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EdTech professor receives President’s Community Service Award

The recipients of the President’s Community Service Award for 2019-2020 were announced in a virtual program during Employee Appreciation Week. The award provides the campus community an opportunity to celebrate and honor individuals, or groups of faculty, staff or students, who are serving our community in extraordinary ways.

This year’s award went to two members of the faculty who stepped up to help the community navigate the impacts of the global pandemic.

Brett Shelton, a professor in the educational technology (Ed-Tech) department, was recognized for his efforts to educate PreK-12 teachers on effective ways to teach online as school districts moved to remote instruction in the fall of 2020.

“Brett realized that he had expertise in an area where teachers and school communities everywhere had a need,” said Jennifer Snow, interim dean and professor in the College of Education. “PreK-12 teachers everywhere did the best they could meeting student needs with a very quick pivot to remote instruction at the end of the spring semester. Yet they still had uncertainties with how to be more purposeful about online and remote instruction.”

What was originally intended to support and handful of local teachers quickly grew into a full-fledged professional development course with nearly 400 teachers enrolled.

“There are a number of teachers in Idaho and across the U.S. that are very grateful for the help,” said Mary Ann Parlin, who nominated Shelton and assisted him with the online course. “We will never know the real number of people that we impacted, but I can tell you that Brett certainly deserves this award!”

Amy Vecchione, associate professor and head of emerging technology and experiential learning for the Albertsons Library, was also honored for the role she and the library’s MakerLab played in supplying healthcare workers with protective equipment.

Nominations for the President’s Community Service Award are accepted year round, and nominations can be submitted via the form on the We Serve web page. The finalists were selected by a committee with representatives from Human Resource Services, the Professional Staff Association, the Association of Classified Employees, and the Faculty Senate. The finalists were submitted to the president for review and final determination of the winners.