Bellevue College Foundation Announces 2019 Faculty & Staff Excellence Award Recipients

Rama Shivashankara, Jennifer Townsend, Carmina Cruz, Janis Juarez

The Bellevue College Foundation honored four outstanding faculty and staff on Wednesday, June 5, 2019 during a campus ceremony in recognition of their ongoing contributions to the campus and to the community.

Awards of $2,500 each go to recipients in the following categories: full-time faculty, part-time faculty, classified staff, and administrative exempt. Nominations are submitted by students, faculty, administrators, staff, and trustees. In all, 159 employees have received the award since its inception 35 years ago.

This year’s recipients are:


Rama Shivashankara – Part-Time Faculty, Diagnostic Ultrasound

Rama ShivashankaraShivashankara is known for going the extra mile for her students, engaging with them in a meaningful and interactive way in the classroom and providing one-on-one assistance outside the classroom. A former department head for Evergreen Hospital vascular department, she fosters engagement with the clinical community and visits her students in the clinics as well. She and her husband recently donated funds to start a scholarship for students pursuing a degree in Diagnostic Ultrasound. Their intent is to provide substantial aid to a second-year student while serving in their required internship placement.



Jennifer Townsend – Full-Time Faculty, Mathematics

Jennifer TownsendTownsend is recognized for her love of the subject and dedication to student success. As the acting Chair and Assistant Chair of the Math department, she demonstrates compassion and advocacy for students and colleagues. She was co-director of a research education project for undergraduates at Seattle University for a summer, in which selected undergraduate students actively engaged in real mathematics research. Jen also formed and chaired a faculty committee to investigate how to improve the success of students transitioning from pre-calculus into calculus, and this has led to the creation of a new course, Math 150, for students who are struggling in the beginning calculus course, Math 151.


Carmina Cruz – Exempt, Radiation Therapy & Radiologic Technology

Carmina CruzCruz is recognized for her commitment to student success from the application process to graduation and all the needs in between. She works hard to ensure that the community at large is kept up-to-date through BC’s clinical network and industry partners and assists with BC’s annual Clinical Instructors Workshop.

Janis Juarez – Classified, Arts & Humanities

Janis JuarezIn her 30 years of service to Bellevue College, Juarez has been consistently recognized for the helpful, compassionate and festive ways in which she supports students and her division. From her weekly web page newsletter, “Islands of Sanity” that keeps the division abreast on the many programs the division and college are offering that support pluralism, sustainability, and innovation, to encouraging Halloween decorations and organizing staff celebrations, Juarez keeps the department well informed while fostering a welcoming environment.

Last Updated September 30, 2019