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German Teachers Receive Awards

Saturday, November 22, 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: AATG
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The American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) recognized sixteen teachers of German and one German program for their outstanding contributions to the teaching and learning of German in the US. The 2014 awards recipients were recognized at a special presentation in conjunction with their annual convention held on November 22 in San Antonio, Texas.

Jo Ferguson Garrison, middle school teacher of German in Wake County Public Schools, Raleigh, North Carolina, Charles J. James, Professor of German and Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and Linda Zins-Adams, teacher of German at Archbishop Moeller High School in Cincinnati, Ohio, received AATG’s highest honor, the Outstanding German Educator Award. This award is presented in recognition of excellence in teaching and outstanding contributions to the German teaching profession. The award is accompanied by the Friedrich-Gerstäcker-Travel Grant sponsored by Checkpoint Charlie Foundation in Berlin.

Michael Geisler, Vice President for Language Schools and Schools Abroad, Middlebury College, Vermont, and Sabina Margalit, Executive Director, German American Partnership Program, New York, New York, received the Friend of German Award, which recognizes exemplary leadership in the advocacy of German and German language education.

"The teachers honored with these awards represent the best in our profession," said Deborah McGee Mifflin, chair of the awards committee. "It is inspiring to see how much these remarkable German teachers have accomplished -- and how their students have benefitted from their expertise."

One German program was recognized as an AATG German Center of Excellence. This designation is presented to well-established and growing German programs with demonstrated excellence in instruction and strong support from administration, professional colleagues, alumni, and students. This year’s recipient is Rilke Schule German Charter School of Arts and Sciences, Anchorage, Alaska.

Joshua Brown of the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire, Sasha Johnson of the Rilke Schule in Anchorage, Alaska, and Theresa Schenker of Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut received the German Embassy Teacher of Excellence Award. The Embassy recognizes up-and-coming German teachers for excellence in teaching, creativity, and outstanding dedication. Honorees receive financial support for study in Germany.

Four educators were recognized with the Goethe-Institut / AATG Certificate of Merit for their achievements in furthering the teaching of German. 2014 awardees are: Wendy Burgbacher, World Language Department Chair at Cary Academy, Cary, North Carolina; Gunhild Lischke, Director of the Language Program at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York; Anita Ratwik, retired from Ramsey Junior High School, St. Paul, Minnesota; and Jennifer Roper, World Language Department Chair at Rocky Mountain High School, Fort Collins, Colorado.

“Recognizing the outstanding achievements of these superb teachers is truly the highlight of our convention,” said Mohamed Esa, president of the American Association of Teachers of German. “We are fortunate to have so many excellent German teachers.”

The AATG Intercultural Student Experiences Language Matters Award was presented to Deborah S. Lund from Ladue Horton Watkins High School in St. Louis, Missouri. The award recognizes a high school teacher of German who provides immersion experiences and motivates students to use the language outside the classroom.

Also recognized for their contributions to the scholarly publications of the AATG were Henry W. Pickford, fellow in residence at the Kolleg Friedrich Nietzsche, Stiftung Klassik Weimar, recipient of the Max Kade Award for Best Article in The German Quarterly, and Michael J. Sosulski of Kalamazoo College in Michigan for the Best Article Award in Die Unterrichtspraxis/Teaching German. Sandra Niethardt of Duke University received the AATG–The German Quarterly Graduate Student Paper Award. 

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