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January 26, 2009

Dale, Dr. Hashemi to receive NISOD Excellence Awards


Due to their stellar work and dedication to the teaching profession, Cowley College instructors Rae Dale and Dr. Jafar Hashemi will receive Excellence Awards from the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development in Austin, Texas in May.

Rae DaleDale, an academic advisor and Office Technology, Computer, and Business instructor at Cowley College, and Dr. Hashemi, a Physics, Mathematics, Engineering and Physical Science instructor at the college’s Arkansas City and Mulvane campuses, will receive the awards during NISOD’s annual International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence May 24-27.

Dale worked for Charles Thoma Architecture and Engineering in Arkansas City from 1974-1990. While working there, Mr. Thoma convinced Dale to return to school and complete her bachelor’s degree.

She took his advice and received an associate’s degree from Cowley County Community College in 1987, and a bachelor’s degree from Southwestern College in 1989. She didn’t stop there, as she received a Master’s of Education degree from Southwestern College in 1994.

Dale began working at Cowley College as an adjunct instructor in 1990 and became a full-time instructor at the college in 1992.

Prior to becoming a full-time instructor at Cowley College, Dale did some substitute teaching for USD 470 and was also a long-term substitute at Caldwell High School.

Once she started working at the college she realized this is where she wanted to be.

“The best part of the job is being in the classroom and working directly with students,” Dale said. “I enjoy the wide diversity of our students, not just culturally, but the difference in age as well.”

She also enjoys conducting non-credit Business and Industry software training.

Dale was named to the Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers in 2005-06. She is a member of the National Education Association, Kansas National Education Association, and College Education Association.

Being named a recipient of the Excellence Award from NISOD is something she is proud of.

“In the hallway of Webb-Brown there are photos of past Master Teacher recipients, so I get to see the faces of many excellent faculty members,” Dale said. “It is a great honor to join them on the wall. I feel Cowley has outstanding faculty and it is a privilege to work with them.”

With computer applications constantly coming out with new versions, Dale finds there is more to learn each semester.

“With the constant change things never get old,” Dale said. “I especially like seeing a student come in a little apprehensive, thinking they can’t do it, and then realizing they can be successful.”

Slade Griffiths, Cowley College vice president of academic affairs, was happy to see Dale receive recognition from NISOD.

“Rae Dale is deserving of the NISOD Master Teacher honor because she engages the students in the classroom by using practices that facilitate learning,” Griffiths said. “She is a content expert and has been very willing to develop new programs and participate in employee professional development by providing many classes.”

Dr. HashemiDr. Hashemi began employment as a full-time Physics and Physical Science instructor at Cowley College in 1999. He has spent a total of 18 years as an instructor.

“I have always enjoyed helping other people and covering subjects I like,” Hashemi said.

He currently teaches  Engineering Physics Part II and General Physics Part II at the college’s Mulvane and Arkansas City campuses. He also teaches Physical Science and Statics.

Prior to coming to Cowley College, Dr. Hashemi was an instructor at the University of Oklahoma, St. Gregory University, and Butler Community College. He also served as a Senior Systems Engineer at Boeing, and was an Operation Research Analyst at Tinker Air Force Base.

“Dr. Hashemi worked for many years as an engineer and, in the classroom, his love for engineering and student learning is evident,” Griffiths said. “He is clearly deserving of the NISOD Master Teacher designation.”

Dr. Hashemi received his Master’s degree (1967) and his Ph.D. (1970) from the University of Oklahoma. He was named an Outstanding Educator of America while teaching at St. Gregory University in 1974, and is a member of the American Association of Physics Teachers, the National Audubon Society, and SIGMA XI-the Scientific Research Society.

He has had his work published in several respected publications.

“I was greatly honored because a panel of experts review the work thoroughly before deciding to publish it,” Hashemi said.

He feels fortunate to be named a recipient of the Excellence Award from NISOD.

“I was surprised and greatly honored,” Hashemi said. “All the faculty at Cowley are well deserving and are doing a great job.”