Alumni News

School of Education presents annual alumni awards

Outstanding Young Alumna Award
Briana Marie Corke

Briana Corke entered classroom teaching to examine how students we traditionally define as at risk for academic failure could become high achievers. And, by all accounts, she has lived up to that intention, helping children succeed regardless of their hardships.

Though she has only four years of teaching experience, Briana has amassed a lifetime of personal achievements. She was named the 2008-2009 Teacher of the Year for her work as a fourth-grade Spanish/dual language teacher at Carrboro Elementary School. She went on to be named the District Teacher of the Year.

Briana received her Bachelor of Arts in elementary education from the School in 2003 and began teaching the following year. She earned her National Board Certification in 2007 as a Middle Childhood Generalist and received the Excellence in Elementary Science Teaching Award from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Briana also was a prestigious Kenan Fellow from 2006 to 2008, during which time she developed the Invention Convention curriculum application project.

In addition to her classroom work, Briana also has been a frequent speaker in Dr. Rhonda Wilkerson’s courses and a reliable mentor for the School’s students. As a cooperating teacher, she has a significant impact on student teachers by modeling best practices and encouraging prospective educators to reach their potential. Briana demonstrates her extensive knowledge of topics and confidence in her abilities.

And she continues to develop her own expertise and competencies. Briana is intellectually curious and always seeking more knowledge and skills to enhance her practice.

Few teachers reach Briana’s level of skill, success and recognition in an entire career, let alone with just four years of classroom experience. Her training at Carolina and her personal philosophy of teaching have obviously served her well – and will continue to do so for years to come. She stands as a model not only of teaching practice but also of professionalism – a model that many other young teachers will undoubtedly seek to emulate.

For her dedication to the profession of teaching and her extraordinary dedication to helping every child she works with reach his or her potential, we honor Briana Marie Corke with the Outstanding Young Alumna Award.