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Saturday May 15th, 2021 7:15PM

GSC event recognizes students, faculty

By Staff
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GAINESVILLE - Gainesville State College holds annual Honors Day Event to recognize students and faculty members.

At its annual Honors Day event on Wednesday, the college honored more than 200 students who were nominated for various academic and service awards. The college awards three top honors each year for outstanding students.

*The GSC Achievement Award went to Dwana Franks of Hiawassee, Ga. An early childhood education K-5 major, Franks began taking classes at GSC in the fall of 2005. The selection committee recognized her successful advancement starting with Learning Support Math 97 to the point where she has earned 44 hours at the College. She personifies persistence.

*The Clark-Theodore Award is presented to a traditional and non-traditional age student and was established to honor those considered the very best and brightest at GSC. These awards are named for Tom Clark and Andrew Theodore, who were members of the first class at GSC and were killed in a tragic auto accident.

The Outstanding Traditional Student Award was presented to Anna Garrison of Lula. She is described as an extremely dedicated, hard-working, and highly motivated student. She is a phenomenal student and a young woman of great character and integrity. After graduating from GSC, Garrison plans to enter the School of Mechanical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the fall, she will be transferring through the Regents Engineering Transfer Program (RETP). Garrison plans to pursue a minor in Biomedical Engineering. She currently serves as the president of the GSC Engineering Club and is very active in a variety of campus clubs including  Math Club, Future Health Professionals, Students for Environmental Awareness, Recreational Outdoor Experience (ROX) and Physics Club.

The Outstanding Non-Traditional Student Award was presented to Terri Milburn of Flowery Branch. A pre-nursing major, Milburn has maintained a very strong GPA while at GSC. One faculty member described her as an outstanding student who was at the top 1% of all the students I have ever taught and exhibited a level of dedication and commitment to learning which is rarely seen in an undergraduate student. Milburn has been accepted into the Emory University Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing for the fall of 2008. According to one of her nominators, she exemplifies the college ideals of excellence in academic achievement, leadership, and service to others.

*Additionally, the GSC students voted and chose the full-time and adjunct Ann Matthews Purdy Outstanding Faculty Members of the Year.
Dr. Andrew Thomas, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, was named as the Ann Matthews Purdy Outstanding Full-Time Faculty Member of the Year. He was described by his division chair as  the kind of faculty member every student dreams of having. Thomas is the founding sponsor of two college clubs, the Recreational Outdoor Experience (ROX) and the Running Club. He is also involved in the Future Healthcare Professionals Club and Students for Environmental Awareness. His students say he  does an exemplary job of teaching both inside and outside of the classroom. He is known for making his classes both fun and relevant, and he is probably the most amazing professor or advisor ever.

Tom Deitz was named as the Ann Matthews Purdy Outstanding Adjunct Faculty Member of the Year. Deitz grew up in Young Harris and earned both his Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees from the University of Georgia. Students describe him as, brilliant, amusing, and extremely likable. His talents abound outside the classroom as well; he recently received the prestigious Phoenix Award, which is given to a professional who has greatly influenced Southern Fandom. He is the published author of 19 books, and was named Georgia Author of the Year for Young Adult Fantasy and Young Adult Literature.

A reception hosted by GSC Student Activities followed the awards ceremony.
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