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May 3, 2012

Pole named Exemplary Teacher at DWU

MITCHELL — Dakota Wesleyan University recognized one of its professors with the Exemplary Teacher Award Sunday during its Honors Convocation.

Rhonda Pole, director of the Kelley Center for Entrepreneurship, was given the honor.

The Division of Higher Education, in partnership with United Methodist-related institutions, expresses support and appreciation for outstanding teaching. The recipient exemplifies excellence in teaching, civility and concern for students and colleagues. This person also maintains a commitment to value-centered education, and service to students, the institution and the community.

Pole joined DWU in 2005 and leads the campus in entrepreneurial course studies, is director of the Kelley Center, which is open to college and community members, and is the adviser for Students in Free Enterprise. Today, entrepreneurial thinking embeds itself into more than 16 different majors on the DWU campus. In addition, Pole has successfully helped create a major and minor in entrepreneurship that has nearly 40 students involved, up from only two when she began at Wesleyan. 

A single-person department, she not only teaches entrepreneurship courses but has also led several community initiatives, including the development of the community Entrepreneurs and Inventors Club, and played an invaluable role in securing a partnership to have the Region III Small Business Development Center located at DWU. 

In January of this year, Pole represented S.D. Launch, one of four national finalists for an award at the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship Education conference. Pole coordinates Launch in partnership with the Enterprise Institute; South Dakota EPSCoR; South Dakota Governor’s Office on Economic Development; South Dakota Small Business Development Centers; and fellow educator and coordinator Barb Heller with the South Dakota State University Entrepreneurial Studies Program.

 

 
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