CHICAGO HEIGHTS–(ENEWSPF)–June 23, 2017. Prairie State College (PSC) Adjunct Professor of Music Alexandra Green recently was recognized as one of the Illinois Community College Trustees Association (ICCTA) Outstanding Part-Time Faculty Award winners.
Green accepted the award during the 2017 ICCTA awards ceremony, held Friday, June 2, in Bloomington-Normal. This is the first time a PSC adjunct faculty member has been named a recipient of the part-time faculty member award.
Green joined the PSC adjunct faculty in 2016, teaching music. At PSC, Green also works with the One Million Degrees Partnership with Housing Authority of Cook County for Student Success, teaching the First-Year Seminar course (COL 101). The class is developed around overcoming specialized challenges faced by low-income, college-bound students, as well as first generation college students.
PSC Dean of Liberal Arts Elighie Wilson says he believes that because Green is the first in her family to complete college, she understands the unique challenges many of the students who come to PSC face because of their various backgrounds.
“She has played in integral part in helping these students successfully navigate through the early stages of the college experience through mentoring and advising. In the classroom, she has been effective in adapting the coursework so students with little to no college experience can succeed,” Wilson said.
Green has spearheaded a number of initiatives in the classroom since joining the PSC adjunct faculty. She expanded the Music Appreciation course to include music from Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia, Africa, African Diasporic communities and the Middle East, which she says is intended to encourage students to “engage in a more global conversation and critical analysis of the world.”
Green also found a way to creatively incorporate the use of cell phones in the classroom. She calls the exercise the “Cellular Orchestra.” Green says she dubs the phones the students “instruments,” and at the start of every music class, the students are assigned a time and theme for the musical selection they will create using their phones. The students then select their phone alarm ringers to coincide with the theme of the day. The phones are collected at the front of the class where a performance stage is created on a large table. Green says that at the assigned time, 20 to 30 phones “come to life, creating a unique electronic musical selection.” At the end of the performance, the students are asked to analyze what musical aspects they hear and then collectively vote on a title for the piece. Green says that because many of her students are not music majors, this exercise allows all her students the opportunity to experience making music collectively.
“During her time teaching at Prairie State College, I have been impressed by how much Ms. Green has accomplished. In addition to teaching several classes on campus, Ms. Green is always willing to take on new things, and, subsequently, has touched the lives of many students at Prairie State College,” said PSC President Dr. Terri L. Winfree.
The college also nominated Professor of Biology Erica Lannan for the Outstanding Full-Time Faculty Member Award and 2016-2017 Student Trustee Octavio Origel for the Gigi Campbell Student Trustee Excellence Award. The partnership between PSC and KLLM Transportation Services, Inc. also was nominated for the Business/Industry Partnership Award.
“The college only nominates the most qualified people for these prestigious awards,” said Winfree. “All our nominees should be very proud of the accomplishments that led the college to nominate them this year.”