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UT Tyler Education Professor Receives Service Award

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October 9, 2013

Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

October 9, 2013

Dr. Olga Fischer, professor of education at The University of Texas at Tyler, was recognized for her longtime service to the Academic Rodeo, Dr. Ross Sherman, College of Education and Psychology dean, announced.

Academic Rodeo is a collection of competitive events for Texas students in Grades K – 12. Events range from individual to team contests, written tests as well as identification and construction activities. Fischer served as a judge for the Academic Rodeo Writing Contest for 18 years.

“Dr. Fischer has been a valuable asset to our college and the UT Tyler School of Education. We are extremely proud that she has been recognized for her work in literacy by the Academic Rodeo,” Sherman said. “She has dedicated her professional career to promoting a love of literacy in K-12 students and their teachers.”

Serving UT Tyler since 1980, Fischer holds a Ph.D. in English education from Vanderbilt University and a master of arts in teaching with concentrations in English and education from Colgate University. She also holds permanent Texas teaching and supervisory certifications from the Texas Education Agency.

Among other awards and honors, she received the 2008 UT Tyler Faculty Senate Medal of Recognition for Teaching Excellence. Fischer also is a four-time winner of a UT Tyler Alpha Chi Teaching Award and two-time nominee for the Piper Professor Award.

Academic Rodeo began at the East Texas State Fair in 1991 as two contests, art and writing, for schools in the Tyler Independent School District. It soon enlarged to include all schools – public, private and home schools – in the East Texas area. Contests were added throughout the years, expanding opportunities for students.

In 2007, Academic Rodeo became a stand-alone event, operating separately from the East Texas State Fair. Currently, there are 14 competitive events and a teacher recognition program. Preliminary rounds of some contests and submission of some entries occur in November or December with the conclusion of contests occurring in late January and early February.

Winners of the Academic Rodeo contests, Outstanding Educator honorees and Academic Rodeo Scholarship recipients are recognized at an Awards Celebration.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of more than 7,500 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.

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