Weiler receives VC’s Distinguished Faculty Award

Geology instructor Matthew Weiler, third from right, received Victoria College’s Distinguished Faculty Award during the spring 2019 commencement ceremony. Pictured from left with Weiler are Amy Mundy, Victoria College Foundation executive director; Josie Rivera, VC trustee and VC Foundation board member; David Hinds, VC president; Penni Gietz, VC Foundation president; Cindy Buchholz, VC vice president of instruction; and Jennifer Yancey, VC vice president of college advancement and external affairs.

Victoria College geology instructor Matthew Weiler was named the recipient of VC’s Distinguished Faculty Award during the spring 2019 commencement ceremony.

The award, presented by the Victoria College Foundation, honors excellence, promotes effective teaching and recognizes exceptional faculty for their contributions to student learning through classroom teaching.

Nominees for the award were judged on resumes, student evaluations and letters of recommendation from students, faculty members and others.

“I was surprised and honored to even be nominated,” Weiler said. “Victoria College is a great place to work because of the students, as well as the faculty, staff, and administration who make teaching a priority and have helped me grow as a professor and supported so many of my endeavors here at VC.”

“Being recognized by your peers is such an honor because it proves you are making a difference in peoples’ lives,” said VC President David Hinds. “Matthew’s passion for teaching is evident. Victoria College is very fortunate to have someone like Matthew on its faculty.”

Weiler, a paleontologist, began teaching geology at Victoria College in 2013.

“I love geology because you can see it, you can touch it,” Weiler said. “I joke with scientists in other fields and tell them in geology, I don’t have to worry about anything dying or rotting. Nobody is going to blow anything up in my class or light anything on fire.”

Weiler, whose wife, Karew Schumaker, teaches biology at Victoria West High School, said he tries to help his students understand how geology affects their everyday lives.

“Due to the content of the geology courses that I teach, I try to incorporate as many visuals, hands-on activities, and demonstrations to help my students gain a better understanding of geologic processes influencing our planet,” Weiler said.

“I tell my students that I don’t care if they’re never going to get a PhD in geology, but geology determines how they live. It determines where they build their homes, how they utilize ground water. I gear my classes toward making sure students know what’s going on around them.”

Along with physical geology, historical geology and environmental science, Weiler also teaches meteorology and oceanography classes at Victoria College.

“We wanted to give students more opportunities as far as elective courses,” Weiler said. “We would eventually like to add labs. Being this close to the coast gives us a chance to gain much more appreciation for what goes on. The oceans drive most of our weather patterns.”

Victoria College student Kylie Neuvar took Weiler’s meteorology class during the spring semester.

“I love the way he teaches,” Neuvar said. “I didn’t know VC offered a meteorology class. I heard a lot of good things about Mr. Weiler, so I wanted to take the class right away.”

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