This is a news release from Pearl River Community College
Dr. Amanda Parker of Petal and Shannon Farmer of Richton will be honored Tuesday, Feb. 17, during the annual HEADWAE observance in Jackson.
HEADWAE - Higher Education Appreciation Day, Working for Academic Excellence - was established by the Legislature to honor academically talented students and faculty.
Parker is chair of the science and health department at the Forrest County Center where she teaches microbiology, anatomy and physiology and Zumba.
“Dr. Parker was selected for the HEADWAE award because of her continued student oriented approach, excellent teaching and willingness to go above and beyond,” said Dr. Jana Causey, assistant vice president for Forrest County operations. “Her students regard her with highest marks on student evaluations and constantly remark on her ability to teach difficult material.”
As is customary, Parker selected the student for the HEADWAE recognition. “Shannon was an excellent student in my course,” Parker said. “I spoke to her other instructors and they all held her in very high standing in the classroom. Shannon is a mother, maintains a full-time job and maintains a very high GPA. Above all, she was attentive in class, participated in class, and showed a true desire to learn.”
Farmer, 38, is a Hattiesburg native and is taking the prerequisites to apply for PRCC's associate degree nursing program. “I want to thank Dr. Amanda Parker for choosing me for this great honor,” she said. “I have thoroughly enjoyed my learning experience and I am looking forward to continuing my education at PRCC.” She has a 12-year-old son, Rayne, and a 9-year-old daughter, Karin. She is the daughter of Gary and Kathy Kelly of Richton. Parker holds the bachelor's degree in biological sciences and the Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Southern Mississippi. She taught at USM before joining the PRCC faculty in 2009.
“As an instructor, I strive to make an impact on my students both in and out of the classroom,” she said. “I want my students to learn the material, but also take away a desire to continue learning. As instructors, we should make the classroom an enjoyable experience so the students want to come back. I am honored to be chosen as the HEADWAE recipient because this award embodies my desire to promote academic achievement in all my students.”
Parker and her husband, Adam, are the parents of a daughter, Kara. Adam Parker is a police officer at the Forrest County Center.
Parker and Farmer, along with honorees from all of Mississippi's colleges and universities, will be welcomed to the State Capitol by Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves and recognized in each chamber of the Legislature. Each honoree will be recognized by name in front of their guests, institution leaders, corporate sponsors and legislators at a luncheon at the Jackson Marriott Hotel.