VALDOSTA — Wiregrass Georgia Technical College President DeAnnia Clements announced Adrienne Young, director of practical nursing, as the 2024 Rick Perkins Award winner. The Rick Perkins Award for Excellence in Technical Instruction is the Technical College System of Georgia’s Instructor of the Year program.
The Rick Perkins Award program is designed to recognize and honor instructors who make significant contributions to technical education through innovation and leadership in their fields. Each year, instructors are nominated for the Rick Perkins Award by their peers throughout the college. College finalists participate in a selection process and interview with a panel of their peers. This year’s finalists were Toby Heard, automotive program coordinator – Valdosta Campus, John Patten, media production program coordinator, multimedia specialist – Valdosta Campus and Adrienne Young, director of practical nursing – Ben Hill-Irwin Campus.
“It is difficult for me to think of another instructor who works harder and travels as much for both her students and faculty. Adrienne presents herself well and always strives to maintain a level of professionalism that reflects great credit on herself, her profession and Wiregrass. Her dedication to her profession is obvious and provides a great model of success for her students,” read one of her nominations.
When asked about her reaction to receiving this honor, Young shared, “Someone gave me a gift and the quote states, ‘Do what you Love, Love what you do.’ This speaks to me because I am truly happy when interacting with students and I love teaching about the profession I love, nursing.” She has been teaching for seven years at Wiregrass. In October 2023 the college’s Practical Nursing program was ranked sixth in the state according to the PracticalNursing.org website.
The following Wiregrass instructors were nominated for the instructor of the year award (in alphabetical order): Tammy Acree, hotel-restaurant-travel management; Jessica Altman, psychology instructor; Unoma Azuah, English instructor; Angela Brantley, business education instructor; Cabot Carlton, welding and joining instructor; Sherry Carroll, psychology instructor; Deidra Floyd, practical nursing instructor; Lisa Griffin, opticianry program coordinator; Dr. Garrett Hall, history instructor; Eddy Harden, computer information system technology instructor; Leigh Ann Hasty, patient care assisting and allied health care instructor; Liane Holbrook, psychology instructor; Vicky Honeycutt, business education instructor; Jason Hurst, EMS paramedic program instructor; Daniel Lawrence, general core instructor; April Lott, cosmetology program coordinator; Mark Ponder, EMS/paramedicine instructor; Jennifer Ray, director of radiology technology; Wally Rewis, welding instructor; Dimple Sali-Carter, patient care assisting and allied health core instructor; Melanie Simmons, patient care assisting and allied health care instructor; Songelyn Smith, early childhood care and education instructor; Taylor Smith, diesel equipment technology instructor program coordinator; Shawn Tatham, director of EMS/paramedic and fire science programs; Phillip Taylor, industrial systems technology instructor; Jack Wiesner, economics instructor, Christy Wise, health sciences core, PCA, phlebotomy instructor; and Sandi Woodward, director of dental programs.
Young will represent Wiregrass at the regional interview competition in February at the Tifton campus of Southern Regional Technical College. All college winners will represent their colleges in April at the state Rick Perkins and GOAL (student of the year program) awards event where the region winners and the state winner will be announced. To learn more about the programs offered at Wiregrass visit Wiregrass.edu.