Mercer Professors Selected As Governor’s Teaching Fellows


SAVANNAH/McDONOUGH — Two Mercer University faculty members were among a select group of educators from across the state selected to participate in the prestigious Governor’s Teaching Fellows Program. Dr. McKinley Thomas, associate professor and director of the Community Medicine Program and Community Preceptor Network at the School of Medicine, was selected to participate in the prestigious Governor’s Teaching Fellows 2012 Summer Symposium. Dr. Ian Henderson, professor of communication in the Department of Liberal Studies of the College of Continuing and Professional Studies, has been named as a full academic year Fellow and will begin the program in August.

The Fellows program is jointly sponsored by the Institute of Higher Education and the Center for Teaching and Learning, University of Georgia, and is designed to move faculty to the leading edge of instructional practice. Mercer is second in the state in the number of faculty who have participated in this program, with 26 fellows since its inception in 1995.

Dr. Thomas has more than 20 years of academic and leadership experience in higher education, with many of his accomplishments in program and curriculum development, including six years with the School of Medicine. Dr. Thomas completed her Doctor of Education from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in 1995 and earned a Master of Education from Georgia College and State University in 1989. 

Dr. Henderson is based at the Henry County Regional Academic Center, and teaches at the Douglas and Macon centers and the Atlanta campus as well. He has been a faculty member at Mercer since 1991 and chairs the College’s Curriculum Committee. He earned his Ph.D. in speech communication from Southern Illinois University in 1991 and his Master of Science there in 1986. Dr. Henderson completed his Bachelor of Arts, with honors, from Birmingham University in Birmingham, England, in 1980.

The Governor’s Teaching Fellows Program was established in 1995 by then-Gov. Zell Miller to provide Georgia’s higher education faculty with expanded opportunities for developing important teaching skills, particularly those addressing how to use emerging technologies in the classroom. Among of the criteria for selection in the program include: excellence in teaching, interest in continuing to improve instruction, ability to have an impact on the home campus and the strong commitment of the home institution to the faculty member’s participation.

About Mercer University:
Founded in 1833, Mercer University is a dynamic and comprehensive center of undergraduate, graduate and professional education. The University enrolls more than 8,300 students in 11 schools and colleges – liberal arts, law, pharmacy, medicine, business, engineering, education, theology, music, nursing and continuing and professional studies – on campuses in Macon, Atlanta and Savannah – and four regional academic centers across the state. The Mercer Health Sciences Center launched July 1, 2012, and includes the University’s medical, nursing and pharmacy schools and will add a fourth college – the College of Health Professions – on July 1, 2013. Mercer is affiliated with four teaching hospitals — Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah, the Medical Center of Central Georgia in Macon, and The Medical Center and St. Francis Hospital in Columbus. The University also has educational partnerships with Warner Robins Air Logistics Center in Warner Robins and Piedmont Healthcare in Atlanta. It operates an academic press and a performing arts center in Macon and an engineering research center in Warner Robins. Mercer is the only private university in Georgia to field an NCAA Division I athletic program.