GWINNETT— Gwinnett Technical College recently named TC Parker, CST, Surgical Technology Program Director, their Rick Perkins Instructor of the Year recipient. Parker discovered her love of teaching when she worked in the industry and received an opportunity to teach lab and clinicals at Morehouse College on a minority scholarship for medical school. The teaching opportunity came up first, and I thought I would try it out, and if I didn’t like it, I would pursue other opportunities. That was 24 years ago. Parker fell in love with teaching, and the look on the student’s faces when I teach is addicting. I have continued to thrive on that look!
“I love helping people find their niche while continuing to work in my favorite industry. There is never a dull moment! I also find that I am teaching operating room skills and helping and coaching them in many life areas. Helping them understand the importance of civic leadership and navigating the world is also important. We give them a pin when they finish, and upon pinning them, we tell them we are no longer their instructor; we are their colleague! It is an important transition that has helped us as they transition to industry by opening opportunities for the college and the program and the students to come,” states Parker.
“Rick Perkins is an inspiring accolade and reminiscent of a shot of adrenaline for a seasoned instructor. It reminds you of how important you are to the mission of where you live over a third of your life. I learned so much from all the experiences and the outstanding people I met. The support I get from every level of leadership at Gwinnett Tech is amazing,” states Parker.
Parker holds a Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Management from Kennedy-Western University, an Associate of Applied Science from Georgia Perimeter College, and a Diploma in Surgical Technology from Gwinnett Technical College. Parker is a Certified Surgical Technologist and President of the Georgia State Assembly of AST (GASA.) She was inducted as a Fellow of the Association of Surgical Technologists (AST) in 2016 and resides in Statham, Georgia.
The Rick Perkins Award for Excellence in Technical Instruction began in 1991. It is designed to recognize and honor technical college instructors who contribute significantly to technical education through innovation and leadership in their fields.
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About Gwinnett Tech: Gwinnett Technical College, one of Georgia’s largest technical colleges, is committed to delivering relevant knowledge to meet the workforce training needs of its community. The college offers over 140 associate degrees, diplomas, certificate programs, and hundreds of seminars, workshops, and courses providing specialized training. Gwinnett Tech is Gwinnett County’s largest corporate training provider and serves residents and businesses in north Fulton County. Gwinnett Technical College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award the associate degree. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097, or call for questions about the accreditation of Gwinnett Technical College. In addition, some college programs hold separate licensure or accreditation status with appropriate agencies. For more information, visit GwinnettTech.edu. A unit of the Technical College System of Georgia.