza Abbassi Biology
2002 Dr. Michael Bagley - Engineering