Big Sandy Professor Receives Prestigious Acorn Award for Teaching

Versailles, Ky. (September 13, 2013) – Dr. William J. Loftus, professor of psychology at Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC), was selected as a recipient of the 2013 Acorn Award. The award was presented during the luncheon program for the Governor’s Conference on Postsecondary Education Trusteeship on Friday, September 13 in Louisville.

The annual Acorn Awards recognize outstanding teachers at Kentucky’s public and independent colleges and universities. The program is sponsored by the Kentucky Advocates for Higher Education, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of postsecondary education in Kentucky. Recipients receive a $5,000 honorarium and are selected based on information they provide about their reasons for selecting college teaching as a profession, their teaching philosophy and their professional achievements.

“His length and breadth of experiences at the college and Eastern Kentucky have imbued his professional practice with a creative and evaluative energy, a diverse social vision grounded within a variety of learning environments, and an empathic response to the need for educational meanings within individual and community lives,” said BSCTC President George D. Edwards.

Dr. Loftus has taught psychology for more than 20 years at BSCTC. He has also served as the Phi Theta Kappa advisor during this time, working with Phi Theta Kappa officers and members to help them attain their goals and be successful. Dr. Loftus holds 10 Phi Theta Kappa Kentucky Regional Outstanding Advisor Horizon Awards from 1993-2013 and was honored with Phi Theta Kappa Advisor of the year award in 2013.

“Without him, many of the students likely would never have believed in themselves.  He truly made a difference, a difference measurable in graduation rates that simply would not have existed but for his generous and loving heart,” said Division One, Seventh Appellate District Judge Sara Walter Combs.

Dr. Loftus has also received numerous awards for his unique and innovative teaching methods during his tenure at BSCTC. Some of these accolades include: University of Kentucky Alumni Association’s Great Teacher Award; three BSCTC Great Teacher Awards; and four National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) Excellence Awards. 

Dr. Loftus studied at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa where he received a bachelors and a master’s degree in psychology. He attended Florida State University for his doctorate degree, which he received in 1989.

In “A Students Tribute to Dr. Bill Loftus” a former student said, “Bill Loftus is a man of numerous accomplishments, academic rigor, mentorship, compassion, and most of all a man with an immense consideration for those whose lives he touches.”