LAWRENCEVILLE -- An associate professor of English at Georgia Gwinnett College has been chosen as one of three University System of Georgia faculty members honored with a prestigious Board of Regents award for superior teaching.
During a March 31 dinner in downtown Atlanta, officials with the University System of Georgia presented Jessica Damian with the Teaching Excellence Award, an honor recognizing outstanding teaching techniques that yield student success.
"Receiving the award means so much to me because the University System of Georgia recognizes the dynamic work taking place within our classrooms at GGC," Damian said.
The professor credited the local college's leadership for serving as "extraordinary mentors...I value their insights and support."
Leaders at Georgia Gwinnett College value Damian.
"Dr. Damian's unsurpassed skill as a leader and her tireless devotion inspire students and faculty to succeed," said President Daniel J. Kaufman. "The measure of her success is the remarkable retention and progression rates achieved by her students, a level that matches or exceeds those at state universities."
Damian, a longtime employee of GGC, is the second faculty member at the institution to receive the award within the past three years. Every year, award recipients like her are selected from nominations submitted by USA institution presidents. Award winners get $5,000 and a certificate of achievement.
At the local college, students make the initial nominations for the award. Damian's students described her as an inspiring and engaging educator.
An excerpt from student Kristine Ward read as follows: "Dr. Damian is not only interested in her students' success while they are students, but invests the necessary time to develop an educational relationship with them that endures long after they leave her classroom. Her allegiance to her students' academic and personal growth is incomparable."
Damian holds a PhD in English from the University of Miami at Coral Gables, where she was the recipient of the Bernard Benstock Doctoral Award and a Center for Latin American Studies Research Grant to the Princeton University Archives.
She specializes in British romanticism, transatlantic studies and Caribbean literature.