Ms. Pappas has been named the Southeastern Region Middle Level Art Educator for 2017.
The prestigious annual award, determined through a peer review of nominations, recognizes the exemplary contributions, service and achievements of an outstanding member at the regional level.
The National Art Education Association’s Southeastern Region consists of 12 states and the Virgin Islands.
Ms. Pappas has taught art at Warrenton Middle for seven years.
She received the award at the association’s national convention in New York, NY, March 2-4.
“This award recognizes excellence in professional accomplishment and service by a dedicated art educator,” said National Art Education Association President Patricia Franklin. “Marisa Pappas exemplifies the highly qualified art educators active in education today: leaders, teachers, students, scholars and advocates who give their best to their students and the profession.”
At the awards ceremony, Vice President of the Southeastern Region Scott Russell said, “Marisa Pappas is an art star. One colleague wrote of her, ‘She has high expectations of her students. Enter her classroom and watch as she demonstrates a skill and teaches a technique or concept. Her students sit in rapt attention because they know that shortly, they will be exploring and experimenting on their own.
“’They will be allowed to craft their own interpretation using this newfound means of expression. In her classroom every middle schooler has the freedom to excel, but is also clearly aware that there is a demand and expectation for excellence. Perhaps the word that would best describe Marisa is collaborative.’”
Ms. Pappas also gave a presentation on best practices in the classroom at the convention.
She also got appointed to the Middle Level Member-at-Large of the National Art Honor Society National Council, the professional association for art educators.
A Warrenton resident, Ms. Pappas earned a bachelor’s degree in fine art at the Massachusetts College of Art.
She also holds a certificate of design from the Paris Fashion Institute in France, certification for vocational education in fashion design from the University of Massachusetts, and a master’s degree in teaching art from George Mason University.
Ms. Pappas received the teacher of the year award for Warrenton Middle School in 2014, and has sponsored an after-school art club there since 2012.
In November 2015, the Virginia Art Education Association selected Ms. Pappas as the Middle School Art Educator of the Year.
Before entering the field of education, Ms. Pappas worked as a fashion design technical consultant, quality control manager, patternmaker for a number of fashion syndicates in the private sector as well as an adjunct instructor of fashion design at Endicott College in Beverly, MA.
She also taught art at the elementary level for four years, with three at Mary Walter Elementary.
“Everything I do, I do for the students,” Ms. Pappas said. “I try to inspire and motivate the students to be the best they can be in all that they try.”