Mr. Duyck grew up on a farm, where he learned that working hard often produces successful results. He attributes that lifestyle with his success throughout his school years.
“The work ethic I learned at a young age has led me to a lifelong education journey through three private universities, two community colleges, and the completion of my graduate degree,” he says. “I’ve learned to identify good teachers who really care, who have instilled in me the tools to become a successful student.”
Mark Duyck’s final paper, “Strategies to Facilitate Success for Student Veterans Affected by Hearing Loss and Traumatic Brain Injury,” identifies successful ways to support the increasing population of returning veterans on PSU’s campus.
Mr. Duyck participated in three internships during his master’s program, working in the disability services departments at OHSU, PSU, and Chemeketa Community College. He attributes these experiences with helping him find his current teaching positions. The PACE master’s program has opened several doors for him, in spite of the current economic climate. He will continue to work as a licensed physical therapist assistant while exploring his teaching opportunities.
PACE students bring to their program unique perspectives on learning that are informed by their more advanced career experiences. Mr. Duyck, who is also a member of Kappa Delta Pi, has a strong start on his future as an educator in the field of physical therapy. “Through my own critical reflection and personal assessment, I was led to my vocation of nurturing and planting seeds of knowledge and fitness in my clients,” he says. “In addition, my clients and students have rewarded me with their gift of teaching me. My advocacy work has called me to esteem the human dignity of the marginalized, veterans, and individuals with disabilities.”
The PSU Commendation Awards were established to recognize and encourage outstanding academic achievement and service among students. Each year PSU awards one Commendation Award to an undergraduate and a graduate student from each school or college. Commendation Award recipients are also considered for the annual Awards of Excellence, which are given to one undergraduate and one graduate student from the whole University.