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Tunnell Empowers Her Students to Reach Their Full Potential

Posted on June 1st, 2012

2012 EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING AWARD RECIPIENT, DIANA TUNNELL
Central Vermont Academy | Northern New England Conference
High School Math and Science, 7th & 8th Math, Registrar, Vice Principal

Upon her baptism into the Seventh-day Adventist church, Dina Tunnell left a successful career in engineering to follow God’s calling. After receiving her second Master’s in Education for middle school mathematics, she accepted a position at Central Vermont Academy (CVA) where she has played a key role for five years.

Tunnell carries a lot of responsibility and brings a variety of skills to the CVA. She teaches the high school math and science courses, 7th and 8th grade math, and serves as registrar and vice principal. She also sponsors the National Honor Society and senior class, and she even drives the school bus.

As graduation counselor, Tunnell holds workshops to prepare students and parents for the college application and financial process.

“Ms. Tunnell is goal-oriented and expects great things from herself and her students,” said Robert Smith, CVA principal.

In science class, Tunnell incorporates faith into the curriculum by assigning memory verses that correspond with the lessons. Each year she leads a group for outdoor school and organizes environmental field study projects as part of Vermont’s Winooski waterway studies. Before school and at lunch she meets with her homework club to lend extra help with tough assignments.

In the community, Tunnell gets her students involved in outreach projects like a housing rehabilitation project for an elderly neighbor and “Socks for Zimbabwe” clothing drive.

Most importantly, Tunnell connects with her students and empowers them. “She saw more in me than I saw in myself, and she helped me not to give up,” said former student Juliette Young.

Donald LeBlanc, a former school board chairmen shared what an impact Tunnell has had at CVA. “She has a gift for pulling the positives in people up to the surface and leading kids to effect positive changes in their lives.”

Award presentation was Thursday, May 31, 2012, at Central Vermont Academy.

Northern New England Conference Superintendent, Trudy Wright, presented the award to Diana Tunnell.

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