Posted:April 22, 2020
On Wednesday, April 22, the Minnesota State Board of Trustees honored English faculty Jill Cadwell and Dr. Angela Coffee with 2020 Minnesota State Board of Trustees Outstanding Educator Awards. The annual award recognizes faculty who deliver an extraordinary education to students within the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.
Ms. Cadwell and Dr. Coffee were acknowledged for their compassion for and dedication to their students’ success, as well as their contributions to the mission, vision, and values of the Century College community and the standards of excellence set by Minnesota State.
Ms. Cadwell has been teaching college-level English courses for over 20 years, and has been teaching at Century College since 2002. She consistently participates in administrative work on campus, whether as English Department Chair, MSCF Union Local Executive Committee Officer, or working on other initiatives important to Century College's mission and for the benefit of the students. Within her teaching philosophy, she views each student as an individual and works with each to diagnose weak spots and strengthen those areas. Her goal each day is to practice kindness, ask thoughtful questions, and listen carefully in order to help students learn, and compassionately do the best job possible.
"Ms. Cadwell was among the first to experiment with Century College's Express English program, designed to help developmental students succeed in college-level writing more effectively and efficiently than the traditional route of developing reading skills before writing skills," notes Century College President Angelia Millender. "Her joyful teaching inspires her students and colleagues."
Dr. Angela Coffee has been teaching justice-oriented writing and literature classes within the English and Gender Studies departments at Century College since 2012. As a teacher, Angela invites her students to develop complex and multifaceted relationships with literature and writing, and to examine their own stories and experiences as profoundly connected to the work of the class. She encouragingly presses back against the desire for easy answers and immediate understandings of challenging readings and ideas and works to create a space where a class might collectively expand their capacity for meaningful discomfort as they learn and grow together.
Century College President Angelia Millender adds, "Dr. Coffee's students truly benefit from her passion about equity in the classroom, and her gentle guidance keeps students actively engaged. She welcomes students to bring their whole selves into the classroom. She builds a learning community among the students in her classes, and encourages them to become engaged in the broader campus community. Angela believes deeply in building a classroom environment that is inclusive and not directive."
The annual Board of Trustees awards are given to Minnesota State faculty members to acknowledge their exceptional professional accomplishments and excellence in teaching throughout the system, as the Minnesota colleges and universities prepare today's students for their professional lives.