DMC Announces 2019 Recipient of Prestigious Dr. Aileen Creighton Award for Teaching Excellence
Article by: Rosa Linda Reynoso
There is no higher honor presented by Del Mar College (DMC) to its faculty than the Dr. Aileen Creighton Award for Teaching Excellence. During fall convocation on Aug. 19, the College announced Dr. Bryan Stone, professor of history in the Social Sciences Department, as the 2019 Creighton Award recipient.
A faculty member at the College since 2004, Stone noted how lucky he was to work where he could engage in what he wanted to do most––teaching––as he accepted the award.
Stone is the 18th recipient of the award, which DMC first established in 2002 and named in honor of Dr. Aileen Creighton, Dean Emeritus of Arts and Sciences. The award represents the late educator’s legacy as a “master teacher” during her 41-year career at the College and serves as the benchmark faculty must emulate to receive the honor. Dr. Creighton was known for her dedication to students and higher education, along with the inspiration she provided to other educators.
In all of these areas, Stone lives up to the standard and tradition of the Creighton Award. Letters of support from colleagues and former students supported Stone’s nomination for the award.
“He delivers his instruction with such passion that it makes learning complex material not only seem simple, but also enjoyable,” wrote DMC colleague and associate professor Dr. Mark Robbins. “His teaching builds intellectual curiosity among his students and an enthusiasm for learning.”
Bob Long, professor of biology in the College’s Natural Sciences Department, wrote that he has “witnessed first-hand (Stone’s) superior level or organization and his commitment to excellence in each and every phase related to quality instruction and educational stewardship.”
Terms used by some of Stone’s former students in their support letters noted that the professor is experienced, patient, compassionate, fair, respectful and an inspirational educator. Regarding his classroom and teaching style, they wrote that Stone demonstrated passion, enthusiasm and understanding for history making learning enjoyable and interesting.
Of his own teaching style, Stone wrote, “Regardless of their individual political views, whether they are American citizens or not, I want my students to engage knowledgeably and effectively in public discourse on important issues and, for those who are eligible, to be active, reliable and informed voters,” adds Stone. “I want them to be aware of how politics and government affect them personally, of how their predecessors struggled to gain the right to vote, and how, after so hard a struggle, it’s appalling that so many Americans simply choose not to participate.”
Outside the classroom, Stone has served on numerous college committees, including chairing the General Education Committee, the Faculty Council and the Promotion, Rank, Tenure and Evaluation Task Force.
A practicing historian, Stone is currently researching the cultural history of the 1900 Galveston Storm and serves as managing editor of Southern Jewish History. He is also a member of the Corpus Christi Landmark Commission; heads an effort to organize and preserve the historical archives of Congregation Beth Israel in Corpus Christi; has been interviewed for video documentaries and National Public Radio (NPR); and has published many article and reviews.
Published by The University of Texas Press, his first book The Chosen Folks: Jews on the Frontiers of Texaswon the Southern Jewish Historical Society Book Prize in 2011. While at DMC, he edited his second book Memories of Two Generations: A Yiddish Life in Russia and Texas(University of Alabama Press), published in 2016.
Stone earned a bachelor’s degree in English (summa cum laude) and his doctoral degree in American Studies and Civilization from The University of Texas at Austin. He earned his master’s degree in English from the University of Virginia.
Del Mar College empowers students to achieve their dreams. We offer quality programs, individual attention, outstanding instruction through faculty with real-world experience and affordable costs to credit and noncredit students in Corpus Christi and the South Texas Coastal Bend area. Nationally recognized while locally focused, we’re ranked in the top two percent of community colleges in the country granting associate degrees to Hispanic students (Community College Week). Del Mar College focuses on offering our students programs that match current or emerging career opportunities. Whether students are interested in the fine arts, sciences, business, occupational or technical areas, students get the education they need for the future they want at Del Mar College.