A lecturer and recently appointed assistant curriculum head in land based studies at Coleg Sir Gâr has been nominated for a CollegesWales teaching award.
The passion and enthusiasm of Mary Richards, assistant curriculum head of land based studies, has been recognised with a nomination into this year’s Teacher of the Year award.
Since 1997, Ms Richards has been an eager and passionate member of the land based curriculum team. Not only does she share her enthusiasm for land based studies but she also has a particular aptitude in communicating with her learners. Ms Richards injects life into every classroom, regardless of abilities or age and has a unique ability to inspire every person with her lively delivery and desire to see everyone achieve.
Practicing by example, Ms Richards is highly regarded in the farming community as an established sheep farmer. She is also a former science teacher and head of year at Ysgol Gyfun Ddwyieithog Ystalafera.
Her ‘hands on’ energetic and team playing skills have gained respect from her peers as well as her levels of enthusiasm and work ethic which she instils into her students. Ms Richards has the ability to effecivetly communicate with a variety of learners whether they are school pupils, college or university level students and those training directly within the industry.
Ms Richards sees education as a holistic experience for the learner and believes that there are many vital parts in their journey, from pastoral support, relevant education, industrial and international visits, practical demonstrations, underpinning knowledge and the use of innovative technology. As a result of her belief in using technology in the land based sector, she won an award and met former Prime Minister Tony Blair as a result.
Being familiar with the farming community, she is also well known for delivering teaching in the Welsh language, before any official bilingual sessions were put in place at the college. She has, as a result, played an integral part in the development of Welsh language provision at Gelli Aur campus.
Christine Edwards, Dinefwr faculty and campus director said: “It is a real privilege to have the opportunity to nominate Mary Richards for this prestigious award. Mary is an inspirational role model to staff and learners alike and I am delighted she has been shortlisted.”
Mary Richards is highly respected by learners and staff for her exceptional and natural teaching ability.