Southwick Named Arch Coal Teacher
Achievement Award Recipient
RICHFIELD, Utah (May 2, 2007) – Sue Southwick recalls adults coming to her childhood home and thanking her mother. “That is where I first learned the importance of education and how a teacher can influence the lives of others,” notes Southwick, who also became a teacher, nearly three decades ago.
“There is no greater reward than seeing a child learn how to read and feel success in life,” she notes. “The most important thing I can do for my students is help them build confidence so they can fulfill their dreams.”
Today Southwick had an opportunity to savor some of that success as well. She was one of five teachers to earn an Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award. Steven F. Leer, Arch Coal’s chairman and chief executive officer, made the announcement during a presentation ceremony at Ashman Elementary School in Richfield. Leer was accompanied by Dixie Allen, state school board member, and Ellen Thompson, vice president of the Utah Education Association.
“Sue is a perfect example of how teachers touch the future,” says Leer. “She and many others were influenced by her mother, and now Sue, in turn, is helping a new generation learn to achieve successful, fulfilling lives.”
Southwick teaches second-grade students at Ashman Elementary. “My philosophy of teaching is that if I can provide a safe, enjoyable and inspiring learning environment for my students, they will succeed and love to learn,” she says.
“One of my strengths as a teacher is that I love to learn, so I am willing to try new and better ways to teach,” Southwick adds. “I manage students well and still let them know I love them. I communicate with parents and make sure they know I think their child is important. When someone really cares about them, they know it.”
Southwick earned bachelor and master’s degrees, +30 hours, at Southern Utah University, and she holds Middle School and Early Childhood endorsements. She continues her education as a participant and presenter in numerous education-related initiatives. Southwick has taught science workshops at district and state levels and has presented at the annual Utah Education Association Conference, which she attended 27 times. She was a State Elementary Science Teacher of the Year and is a Project Wild facilitator for the state. Southwick served as faculty representative for the Sevier Education Association and now serves as a faculty representative for Ashman’s Parent Teacher Organization. She further supports her community through involvement in political, civic, church and other education-related activities.
The award is underwritten by the Arch Coal Foundation. This is the first year the Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards have been presented in Utah. Classroom teachers in Carbon, Emery, Sanpete and Sevier counties were eligible. More than 150 nominations were received from the public. In addition to recognition, award recipients receive a $2,500 unrestricted cash prize, a distinctive trophy and a classroom plaque.
The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards program is supported by the Office of the Governor, Utah State Office of Education, Utah Education Association, Utah School Superintendents Association, the Carbon, Emery and Sevier counties and North and South Sanpete school districts, Far West Bank, Market Express, KUSA FM/ KASL AM, and both TacoTime and Bookcliff Sales, in Price.
Arch Coal is Utah’s largest coal producer and a large state employer, with a combined workforce of approximately 800 at its Dugout Canyon, Sufco and Skyline mines. Through its combined operations, Arch Coal is one of the nation’s largest coal producers. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACI) and maintains its corporate headquarters in St. Louis.