Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Elder nominated for prestigious Acorn Award

J-E Editor

Many people around Webster County know Loretta Elder, if not personally, then through her family. Many know her as the wife of Jailer Terry Elder. To other she has been known a mother, grandmother, aunt or sister. Now Elder has been recognized for her own accomplishments after Madisonville Community College  (MCC)announced that she has been nominated for the 2015 Acorn Award sponsored by the Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE)

The Acorn Award, which has been given out since 1992, is designed to enhance the quality of higher education by recognizing ‘inspired teachers’ in Kentucky’s colleges and Universities who provide strong service and commitment to their students.

“It is very humbling to be considered for a prestigious award that is given to someone exhibiting excellence in teaching,” said Elder, who was nominated by MCC President Dr. Judy Rhoads. “I can’t begin to tell you how much I have thought about the mentors in my life who have molded my career, and that I only hope I am the same kind of mentor to others.” 
Elder has been a professor in MCC’s Intergrated Nursing Program for 14 years, and has a total of 37 years in the nursing field.

“I still love every moment of what I do,” Elder said. “Whatever I do as a nurse, I impact patients.  When I teach, I am helping others to care for those in need.  I love teaching. I love caring for patients.  I love my profession!”

 She is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Nursing Practice in Organizational Leadership (DNP) degree from Eastern Kentucky University.  Anticipated graduation date is May 2016.  She holds a Master of Science in Nursing Education (MSN) degree from the University of Southern Indiana, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree (BSN) from Murray State University, and completed her Associate of Applied Science in Nursing degree from MCC.  She is credentialed as a Certified Nurse Educator in addition to being a Registered Nurse.
She is a member of the National League for Nurses, the American Nurses Association, the Kentucky Nurses Association, the National Organization for Associate Degree Nurses, and Sigma Theta Tau International.  She has served as President for District 11 of the Kentucky Nurses Association and as the State Elected KNA Professional Practice and Advocacy Cabinet member.

In the award nomination packet, Elder shared that she chose teaching as a profession after serving many years in the role of staff nurse, nurse manager, and nursing education coordinator.  Nursing is a career full of teaching moments.  As a nurse, her goal was to help other succeed.  Teaching fulfilled her ultimate passion of helping students begin successful careers.

“I would like to thank God for my career, everyone who played a role in this nomination, my family who have always supported my career, and my students who give me great satisfaction in my career,” Elder noted. “I want to add, I love serving others and making a difference in the lives of others.”

 All Acorn Award nomination packets are reviewed by a committee appointed by CPE.  The 2015 Acorn Award recipients will be announced on September 28 during the awards ceremony at the Governor’s Trusteeship Conference held at the Marriott Griffin Gate in Lexington

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