Faculty gets recognized at award ceremony


Kelly Nam

The Outstanding Faculty Awards were held on Thursday, April 28, where 10 faculty members were recognized for their hard work. David Betancourt was presented The Most Outstanding Faculty Award. Photo credit: Kelly Nam

Kelly Nam

Faculty from all departments gathered at the student center on Thursday, April 28 in honor of the 2015-2016 Outstanding Faculty Awards Ceremony.

Attendance was at peak and there was lively conversation and live music prior to the ceremony.

Additionally, lunch was provided by the culinary department.

The Most Outstanding Faculty Award went to Dr. David Betancourt who has been the Director and bands and Orchestra since 1998.

He is the conductor for the Concert Band, Jazz Ensemble, Pep Band, Pop/rock ensemble and facilitates drumline.

“The classes I am teaching are performing groups and we have over 25 events just this semester alone.

Most of them take place in this final month of classes so my immediate goal is to be able to help all the students successfully navigate their hectic schedules and to give their best performance at each and every event.

My long term goals continue to be focusing on the students and how I can help them learn about life through music,” he said.

Aside from the various classes he teachers, he is also the coordinator for Center for Teaching Excellence (CTX) at Cerritos College.

CTX is a resource for professional learner enters on California universities and community colleges.

On behalf of CTX, Betancourt presents professional learning topics at conferences and various campuses.

“I want to help all students be successful academically and with their life goals. As the Coordinator of the Center for Teaching Excellence, I also have a passion for helping colleagues with their professional learning goals: Put another way, How can we be better teachers? It is a never ending journey that I enjoy and embrace!”

He is also the chair for Cerritos College Academic Excellence Committee.

“I am honored and humbled to receive this award.

I believe that I still have a lot to learn, there is still much room for growth, and that I can continue to improve as a teacher and person.

I feel privileged to be in a profession where we can practice the art of teaching and to be in a college where professional learning, something essential to our practice, is so vibrant,” Betancourt expressed.

Ten other professors received the Outstanding Faculty Award.

Carlos Arce, Spanish professor; Judy Chan exercise/sports science professor; Dr. Jan Connal, academic counselor and instructor; Dr. Micic Miodrag professor and department chair of engineering design technology; Terrance Mullins political science professor; Dr. Mojdeh Nikdel, math professor; Dr. Linda Palumbo, English Professor; Inge Potter, German professor; Katrina Taylor speech communications professor; and Ana Torres-Bower professor and department chair of philosophy and women’s and gender studies.

The annual Faculty and Awards Ceremony celebrates and recognizes faculty that have made a positive and effective impact on Cerritos College’s body.

“It is amazing to see the impact you have on students lives.

You may not see those students again that are thankful , but the impact u had on them will continue the rest of their lives,” Dr. Fierro said.