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Academic Deans

2016 Nomination Forms

Nomination deadline
March 4, 2016

Download the Nomination Form for the 2016 awards

2016 Committee Membership

History of the Award

Outstanding Faculty Awards Guidelines

Outstanding Faculty

Congratulations to our 2010 recipients of the following awards:

Each year one-full time faculty member at Jackson Community College is selected to receive the J. Ward Preston Outstanding Faculty Award. The recipient is chosen on the basis of:

  1. Excellence in teaching techniques
  2. Maintaining superlative rapport with students
  3. Use of innovative and interesting approaches; and
  4. Complete sense of dedication consistent with the finest traditions of Jackson Community College.

J. Ward Preston Outstanding FacultyCurt Cremeans

Curt Cremeans
Professor of Business Administration, Business & Computer Systems Information Department

For his excellence in teaching, Curt Cremeans, professor of business administration at JCC, received the 2009-10 J. Ward Preston Outstanding Faculty Award. The award honors faculty who demonstrate outstanding teaching techniques, maintain superlative rapport with students, use innovative and interesting approaches and demonstrate a sense of dedication consistent with the finest traditions of JCC.

“I am very honored, and very humbled, to receive this award,” Cremeans said.

Cremeans, a Vietnam veteran, used the GI Bill to complete his undergraduate degree in marketing and economics at Michigan State University. He worked in marketing and sales for Procter & Gamble before completing his master's degree from MSU.  It was at that time he was convinced by a professor that he had a gift for teaching.

Cremeans came to JCC after teaching at the Branch Area Career Center in Coldwater for four years. He loves his job as a college professor and wouldn’t trade coming to work each day. 

“To get students excited about the material is rewarding. I still get excited and look forward to being in the classroom,” Cremeans said. “I love the student interaction, they keep you young. They have a lot of energy. I think I bring them energy as a teacher, and they bring it right back.”

Whether working with students or when mentoring adjunct faculty, he adheres to his “5 P's for Teaching Success -- be prepared, professional, positive, polite and patient. An educational environment based on these 5 P's is destined for success,” he says.

He has taught several business courses at JCC, including contemporary business, marketing, human relations, sales, and advertising. Teaching as a profession has evolved over the years, with the influx of technology in education, as well as changing subject matter as business and economic trends have changed. 

“It’s rare today to have the opportunity to be in the same place for 30 years,” Cremeans said. “For me, it never grows stagnant. I love to teach, and every semester when I come into the classroom with a new group of students, it’s a new beginning.”

Outside of the classroom, Cremeans is active in his church and in the community. He is an avid sports fan and over the years has coached many young athletes in soccer, baseball, football, and basketball. He loves sports himself, is a Spartan fan, and enjoys downhill skiing in the winter. He and his wife, Joan, have four children.

To help students offset college expenditures, Cremeans continues to support a scholarship through the Jackson Community College Foundation in honor of his first wife who also taught at JCC. He plans to donate the monetary award he received into the Judith Brown Cremeans Memorial Scholarship fund to continue helping students afford a college education.


Each year, one Adjunct Faculty member at Jackson Community College is selected to receive the Outstanding Adjunct Faculty Award. The recipient is chosen on the basis of:

  1. Teaching excellence and innovation in support of the Learning college;
  2. Maintaining superlative rapport with students;
  3. Complete sense of dedication consistent with the goals of the department and the values of the college; and
  4. Having taught for JCC a minimum of ten semesters (not necessarily consecutive)

Outstanding Adjunct AwardJan Omo

Jan Omo
Adjunct Instructor, Science and Mathematics Departments

Jan Omo, who teaches geology, geography and math for JCC, was recently honored with the College’s Outstanding Adjunct Faculty Award for the 2009-2010 year. A retired teacher from the Concord Community School district, Omo resides in Hanover Township and has taught part-time for JCC since 1974, at the Hillsdale LeTarte Center, as well as the Jackson and Lenawee campuses and the former downtown site.

“I enjoy the fulfillment that comes with educating the students. It’s a great feeling, and I don’t know what I would do if I wasn’t able to teach,” Omo said. “As long as I’m able, I hope to be teaching.”

Students give their instructor high marks. One student wrote: “I only wish that there were more classes offered that I could take with Mr. Omo because he sparked such an interest in me with his love and knowledge of geology.” 

And another wrote: “Mr. Omo gave any help that he could with helping his students thoroughly understand the subjects he was teaching. He is willing to teach one topic in several different ways to ensure maximum comprehension for his pupils.”

Pene Vandenburgh, director of the Hillsdale LeTarte Center, said: “Jan has brought many of his own items from home to display in the classroom, i.e., rocks, maps, etc.  He also seeks out areas in Hillsdale County where he can take his class and show them things that relate to class. His love for teaching geology is amazing.”

Omo said he was honored to win the award and that it was a treat to have President Dan Phelan and others come down and do a formal presentation.

“I enjoy the appreciation of students when they enjoy what they discover,” Omo said. Particularly in geology, he’s had some students come back and show rocks and other items they have found and make “donations” of their finds for future classes.

Omo is married to his wife, Mary Joellen Omo, who is also a teacher, and they have three adult sons and two grandchildren. He and his wife are active in activities at Farwell Lake, and in the summer they are lighthouse keepers. This summer they plan to spend a week at Little Sable Point Lighthouse.


Students, faculty, administrators, and staff members are eligible to nominate faculty to receive these awards. Nominations are received during the months of September through February of each year. Nomination forms are available in each instructional building. Completed nominations should be sent to the Dean of Arts & Sciences office in BW 227.

Nominations should address as many of the four criteria listed above as possible, and must provide specific reasons why the nominee should receive the award. The quality, rather than the number or length of nominations will be considered by the selection committee. Nominations must be submitted by the end of February. Nominations should be typed or legibly hand written. Only one person must sign each nomination. No unsigned nominations will be considered. See the top of the page for nomination forms.

Updated: 07/06/2012

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