May 15th would have been a normal day for Associate Professor Mark Usnick as he sat amongst his colleagues at the 2015 Amarillo College graduation – but when his name was called following the announcement of the John F Mead Faculty Award, he came over with surprise. Since 1988, AC has taken nominations for the Faculty Excellence Award, evaluating classroom teaching, professional activities, service to the college, student and peer support, as well as research, writing, exhibitions and performance.“It was a tremendous surprise and an honor. AC Faculty are required to go to graduation, so every year we sit in the audience and see someone get recognized and it’s always the high achieving teachers. It’s always someone else, is the bottom line. “ Usnick Said. “Its nice to know that your efforts do bare fruit. Not for you, but for your students, and they recognize it. Sometimes you hear, and often you don’t hear whether what you’re doing makes a difference or not. “ Usnick, is starting his fifteenth year of teaching and is currently based out of the Computer Information Systems Department at AC, but teaches a variety of classes including Computer Science as well as Mathematics. Usnick expressed several times how motivating it is to be recognized that his efforts are appreciated and that students and colleagues feel he is worthy for such a prestigious award. Edie Carter of the math department was the 2014 Mead winner.