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Dental Hygiene Professor Nominated for Prestigious Award

Maribeth StittMaribeth Stitt, professor and director of the Dental Hygiene program at Lone Star College-Kingwood, has been nominated for the Minnie Stevens Piper Professor Award.

All college and universities in the state of Texas are invited to select a nominee for this award and 10 award recipients will be announced in May.  Stitt was selected as LSC-Kingwood’s nominee from nominations made by faculty members. The award recognizes superior teaching at the college level.

“When I received the nomination, I was surprised. I was previously nominated twice, but never selected to be the nominee from LSC-Kingwood,” Stitt said.

Stitt always knew she wanted to pursue a career in health care and work with people to prevent illnesses. After getting to know her dental hygienist when she was in high school, she decided to work in the dental field.

“My dental hygienist was a wonderful role model of a servant leader as well as a female role model in the profession,” she said. “This along with a gentle nudge from the dentist really encouraged me to seek a career in the profession.”

After 18 years of working in clinical dental hygiene, Stitt wanted to make a change within the profession. She earned her master’s degree while teaching part time for the University of Texas Houston School of Dentistry Dental Hygiene program. After earning her graduate degree, she became a consultant for LSC-Kingwood’s Dental Hygiene program through the planning and development stages. In 2003, she was hired as the program’s director.

“I love working with students and helping them to succeed and reach their goals.  The thing that I like the most about working with the students is watching the change in their lives,” Stitt said.  I have had the opportunity to watch both men and women achieve a career goal that will give them independence and I love that.”

Stitt earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene from Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas and her Master’s Degree in Allied Health Education and Administration from the University of Houston. Prior to teaching for the University of Texas Houston School of Dentistry Dental Hygiene program, she worked in private practice as well as teaching for a brief time in the dental hygiene program at Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas.

Throughout her career, Stitt has earned many professional awards. She was the first dental hygiene faculty to receive the John P. McGovern Outstanding Teaching Award for the University of Texas Houston Dental School; she was a Faculty Excellence Award winner at LSC-Kingwood; and she is the recipient of the John and Suanne Roueche Excellence Award, which she will receive at the Innovations Conference this month. Stitt is also one of the four health care program directors at LSC-Kingwood to receive the Chair Academy’s 2013 International Exemplary Leader Award.

According to its website, the Piper Professor Award was established by the San Antonio based Minnie Stevens Piper Foundation in 1958 to annually recognize outstanding college professors across Texas. Selection is made on the basis of nominations; each two and four-year college and university in the state may submit only one nominee annually.

For more information on LSC-Kingwood’s Dental Hygiene program, visit the LSC-Kingwood Dental Hygiene Department. Additional information on the Minnie Stevens Piper Professor Award can be found at Piper Professor Program.

Register now for credit classes online through myLoneStar.  Classes are offered days, evenings, or weekends in traditional, Internet, video, TV and independent study formats. For more information on how to register online, visit www.lonestar.edu/registration.

For general information about Lone Star College-Kingwood, call 281.312.1600 or visit http://lonestar.edu/kingwood.htm.

Lone Star College System has been opening doors to a better community for 40 years. Founded in 1973, LSCS remains steadfast in its commitment to student success and credential completion. Today, with 78,000 students in credit classes, and a total enrollment of more than 90,000, Lone Star College System is the largest institution of higher education in the Houston area and the fastest-growing community college system in the nation. Dr. Richard Carpenter is the chancellor of LSCS, which consists of six colleges including LSC-CyFair, LSC-Kingwood, LSC-Montgomery, LSC-North Harris, LSC-Tomball and LSC-University Park, five centers, LSC-University Center at Montgomery, LSC-University Center at University Park, Lone Star Corporate College, and LSC-Online. To learn more visit LoneStar.edu.