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Ms. Pamela McKenzie-Rundle, 2008-2009 Character Educator of the Year

Ms. Pamela McKenzie-Rundle, 2008-2009 Character Educator of the Year

Ms. Pamela McKenzie-Rundle, Assistant Professor of Psychology and Sociology at GMC-Atlanta/Fairburn, was recognized as the GMC Character Educator of the Year during the 2009 Grand Tattoo and Command Retreat. This award is presented annually to a junior college faculty member for elevating student understanding of ethics and for the creative and innovative manner in which the faculty member inspires students to value ethical behavior. Ms. McKenzie-Rundle was presented with The President’s Award for Excellence medallion, a check for $500, and an engraved watch presented by the GMC Foundation. Her nomination by Deborah E. Condon, Director, Georgia Military College-Atlanta/Fairburn, follows.

Not only is Pamela McKenzie-Rundle an excellent instructor, but she also initiates her own community service projects and encourages the students to give of themselves outside of the classroom requirements. She has a vast amount of experience in Criminal Justice as a forensic psychologist and she teaches Psychology and Sociology. Imbedded into each one of her classes is the required ethical component, but she offers so much more.

Of special importance is her position as chair of the GMC Honors council in Fairburn. Although this council does not meet often, it is a comfort knowing that she is in charge. She facilitates the process and because of her criminal justice background, the guidelines are followed and due process is given.

There have been many difficult sessions that have required not only the expertise from Milledgeville, but also the valuable insight of Ms. McKenzie-Rundle.

Her special projects have focused on the local community. Her Thanksgiving Day was spent with twelve GMC students serving over 40 firefighters from the Fairburn and Union City Fire Departments their Thanksgiving Dinner. The students solicited donations from the local businesses and spent their day cooking, serving, and spending time with the city employees who had to work for the holiday.

Another special project that was not part of her classroom requirements was the adoption of a family from the Promise Place, a home sponsored by the Georgia Council on Domestic Violence. Under her guidance the school filled up the bottom of a Christmas tree with gifts. The family consisted of a mother and her four boys, ages 14, 12, 5, & 4. A box for cash donations was also placed in the library. Toys, clothes, household goods, and food were collected for the family of five. The family had a nice holiday because of Ms. McKinzie-Rundle’s special efforts in organizing the students of Georgia Military College.

In addition, she requires the students in her classes to have eight hours of social service work with a legitimate recognized agency. Some of the volunteer opportunities she has organized are the following: participation at the luau for special needs citizens of Fayette County, working at Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta, helping at used clothing thrift stores, and ushering at the Clayton County Symphony. She also organizes a “Diversity Luncheon” each quarter that includes food from around the world and clothes from different countries. It is always well attended and ends with discussions about the various countries.

Finally, she practices what she preaches. Her entire life has been one of service. She is a retired military officer and has spent her vacations helping people, especially children, in third world countries. Ms. McKinzie-Rundle’s commitment to building the moral development of GMC students is unparalleled.