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Teaching Awards Presented to Two Penn College Faculty Members


Two members of the full-time faculty at Pennsylvania College of Technology were honored with teaching awards during commencement ceremonies held May 11-12 at the Community Arts Center, Williamsport.

Excellence in Teaching Award winner Daniel K. Christopher with Pennsylvania College of Technology President Davie Jane Gilmour.
Excellence in Teaching Award winner Daniel K. Christopher with Pennsylvania College of Technology President Davie Jane Gilmour.

As part of the Distinguished Teaching Awards program, Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour presented 2012 Excellence in Teaching Awards to Daniel K. Christopher, assistant professor of business administration/health information technology, and Katherine A. Walker, assistant professor and department head, drafting and computer aided design.

Distinguished Teaching Awards (which also include the Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award) are presented to full-time faculty at Penn College who have been nominated by their students and colleagues for excellence in instructional performance. Since 1982, Distinguished Teaching Awards have been presented to 89 honorees.

Christopher began his employment with the college in August 1999. Previously, he was employed by South Hills School of Business and Technology, State College, as director of the health information technology program. Before that, he served as director of medical records for Bon Secours Hospital, Altoona; J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital, Huntingdon; and Wernersville State Hospital. He also served as a health information consultant for Lock Haven Hospital.

He holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Pittsburgh and a bachelor’s degree in health records administration, with a minor in biology, from York College of Pennsylvania. He holds a certification in RHIA (Registered Health Information Administrator) from the American Health Information Management Association.

Christopher is an active member of the American Health Information Management Association and the Pennsylvania Health Information Management Association, and he was recently chosen as president-elect for PHIMA. Previously, he served as president of the Central Pennsylvania Health Information Management Association.

A nominator wrote: “Mr. Christopher is excited about the healthcare field. That excitement spills over into his rapport with students and staff. He never degrades students, but continually supports his students and is always willing to help when they are having difficulty in the classroom setting.”

Another comment from the nominating documentation: “Mr. Christopher is always willing to listen to his students; he is never negative regarding his respect for and treatment of students and staff. He is able to convey the knowledge without making it boring, yet maintains a professionalism that makes the classes interesting and exciting.”

Excellence in Teaching Award winner Katherine A. Walker and President Gilmour
Excellence in Teaching Award winner Katherine A. Walker and President Gilmour

Walker began her employment with the college in July 1990 as a computer aided drafting specialist with the Technology Transfer Center. She was a part-time instructor from 1990-93 and received a Part-time Teaching Excellence Award from the college in 1992. In 1993, she became a faculty member in drafting and CAD technology. In 2000, Walker was named department head for architectural drafting; in 2002, she was promoted to assistant professor.

Before coming to Penn College, Walker worked as a computer aided drafting specialist for Lancaster County Vocational Technical School, Willow Street, and as designer/drafter for Dorma Door Controls Inc., Reamstown, and Simplex Time Recorder Co., Lewisberry.

She holds a Master of Education, with a concentration in instructional technology, from Wilkes University; a Bachelor of Science in technology management, magna cum laude, from Penn College; and an associate degree in mechanical engineering technology from Penn State Wilkes-Barre.

A nominator said of Walker: “Kathy is one of those people who shines behind the scenes, never seeking the spotlight, always ready and willing to serve without recognition. She models such wonderful leadership qualities that I believe all faculty can be inspired by her.”

Another comment from her nominating documentation: “You will be hard-pressed to find another who believes in the students to the degree that Kathy does. She is a champion of all and goes above and beyond to help them be successful.”

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