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June 9, 2016
By Alexandra Mortallaro, media relations assistant
Gina McNeese, an instructor of health and physical education at Northwest Missouri State University and its Horace Mann Laboratory School, recently was recognized by the Missouri Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (MOAHPERD) as the Northwest District Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year for 2016.
She is now a candidate for the Missouri Physical Education Teacher of the Year.
“The Missouri Physical Education Teacher award means a great deal to me because over 35 years ago, when I was a student at Northwest, I attended my first Missouri Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance convention,” McNeese said. “Attendance at that convention provided me the opportunity to witness excellent teacher workshops and the awards banquet. That first experience inspired me and set the tone for my career.”
McNeese joined the Northwest faculty in 1994. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education and health as well as her Master of Science degree in physical education from Northwest.
For the last 30 years, McNeese has presented on a variety of topics at the same convention she attended when she was a student, and she encourages health science and wellness majors from Northwest to attend as well.
“I consider myself fortunate to have had the opportunity to encourage students of all ages to improve their health and develop skills that will hopefully help them to achieve a full, healthy and happy life,” she said.
Outside of her teaching, McNeese conducts CPR, first aid, lifeguard training and water safety workshops in Missouri and Iowa as well as Northwest. She also leads multiple church youth groups, summer youth programs and swimming lessons, and she volunteers for community improvement and clean-up projects.
“Gina McNeese is a lifelong northwest Missouri resident who finds time to help in any and all ways possible to provide an outstanding education to Northwest students,” Horace Mann Principal Sandy Seipel said. “The selection committee was greatly impressed with her credentials and supporting letters.”
McNeese will be recognized on Saturday, Nov. 12, at the MOAHPERD state convention banquet at the Lodge of Four Seasons in Lake Ozark, Missouri.
MOAHPERD supports, encourages and provides assistance to professionals and students to promote programs in health, leisure and movement related activities for the enrichment of human life. For more information about MOAHPERD visit www.moahperd.org.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
215 Administration Building | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468