Montoya receives MSU Texas Faculty Award

Students say Spanish professor 'passionate about teaching'

Montoya receives MSU Texas Faculty Award

Claudia Montoya, professor of Spanish at Midwestern State University, was presented with the Faculty Award during the Fall 2023 Commencement Ceremony Dec. 16 at D.L. Ligon Coliseum.

“I know there are plenty of deserving individuals out here; so, I’m thankful my colleagues decided to highlight my contributions this time. I have been teaching for more than 30 years and my beginnings are humble and rough, this award is an important milestone on that road,” Montoya said.

The Faculty Award recipient is selected by the 239 members of the MSU Texas faculty at large and kept secret until commencement. Karen Moriarty, associate professor of Nursing and Faculty Senate chair, said in her announcement of Montoya as the recipient, “Her students say that she is one of the best professors they have had and that she is passionate about teaching. However, her faculty colleagues will say that she is passionate about everything.” Moriarty said that students feel Montoya strives to genuinely know them.

“Fun, upbeat, and enjoyable,” are other ways students describe Montoya. “Her students say that Montoya’s idea of making learning fun was to have them sing in Spanish and to give extra points to those who sing the loudest,” Moriarty said.

Montoya has served on numerous university committees, councils, and workgroups since starting here in 2002. She currently serves as a member of the Faculty Senate.

This year’s Faculty Award finalists were Vicki Dillard, associate professor of Radiologic Science; Tim Hinchman, assistant professor of Education/Reading; Andrew Katumwehe, associate Professor of Geosciences; Jim Sernoe, chair of Mass Communication; and Kris Tilker, professor of Legal studies.

The first recipient of the Faculty Award was Arthur F. Beyer in 1977.