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Oakton Faculty and Staff Recognized for Excellence

(August 23, 2013) – Cary Schawel, professor of psychology and human sexuality, and Cari Paterno, psychology lecturer, are the recipients of the 2013 Ray Hartstein Awards for Outstanding Professional Excellence in Teaching at Oakton Community College. The honors were announced during the College’s annual breakfast on August 15.

A resident of Mundelein, Schawel has more than 30 years of teaching experience. He joined Oakton part time in 1982, and was hired full time in 1989. At the College, Schawel also serves as a counselor and mediator for Student Affairs. He graduated from Eastern Illinois University with a bachelor’s degree in psychology, where he also earned his master’s degree in psychology. Schawel received a second master’s degree in educational administration from Northern Illinois University.

Paterno, who lives in Park Ridge, joined the College part time in 2010. She received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a master’s degree in psychology from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Named for the founder of Oakton’s Board of Trustees, the Ray Hartstein Awards annually recognize one full-time and one part-time faculty member. Nominees must demonstrate excellence in teaching and respect for students and peers. Following a review by the Student Government Association, the Oakton Educational Foundation Grants Committee selects winners.

Also at the annual breakfast, Anthony Silmon, clerical assistant for the Division of Science and Health Careers, received the Classified Staff Excellence Award, which recognizes a staff member who goes “beyond actual job responsibilities,” and “uses creativity in fulfilling undertakings.”

A resident of Chicago, Silmon joined Oakton in 2011. A former student employee, he is working toward his associate’s degree in applied science at the College.

Nominees are reviewed by a Staff Excellence Award Committee, which narrows the pool to three candidates. The Educational Foundation Grants Committee selects the winner from the finalists.

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