Cascadia faculty members honored for excellence

Estelle, Leising receive awards

Cascadia Community College has honored two faculty members with the annual Excellence in Teaching, Learning and Service award. The recipients for 2008 are Melissa Estelle and Jared Leising. As part of the honor, each will receive an award of $1,000 for professional development or to support a Cascadia program.

Estelle teaches a wide range of classes, including college strategies, anthropology and communications. However, her role at Cascadia goes well beyond the classroom. She is actively involved in connecting students to unique learning opportunities, including internships and volunteerism. Mentoring new associate faculty members is also one of her strengths, helping them perfect their abilities as instructors.

“Melissa’s dedication to improving the college experience for students is evidenced in the innovative ideas she brings to the classroom,” said Cascadia faculty member Tori Saneda. “She is also a great colleague in that she is an active participant in faculty governance and always willing to sit down for a discussion on better assessment in the classroom.”

Leising has taught English, poetry and creative writing at Cascadia since he joined the college in 2000. He is an adviser to Cascadia’s Creative Arts Club, which publishes Yours Truly, an annual publication which features the best in writing, art and photography from the Cascadia community. Leising is also the president of the Washington Community and Technical College Humanities Association.

“Jared Leising is a poet,” reflects colleague Dr. Todd Lundberg. “He does not so much teach students as write with writers. He believes that every student has something to say, and he has a knack for sharing strategies and hosting communities that provide each student an opportunity to say her piece and say it well.”

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