2017 LC graduate Whitlock-Wild wins national award

Whitlock Wild SmLEWISTON, Idaho – Theresa Whitlock-Wild has become the second Lewis-Clark State College graduate in the past 10 years to win the University Professional Continuing Education Association’s national Outstanding Professional, Continuing, and/or Online Education Student: Credit Award.

Whitlock-Wild, who graduated from LCSC-Coeur d’Alene last May with a degree in communications, will be honored with the award on Thursday during a special presentation at the national UPCEA conference in Baltimore. Kathy Martin, LCSC Dean for Community Programs, will present Whitlock-Wild with the award.

Whitlock-Wild was named the West Region winner of the award last fall, which qualified her as one of the finalists for the national honor. The award recognizes outstanding student achievement in professional and continuing education.

LCSC graduate Mary Jane Oatman also won the award in 2008.

Martin, the Community Programs office, and officials at LCSC-Coeur d’Alene nominated Whitlock-Wild for the award based on her work as the first work scholar at LCSC-Coeur d’Alene. The LCSC Work Scholars program, the only one of its kind in Idaho, pairs high achieving students who have financial need with meaningful jobs both on campus and in the community. Each student receives a full tuition scholarship for the academic year in turn for working 10 hours a week.

Whitlock-Wild coordinated the Swinging for Scholarships golf scramble in Coeur d’Alene last spring, which raised nearly $7,000, a record for the event. The money raised went to scholarship funds for LCSC-Coeur d’Alene students. Whitlock-Wild solicited sponsorships for the event, moved it to a different golf course, and improved the format.

Whitlock-Wild also has been heavily involved with the Matt’s Place Foundation, which she co-founded in 2015 shortly after her husband Matt was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The non-profit organization was created to assist people with ALS and spinal muscular atrophy, along with their families. It’s intention is to provide hope, housing, and assistance to families who are dealing with motor neuron diseases like ALS, Parkinson’s disease and spinal muscular atrophy.

Last November, Matt’s Place Foundation completed its first ALS-friendly home in Coeur d’Alene. The home was also showcased in the Coeur d’Alene Parade of Homes. The house has a smart home design, which allows an ALS patient to open the house with their eyes, along with opening and closing doors and windows, among other items. The foundation is hoping to build more home like this in northern Idaho.

Whitlock-Wild helped raise more than $200,000 to help with construction for the home.

Along with being an LC Work Scholar and helping with fundraising for Matt’s Place Foundation, Whitlock-Wild was a full-time student and made the school’s honor role. She earned her bachelor’s degree while being care provider for her husband and raising three children. She wants to earn a Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership.

“She is an excellent example of devotion to family, perseverance under adverse conditions, and determination to complete multiple projects competing for her attention – all while doing them exceedingly well,” Martin wrote in her nomination letter.

As part of the award, Whitlock-Wild had to put together a 60 second acceptance video, which can be found on YouTube at https://youtu.be/yl6jc8BGpoA