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Citadel News Service
15 Nov 2007

Sigma Delta Pi names teacher of the year

The Citadel's Chapter of Sigma Delta Pi, the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society has named Renee Love of Gaffney High School the 2007 South Carolina Spanish Teacher of the Year.

Love was among three finalists for the award, which was presented Thursday, Nov. 15 for the third consecutive year to recognize outstanding Spanish teachers in K-12 schools across the Palmetto State. Past winners include Celina P. Anthony of West Ashley High School in 2006 and Jennifer Bryant of Eastside High School (Greenville) in 2005.

The contest's Board chose Love for her impressive and diverse teaching accomplishments in and outside of her school as well as for her outstanding role in disseminating the Hispanic language and culture in South Carolina, said Dr. Mark P. Del Mastro, professor of Spanish and founder and director of the awards program.

Daniel Vallini, on behalf of the sponsor Harvey, Casterline and Vallini law firm, and the Stewart Title Guaranty Co. each presented the winner with a check for $500 totaling $1,000. The runners up, Brenda Barron of Socastee High School in Myrtle Beach and Maelda Chalk of Hilton Head Preparatory School were recognized for their achievements and received plaques during the evening awards ceremony in Mark Clark Hall at The Citadel. All three finalists received a one-night stay for two and breakfast the morning following the ceremony courtesy of the Francis Marion Hotel in downtown Charleston.

The three teachers were selected from nominees from across the state and were judged on innovation in teaching, initiative in Spanish curriculum development, extra-curricular activities related to teaching and professional development.

Love has taught Spanish at Gaffney High School since 1985 and has served as the Foreign Language Department Head since 1991. She collaborated in the writing of a $200,000 Technology Grant for the Gaffney High Foreign Language Lab, and she has served as sponsor of the Spanish club and directed student travel to Spain. A graduate of Limestone College, Love has completed graduate coursework at Converse, Winthrop and USC-Spartanburg.

For more information about the South Carolina Spanish Teacher of the Year program, contact the founder and director, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  by email or call 843-953-5065. Nomination information for the 2008 contest will be available online in late January/early February.

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