TVCC Instructor Named Educator of the Year

Sandy Porter receives award

The Ontario Chamber of Commerce named TVCC Ag Instructor Sandy Porter as its 2018 Educator of the Year. Porter was honored during the Chamber's annual awards banquet on Jan. 11, 2019. The TVCC Board of Education also honored Porter during its regular Board Meeting on Jan. 15, 2019.

Sandy was nominated by for this award by TVCC President Dr. Dana Young. Following are excerpts of the nomination letter:

"Sandy Porter has taught at TVCC for more than a decade has served as instructor, as the Agriculture & Natural Resources department chair, and she stepped forward to lead as interim Career & Technical Education Dean when the position was vacant in 2015. Sandy has shown a unique ability to always focus on what is best for our students – not the administration or just our faculty – but truly what makes the college better for our students. Sandy has been an unwavering advocate for student programs and campus events that engage our students.

Perhaps the most resounding endorsement of her teaching expertise and the impact she has on students’ lives is the fact that she was selected as TVCC Teacher of the Year for 2017-18. TVCC students vote for the winner of this annual award through a campus-wide online voting tool. Sandy makes a difference not only for the students she teaches in her classes, but as evidenced by her college-wide award, for so many students throughout the TVCC. This past fall she volunteered to be the keynote speaker at our New Student Orientation, she comes in regularly to help with new student advising, serves on countless college hiring committees, and she helps promote student programs, scholarships and opportunities.

Sandy is a member of the National Association of Agriculture Educators (NAAE), Oregon Agriculture Teacher Association (OATA) and Idaho Agriculture Teacher Association (IATA). Her dedication to not only keeping these memberships but being an active leader within these groups insures she has access to cutting-edge agriculture curriculum to help TVCC students keep pace with this dynamic industry.

Sandy is constantly looking at ways to bring more hands-on opportunities to her classes. As part of that effort, she has led TVCC’s Ag in the Classroom event where TVCC students help introduce hundreds of local elementary students to agriculture through interactive stations where they get to try out agriculture activities.

Sandy is dedicated to helping our agriculture students develop skills and knowledge to help insure our local family farms and ranches remain marketable. An innovative example of her focus is Sandy’s efforts to develop ultrasound training for cattle grading. Students learn to measure marbling, fat and other criteria to determine breeding choices, market rates and other selection factors for the beef industry. In addition, Sandy regularly brings guest lecturers into her classroom to discuss practical application of agriculture concepts.

While we often wait until the end of an educator’s career to give this honor, awarding this recognition in the middle of a career not only provides well-deserved recognition for her accomplishments, but I hope it inspires other educators to continue their great work as they see recognition is not dependent on years served, but instead on hard work, effort and dedication shown at any point in a career."

Congratulations Sandy! You truly make TVCC a great place for students.