Jaye Fredrickson Award for Teaching Excellence

The Jaye Fredrickson Award for Teaching Excellence is the highest teaching award offered at NorQuest College. The peer-nominated award upholds our mission and values by honouring teaching excellence.

Award recipients must demonstrate a record of professional competence in teaching exemplified by:

  • engaging learners through exemplary facilitation
  • supporting learners through advocacy
  • using innovative pedagogical approaches
  • developing learning-centred curriculum materials
  • employing fair evaluation
  • demonstrating scholarship

Named for NorQuest College’s former Vice President, Academic, the Jaye Fredrickson Award for Teaching Excellence was established to honour the legacy of teaching excellence that Fredrickson inspired. It honours an individual who engages learners through exemplary facilitation, supports them through advocacy and utilizes innovative approaches to education.


2020 recipient: Clara Bergen

Clara Bergen is a difference maker in the lives of her students.

As an instructor in the Interdisciplinary Therapy Assistant program, Clara doesn’t shy away from a challenge. In fact, she is always seeking new and exciting ways to improve her courses and learning materials. Simulations, games, videos, scenario or problem-based learning activities that require clinical judgment are just some of the innovations that Clara incorporates into her classroom. She believes that personalized support, as well as clear, prompt, and regular feedback are essential for learners to build confidence and master skills.

Not only is Clara preparing her students to succeed in their profession, she is also helping them understand the importance of participating in communities of practice, mentorship, and lifelong learning. In addition to maintaining her clinical expertise as a physiotherapist at the University of Alberta Hospital, she keeps very busy with her teaching, and organizing an annual student symposium. Clara is also pursuing a graduate diploma in Instructional Design through Athabasca University. She is certainly not bored!

Colleagues have shared that Clara is an amazing role model, who regularly shares her expertise in student-centred teaching and technological innovations.

Clara’s students say she is “unforgettable”, and one shared that “During COVID-19, Clara has supported us through always being there for us when we need assistance and always giving us constructive feedback that has helped develop our skills. But the biggest thing Clara does for us is listen to what we have to say. So often we see teachers just teach but Clara teaches in a way that allows for shared respect for one another. She is someone who actually cares about her students… She assists us in developing into professionals in our field. There is no one else like Clara, truly.”