NEWARK, Ohio, November 13, 2020 — Percella Gualtieri, of Newark, began teaching in the nursing program at Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) in January, but already she's receiving accolades from her peers nationwide. On November 12, the Foundation of the Organization for Associate Degree Nursing (OADN) bestowed the 2020 Elsevier Educator of the Year Award to Gualtieri in a virtual award ceremony.
"I am so blessed to win this award! Nursing is my passion and being able to teach nurses is an extension of that passion," said Gualtieri. "Being recognized at this early stage of my teaching career lets me know I am making a difference in the lives of my students."
Each year, the Elsevier Educator of the Year Award is given to one exceptional educator that uses innovative teaching strategies; motivates students to perform at their highest level; works cooperatively with colleagues in the college and/or clinical setting; and demonstrates meaningful participation in college, professional and community activities. It is awarded by the OADN Foundation, which promotes the mission and vision of OADN through the development of resources, the recognition of scholarship and excellence in associate degree nursing education, and the support of advocacy for associate degree nursing.
"My favorite part of teaching is finding the 'moment,' the one thing or explanation, that makes the student understand something. Watching them grow in their confidence and knowledge, and knowing I had a part in that, is the best thing ever," said Gualtieri. "When I was a student, an instructor did that for me. It is awesome to pay it forward."
Gualtieri is no stranger to COTC. She completed her associate degree in nursing technology at the college before earning a bachelor's degree and a Master of Science in Nursing from Capital University. She is currently working on a doctoral degree. In addition to teaching at COTC, Gualtieri works in the acute leukemia unit at The James Cancer Hospital at The Ohio State University. Prior to that, she held positions at Licking Memorial Hospital and Nationwide Children's Hospital.
"COTC is definitely a cut above the rest," said Gualtieri. "The faculty has extensive nursing practice experience, exceptional teaching skills and high levels of education themselves. Several have completed doctorate degrees, and several more, including myself, are in the process currently. This level of experience is not always found in an associate degree program."
COTC has several options to help aspiring nurses start their career. COTC offers associate degree nursing (ADN), a traditional five-semester plan of study; practical nursing (PN), a one-year certificate program; LPN to ADN transition, a three-semester transition option for licensed practical nurses (LPN); and State Tested Nurse Aide (STNA) course.
Pictured: Percella Gualtieri (right) with her husband, Jim.
COTC is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs. COTC is the only technical college in Ohio operating four full-service campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.