Biology professor Kimberley Clawson has been selected to receive Temple College’s 2021 Claudia and W.T. Barnhart Teacher of the Year Award. The award includes a $2,000 stipend and the winner becomes Temple College’s nominee for the Minnie Stevens Piper Professor Award, which recognizes outstanding educators across the state.
Clawson has been a member of the Temple College faculty since 2006 and has been instrumental in the success of the Texas Bioscience Institute (TBI) Middle College program, which offers highly motivated high school students the opportunity to earn up to 60 hours of college credit in STEM-focused courses while they are still in high school. Clawson teaches a wide variety of biology courses for students participating in the TBI program, as well as courses for traditional biology students.
“Kim consistently receives praise from students, faculty and staff at the (TBI) facility,” said Dr. Shelley Pearson, associate vice president for health professions. “She has a unique approach to teaching and the students respond to her innovative and engaging activities.”
Pearson said Clawson is constantly looking for ways to enhance her student classroom experience, whether it be testing their favorite corn chips in genetics class for the presence of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or analyzing DNA from a mock crime scene in a biology class.
“Students are excited and look forward to new activities she has planned,” Pearson said.
Clawson’ service to the college extends beyond the classroom. She is an active recruiter for the TBI program, as well as a mentor to new faculty members. At college professional development events, she shares her expertise on a wide range of topics including innovative classroom techniques and experience from her work in the genetics laboratory.
Pearson said Clawson also is an important ambassador for promoting Temple College in the community’s science and industry sectors. She is active in the community and maintains contacts with partner research institutions such as the Blackland Research and Extension Center, Temple Health & Bioscience District, Baylor Scott and White Health, and the Central Texas Veterans Health System.
Clawson holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from The University of Texas at Austin and a Masters in Science Teaching in Biology from Tarleton State University. She also completed additional graduate study at Michigan State University.
Prior to joining the Temple College faculty, she was a science teacher at Gatesville High School and an adjunct biology instructor at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. She also worked in the Cytogenetic Laboratory at Scott & White Medical Center in Temple.
Clawson is the 33rd recipient of the Claudia and W.T. Barnhart Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award. For more information on the award, visit www.templejc.edu/employees/barnhart-award/.