Nominated by his peers, Harold Torrence said he is proud to represent DCTC for the Excellence in Teaching award
Dakota County Technical College Business Management Instructor Harold Torrence has been nominated for the 2016 MNSCU Board of Trustees Excellence in Teaching award.
The Board of Trustees presents the Award for Excellence in Teaching annually. The award recognizes educators for exceptional professional accomplishments in teaching.
This year’s award will be given out on April 20. That date already holds significance for Torrence, as it is the day in 1999 that he came to the United States.
Torrence moved from Venezuela to attend graduate school at Hamline University. He arrived in April speaking limited English. He had four months to learn the language before starting a Master’s program in August.
“Many international graduate students do that. It shows what human beings are able to accomplish, when they have a true desired to grow and to learn,” said Torrence.
Education has played a central theme in Torrence’s life. After completing his Master of Arts in Management, he went on to achieve a second Master’s Degree in Public Administration.
He joined DCTC in early 2005 working in Customized Training. He then took on teaching duties and eventually was hired on as a full-time faculty member.
His work as an educator inspired Torrence to go back to school one more time and he earned a Doctorate in Education from Hamline University in 2012.
“I wanted to learn to become a better educator,” said Torrence.
During his time at DCTC, Dr. Torrence has taught a variety of courses including International Business, Managing Diversity, Multicultural Mentoring, Multicultural Conflict Resolutions, Organizational Behavior, Management Effectiveness, Foundations of Management, Quality Management, Effective Business Communication, Project Management, and Spanish.
On top of his teaching duties, Torrence serves on a variety of committees and councils including the Dakota County Technical College Diversity Council and the Multicultural Student Leadership Association.
“I enjoy being engaged because I love this place. I love what we do here,” said Torrence.
Torrence said he sees Dakota County Technical College as an enterprise for transformation and change. For his part in it, he works hard to make sure that students gain the skills and knowledge to go out and reach their full potential.
“It’s fantastic to hear students tell me their success stories. That to me has a lot of value,” said Torrence.
An honor he wasn’t expecting, Torrence said he was humbled by the kind words that came with the nomination. A handful of people nominated Harold for the honor. Some of the statements they made about him include, “He strives to be the best that he can be every single day.” And, “Harold is a great example of energy and passion. He’s an ambassador of DCTC.”
Grateful for the opportunity to represent the school, Torrence said he’s proud to work at Dakota County Technical College.
“I love our mission and I believe in our mission very strongly. Regardless of the challenges, this is a great place to work,” said Torrence.