Dr. Kay Amey to Receive Outstanding Teaching Award
“It feels amazing to be acknowledged for what is truly a passion of mine and a profession that I put my whole heart into.” - Dr. Kay Amey
Kent State University at Ashtabula assistant professor Katherine (Kay) Springer Amey, Ph.D., received quite the surprise in her classroom on Wednesday, Oct. 2, when several of her colleagues poured into the room with balloons, cupcakes and noisemakers. Also joining them was Melissa Dyer, part of the University Teaching Council, who was there to announce Amey as one of three recipients this year across the Kent State system to receive the Outstanding Teaching Award (OTA).
Presented since 1996, the OTA is the highest honor a non-tenure-track or part-time faculty member can receive at Kent State. The award will be presented at an awards ceremony during the University Teaching Council Annual Conference on Oct. 25, 2019.
“I am thrilled to receive the Kent State University 2019 Outstanding Teaching Award, and I am so very thankful for this honor,” Amey said. “It feels amazing to be acknowledged for what is truly a passion of mine and a profession that I put my whole heart into.”
To be eligible, the faculty member must be on a non-tenure-track or part-time contract for a minimum of five years, including the current academic year, and previous recipients are not eligible to receive the award. Amey was one of only a select few of the nominees to receive multiple nominations from students and colleagues.
“Kay is certainly deserving of this honor,” said Kent State Ashtabula Dean and Chief Administrative Officer Susan J. Stocker, Ph.D. “In addition to excellent student and peer reviews, Kay has gone above the expectations of a full-time non-tenure-track faculty member. She has provided an exemplary level of service as the coordinator of student life, she maintains a research agenda and has been engaged in community service activities.”
Stocker said she believes Amey is the first member from the Ashtabula campus to receive this award.
Amey teaches courses in geography and geology and has widely been recognized for her research work in environmental sciences and joined the Kent State Ashtabula campus in 2013. Prior to coming to Kent State Ashtabula she taught at Cleveland State University, Hiram College and the Kent State campus in Kent in addition to a career outside academia with the Office of Nuclear Waste Isolation at Battelle Institute and Eagon and Associates in Columbus, Ohio; the U.S. Forest Service-Geologic Field Mapping, in Sitka, Alaska; URS consulting; and 10 years at the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency in the Division of Solid and Hazardous Waste, Drinking Water, and Groundwater.
“It is extremely rewarding in and of itself when I can give a student, who originally believes themselves incapable of succeeding and as someone who ‘can’t do science’, that light bulb moment and a vision for their future,” Amey said. “I am moved by this special recognition set aside for teachers-- it is an exceptional and palpable thank you for a profession which often goes un-thanked. This award is sincerely an added bonus!”