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Newberry Professor Receives Teaching Award

April 13, 2017

Lesaine holding up award

Newberry College Assistant Professor of Sport Professions and Newberry resident Dr. John Lesaine recently received the Excellence in Teaching Award, an honor given annually to one faculty member from each of the 20 member institutions of the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities (SCICU) organization.


The honorees were recognized at the 12th annual Excellence in Teaching awards dinner held on April 4, at which time each professor also received a $3,000 professional development grant from SCICU.


A Newberry College graduate, Lesaine has been a member of the Newberry faculty since 2012. He earned his Ed.D. in Sport Management from U.S. Sports Academy, an M.Ed. in Higher Education Leadership from Valdosta State University, and a B.S. Sport Management from Newberry College.


Prior to joining the Newberry faculty, Lesaine held various college basketball coaching positions. As an assistant coach, Lesaine’s teams appeared in six consecutive NCAA Division II national tournaments. He continues to officiate NCAA women’s basketball games.


Bringing from coaching into the classroom what he learned about mentoring and encouraging student success, Lesaine has twice been honored by Newberry as Professor of the Year (for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 academic years). Lesaine also has received the L. Grady Cooper Award for loyalty and dedication to Newberry College.


“John is a dedicated teacher and mentor to many of our students,” said Dr. Timothy Elston, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College. “He serves as a role model in and out of the classroom and inspires our students to reach higher than they sometimes think possible.”


Lesaine teaches several popular courses, including Film and Sport, an interdisciplinary course that examines the historical versus popular views of sports and various athletic personalities on the American psyche.


“John is always creative and engaging in his approach to teaching and motivating students to strive for their own personal best,” said Gretchen Haskett, chair of the Department of Sport Professions.

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