The Price School of Education at Reinhardt College has awarded its 2006-07 William G. Hasty Sr. Award to Cindy Rudin of Alpharetta, Ga. Established in 2001, the award honors Reinhardt's most outstanding education graduate, the alumnus who best represents the goals of the teaching profession.
A $1,000 grant from the College was presented to the new Avery Elementary School in Canton, Ga., where Rudin is in her first year as a second-grade teacher. The grant provides additional discretionary funds for Rudin to use during the 2007-08 school year.
"I'm just so honored to have been chosen to receive this award," Rudin said. "I'm so appreciative to Reinhardt and the Hasty family.
"I'm very blessed to have gone to Reinhardt because the College is definitely a 21st century school, as far as education goes. To be exposed to the curriculum that I was exposed to and the experiences I had -- I feel I only would have gotten that at Reinhardt. The small classrooms and the top-notch professors were a big plus for me. This is a second career for me after being in the business world, so I was able to take a lot of my past and apply it to my future in the classroom.
"I'm just overwhelmed with joy because of what I'll be able to do with that money in my classroom," Rudin continued. "I can spend it on learning materials that are much needed, especially with opening up a brand new school. It's going to support my classroom and I'm going to be able to differentiate with my students because I have a diverse population of children."
The first recipient of the award, Jacob Griffith, echoed Rudin's comments on receiving the honor. Griffith is currently teaching mathematics at Austin Middle School in Douglasville, Ga., after being at Teasley Middle School in Canton.
"Upon graduating from Reinhardt, what a great honor to receive the William G. Hasty Sr. Award," he said. "I had never felt so honored.
"After receiving the award, I had a head start on teaching. I started the 2003-04 academic year just married, living with my new wife who was still in college. We had no money and there was no way for me to personally buy all of the materials I needed for my classroom.
"As a first-year teacher, you walk past classrooms of veteran teachers and wish you had the supplies they have," Griffith added. "Most teachers supply their classrooms over the course of years, not days. With the award, I had the money and I bought what I needed, and it was all of the little things that made the difference."
A 1941 Reinhardt graduate, Hasty was synonymous with education in the state as a teacher, principal, superintendent of Cherokee County Schools and with the Georgia Education Association. Before his death in November 2003, he was a faithful supporter, advisor and donor to the College after his graduation and encouraged four generations of the Hasty family to attend Reinhardt. In the community, he also served as an author, newspaper columnist, state representative, state senator and Ninth District representative, and vice chair of the state transportation board.
"This award is a wonderful reminder of Sen. Hasty's legacy of giving to others," said JoEllen Wilson, Reinhardt vice president for institutional advancement and external affairs. "It's a fitting way for Reinhardt to honor this alumnus, a man of great vision and infectious enthusiasm who worked tirelessly to improve the world around him."
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