Assistant Professor of Mathematics Michael Nyagol was named the Faculty New Horizon Award honoree by the Kentucky Community and Technical College System on May 20. KCTCS President Dr. Michael B. McCall presented the award during a statewide conference. Nyagol was nominated for the award by Hazard Community and Technical College.
HCTC President Dr. Steve Greiner noted, “The success rate of his developmental math students is reflective of his outstanding ability to create a learning environment that enables students to realize personal and academic achievement.”
Dr. R. Kathy Smoot, Provost/Vice President of Academic Services, said Nyagol actively demonstrates excellence and innovation in teaching and learning on a daily basis. “In his role as one of our top Developmental Education faculty, he also constantly focuses on increasing student access and success in coursework that has traditionally shown low levels of achievement,” she said.
Nyagol’s teaching philosophy states, “The ultimate goal of any educator should be to enable his/her students to achieve their potential. I attempt to attain this goal through three major strategies: creating a friendly classroom atmosphere, giving challenging and creative assignments and exams, and adapting my courses to the specific students in order to promote active engagement during the learning process.”
As a leader in HCTC’s Developmental Math Redesign Project, Nyagol has embodied this teaching philosophy and embracing new methodology and technology while sustaining one of the highest student completion rates at HCTC.
Quoting from the student who nominated Michael locally for this recognition, I believe Michael Nyagol deserves to be recognized for the Award of Excellence because “he is an all-around great professor. He always puts the students first, does everything possible to make sure everyone understands the material, and is always in a positive mood. He makes the class exciting, yet everyone learns so much from him.”
Nyagol has created the first HCTC online statistics course which gives students the opportunity to take the class from any campus location; he serves as HCTC Faculty Co-Chair and is an active member of HCTC Faculty Council; he is a trained Master Advisor; and he continues to focus on his own growth and professional development.
Michael began at HCTC in May 2009. His career goals are to explore varied teaching strategies and methods so as to best meet the needs of each individual learner in his classroom.
“The caring, listening, respect, appreciation for the contributions and efforts of others and the great learning facilities makes HCTC the best place to work,” he said.
Nyagol holds a master’s degree in Mathematics Education from Western Michigan University and a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics & Statistics from Moi University in Kenya, East Africa.
He and his wife have two children, ages 3 and 7. The family lives in Hazard.