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2014 APEQ Award Recipients


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PHE Canada Dr. Andy Anderson Young Professional Award
Michael Cicchillitti – McGill University
About the Award:

The Dr. Andy Anderson Young Professional Award is presented yearly on behalf of Physical and Health Education Canada to one professional per province that best epitomizes exemplary work on behalf of the physical and health education profession. The recipient must be 35 years of age or younger. Dr. Anderson was an incredible leader and had an enormous impact on the field of health and physical education. Throughout his career, he nurtured many leaders who continue to serve as champions and carry on his legacy in our profession today.

Mike completed his degree in Physical Education from McGill University in 2011. He went on to pursue a Master’s degree in Physical Education pedagogy, focusing on the perceptions of male and female physical education teacher education (PETE) students on the reasons why they think boys and girls participate in elementary and high school physical education.

Mike has been on the executive of APEQ since 2010. He has served in the major role of conference co-chair for the past two years. He is currently in the position of treasurer. In short, Mike is a major driving force of the organization, bringing dedication, professionalism, and a positive outlook to every meeting.

Consistent with his strong belief in the promotion of quality teaching, Mike is also a content developer for the website “The PhysicalEducator.com”. He is an avid believer of the use of technology in the classroom and has developed an expertise in this area.

Finally, this year, Mike started in the position of faculty instructor in the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, where his dedication to developing quality physical education pre-service teachers is evident through the care and passion that he shows in his classes and interactions with students.


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Dr. Graham Neil Excellence in Teaching Award (Elementary)
Laura MacTavish - Arundel Elementary School (Sir Wilfrid Laurier School Board)

This annual award is in recognition of physical educators who go above and beyond. APEQ was proud to rename this award after Dr. Graham Neil in 2013. Dr. Neil worked passionately to develop our field, in part as a founding member of APEQ

Laura is someone who is described as both a teacher and leader at her school. She is always motivated and excited to try something new with her students. Laura is very aware of each child's abilities and tries to accommodate each child so they feel comfortable taking part in all the activities she organizes at school. She is always positive and is each child's biggest cheerleader. She supports their competitiveness but keeps them humble. Laura not only champions physical activity, but she also promotes healthy eating in educating students about healthy choices. She invites parents to participate in classes where she is making nutritious snacks with students. Laura’s program emphasizes sportsmanship and ensures that all her students are smiling and enjoying being physically active.


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Dr. Graham Neil Excellence in Teaching Award (Secondary)
Bob Simpson – Mackay Centre School (English Montreal School Board)

This annual award is in recognition of physical educators who go above and beyond. APEQ was proud to rename this award after Dr. Graham Neil in 2013. Dr. Neil worked passionately to develop our field, in part as a founding member of APEQ

Bob was heavily involved with APEQ many moons ago. He is currently in charge of both the Physical Education program and the Swim program at Mackay Center School, and has put a tremendous amount of time and energy into both these programs. Teaching Physical Education to children with disabilities is a challenging job but Bob has worked hard to create an adapted program that includes all students and gives every child an opportunity to participate and be successful in Physical Education. One of the reasons the PE program at Mackay is so successful is because it is a team effort between teachers, nurses, physiotherapists, doctors, parents and pool staff (facilities), and Bob puts in the time and effort necessary to ensure the team approach. The time, energy and dedication that he has put into the Physical Education program at Mackay is inspiring to others, and colleagues in the field in particular.