Wednesday, November 20, 2019 - by Don Foley, Cleveland State Community College
Cleveland State Community College Dean of Business and Healthcare Susan Webb-Curtis and Dr. Victoria Bryan, Honors Program director and interim dean of Humanities, Social Sciences, Fine Arts, and Education, are being recognized for their commitment to excellence.
Dr. Bryan has been named a finalist for the SOAR Outstanding Faculty Award, and Mrs. Webb-Curtis is a finalist for the SOAR Staff Excellence Award.
“I was incredibly honored to be nominated for the award, to know that Cleveland State believes in me as much as I believe in the college,” Dr. Bryan said. “Whether I win or not, just knowing that my school believes in my work and will invest in this program for the betterment of our students is honor enough.”
The work nearest to Dr. Bryan’s heart is Cleveland State’s Honors College. Over the last five years, Dr. Bryan has put her heart and soul into developing the program, which helps outstanding students take their community college experience to the next level. In addition to academic excellence, Honors College emphasizes community service, public speaking, leadership, and in-depth subject exploration.
Though it took five years, the effort has paid off. Today, Dr. Bryan guides students through the Honors College and watches them grow from timid freshmen into “powerful, confident, and capable graduates.” And while teaching keeps good teachers like Dr. Bryan busy, she recently found time to publish Prestige Television and Prison in the Age of Mass Incarceration, a book that gives a hard look at how prison is portrayed in television.
At Cleveland State since 1988, Mrs. Webb-Curtis is driven by a passion for improving the college. She can often be found brainstorming with others to redesign processes or programs in order to enhance the learning experience for students.
Through the years, she helped design a student retention program, redesigned freshman orientation, lent a hand in student recruitment, and helped with career planning and placement services. In her new role, she has the unique opportunity to watch faculty members work their magic in the classroom as the future opens up to students.
“One of my favorite sayings is ‘Keep company with those who inspire,’ and I’ve been fortunate to be around many colleagues who fit that description,” Mrs. Webb-Curtis said. “The touching nomination letters made me feel as if I had contributed to some of the great things at Cleveland State, and that is a tremendous honor.”
Mrs. Webb-Curtis and Dr. Bryan will travel to the Doubletree Hotel in Nashville for the State-level competition on Tuesday, March 24, 2020. The SOAR Awards banquet will take place the following night. While the outcome of this year’s awards is not yet known, one thing is for sure: the real winners are the residents who have had the pleasure of being served by these two outstanding ladies.