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email: abrenner@averett.edu Phone: 434-791-5048 Office: Danville Hall 108B

From her first days in college, Dr. Aimee M. Brenner knew the importance of good teachers, knew that she wanted to be one. And now? “With all of the issues and challenges that swallow some of the kids today, I feel that creating effective teachers is even more important than ever.”

She says that teaching in Averett’s Education Department gives her a chance to see that education students who truly feel a passion for teaching can become the best they can be. Part of that involves using emerging technologies, a specialty of hers: “Among the tools I want to give them are methods of integrating technology into their classrooms.”

She has chosen to teach at Averett because: “The personal interactions with students, the small classes and the overall nurturing environment of a small liberal arts school are very appealing. At [a large state school] I saw many young students turned loose and run amok. That can happen in a large school, whereas at Averett we can pay more attention to students, focus on their academics and more. After all, what happens outside the classroom affects them in class, as well.”

Even though she is a scholar, eager to do follow-up work on her doctoral dissertation on teacher education and technology integration, she is a teacher first and foremost. “That’s what faculty are expected to do here, focus on teaching. Scholarship and outreach are good, but we’re here for the students.”

Brenner adds that many of the students new to the Education Department are there to see if they want to teach, and some decide not to: “The good thing is that Averett gives them a chance to learn who they are, what their passions are in life.”

The closeness of the Averett community, a major factor in her deciding to work at Averett, was evident to her when she interviewed for the job. “I’ve never been at any other college or university where the president of the institution invites students to her home to get their opinion about things. She [Averett President Dr. Tiffany Franks] does that.

“Also I‘ve never felt I could just contact the president about anything, but I know I can here. It’s important that the Averett leadership values the students and what they think about the school and what could improve it. That says a lot. That attitude trickles down. The faculty members are happy to do that.”

Credentials:

Doctor of Philosophy, Curriculum and Instruction, focus in Instructional Design and Technology, Virginia Tech

Master of Arts, Curriculum and Instruction, focus on English Education, Virginia Tech

Master of Science, Administration and Supervision, Radford University

Bachelor of Arts, English, James Madison University