Troy Smith, a resident of Hyde Park, this spring received the 2009 National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) Teaching Excellence Award at the International Educational Conference, held in Austin, Texas.
On Wednesday, May 27, 2009, the final day of this year’s conference, recipients were honored in a special video presentation and finally presented with a medallion cast in their honor. On hand to present Smith with his medal was his wife, Lisa Gilbert-Smith.
Smith has served as a professor of human services at North Shore Community College since 1992. As a curriculum consultant for the college’s youth worker initiative, Smith was involved in creating a certificate program for students pursuing careers in youth development and leadership. He also teaches a course called “Martin and Malcolm: Advocates for Human Rights.”
He has been active in violence prevention work in Boston and Lynn for a number of years, and is a founding member of and advisor for the North Shore Community College Civic Engagement/Anti-Violence Club. He is also a senior instructor at Cambridge College and an adjunct instructor at Springfield College’s Boston campus.
After his selection for the Teaching Excellence Award, the NISOD committee in Austin asked Smith to reflect on what inspired him to teach and the strategies that help drive his success.
“As an educator in the helping professions, a personal mission of building community and facilitating personal empowerment inspires my work,” Smith said in a statement. “Building trust is a crucial strategy that drives the learning process. Fostering trust within class helps students find their authentic voice and take risks, which makes meaningful learning possible.”
Smith holds a bachelor’s degree from Bates College, a master’s degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a master’s degree in sociology from the University of Michigan.
Since it began in 1978, NISOD has emphasized the importance of teaching excellence. In 1989, NISOD began its awards ceremony in conjunction with its annual International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence.