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May 4, 2000


LA CROSSE, Wis.—She’s met the Dalai Llama and inspired a play about her experience as a volunteer teacher at the Tibetan Home School in India. She is a mentor and inspiration to hundreds of college students. And she inspires and teaches teachers.

She is this year’s Viterbo College 2000 Teacher of the Year—Dr. Pam Maykut.

Maykut, an associate professor of psychology, has been with Viterbo College since 1986. She received a B.A. degree in psychology and sociology from Bowling Green State University, Ohio, in 1974, a M.A. degree in school psychology from the University of Wisconsin—La Crosse in 1976, and a Ph.D. in Studies in Behavioral Disabilities from the University of Wisconsin—Madison in 1983.

Prior to joining Viterbo, Maykut served as Director of Research and Training at the Fairbanks Rehabilitation Association and served as an instructor in the Department of Psychology at UW—La Crosse. She has served as a consultant for many organizations and has written numerous articles for publication. In 1996, she spent her spring sabbatical working with Tibetan refugee children in India. A play by Vic Passante, "Seeds of Tibet," was inspired by her trip and the artwork and stories of the Tibetan refugee children taught by Maykut.

Her colleagues admire her many strengths and abilities. "(Pam’s) approach in the classroom benefits all learners and learning styles," said Dr. Mary Hassinger, dean of the School of Letters and Sciences. "She individualizes her teaching relationship with each student and encourages students to think about how they think and learn. By increasing their self-knowledge, Pam allows students to recognize their own competencies and values—perhaps for the first time."

Maykut’s students feel she is an exemplary role model. "Pam lives education," said senior Rebekah Aderman. "She motivates students first by having a high expectation of herself, then by having a high expectation of her students …Her challenge was to help you become your best, not her best."

Senior Karen LaMotte agrees. "After having Pam for a teacher, I feel better about myself as a student and a person. I realized that it is possible to achieve the impossible if someone believes in you, like Pam believes in me."

The following people also were recognized at the Honors Convocation, held annually near the end of the college’s academic year:

  • Earl J. Madary, an assistant professor in the Religious Studies Department, who received the J. Thomas Finucan Award for his exceptional contributions to furthering the mission of Viterbo College.
  • Lisa Schoenfielder, an assistant professor in the Art Department, who received the Alec Chiu Memorial Award for her pursuit of scholarly activities and studies.
  • Rochelle Cadogan, an assistant professor in the Dahl School of Business, who received the Outstanding Academic Advisor Award, for her dedication and commitment to the academic advising of students.
  • The Connect Club, a campus group dedicated to increasing awareness of alcohol-related issues and promoting alcohol-free alternatives, which received the Pax Et Bonum Award for its fulfillment of the Franciscan values of service, respect, hospitality, stewardship, and joy.
  • Servant Leader Awards were presented to the following for their leadership and service to others:
    • Elissa Kamaka, FSPA, instructor in Extended Learning
    • Kathleen Kenkel, FSPA, an assistant professor in Religious Studies who is retiring this year
    • Ed Morrison, instructor and Micro Computer Systems Specialist
    • Darrell Pofahl, associate professor and chair of Sociology/Social Work/Criminal Justice

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