(Memphis, TN) — The Southern Conference on Language Teaching (SCOLT) held its annual conference in Memphis, Tennessee, from March 13-15, 2014. During the conference, Dr. Sue Barry, a Graduate Program Officer and Coordinator of Foreign Language Education at the Auburn University in Alabama, was named the 2014 SCOLT Educator of Excellence. Each member state in the SCOLT region may nominate one candidate from higher education for this award. Dr. Barry was selected as this year’s recipient on the basis of her excellent teaching portfolio and letters of recommendation.
As an instructor of methods for Foreign Language Teaching since 1993 and as a researcher of cognition and memory, specifically text comprehension, Dr. Barry’s talent is confirmed both by colleagues, who write that her dedication to language learning and advocacy for languages is unparalleled, and by excellent evaluations from her students. Her colleagues additionally praise her for her use of technology in providing distance learning combined with on-campus experiences, for her leadership regionally and nationally, and for her willingness to mentor many language teachers throughout her career. Heather West, Executive Director of AAFLT (Alabama Association of Foreign Language Teachers) writes, “A solid example of the three-leg stool model of professorial activity, Dr. Barry also makes time for a great deal of meaningful service to our profession. She has regularly served on various committees of the Alabama State Department of Education regarding state textbook selection and revision of the Alabama Standards for Modern Language Education with the goal of improving the learning of students in public school classrooms. She also served for five years on the SCOLT Advisory Board during which time she represented the organization as an official delegate at the National Assessment Summit, the JNCL-NCLIS (The Joint National Committee for Languages/The National Council for Languages and International Studies), and ACTFL (The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages).
Above all, Dr. Barry has remained committed to future teachers of languages on campus and beyond the classroom. She sets high expectations to lead her students to present with her at conferences, whereby these educators see the need to become members of associations, all of which encourages them to achieve higher recognition through National Board Certification, win awards, and ultimately become mentors. SCOLT congratulates Dr. Barry on this award and thanks her for her tireless efforts to promote world languages in the southeastern United States.