Kathleen (Katy) Hardy, program director for the School of Humanities and Social Sciences in Tri-County Technical College’s Arts and Sciences Division, was honored May 6 with the highest award presented to the faculty. She received the Presidential Medallion for Instructional Excellence at the College’s spring convocation.
“Katy embodies Tri-County Technical College’s mission, vision and values and is a tireless advocate for students,” said President Galen DeHay.
“Katy understands that students are our most valuable resource,” said Corey Evans, Spanish instructor, one of two instructors who nominated Hardy for the award.
Colleagues praise Hardy for providing quality instruction which creates substantive change in learners. Through her hands-on teaching style and her ability to relate to a wide variety of students, she creates activities and classroom topics that are relevant to students.
Hardy joined the College in 2017 as a history instructor and has taught all the history courses offered. “Whether in group tests, class discussion about primary sources, or group projects, Katy is always changing her teaching to adapt to student learning. Her skill at evaluating outcomes and making classroom changes was especially evident when she translated her classroom learning tasks to fit outcomes suitable to the pandemic learning environment,” said Dr. Della Vanhuss, history instructor.
Last year Hardy was promoted to program director of the school of humanities and social sciences and continues to teach and encourage co-curricular learning to enhance the personal and career development of students.
One of her projects was the design of Leadership through the Humanities, a course to help students recognize their leadership growth potential in a variety of work environments. Since piloting the course in the spring of 2020, she continues to seek out different avenues in which to promote this course to students with a variety of academic backgrounds and educational goals, both traditional and non-traditional.
“Through her involvement with the various resources at the College, Katy is an advocate for getting students involved and acknowledged, knowing that life lessons are not just a product of a traditional classroom experience,” said Evans.
“She continues to meet students where and when they are available whether face-to-face or online. She is the best at analyzing their situations to help them decide the best direction for their studies based on their educational interests and personality traits as individuals,” said Evans.
“Her students respect her enthusiasm in the classroom and her advisees seek her advice and experience as she mentors them and gets to know them better with each advising session. Katy is supportive of all aspects of the College’s growth initiatives and plays a critical role at positively contributing to the College’s mission of being student-focused in all aspects of the job,” said Dr. Vanhuss.
Hardy attended and presented at the National League of Innovations Conference in New York City in February 2019 and in April 2020.
She holds a B.A. degree in history and master’s degrees in history and higher education administration, all from the University of Akron.
About Tri-County Technical College
Tri-County Technical College, a public two-year community and technical college serving Anderson, Oconee and Pickens Counties in South Carolina, enrolls more than 9,000 students annually and offers more than 70 major fields of study, including computer technology, industrial electronics, mechatronics, nursing, and university transfer programs. Tri-County boasts the highest student success rate among two-year colleges in the state and ranks in the top one percent nationally for successful student transfers to four-year colleges and universities. To learn more, visit tctc.edu.