Education

Parkersburg High School’s Hickle Receives Arch Coal Achievement Award

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (March 8, 2011) – By the time Terry J. Hickle became a student, his brother Dell, 18 years older, was well on his way in a career as a high school math teacher. “He was my role model and could do no wrong in my eyes,” recalls Hickle, now a 36-year veteran educator. “Seeing how much my brother enjoyed teaching made me in awe of his work with students. So it made perfect sense that I would follow in his footsteps.”

Today Hickle became a role model for teachers throughout West Virginia. He was among only 12 statewide to receive a 2011 Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award. Arch Coal Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Steven F. Leer made the announcement during a presentation ceremony at the Clay Center in Charleston. He was accompanied by West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and West Virginia Education Association (WVEA) Executive Director David Haney.

“Terry J. Hickle believes students must be prepared for the current world and how to approach a world that will exist in the future,” says Leer. “In order to achieve this, teachers are obligated to maintain skills at a global level.”

A Vienna resident, Hickle teaches math, computer applications and technology at Parkersburg High School. “My advice to those who believe they want a career as an educator is to reflect on their years as a student,” he notes. “Teachers are no longer instructors of content subjects. They must accept that teaching today is finding those practices that enable each student to learn. Education, like technology, is constantly changing. Successful teachers use their problem-solving skills to find beneficial solutions to new challenges.”

Hickle earned a bachelor’s degree at California State College, California, Pa., and a master’s degree at West Virginia University. He has achieved an additional 60 hours of graduate credit at various education institutions. Hickle is a member of the PHS technology team and serves as the school’s technology coordinator. He also is the school’s instructor for the Aries computer hardware, networking and servers course. Hickle developed and teaches a computer applications course on how to use free software and other powerful programs, and he helped design offsite access for the school’s security cameras and wireless computer access points.

Hickle further serves his community through longtime involvement in a range of scouting initiatives, through which he received the Cross and Flame Outstanding Service and the Blennerhassett District Charlie Akers Scouting Spirit awards. He is a member of the Partner in Education Committee with DuPont and a Wood County master gardener. Hickle has served as assistant director of the Vienna River Road Race for 12 years, with five as timing coordinator of the News and Sentinel Half Marathon and three as course director of the regional cross-county meet. He also operates the electronic message board during PHS home football games.

In addition to recognition, awardees receive a $3,500 unrestricted cash prize, a distinctive trophy and a classroom plaque. The West Virginia Foundation for the Improvement of Education, a foundation of WVEA, makes a $1,000 award to each recipient’s school, for use with at-risk students.

The teacher-recognition awards are underwritten by the Arch Coal Foundation and supported in program-promotion by the West Virginia Department of Education, the WVEA and the West Virginia Library Commission. The Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Awards is the longest running, privately sponsored teacher-recognition program in the state. Nominations are made by the public, and selection is made by a blue-ribbon panel of the teachers’ peers – previous recipients of the award.

The Arch Coal Foundation also supports teacher-recognition or grant programs in Wyoming, Utah and Colorado, as well as a number of other education-related causes.

Arch Coal, Inc. is one of the world’s largest and most efficient coal producers, with more than 160 million tons sold in 2010. Arch supplies cleaner-burning, low-sulfur coal to customers on four continents through its national network of mines. In West Virginia, Arch subsidiaries operate the Mountain Laurel and Coal-Mac complexes. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACI) and maintains its corporate headquarters in St. Louis, Mo.