Victor R. Swenson Award

Recognizing an outstanding humanities educator

Victor R. Swenson Humanities Educator Award

With this award, the Vermont Humanities Council recognizes an educator in grades 6 through 12 who:

  • Inspires his or her students and encourages in them intellectual curiosity and a lifelong love of learning
  • Possesses extraordinary knowledge, ability, and accomplishment in the teaching of language, literature, history, social studies, or other humanities fields
  • Exhibits infectious enthusiasm for his/her subject and learning in general
  • Embodies a commitment to the highest standards of achievement, for him/herself and students

Changes for 2021

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we did not ask for Swenson Award nominations in the fall of 2020, as teachers and administrators worked tirelessly and skillfully to meet the needs of their students. Up to two Victor R. Swenson Educator Awards will be given in 2021.

This year, we’re asking nominators to tell us how teachers have excelled in working under the difficult circumstances presented by the twin pandemics of Covid-19 and structural racism. The deadline for nominations for this year’s award is August 15, 2021.

The awards, with a $1,000 prize, will be presented in the fall. To learn more about the award, contact Linda Wrazen at . 

Nominate an Educator for the Swenson Award

Nominations are due August 15, 2021.

Image of Joyce Yoo Babbitt with Ben Doyle and Victor R. Swenson

2019 Award Winner: Jason Barney, Missisquoi Valley Union High School

Barney has taught history and civics at MVU since 2003. In nominating him for the Swenson Award, colleagues pointed to his engaging teaching style and to the design of his classes, which provide students with immersive, hands-on learning experiences that have greatly enriched the learning culture at MVU.

Read more about Jason Barney.