November 22, 2021
21-104

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

Lauren Brewer Named Top College of Education and Human Services Graduate at VSU

Lauren Elizabeth Brewer of Valdosta, Georgia, is the recipient of the Fall 2021 President’s Award for Academic Excellence for the James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services at Valdosta State University. She will graduate magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Education in Elementary Education and the certification needed to teach students in prekindergarten through fifth grade during VSU's 232nd Commencement.

VALDOSTA — Lauren Elizabeth Brewer of Valdosta, Georgia, is the recipient of the Fall 2021 President’s Award for Academic Excellence for the James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services at Valdosta State University.

The President’s Award for Academic Excellence is presented to the graduating student with the highest grade point average in each of VSU’s six colleges — Harley Langdale Jr. College of Business Administration, College of Nursing and Health Sciences, College of the Arts, James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and College of Science and Mathematics.

Brewer will be recognized during VSU’s 232nd Commencement at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 11, on the Front Lawn. She will graduate magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Education in Elementary Education and the certification needed to teach students in prekindergarten through fifth grade.

“What an honor this is,” she said. “Once I was told about this award, I immediately began to reminisce about my experience at VSU, and one specific memory came to mind.

“Each year at VSU, and even while I was at Lowndes High School, I would drive by the James L. and Dorothy H. Dewar College of Education and Human Services Education Center. Before I even started the program, I used to say to myself, ‘I can’t wait to see the things I will learn, the people I will meet, and the advice I will receive as I become an educator.’ After four years at VSU, the things I anticipated exceeded my expectations. I was provided with all the resources and accommodations a college student might need to succeed in their field. I met professors who gave constructive feedback and advice on how to set goals and work hard to achieve them. I was given the opportunity to work in a range of schools and gain experience in multiple grade levels, not to mention the phenomenal mentor teachers who guided me along the way.

“A mission statement that is said every morning at the school where I did my student teaching is, ‘Where everyone succeeds academically and socially now and in the future.’ Every morning, after reading this with the students, I got a deeper love and appreciation for the career I have chosen. The students are striving to meet this expectation while I am striving to guide them in their academic and social learning process. This saying holds true for VSU as well. All my experience, strategies, and skills I have learned will be used to meet students where they are in order to prepare them for the future. Making a positive impact on a student’s future is more than I could ever ask for.

“I am so thankful for such a supportive community. Academics are a priority for me, and the fact that I am being recognized for the hours of dedication I have put into my degree is such an honor. I’m proud to be a part of the VSU community, and I will always set the best example I can for the Department of Teacher Education as long as I am a teacher. Thank you for this award, and thank you for some of the best years of my life.”

As a student at VSU, Brewer was an active member of the Wesley Foundation, a campus ministry. She served as a youth and missions outreach intern for Crossroads Baptist Church in Valdosta and volunteered with Lowndes Associates Ministries to People Inc., a nonprofit fighting homelessness across South Georgia. She also gave back to her community as a certified early education tutor and a certified substitute teacher with the Lowndes County Board of Education.

Brewer’s commitment to academic and service excellence resulted in her being named a HOPE Scholar and earning repeated Dean’s List honors, Google for Education educator certification, Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative certification, and Georgia Educator Ethics certification.

“After graduation I am going to continue to set goals for my personal and professional life,” she said. “I am getting married the weekend after graduation to my wonderful fiancé, Austin Crockett. I am looking forward to building a life with him here in Valdosta.

“I have had the opportunity to volunteer and work in almost every Lowndes County and Valdosta City school. After graduation, I have some opportunities lined up to finish off the elementary school year. During this time I will also be applying to Lowndes County Schools, where I have gone to school in the past and gained most of my teaching experience. I would relish the opportunity to give back to the community that I belong to. Being given an opportunity to work in Lowndes County Schools would allow me to become a part of such a committed team and use my own personal skills to further strengthen the high-quality learning environment that these schools offer to their students. Eventually, I’d love to further my education.”

Brewer’s supportive family includes fiancé Austin Crockett, mother Suzanne Brewer, father Hank Brewer, and brothers Henry and Kyle Brewer. She attended Lowndes High School, where she earned the Clemons Scholarship and Dewar Education Scholarship.

On the Web:
https://www.valdosta.edu/administration/advancement/event-services/commencement/
https://www.valdosta.edu/colleges/education/
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