Faculty, Staff Honored during Employee Appreciation Event

Bernadette Kenny (left) and Rachel Bridgers were given special recognition for their work for the college during this month's PCC employee appreciation event.


GREENVILLE—Pitt Community College celebrated employee achievements this month with the 36th Annual Employee Appreciation and Recognition Evening,

Held at the Greenville Convention Center April 12, the program featured college administrators presenting service awards to 68 employees with a combined 640 years of service. Recent retirees were also honored, and the recipients of several special awards were announced.

“This is a time to celebrate, honor and show appreciation for you, who have helped continue a strong tradition of service to our students, our community and county, and all of eastern North Carolina,” PCC President Lawrence Rouse told employees. “… This event underscores the importance of our entire team of faculty, staff, retirees, board members and community partners to the success of PCC.”

Five instructors—Chasity Bass, Vicki Coleman, Miranda Dunn, Bernadette Kenny and Keith Kinlaw—received Faculty Excellence Awards. From that group, Kenny, an Anatomy & Physiology instructor, was selected as this year’s recipient of the Joseph E. Downing Award for Excellence in Teaching.

PCC Vice President of Academic Affairs Tom Gould presented the honor to Kenny, noting that she has spent countless hours helping students be successful in their chosen career pathways.

“She has an amazing ability to take very complex material and communicate in a way that students can understand and make connections from past courses in how the body works,” Gould said. “Students have great respect for (her) and her vast knowledge.”

The 2019 Joan and Ed Warren Outstanding Staff Employee of the Year Award was presented to Rachel Bridgers, who works as Career Outreach Specialist with PCC Career Services.

In presenting the award, Rouse said Bridgers “exemplifies the best of what PCC expects of its employees” – teamwork, innovation, determination and perseverance. He also cited her positivity and ability to develop a network of external partnerships to ensure student success.

“(Rachel) educates stakeholders on PCC’s programs and services while assisting them with understanding the support available through the college,” Rouse said. “… (She) works to ensure students have access to opportunities to connect with community employers and to learn new jobs and internships.”

Bridgers was one of four Staff Excellence Award recipients eligible for this year’s Warren Award, along with Nancy Jesmer, Michael Mayo and Jeremy Morris.

Also recognized during the event were several employees who have made efforts to improve student retention and completion by implementing innovative and engaging teaching and learning methods in the classroom. Three instructors – Jennifer Addison, Elizabeth Cope and Wanda Tenpenny – received the Faculty Award for Innovation and Engagement, which is decided entirely by PCC students.

Ten recent retirees were also honored. Among them, Katalin Szucs received the State of North Carolina’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine Award for having worked at least 30 years in state government.