Assistant Professor of Geology Callan Bentley (AN) has been honored with a 2015 Outstanding Faculty Award from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) and Dominion Resources.
Bentley has taught environmental science and geology for nearly 15 years in secondary and postsecondary education, with nine of those years at NOVA. He has won many awards for his teaching including NOVA’s Golden Apple Award (2007), the Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence (2012), the President’s Sabbatical (2013) and Biggs Award for Excellence in Earth Science Teaching from the Geological Society of America (2014). He was named Fine Fellow (Fine Outreach for Science in 2010) and nominated for NOVA’s Faculty of the Year in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011.
When asked why he chose geology as his major and ultimately his career, he said he picked the major when he got to college because it offered the most field trips and he likes to be outside.
“But once you tap into the basic signatures of geological processes, you look at the world differently. I love to help students see that it’s not a rock, but it is evidence of an ancient process. I like sharing that perspective. The gratification of sharing this ‘enhanced reality’ is what motivates me and NOVA is the perfect place to do it,” Bentley said.
Bentley holds a bachelor’s degree in geology from the College of William and Mary, a master’s degree in geology from the University of Maryland and a second master’s degree in science education from Montana State University.
Bentley and his wife, Lily, are raising their 2-year-old son, Baxter, in Fort Valley, an isolated enclave within the Massanutten Mountain system in Shenandoah County, Virginia. He calls it “a little slice of the past, with farmland and forest.”
This year marks the 29th anniversary of the statewide awards program which honors faculty members for excellence in teaching, research, knowledge integration and public service. Bentley was one of 13 recipients selected from a pool of 88 nominees. The 12 other recipients teach at such four-year institutions including Virginia Military Institute, College of William and Mary, Norfolk State, University of Mary Washington, George Mason University, University of Virginia, Radford University, Virginia Commonwealth University and Old Dominion University.
Recipients will be recognized during a February 19, 2015 ceremony at The Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Virginia. Each will receive an engraved award and $5,000 underwritten by Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources and parent company of Dominion Virginia Power.