Faculty Spotlight: Seminole State professor named AFC Professor of the Year
Monday, April 29, 2019
Written by: Emily Hollingshead
Seminole State College of Florida professor Amee Mehta was awarded the Association of Florida College’s 2019 Professor of the Year award.
Mehta is a professor of biological sciences at the College and has been a part of the Seminole State faculty for 12 years. During this time, she has earned two of the College’s most prestigious awards: the Ken Sylvester Faculty Excellence Award in 2014 and one of four Endowed Teaching Chair Awards in 2018.
“She is a passionate and knowledgeable educator who is dedicated to helping her students reach success,” said Dr. Laura Ross, vice president of Academic Affairs and chief academic officer, who nominated Mehta for the award. “Students appreciate her teaching methodologies and caring nature. Many of these students go on to enter our nursing program or they transfer to a university to pursue professions in the medical field, and I am confident they are well prepared.”
After being nominated, Mehta presented on antimicrobial resistance to demonstrate her teaching style to the Association of Florida College’s Faculty Commission. She was evaluated on the strength of her recommendations, her teaching philosophy, her presentation and her professional service.
Mehta credits her award to the help she received from colleagues and students who gave feedback and guidance regarding her presentation. “I am really thankful to everyone. I am proud of us, and it was an honor to represent our College at the Association of Florida Colleges conference,” Mehta said.
She discovered her passion for teaching while working as a teaching assistant when completing her Master of Science in molecular and microbiology in India. She tries to bring the real world into the classroom as much as she can by starting each class with a question. Mehta stresses that it is important for the students to understand her thought process and feel comfortable to re-work their own ideas.
When she came to Seminole State, Mehta remarked that it was a “melting-pot” of students and faculty who came from various backgrounds, demographics and learning styles. “Our diverse student body is one of our most valuable resources,” Mehta said. “The more we engage with them, the more we benefit as an institution.”
Her favorite aspects of teaching are getting to share her love of biology and helping students become more self-sufficient. She believes that students who learn their own teaching styles will gain more confidence and be able to teach others and keep themselves on track. “I encourage group study,” Mehta said. “Good professors believe in personal growth and development. It gives me new joys and excitements to see new developments in the evolving nature of biology, and that rubs off on my students.”
Seminole State College of Florida, established in 1965, serves nearly 30,000 students across six sites in Central Florida. A comprehensive college, Seminole State has awarded more than 100,000 credentials, from bachelor's degrees to high school diplomas, and offers more than 200 degrees, certificates and programs designed for success. For more about the college, visit seminolestate.edu
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