Kevin Conner, professor of info engineering at Glen Oaks, is this year’s receiver of the E.J. Shaheen Instructing Excellence award.
Conner will be honored Friday at the college’s graduation ceremony.
Conner is explained to be a charming and caring teacher who performs tough to can make positive his college students totally comprehend principles and triumph in their lessons and program for the upcoming. He has labored to increase the assortment of facts engineering system offerings.
Outside of the classroom, he started “Gaming Club” a handful of years back. Pre-pandemic, he invested 3 or 4 hours on weeknights, as effectively as Saturday mornings, to provide time for like-minded college students to acquire to advance their gaming and social skills.
Conner, a native of Sturgis, prolonged had viewed as learning computers. But after graduating from Sturgis Significant College, he worked in residential and industrial painting in addition to doing work section-time at Porter Drug Shop. Right after suffering a lifetime-shifting health affliction influencing his mobility at age 29, he recalls driving to Glen Oaks and creating the choice to show up at higher education.
“I sold my fishing boat and trailer, and a couple of other assets to pay back for a fundamental pc . and I started classes as an grownup pupil,” Conner said.
Shortly into his studies, he was available a aspect-time position as a media assistant at the college’s media center. That marked the starting of a 27-12 months vocation at Glen Oaks.
In 1997, Conner acquired an affiliate of used science degeree in business, with a aim on microcomputer purposes. Throughout commencement, he was honored with the President’s Award. He also been given the Wall St. Journal Award in recognition of excellence in lecturers.
Subsequent graduation, Conner ongoing operating element-time at the media middle and before long was supplied an prospect to instruct a facts processing class at Glen Oaks.
“I was surprised at the option and anxious about the educating assignment,” Conner stated. “But it actually went really very well.”
He also taught the following semester though pursuing a bachelor’s diploma at Davenport University’s Kalamazoo campus. He received a bachelor inapplied science, specializing in e-commerce, in 2003, before acquiring a master of science in 2005 from Capella College, where he specialised in computer networking.
HeI taught as an adjunct and that turned into a component-time training situation. During the last yr of his master’s plan, he became a entire-time faculty member.
Conner has been instrumental in advancing the information engineering office, according to the faculty.
“When I began, we didn’t have strictly information and facts technologies degrees,” he said. “Computer classes were made available by means of the organization department.”
Just one of the very first courses he introduced to the application was a personal computer restore class, adopted by a computer system networking training course. Early plans centered additional on website advancement, but as processes became additional automatic, via use of content management programs these as WordPress, demand for individuals programs reduced, Conner said.
Extra just lately, he spearheaded the hard work to deliver a pair cybersecurity applications and an associate of personal computer science diploma to campus.
Through the a long time, Conner has witnessed a whole lot of alter on campus. For 1, classes are a lot more palms-on and participating, he said.
“They say you can get rid of a student’s awareness in fewer than a next, so you need to be mindful of that,” he reported. “Instructors require to continue to keep items quick and to the place. Modifications in know-how by the years has produced that all the less complicated for me.”
The E.J. Shaheen Chair for Instructing and Excellence Award was initiated in 1984 with a donation from E. J. Shaheen, 1 of the initial Glen Oaks Board associates. Shaheen, a university professor, lawyer and organization owner, placed higher price on education and expended considerably of his existence advertising large-good quality training and schooling institutions, which include Glen Oaks.
The award is administered via Glen Oaks Basis.