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Benson receives COT Excellence in Teaching Award

April 28, 2014 12:00AM

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Assistant Professor Christel Benson

For Christel Benson, graphic design is not just a career. It’s not just what she teaches in the Pitt State Graphics and Imaging Technologies Department. It’s more than that.

It’s her passion. It’s who she is.

“And what’s great about Christel is that she not only has passion, she has the drive to excel,” said Doug Hague, assistant professor in Pitt State’s wood technology program.

That passion and drive were both celebrated earlier this month when Benson received the Excellence in Teaching Award from the College of Technology.

“Winning the Excellence in Teaching Award is a huge honor,” Benson, assistant professor, said. “Being able to impact the next generation of designers has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career. I am truly humbled to be counted among the prestigious past recipients, not only in the College of Technology, but across campus.”

Benson joined the PSU faculty in 2009 after many years as a corporate and freelance designer. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Arkansas State University and a master’s degree from Pittsburg State. She is currently enrolled in the EdS Workforce Development program at Pitt State with plans to transfer those courses into a doctoral program.

Among her many achievements, Benson helped lead the effort to get Pittsburg State students to compete in the annual American Advertising Awards (ADDYs) competition. Since Pitt State’s initial participation in 2010, the students have claimed multiple Gold, Silver and Best of Show awards.

One of the most recent ADDYs winners, senior Matt Heflin, credits Benson with his success.

“I could not have succeeded without her help and unique teaching abilities,” he said. “She went the extra mile for me and I am forever grateful to her in the role she has played in my career preparation.”

©2014 Pittsburg State University