Dr. Joyce Middleton, an associate professor of accounting in Frostburg State University's College of Business, recently won an award for teaching excellence from the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants.
A framed certificate of the 2001 Frank Blacklock Outstanding Accounting Educator Award hangs above Dr. Middleton's desk in her new office, located in Framptom Hall. The $2,000 award recognizes educators for outstanding teaching skills, scholarly activities, service and professional achievements. She was also nominated for a $1,000 award given to educators based on teaching effectiveness and innovation, student evaluations, student interaction and other factors indicating excellence. Both nominations were made anonymously.
" I'm in good company, " she said of the award, referring to her colleague, Dr. Connie Groer, who also teaches accounting at FSU, and received the MACPA Outstanding Accounting Teacher Award in 1993.
Dr. Middleton's interest in a teaching career grew along with her education. A Cumberland native and the first in her family to attend college, she began studies in business at Allegany College after discovering in a high school bookkeeping class that she enjoyed working with numbers. She transferred to Frostburg State to pursue a degree in accounting and graduated in 1980. After moving to Georgia, she eventually earned both a master's degree and doctorate in accounting with a focus on taxation from the University of Georgia.
"Teaching was the last thing on my mind," Dr. Middleton says, until she had the chance to teach introductory accounting courses as a doctoral student. She discovered that she loved teaching, and came home to teach at her alma mater in 1990.
Reflecting on the changes she's seen in more than a decade of teaching, she says, "There's been a 180 degree change in how you deliver information to students. I try to keep up with how they process information."
To help students stay current, Dr. Middleton has incorporated the Internet as a source of supplementary material for her classes and research tool especially useful with ever-changing tax laws. In the process, she strives to help them learn to critique sources and become more selective in choosing them.
Ultimately, she hopes her interest in accounting inspires her students to success in the classroom and beyond.
For more information about accounting at FSU, call (301) 687-4297 or visit the Web site at www.frostburg.edu.
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