Instructor awarded for online classes

VP briefs college community on expansion


Cathie Lawrence

Veteran Center Opening Day. LMC, PIttsburg, Calif. Mike Conklin who is the Chairman for Sentinels Of Freedom Scholarship Foundation is talking with Laurie Huffman about the new facilities.

Los Medanos College Spanish professor Laurie Huffman — who also teaches online at Florida State College in Jacksonville — received the award for “Outstanding Faculty” from FSCJ Thursday, April 21. Huffman was recognized for her contributions to the college’s online Spanish classes over the last 10 years.

According to a letter sent to Huffman from FSCJ, the awards are given each year to selected faculty and students based on personal nominations. Huffman was nominated by her peers at the college, who wished to highlight her leadership and excellence in the digital classroom.

“It was such a surprise to receive this award as I am an adjunct at Florida State College,” Huffman said. “I had no idea my students had recommended me for the honor.”

LMC President Bob Kratochvil said Huffman is an exceptional educator at LMC and that her receiving this award is indicative of the outstanding teaching and collaboration with students that she exhibits at LMC.

FSCJ is one of the most popular online colleges in the nation.  FSCJ was able to offer her specific training in design and delivery of online classes that was not yet available in her department 10 years ago.  She said she was able to use her skills from her Ph.D. in Teaching and Learning Online through teaching at the college.

Since the beginning of her teaching stint at FSCJ, Huffman has been able to bring these ideas and training methods to LMC. In 2015, she was chosen as a Lead Reviewer for the Online Education Initiative out of the state Chancellor’s office.

“The work I was able to do in Florida and here at LMC gave me the necessary tools to move forward with the OEI and work with online instructors statewide,” said Huffman. “A well-designed online course is a must for a successful student online experience.”

Huffman has been working with Wiley College in New Jersey to incorporate live learning into her new fully-online Spanish courses that will begin this summer.

“I’m looking forward to this creative collaboration,” Huffman said. “I assisted in the design of this new integrated program from Wiley, which will be a major component of my fully online course.”

She added she would use her experience with LMC, FSCJ, OEI and Wiley to help build a comprehensive course for her students of Spanish at LMC.