facebook pixel Skip to Main Content
Idaho State University home

College of Education 2024 Celebrating Excellence Awards

April 15, 2024

Each year the Idaho State University College of Education hosts an annual Celebrating Excellence event to honor deserving faculty, staff, alumni, and advancement partners of the College for their significant accomplishments and commitment to excellence in education. This year’s Celebrating Excellence event is scheduled for Friday, April 19, 2024, in the Idaho Central Credit Union Bengal Alumni Center. The research poster session hosted by students, faculty, and staff within the College and social hour will start at 4 p.m. with the award ceremony beginning at 5:30 p.m. Food and drinks will be provided.

We are pleased to announce the College of Education’s 2024 Celebrating Excellence Award winners. 

Mona Heern, College of Education Staff Excellence Award 

Mona Heern has diverse educational experiences as she has lived in four countries on three different continents. She has a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from California State University, Northridge (CSUN). She also has two master's degrees, a master of arts in secondary education and another in educational administration from Idaho State University.

Heern holds school administrator and instructional licenses for Idaho, as well as a secondary teaching license for Utah. She worked as a secondary English and German teacher for a decade and has served as Chair of the English Department at her middle school for five years. 

For the past twenty years, Heern has been an instructor of education and English at multiple colleges and universities. Since 2020, she has been the field experience coordinator at the College of Education, where she finds great joy in supporting teacher education candidates.


Dr. Elaine Foster, College of Education Faculty Excellence Award 

Dr. Elaine Foster is an assistant professor in the Idaho State University Human Performance and Sport Studies (HPSS) Department. She earned a bachelor’s in physical education with an emphasis in exercise science and minor in coaching, and a master’s in physical education with an athletic administration emphasis, both from Idaho State’s College of Education. She also completed her Ph.D. in Education from the University of Idaho with an emphasis in sport pedagogy and character development. Foster is committed to promoting physical activity, especially among girls and women, and this passion led to her scholarly studies focusing on sport philosophy and the subjective value of physical activity. She is actively involved in presenting at conferences and publishing on these topics.

Foster teaches a variety of courses within HPSS including history and philosophy of sport and physical education, issues in sport, and methods of teaching physical education. Her educational philosophy is to support students as “they learn how to learn.” Foster’s service contributions include representing the College of Education on Faculty Senate, serving on the College of Education Faculty Review Committee, and coordinating the annual celebration of National Girls and Women in Sports Day at ISU. In 2022, she received the Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) Idaho for giving 12 years of service to the organization.


Carly Maloney, College of Education Young Alumnus Impact Award 

Mrs. Carly Maloney is in her tenth year as a secondary educator for Davis School District. She teaches concurrent enrollment English, advanced placement psychology, and English language development courses at Viewmont High School in Bountiful, Utah. Maloney is a member of the Davis District Teacher Leader Fellowship, which is the first teacher leadership cohort in her district. She is also a teacher leader mentor for early career teachers, a professional learning coach for experienced teachers, and a school canvas facilitator. In 2023, Maloney was awarded the 2023 Davis School District Teacher of the Year Award, and in 2024, she was named Utah State Teacher of the Year

Maloney graduated with honors from the Idaho State University College of Education in 2014, earning a bachelor of arts in secondary education. She is endorsed in English as a second language (ESL), English language, literature, composition, and psychology. She is a member of the National Education Association and has also served on the Davis Educational Association Board. Throughout her career, Maloney has taught sophomore traditional and honors English, junior English, and digital acceleration courses. She has also coached girls’ soccer and advised sophomore, junior, and student body officers. Additionally, Maloney has served as part of Vermont High School’s joint staff school and standards-based learning committees.


Rosa Gonzalez, Alumni Teaching Excellence Award

Mrs. Rosa Keyli Gonzalez is a 5th grade Spanish teacher in Jerome, Idaho where she teaches as part of the school district’s dual language program and has a strong drive for teaching language learners. Gonzalez discovered her passion for teaching during high school while serving as a student aid and tutor.

Gonzalez had a challenging journey being a first-generation college student. However, through perseverance and hard work, she earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the Idaho State University College of Education in 2016. In 2017, after teaching for a year, Gonzalez decided to apply for a grant for an English as a Second Language (ESL) Endorsement. Having been an ESL student herself, and taking into account the high ESL student population in the community, Gonzalez quickly found her focus in teaching. From there, she pursued her master’s degree in bilingual education. This degree helped Gonzalez prepare to join the dual language program and continuously support language learners in more ways than one.

Gonzalez is currently enrolling in an education administration program and hopes to finish an education specialist degree within the next year. Gonzalez believes that education is a never-ending experience and wants to keep learning as time goes on.


Dr. Jered Borup, Alumni Leadership Excellence Award

Dr. Jered Borup is an associate professor in the Division of Learning Technologies at George Mason University in Fairfax County, Virginia. He is also a third-generation educator with over 20 years of teaching experience including six years as a social studies teacher for the Idaho Falls School District.

Borup earned a master’s degree from the Idaho State University College of Education in 2006 and a Ph.D. from Brigham Young University in 2013. In his current position, he is in charge of Mason’s Learning Technologies in Schools Master’s program which is devoted to improving teacher practices in online and blended learning environments. 

Borup’s current research interests include developing online learning communities and identifying support systems for adolescent learners’ success in online environments. His research includes 70 publications focused largely on communication and support systems within online and blended learning environments. He has been recognized by researchers at Stanford University as one of the top 2% of most-cited researchers in his field.


Tabatha Butler, Bengal Partner Award

Tabatha Butler is an Idaho State University alumnus who completed a degree in history and returned to Pocatello after previously working for both United Way and Intermountain Healthcare in Utah. During her time at Intermountain Healthcare, she was involved with several projects such as fundraising for Primary Children’s Hospital through the Idaho Radiothon, supporting the remodel of the WorkMed space at the Bear River Valley Hospital, and mentoring student coordinators that hosted dance marathons in support of Primary Children’s Hospital.

Butler was recently promoted to executive director of philanthropic engagement, overseeing the fundraising efforts for both the College of Education and the Idaho Museum of Natural History along with managing the philanthropic advisor for the College of Arts and Letters, and supervising the director of donor relations who oversees all stewardship for Idaho State donors. In this role, she has continued to reach and exceed fundraising goals, securing millions of dollars in donations. Additionally, Butler also successfully unveiled the College of Education’s highly anticipated and innovative donor wall, located in the College’s lobby, this spring. This donor wall is the first of its kind on the Idaho State campus. 

To learn more about the College of Education’s Celebrating Excellence event and to RSVP, please visit: https://www.isu.edu/education/outreach/celebratingexcellence/


College of EducationUniversity News