Faculty Recognition

Outstanding Faculty Contributions to Community Engaged Learning Award

ECU’s mission is to serve, and many of our amazing ECU faculty accomplish this mission by working with local community organizations through service-learning partnerships.  These partnerships not only help students learn more effectively, but they help our partners provide better service to eastern North Carolina and beyond.  The purpose of the Outstanding Faculty Contributions to Community Engaged Learning Award is to recognize teaching strategies that have positively impacted students and the community. The award will be presented to a course instructor (or co-instructors) who has demonstrated the ability to enrich both course content and the community through the application of community engaged learning. Community engaged learning is a broad, inclusive term that reflects ways that people engage with their communities by combining academic coursework with the application of institutional resources to address challenges facing communities.

A maximum of one award will be awarded annually. The award will carry a $1,000 faculty development award in support of course needs or professional development (not an individual faculty stipend). The recipient will be announced at the Chancellor’s Horizon Awards for Service ceremony in March 2021.


Any faculty who has been involved in community engaged learning in the academic year in which they are selected and in at least one previous year are eligible. Nominees must:

  • Have demonstrated innovation and originality in developing, implementing and/or sustaining community engaged learning strategies;
  • Have had experience teaching a designated service-learning course or a course with community engaged learning components within an academic year;
  • Have demonstrated results/impact in students’ learning from community-based experiences in the course(s);
  • Have demonstrated significant contributions to the community and classroom; and
  • Have demonstrated collaborative work/planning with the community organization or constituents.
Nomination Process

Nominations by deans and department heads, faculty colleagues, or self-nominations are accepted. All materials should be submitted via the online form below.

Nominations will include the following:

  • Nominee information (Name, Title, Department, College/School, Campus Address, Email, Phone);
  • Descriptive listing of service-learning or community engaged learning courses taught along with following information: course name/number, semester(s) and year(s) taught, number of students engaged, services performed, community partners involved, and student learning goals accomplished through community engaged learning;
  • A syllabus from one of the listed courses, demonstrating evidence of best practices in community engaged learning;
  • Two-page personal statement summarizing and contextualizing the nominee’s record of excellence in developing, implementing and sustaining community engaged learning with relevant outcomes/impacts on students, community, and/or department;
  • Abbreviated (no more than 5 pages) CV, emphasizing community engaged learning activities; and
  • Two letters of support form any combination of department head/dean, current/former student or community partner, addressing relevant activities, outcomes, and impacts of nominee’s community engaged learning instruction.
Past Recipients
2020-2021 – Dr. David Loy

Dr. David Loy is associate professor in ECU’s College of Health and Human Performance, where he created the Pirate Wellness Program to serve as a telehealth treatment program for individuals with disabilities and as a capstone learning platform for recreational therapy students unable to obtain traditional face-to-face internships due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Loy was selected as the 2020-2021 recipient to celebrate the resilience in providing a community engaged learning experience despite the pandemic, as well as his variety of partnerships within the community.

2019-2020 – Dr. Carol Goodwillie

Dr. Carol Goodwillie is associate professor in ECU’s biology department, where she teaches a service-learning course in Plant Biology. After becoming aware of an early plant invasion along a newly constructed greenway in 2014, Dr. Goodwillie found the perfect way to harness the energy and commitment of undergraduates to solve a community problem in partnership with Greenville Recreation and Parks.

2017-2018 (Service-Learning Teaching Excellence Award) – Dr. Wanda Wright

Dr. Wanda Wright is assistant professor in ECU’s school of dental medicine and division director of public health, where she works with third-year dental students to prepare them for placements at Community Service Learning Centers are North Carolina.  Dr. Wright is a passionate educator and health professional, and we are thankful for her great work on behalf of ECU!