Morningside College presented the 2014 Alumni Educator of the Year Award to Jerad Wulf, principal and district special education director at Wakefield Elementary School in Wakefield, Neb., and the 2014 Siouxland Alumni Teacher of the Year Award to Nancy Walker, a first-grade teacher at Liberty Elementary School in Sioux City.
The Morningside Educator Recognition for Inspired Teaching (MERIT) Program at Morningside College has presented the 2014 Alumni Educator of the Year Award to Jerad Wulf, principal and district special education director at Wakefield Elementary School in Wakefield, Neb., and the 2014 Siouxland Alumni Teacher of the Year Award to Nancy Walker, a first-grade teacher at Liberty Elementary School in Sioux City.
William Deeds, Morningside’s vice president for academic affairs and dean of the college, presented the awards at a banquet on Wednesday, March 26, in the college’s Olsen Student Center. To be considered for the awards, candidates must exemplify the qualities of an effective educator, have made a significant contribution to the field of education, and have had a positive impact on students and their families.
Wulf, a 2002 Morningside graduate, began his teaching career as an elementary Behavior Disorders teacher and eventually an SAT coordinator in the South Sioux City Community Schools. He earned a master’s degree from Wayne State College in Nebraska in 2009 and then accepted a position at Wakefield Elementary School. Wakefield Elementary School recently received National Blue Ribbon Schools distinction from the U.S. Department of Education. The award recognized 286 schools nationwide for high academic performance and growth in student achievement.
Walker, a 1985 Morningside graduate, was recognized for engaging her students, incorporating best practice strategies into her instruction, developing a family atmosphere in the classroom, and seeking the resources her students need to be successful. She is a leader in her professional learning community, and she has helped to shape future educators by hosting student teachers in her classroom each year. She has developed creative whole-school skits and assemblies for many years to help kick off reading incentives.
Other nominees for the Siouxland Alumni Teacher of the Year Award included:
Sioux City – Mike Borrall, West Middle School; Trever Case, West High School; Beth Engle, Crescent Park Elementary School; Sylvia Klave, Clark Elementary School; and Lori Rose, Unity Elementary School.
Iowa – Kim Pauley, Denison Middle School, Denison; Gina Paulsen, Hospers Elementary School, Hospers; and Kristine Salmon, Schaller-Crestland Elementary School, Schaller.
Morningside College began recognizing outstanding alumni educators in 2003. Since that time, well over 170 teachers have been nominated for this award.