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STLCC Faculty Members to be Honored by Emerson

Three St. Louis Community College faculty members will be recognized for commitment and passion for the teaching profession as recipients of the Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award. 

STLCC’s honorees this year are Gary Forde, professor of psychology at Forest Park; Sharon North, professor of mathematics at Florissant Valley; and Jeffrey Schneider, professor and chair of the English department at Meramec. 

The Emerson Excellence in Teaching Award program, sponsored by Emerson, annually recognizes approximately 100 educators in the St. Louis metropolitan area – from kindergarten teachers to college professors – who are examples of excellence in their field. This award recognizes educators for their leadership in and passion for teaching, their contributions to student learning, and their knowledge and creativity. 

Gary FordeThis is the only public recognition event of its kind to honor teachers in both Missouri and Illinois. Emerson, with its world headquarters located in St. Louis, has sponsored this program since 1989, as part of its commitment to promote quality education throughout the St. Louis area. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and related uncertainties, honorees will receive their Excellence in Teaching Award from Emerson later this year. 

Gary Forde has been a full-time and adjunct instructor at Forest Park for the past 15 years. 

Forde has received numerous teaching awards from the campus student government association as well as the campus’ Honors Committee. He also has served on a variety of campus committees, including Sabbatical Leave, Honors, Academic Appeals, Student Disciplinary and Student Grievance. He will receive the Governor's Award for Excellence in Teaching in early November.

Forde also has cochaired the African-American History Month Committee several times, and is a member of the Women’s History Month Committee. He also served briefly on the College’s Voice for Diversity and Inclusion Task Force. 

Sharon North“The award recognizes the excellent teaching and support that St. Louis Community College – Forest Park specifically -- provides to students in the St. Louis area,” he said. “It represents the totality of support that students receive from the College in areas such as the Access office, advising, academic support and student success, the library, counseling and Campus Life. All of these areas enhance their success at the College.”  

Sharon North began her career at STLCC in 1998. She is in her 33rd year of teaching mathematics at community college and university levels. She has taught nearly 10,000 students college mathematics. She has designed math curricula and written application-based content for students, and served in leadership roles as a department chair, assistant chair and a districtwide developmental education coordinator.  

“Sharon is very excited to engage with faculty implementing math pathways because she has seen the difference that mathematics taught in context can make in her students’ lives,” said Elizabeth Gassel Perkins, Ed.D., president and chief academic officer at Florissant Valley. “When students see real meaning in the mathematics they are learning, it empowers them to persist and complete the course.” 

North represents STLCC faculty on the Missouri Corequisite at Scale Taskforce and serves on the state advisory board for mathematics pathways. She received the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development Excellence Award in 2010 and has been recognized by students as a faculty mentor in the STLCC Emerging Scholars program. Earlier this year, North received the David L. Underwood Memorial Lecture Award. 

Jeffrey SchneiderJeffrey Schneider has been a faculty member since 2007, where he has served in several leadership roles. Schneider completed his doctorate in English at Purdue University in 2003. His research agenda focuses on best practices and trends in concurrent enrollment – dual credit and dual enrollment programs. He has developed, implement and taught aligned English composition curricula in St. Louis area high schools. 

“Jeffrey’s commitment to excellence and dedication to our students is unparalleled, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to honor him as the Meramec recipient of this award,” said Feleccia Moore-Davis, Ph.D., Meramec campus president and chief academic officer. 

Aside from his research and teaching, Schneider serves as a visual culture area chair for the Popular Culture Association. He also sits on the Board of Directors of the Hispanic Arts Council of St. Louis, for whom he developed and oversees the English curriculum for their Puertas ACT prep and college mentoring program. 

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