2 WT faculty members honored as ‘top teachers of future educators’

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The Chancellor’s Century Council celebrates it CATE winners at the 2021 CCC Gold Dinner.

CANYON, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Two West Texas A&M University faculty members were recognized as the top teachers of future educators in the Texas A&M University System (TAMUS), according to a press release by WT’s Communication Dept.

Dr. Russ Teweleit and Dr. Betty Coneway were among TAMUS professors who joined the Chancellor’s Academy of Teacher Educators, which honors faculy members who have had a “significant impact on the preparation of teachers,” the release stated.

“Even before being inducted into the Chancellor’s Academy, these individuals have received numerous system, state and national awards,” said Dr. James Hallmark, vice chancellor for academic affairs, during their recent induction ceremony. “They are proof that excellence is synonymous with The Texas A&M System.” 

“Dr. Teweleit and Dr. Coneway truly represent the best of the best,” said WT President Walter V. Wendler. “We take very seriously our responsibility to provide exemplary education for the teachers who will mold the young minds in our region, and WT is proud that we produce 75 percent of the teachers and administrators in the Panhandle area.” 

According to the release, Teweleit, professor of music, was selected for the 2019-2020 academy cohort, which recognizes his work as the coordinator of music education in WT’s Sybil B. Harrington College of Fine Arts and Humanities. In addition, Teweleit has worked with 600 clinical teachers and was a mentor for hundreds of public school teachers.

“I love teaching teachers and it’s an honor to have a part in the work we do at WT,” Teweleit said. “Teaching is a profession and not just a job, but that’s what makes it so rewarding. The key for me is to first and foremost prepare students to enter the profession with lots of tools in their toolbox. I hope that our graduates see their degree as a license to learn and constantly work to develop their craft and continually add new tools to that toolbox.” 

“I cannot imagine a more devoted advocate for our aspiring music educators than Dr. Teweleit,” said Dr. Robert Hansen, Regents Professor of Music and director of the School of Music. “Russ brings his own public school teaching experience to his theoretical knowledge of best practices to assure that our graduates are proficient and well-prepared their careers in public education. The fact that WT School of Music graduates are in demand and are teaching throughout the state of Texas attests to his success.” 

According to the release, Coneway was recently named Dr. Geneva Schaeffer Professor of Education and Social Sciences and was selected for the 2020-2021 cohort, which recognizes “her work as a leader in undergraduate programs and as chair for the graduate curriculum and instruction reading specialist program.” In addition, Coneway serves as a member of the WT Center for Learning Disabilities.

“I am humbled to be inducted into the Chancellor’s Academy of Teacher Educators,” Coneway said. “I am privileged to prepare new educators who will go on to teach students across the state, so I extend gratitude to the preservice teacher candidates who I have taught over the years. Being a teacher educator is a true blessing and I very honored by this recognition.” 

“Dr. Coneway has distinguished herself as an outstanding faculty member and departmental team leader,” said Dr. Janet Hindman, head of WT’s Department of Education. “A consummate professional educator with a deep love of children and for teaching and learning, Betty is most deserving of this prestigious award. Her work consistently shines as an example of excellence and inspiration.” 

In addition to joining the academy, Tweleit and Coneway received a $1,000 stipend from the Chancellor’s Century Council, a commemorative medallion, and a certificate “honoring their commitment and dedication,” the release said.

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