Leyendecker Named College/University Dance Educator of the Year

A Texas A&M International University faculty member who has demonstrated her love for teaching dance step by dance step has won a prestigious award recognizing her teaching excellence.

Bede Leyendecker, A&M International assistant professor of dance and fine arts coordinator, has been named the 2000 College/University Dance Educator of the Year by the Texas Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (TAHPERD), a state organization promoting excellence in teaching in these four areas.

Leyendecker was one of seven state-wide recipients to receive an award.

"I'm honored and really excited. I feel a lot of appreciation is owed to my students who serve as an inspiration for me to be a good teacher", Leyendecker said.

Leyendecker, who is also the instructor of the A&M International Flamenco Troupe, will travel to Dallas in December with six of her Troupe members to receive the award. The Troupe members will perform at the TAHPERD annual conference and give a presentation on Flamenco dancing techniques to students and educators attending.

Leyendecker joined the A&M International faculty in the Fall of 1998.

A Laredo native, she holds both a B.S. and M.S. in Education from the University of Houston. Prior to joining A&M International, she was a longtime dance instructor at Laredo Community College.

As fine arts coordinator, Leyendecker is assisting in the development of a planned Department and directing fine and performing arts activities at the University that are planned as part of the University's new Center for the Performing Arts.

Part of the University's $49.5 million Phase III expansion, the Center is scheduled to include classrooms, dance and art studios, a band hall, a concert hall and a theater.

For further information, please contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at 326-2180. University office hours are 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Affairs and Information Services at pais@tamiu.edu