Jonathan Noyalas, Assistant Professor of History at Lord Fairfax Community College (LFCC), is a recipient of the 2016 Outstanding Faculty Awards from the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV). Noyalas is the only community college professor in Virginia to receive this recognition for 2016. Award recipients are selected based upon their contributions to their students, academic disciplines, institutions, and communities.
Dr. Cheryl Thompson-Stacy, President of LFCC remarked, “Jonathan is an exceptional faculty member. His dedication to our students and his passion for history shine bright. We are fortunate to have a professor of his caliber at LFCC.”
This is quite an achievement for that young kindergartener who reflected as being the only child in his class carrying around a copy of “The Civil War,” by Bruce Catton.
Noyalas is a well-known author of 11 books and numerous articles about the Civil War. However, it is his talent as an educator of history that ranks highest with his students at LFCC. Many times his classes are filled to capacity, and students are amazed and awe-inspired by the way he makes the past come alive while simultaneously showing history’s applicability to their daily lives.
In addition to showing students how an understanding of history can inspire us in moments of great personal or national crisis, Noyalas also helps students connect with the past through immersing them in the rich history of the lower Shenandoah Valley.
Each semester Professor Noyalas engages his students in local history by conducting tours of portions of the Cedar Creek Battlefield, as well as opening up private tours of various history sites in the Shenandoah Valley. Three of his former students are employed with the National Park Service.
Noyalas began his teaching career as an Adjunct History Instructor at LFCC shortly after receiving his M.A. in History from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 2003. In 2008, he was promoted to Assistant Professor of History at LFCC, where he founded and directs the Center for Civil War History. As director, Noyalas has lead many tours and seminars, including recent programs on “The Battle of Front Royal,” “The Quest for Freedom of Afro-Americans in the Shenandoah Valley” and “Heal the Wounds, Life after War.”
From the moment Professor Noyalas joined LFCC’s full-time teaching faculty, he searched for ways to assist the institution in its mission. Recognized by his peers as a leader among the College’s faculty ranks, Noyalas was elected to his first term as a faculty senate representative in September 2010, after only two years as part of the full-time faculty.
During his seven years as a full-time faculty member, his service to the college includes:
- Faculty senate’s representative to the College’s Leadership Council
- Current chair of the faculty senate
- LFCC’s Curriculum and Instruction Committee
- Five faculty search committees, including chair of one
His most notable awards include:
- Virginia Community Colleges Association’s Faculty Showcase Award, received in October 2015
- The Distinguished Faculty Award and the Distinguished Scholarship Awards from the college, both in May 2015
Noyalas served as chair of the Interpretation and Education Committee for the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation. He also served as chair of the foundation’s annual sesquicentennial conferences, bringing together historians to present on topics unique to our region. The sesquicentennial marks the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.
The Outstanding Faculty Awards ceremony and luncheon will be held at the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond on Tuesday, February 16, 2016. Prior to the event, the recipients will be asked to join in an honorary introduction on the floor of the Virginia General Assembly.