CONTACT: JENNIFER HULEHAN, 646-1333 or firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 2/28/2018
(By Lisa Garrett)
PENDLETON --- Jennifer Hulehan’s creative efforts in redesigning developmental course offerings to improve retention and student success earned her the esteemed A. Wade Martin Innovator of the Year award.
Hulehan, who leads Tri-County Technical College's Comprehensive Studies department, was recognized at the South Carolina Technical Education Association (SCTEA) annual conference February 15-17 in Myrtle Beach.
The Innovator of the Year award is named in honor of A. Wade Martin, the first executive director of the technical and industrial training program in South Carolina, now the SC Technical College System. The award was established to recognize individuals in the technical college system who employ innovative approaches to meet the ever-changing needs in the technical education arena and whose achievements assist in statewide economic development and the education of students.
“Successful innovation requires a good team. We are fortunate at Tri-County to have an administration that is willing to support our efforts. We’re also fortunate to have a dedicated team of educators in the Comprehensive Studies Department, who are willing to put in long hours and hard work to do what’s best for students,” said Hulehan.
Since 2012, she and her team introduced and piloted a Fast Track program and later an Express Track program, designed to increase student success and retention. Using the nationally-known Emporium teaching model, she and her math, English, and reading faculty created a modified design unique to Tri-County, which provides students with an individualized learning experience that allows them to move more quickly and effectively through their pre-curricular sequence and into their program of study. The team also redesigned pre-curricular courses to include cross-discipline integration of basic skills and to focus not just on cognitive skills, but also on the affective skills necessary to succeed in college and life. Students in the new developmental courses don’t just learn math, English, or reading; they learn how to learn and how to succeed in their college-level courses, said Hulehan.
Both of these programs resulted in double digit improvement in successful completion, persistence, and retention in the developmental courses and subsequent credit courses. Students in Fast Track classes had an 87 percent success rate, while Express Track succeeded at a rate of 73 percent.
“Jennifer’s leadership in re-conceptualizing, reinventing, and revolutionizing developmental education for the students at Tri-County has resulted in significant improvements in student learning, outcomes, and success. Her spirit of innovation is well known to her colleagues, who value her energy, collaborative spirit, and dedication to student success,” said Dr. Ronnie L. Booth, president of Tri-County Technical College.
“Jennifer lives out an authentic commitment to the success of all students, individually and collectively, in the way she leads the Comprehensive Studies Department, teaches her courses, invests in students and employees, serves the College, and challenges the status quo to continually innovate and improve,” said Jenni Creamer, dean of College Transitions, in support of the nomination.
Hulehanjoined the College’s English Department in 2004 as an instructor in the Arts and Sciences Division. She was named Department Head for Comprehensive Studies in 2012. She was part of the team charged with developing the Quality Enhancement Plan as part of the SACS reaffirmation process. She led the plan which focused on individual students in need of a first-year student experience. Her work was instrumental in Tri-County obtaining a Title III grant to expand the Learning Excellence Initiative program.
In addition to her responsibilities as department head, she teaches developmental and college-level English, Freshman Seminar, and College Skills courses.
She also created two student success courses, an e-Learning Success course and a high school dual enrollment transition course. She piloted an early alert system with intrusive support services to help increase student success.
She has previously served in several leadership roles in her field, including as secretary and president of the South Carolina chapter of the National Association for Developmental Education (NADE) and president of the South Carolina Departments of English. She is an active member of NADE and currently serves as chair of its marketing committee. She is also a member of the National Council of Teachers of English, the Two-Year College English Association and the South Carolina State Council, International Reading Association.
In 2017, Hulehan was recognized by SCADE with the Outstanding Service to Students Award.
She received the Tri-County Technical Education Association Educator of the Year award in 2015. She serves on the Simpsonville City Council and is active in numerous community projects, such as Habitat for Humanity.
She holds B. A. and M.A. degrees in English from Winthrop University. She and her husband, Trent, live in Simpsonville.