Assistant Dean Debbie Brinker was named one of two recipients of the President’s Distinguished Teaching Awards for Instructors and Clinical Faculty – the first College of Nursing faculty member to receive the honor.

Brinker teaches professional development and senior practicum courses and is Assistant Dean for Faculty Affairs and Community Engagement; she’s been on the College of Nursing faculty for 13 years.

As an educator, “My primary focus is to engage students so we grow leaders in health care,” she said. But Brinker said credit for her honor also goes to the College of Nursing’s exceptional faculty, staff, and students, who she called “the why of what we do.”

WSU said in announcing the award, “Her teaching philosophy of ‘engage and transform’ is manifested in her research publications, positive student evaluations and affirming feedback from clinical site partners.”

Her legacy as a WSU educator will be in her students’ open minds, critical-thinking skills, and in their leadership. She’s still on an educational journey herself, Brinker noted: “I’ve been a nurse for 40 years, and when I’m done learning, it’s either time for a new job, or time to retire.”

About the award: The President’s Distinguished Teaching Award for Instructors and Clinical Faculty recognizes “truly outstanding accomplishments in the establishment of excellence in the instructional programs of Washington State University,” either as a record of excellence or through outstanding singular accomplishments.

Debbie Brinker and her fellow honoree, Xiaopeng Bi of WSU North Puget Sound in Everett, will be recognized at the Celebrating Excellence Recognition Banquet on Friday, March 31, at 5:30 p.m. in Beasley Coliseum in Pullman.