Bethany’s Yancosek Gamble Receives Educator of the Year Award

BETHANY, W.Va. – Mary Elizabeth “M.E.” Yancosek Gamble, Chair of the Business, Communications and Media Arts department at Bethany College, was recently named the recipient of the West Virginia Public Relations Educator of the Year Award by the state chapter of Public Relations Society of America. The award recognizes a PRSA member who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of public relations education through college or university teaching. She was recognized at the annual Crystal Awards banquet and gala June 17 in Charleston, West Virginia.

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Yancosek Gamble teaches the integrated marketing classes for Bethany College. The Bethany College Chapter of Public Relations Student Society of America, of which she is the advisor, was named “Chapter of the Year” in 2012.

The award is officially called the “Dr. Hal Shaver, APR Public Relations Educator of the Year Award” after the long-time public relations educator in West Virginia. Yancosek Gamble’s first academic position was for Shaver, who was chair of the Bethany College Communications Department from 1982-1990. Shaver left Bethany to be the dean of the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications at Marshall University, where he served until his death in 2004. Gamble and Shaver remained close, and she found winning the Educator of the Year award especially meaningful as he was not only her first academic supervisor, but also a life-long mentor. She now holds the same position that he once held at Bethany College.

Yancosek Gamble is the education chair for the West Virginia Public Relations Society of America. She is also the Vice President for Philanthropy & Programming for Society for Collegiate Journalists. Bethany College was named the SCJ Chapter of the Year in 2014. Yancosek Gamble won the President’s Award for Excellence at Bethany College in 2013, was nominated for the T.A. Abbott Award, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Teaching Excellence Award, and was a first-round finalist for the U.S. Professor of the Year by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

She was also named faculty member of the year by the Service Learning Center at Bethany College for her dedication to volunteer hours. For the past several years her department has won an award for most volunteer hours from the Bethany College Service Learning Department.  

Yancosek Gamble has a master’s degree from Marshall University, a bachelor’s degree from California University of Pennsylvania and has presented nationally five academic papers during the 2014-2015 year. Her research focus is on the e-University and how best educators can integrate technology, such as social media, into the classroom. She has been a contributor to the West Virginia Executive Magazine on this topic.

Bethany College is a small college of national distinction located on a picturesque and historic campus in the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia. Founded in 1840, Bethany is the state’s oldest private college.