By Nicole Kiefert
Henderson said it was so surreal to receive the honor that she almost didn’t believe it when she first got the call.
“It’s funny because I got a message on my phone, they called when I was in class,” Henderson said. “I got the message and I thought it was a joke. So I didn’t believe it for a while. It just didn’t seem possible.”
She said the first people she told were her students in PRSSA. “They were very sweet,” she said.
Henderson attributes receiving the award to her students, so she was very pleased that PRSA had given tickets to her students to attend the conference and watch her receive her award.
“They provided tickets for all of my students to come, which was awesome because the tickets by themselves are $99 apiece and none of my students could really have afforded that,” Henderson said. “So that was very nice and they got to sit right in the front so they had a special seat.”
While Henderson was giving her remarks, she surprised her students by recognizing them and having them stand.
“During my remarks I made them all stand up and take a bow because I figured part of the reason I got the award is because of students that make me look good all the time,” Henderson said. “So they stood up and that was pretty cool. I didn’t tell them ahead of time.”
“I believe I’m the first one from Wisconsin,” Henderson said. “It usually goes to somebody from a bigger school because it’s educator, not adviser. So that also includes research and usually it goes to somebody who’s from a research university, which we are not. We are a teaching school. So that also made it special.”
“I am retiring this year, so it was just a really very special moment and very nice to have my last year, to receive a very special recognition,” Henderson said
Henderson said the thing she will miss the most about teaching will be her students.
“That’s really definitely what I’m going to miss the most,” Henderson said. “Not grading papers, not lecturing, not writing tests. Definitely working with the students. That’s going to be a hard break. But through Facebook you are connected for forever.”
Congratulations to Dr. Julie Henderson for receiving the PRSA Outstanding Educator Award.