FCC Faculty Member Wins American Chemical Society Award


Frederick Community College faculty member Keri-Beth Pettengill has been named the 2014 winner of the George L. Braude Award, which recognizes science faculty for innovative teaching strategies, mentoring and supporting students, and encouraging students to participate in undergraduate research.

Pettengill is the first faculty member from a community college to win the award, which she formally accepted on Oct. 17 during the American Chemical Society Maryland Section 100th Anniversary Gala in Baltimore.

"We are extraordinarily proud of Professor Pettengill," said FCC Interim Vice President for Learning David Croghan. "She represents a class of educators who have made it their mission to open doors to careers in science for diverse groups of students. When people describe the American community college as being the Ellis Island of higher education, they are talking about the work of teachers like Keri-Beth."

During her acceptance speech, Pettengill discussed how the quality of student-faculty interactions encourages student success and the importance of community colleges as an entry point for traditionally underserved students into careers in science. Additionally, she talked about how student research strengthens STEM programs, student persistence and transfer, and provides students with opportunities to meet and connect with the scientific community and build real-life learning opportunities.

"As the first award recipient from a community college, I am pleased that the American Chemical Society recognizes the success of the FCC Bioprocessing Technology Career Science program in training qualified and successful graduates, my role in fostering student success, and the importance of FCC and community colleges as much-needed centers for career training and college-level science education,” Pettengill said. “I could not offer our students the research opportunities, courses and academic services, and the state-of-the-art teaching lab at the Mount Airy College Center without the support and dedication of our advisory board, faculty, staff, and local scientific community in providing our students with a high-quality undergraduate science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education."

Pettengill has taught at FCC since 2003. She is an associate professor of science and program manager for the Bioprocessing Technology Program.