Issue Date: December 21, 2009
First Community College Award To Jeanette Medina
The American Chemical Society gives awards at local, regional, and national levels for excellent teaching in high schools, colleges, and universities. The ACS Santa Clara Valley (SCV) local section award has moved to fill a conspicuous gap. It is the first section to recognize the contributions of community college chemistry teachers to science education. On Nov. 1, Jeanette Medina, a member of the chemistry faculty at Cañada College, in Redwood City, Calif., received the first Teacher-Scholar Award for Community College Chemistry Faculty, a plaque, and $500, with a matching amount going to her department. ACS President Thomas H. Lane presented the award and talked about the importance of community college education.
Medina has taught chemistry for 13 years, has published 14 papers in refereed scientific journals, and is the principal investigator on three National Science Foundation grants. With a 2007 grant, she developed a certificate program and an associate in science program in chemical technology that prepares Cañada students for technician positions in local industry and Cañada graduates for undergraduate transitions to baccalaureate programs in the chemical sciences.
According to section chair Natalie McClure, Medina "is an educator who understands what students require to learn chemistry. She seeks to provide those experiences and services for her students that not only enrich their education, but also help remove the stress of those factors that get in the way of learning."
Cabrillo College's Harry Ungar spearheaded the award's establishment. He hopes it catalyzes the formation of similar awards among ACS local sections. Ungar, who may be reached by e-mail at email@example.com, says he will provide all the materials needed to make it easy for sections to set up an award.
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