WESTMINSTER — Two members of the Western Maryland College community have received top teaching honors from the Maryland Association of Teacher Educators and a third has received high recognition from the group.
Patty Bartlett, chairwoman of MATE's Scholarship and Awards Committee, saidit is "impressive" for one college to claim so many top award recipients.
The three honored Friday at MATE's annual conference in Ocean City are:
* Student Teacher of the Year for the State of Maryland, won by Patricia "Patsy" McClintock, a December 1990 summa cum laude WMCgraduate who student-taught at Robert Moton and William Winchester elementaries.
McClintock now teaches third grade at Carrolltowne Elementary. A non-traditional (over 25 years of age) student, she majored in psychology and minored in education at WMC after transferring from Southern Illinois University.
The Westminster resident, who became employed as a teacher immediately upon graduation last December,said teaching children has been her greatest satisfaction ever sinceshe took a summer job working with autistic children in Linwood Children's Center in Ellicott City, Howard County.
"Children have beenmy life," she said. "I always thought my talents were in interactingwith children."
She said the MATE award came as "quite a surprise" and credited her own children with supporting her in her quest to become an outstanding teacher.
* Outstanding Clinical Supervising Teacher for the State of Maryland, won by Patricia "Trish" Barnhart, aWMC education lecturer and teacher at Robert Moton.
Barnhart, whoattended WMC in the early 1960s and later earned her graduate degreein liberal arts at the college, has supervised many of WMC's studentteachers over the years, and also has taught a course in the elementary education sequence in the college's Department of Education.
The Westminster resident has supervised student teachers in Carroll County since the late 1970s. She said the purpose of her job is to share classroom experiences with young educators -- building on their individual strengths and helping them to understand every aspect of teaching.
"You have to guide them into teaching," she said. "It's a real process every teacher goes through."
Barnhart said she was "shocked and tremendously proud" when she learned she had won the MATE award.
Curtis Schnorr, principal at Robert Moton, said Barnhart is popular among students and parents -- and for good reason.
"She has 20-plus years in the school system, and she still brings something different, something creative to the classroom every day," he said. "That enthusiasm is contagious to her students and to our student-teachers -- it really energizes them."
* Chosen as a Scholarship Awardfinalist -- presented to promising students in teacher education studies -- was Michal Hall, a junior.
Also a non-traditional student,Hall is majoring in English and minoring in education at WMC. Hall, who said he feels highly complimented by his nomination for the MATE scholarship award, is eager to complete his education and fulfill hislifelong dream of becoming a teacher. The Westminster resident enrolled at WMC following a 13-year hiatus in his educational career.
"In my classes, (teachers) astound me with how much they know and all there is for me to learn," he said. "I'm very lucky for all that's been shared with me and look forward to when I will give something backto my students."
Joan Coley, professor and chairwoman of WMC's Education Department, said the three "truly are leaders in elementary education and clearly are dedicated to the profession of teaching.
"Patsy has shown her dedication by overcoming many personal sacrifices to complete her degree here and succeeding so quickly in one of thestate's finest schools.
"Trish is a master teacher who has seen aworld of change in the classroom and continues to persevere and inspire. She's absolutely deserving of this award.
"Michal, who has yet to finish his student teaching internship, is establishing a strongrecord at Western Maryland and shows promise as a future teacher in this most challenging of decades."