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Wilson honored by S.C. Independent Colleges, Universities

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2009-04-21

Wofford professor among four in Upstate to receive awards

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Dr. Carol Wilson, associate professor of English at Wofford College, is among four Upstate professors to receive Excellence in Teaching awards presented by South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities Inc. Others recognized were Brent Glenn, assistant professor of theatre at Converse College; Dr. Paul LeFrancois, chair of the Professional Studies Division at Limestone College; and Dr. Kris Pratt, professor of religion, at Spartanburg Methodist College.

A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Wofford College, earning a bachelor’s degree in English in 1981, Wilson returned to teach at her alma mater in 1984. She earned her master’s degree and the Ph.D. in English literature from the University of South Carolina. Wilson is faculty sponsor for the Sigma Tau Delta English honor society.

Now in his third year at Converse College, Glenn attended Brenau College and Louisiana State University, where he received his master’s of fine arts in theatre design. He is a professional actor, director and designer who has worked for theaters from Alaska to New York and many places betwixt the two. Glenn believes strongly in the creation of new ideas and the study of the point of connection where seemingly disparate schools of thought intersect. At Converse, he has involved collaboration with faculty from the college’s science, creative writing, and philosophy departments as well as the college’s Petrie School of Music.

LeFrancois has been at Limestone College since 1985 and has been the chair of the Professional Studies Division since 1991. He is a nine-time recipient of the Fullerton Excellence in Teaching Award and received the South Carolina Governor’s Distinguished Professor Award in 1999. LeFrancois also is chair of the Overmountain Victory Trail Committee and the president of the Palmetto Cycling Coalition. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts and his master’s and Ph.D. from the University of West Virginia.

Pratt is in his second academic year as a professor of religion at Spartanburg Methodist College, where he teaches four religion courses. Pratt, a Cary, N.C., native, is a 1996 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a bachelor of arts in education. He received a master’s degree in divinity from Gardner Webb University in 1999 and a Ph.D. in religion in 2005 from Baylor University. While working as a minister at Mountain Grove Baptist Church in Hickory, N.C., he realized his ministry was in teaching. Previously, Pratt taught at Palm Beach Atlantic College in Florida, where he taught religion at the adult continuing education level.

Each of the 20 member institutions of the SCICU consortium selects one faculty member each year to receive the award, which includes a professional development stipend for the professor. Each recipient is chosen by his or her institution according to rigorous criteria. The most important characteristic of the nominees is their demonstration of the highest standards in teaching methods that encourage students to strive for excellence in their studies and pursuits.

SCICU was established in 1953 with the primary mission of promoting independent higher education in South Carolina. SCICU seeks to advance independent higher education through fundraising, scholarships, research, and by facilitating collaborative activities among the 20 member institutions, which educate nearly 33,000 students each year. For additional information about SCICU, contact Mike LeFever or Brenda Torrence at 803-799-7122, or visit www.scicu.org.