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Blinn honors three instructors for teaching excellence

Hoppens, Langenegger and Presswood are recognized by colleagues for outstanding service

May 2, 2014

Math Professor Randal Hoppens Blinn College recently celebrated another year of outstanding instruction with banquets honoring its finest faculty across the College’s four campuses.

Blinn named Math Professor Randal Hoppens the Teaching Excellence Award winner for its Brenham, Schulenburg and Sealy campuses, while Government Professor Dr. Joyce Langenegger and Associate Degree Nursing Professor Rebecca Presswood earned the honor on Blinn’s Bryan campus. The awards are presented by the Blinn professional associations on the Brenham and Bryan campuses.

Hoppens joined Blinn’s faculty in 1984 and became a division chair in 1992. He will retire from full-time instruction at the end of this semester but will continue to teach part-time.

In his nomination letter, fellow math professor Gary Ivy commended Hoppens’ unique ability to demonstrate how mathematical concepts impact students’ daily lives.

“The teaching of mathematics is really the teaching of logic,” Hoppens said. “After 30 years of teaching college math, I am still learning new ways to solve old problems and how to teach them to students.”

Economics Professor Andy Harrington, English Professor Mark Bernier and Agricultural Sciences Professor Bryn Behnke were also nominated for the honor.

Professor Dr. Joyce Langenegger A government instructor for Blinn’s Social Sciences Division since 2005, Langenegger was named Blinn’s interim director of Professional Development last month, a role in which she will help fellow instructors develop new strategies for helping students succeed.

“Joyce has high expectations for her students and the ability to communicate with compassion,” said Social Science Professor Jeff Lee. “She helps lead the Center for Teaching and Learning, is a great support to faculty in the Social Sciences Division on the Bryan campus and is constantly trying new things in her classroom.”

Langenegger is a member of Blinn’s Quality Enhancement Plan development team, Assessment Council, Center for Teaching and Learning steering committee and textbook committee. She is also a sponsor for Blinn’s Phi Theta Kappa honor society.

“Teaching is my passion and mission,” Langenegger said. “After practicing law for 17 years, I stepped into my first community college classroom in July 1994. From the first word I spoke, I knew I was home and in the right place.”

Presswood has served on Blinn’s faculty and curriculum committees since 2006 and its admissions committee since 2001. She is a member of the National Organization of Associate Degree Nursing, the Texas Organization of Associate Degree Nursing and the National League of Nursing.

“Rebecca is an advocate for evidence-based practice and works diligently to develop her lectures, activities and clinical experiences for students with this approach,” said Simulations Director Sami Rahman. “Students find her engaging and innovative, as do her colleagues.”

Business Programs Instructor Brandy Scholze, Social Science Instructor Rhonda Reagan, Math & Engineering Professor Judy Wagner, Health & Kinesiology Professor Larry Latterman, Social Science Professor Charles Swanlund and Natural Science Instructor Melissa Layton were also nominated on the Bryan campus.

Blinn recognized 11 retiring employees in Hoppens, Humanities Instructor Jody Tyson (10 years), Computer Science Professor Judy Kroll (13 years), District HVAC Systems Manager Spencer Lofland (12 years), Business Division Chair and Professor Karen May (13 years), Accounts Payable Specialist Judy Niemeyer (13 years), Humanities Division Chair and Professor H.F. Poehlmann (27 years), Social Science Instructor Linda Tiemann (25 years), Coordinator of Campus Events Glen Vierus (23 years), Associate Degree Nursing Professor Lois Brokenbourgh (21 years) and Assistant Maintenance Supervisor Alfred Zettel (22 years).

The Bryan campus Blinn Professional Association also recognized Blanche Brick, Dwight Bohlmeyer, May, John Schaffer, Amanda Chau, Kathy Anzivino, Bennie Graves and Essie Childers for outstanding service and awarded merit scholarships to students Melissa B. Mohdazam and Tao Qin.

Blinn enrolled 18,413 students this Fall and has experienced 31.1 percent growth since 2006. Founded in 1883, the College’s tuition and fees average about one-third the cost of the same classes at most four-year public universities in the state. In addition to its campuses in Brenham, Bryan, Schulenburg and Sealy, the College teaches online courses, dual credit for high school and prepares students for quick employment through its career and technical certification programs.

Registration is now available for Blinn’s May minimester (May 12-28) as well as the Summer I, Summer II and Fall semesters. For enrollment information and to learn about financial aid opportunities, visit: www.blinn.edu.

RANDAL HOPPENS -- Math Professor Randal Hoppens receives the Teaching Excellence Award from the Blinn Professional Association – Brenham campus. The award recognizes outstanding instruction on Blinn College’s Brenham, Schulenburg and Sealy campuses.

JOYCE LANGENEGGER – Shahnaz Milani of the Blinn Professional Association – Bryan campus presents Government Professor Dr. Joyce Langenegger (right) the Teaching Excellence Award for her outstanding instruction on the Blinn College – Bryan campus.