On Tuesday, July 16, Brownwood High School Health Science Teacher, Ann Tew, was awarded “Outstanding New Health Science Teacher in Texas” by Texas Health Occupations Association, Inc. (THOA).
The recipient of the award is determined through a nomination and interview process. Nominees must be a member of THOA and are required to have taught in the field for at least three years, but not more than five years. Tew has just completed her fourth year teaching Health Science at Brownwood High School.
“This was a complete surprise,” said Tew. “I had no idea this was coming.”
Tew was the first instructor for the Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) program that began at BHS three years ago. BHS has seen an increase in HOSA student involvement every year, with around 40 students the first year to 100 students last year.
“The [Health Science] program is only 4 years old, and that is what they [THOA] have been watching,” explained Tew. “They’ve watched this program grow, and just couldn’t believe how much we’ve progressed.”
With an estimated 12 percent of high school students now involved in HOSA, the growing success of the program was considered during the judging process. In addition, every year that the BHS HOSA team has competed, they have qualified for state, and for the last two years they have had national qualifiers.
“We took 15 kids to state this year. That’s pretty awesome,” noted Tew. “We also had a state winner this past year. Amelia Collins took first place in the state of Texas in Medical Reading.”
Tew indicated that the increase in programs and certifications offered through the BHS Health Sciences program also played a role in her being selected for the award.
“The first year we just had one certification for Pharmacy Tech,” said Tew. “The second year, when Mrs. [Annaylin] Deen joined us, we were able to expand and offer the National Healthcare Standard Skills certification.”
“We’ve also recently added microbiology and pathophysiology to the program,” stated Tew, explaining that she received additional certifications to be able to offer them at BHS. “I worked on getting two certifications, and because I’m certified in Health Science Technology and Life Science, I went ahead and received the core certification to be able to teach them.”
Though the award was a surprise for Tew, she acknowledged the department’s success is partly due to the support she receives from the administration at Brownwood ISD.
“The [BISD] administration found me four years ago in the summer, and got my resume from the hospital,” noted Tew, recalling specific instances where BISD Superintendent, Dr. Reece Blincoe, Deputy Superintendent, Kevin Gabaree, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculm, Liesa Land, and BHS Principal Bill Faircloth encouraged and helped her in one way or another. “They gave me this opportunity, and all of them have been nothing but encouraging. It’s that kind of thing that has made the program grow. Not me.”