DePaola receives 2021 TU Vulcan Teaching Excellence AwardPost Published On:
During its undergraduate Commencement ceremony held Saturday morning, May 8, Dr. Steve DePaola of Thomasville was named the 2021 recipient of the Thomas University Vulcan Teaching Excellence Award.
For the past 26 years, Vulcan Materials, in conjunction with the Georgia Independent College Association, has been honoring an outstanding professor with the Vulcan Teaching Excellence Award at select members of the Georgia Independent College Association. This award recognizes an outstanding faculty member who demonstrates strong academic skills in the classroom and provides leadership and support in the other areas of campus life. The recipients are faculty who assist the institution in nurturing an academic climate which fosters teaching and who provide leadership to enhance the campus community.
In presenting the award, Dr. Andy Sheppard, TU President, called DePaola “an accomplished scholar with a good balance between his head and his heart.” Sheppard talked about DePaola’s ability to keep students engaged in the classroom with humor and by building rapport to create a safe place for learning. Sheppard noted how DePaola’s commitment to teaching others goes beyond the classroom. He can also be found at student events interacting with students in the stands and on the sidelines. Sheppard also mentioned that DePaola has served “as the heart” of six conferences related to gerontology.
“In short, Dr. DePaola is a gifted teacher,” Sheppard said. “His passion for his subject and his infectious joy for learning are unmistakable. For that reason, Dr. Steve DePaola is the recipient of the Vulcan Teaching Excellence Award.”