MASON — The Teacher of the Year award was recently given to a Wahama High School social studies teacher.
The Mason County Board of Education awarded Catherine Hamm Teacher of the Year at its most recent meeting.
Educators wanting to be considered for the award must fill out a State Teacher of the Year application packet and submit it the West Virginia Department of Education before July 1. The opportunity is available to early childhood, middle/junior high, and adolescent level teachers of any subject. The candidate must hold a professional certification in the area of their concentration, be a current full-time classroom teacher as defined by a teaching contract, and have completed the past three years as a full-time classroom teacher in West Virginia.
Eighth grade West Virginia history and eleventh grade contemporary history are Hamm’s concentrations. She also teaches as an adjunct professor for Marshall University in the subject of history. Hamm shared how she made a midlife career change in the early 2000s by enrolling herself into Marshall University to complete a Master’s program. By 2004, Hamm received her social studies certification. Before becoming a fulltime teacher in Mason County, she would substitute for half the day and then teach a social studies class the later half of the day.
Hamm expressed the pride she feels by teaching in the Mason County school system. She regards her fellow staff as the type of educators that not only see their students as another body in a desk, but as individuals that may need their teacher to act as a parental figure or a guidance counselor on particular days, she said. Hamm also said she could not believe she was the winner of this year’s award as she is surrounded by such great company among the staff at her school. According to her, “being in their company is very humbling.”
Erin Perkins is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing.