CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. -- "The better instructor you are, the better the quality of Marine you put out into the fleet," said Staff Sgt. Eva Scaggs, an instructor at the Personnel Administration School, Marine Corps Combat Service Support Schools on Camp Johnson.
The command honored the New Orleans Marine May 3 during an Instructor of the Year ceremony at the Camp Johnson Chapel.
Scaggs, a former career planner who took Career Planner of the Year honors for Headquarters Marine Corps in 1998, competed against three other instructors who had previously been selected as the Instructors of the Year within their individual schools.
"It was a good competition," Scaggs said. "I put a lot of effort into it. It was the highlight of my week, and it makes you strive to be better. I enjoy teaching better than being a career planner."
MCCSSS incorporated the IOY competition into its classrooms in the mid-80s to recognize the most outstanding instructor at the school and build competitiveness in becoming the best of the best, according to Marcy Lynn Waters, the unit command academics officer.
"Our primary mission is training Marines in various military occupational skills," said Waters. "If we don't train them well, they will not be effective members of their units. When they leave the front gate at Camp Johnson, we want them to be effective. The one person who is going to make that happen is the instructor."
Each instructor is at various stages in his or her tour at the school, but the competition revolves around the calendar year. Waters said the schools conduct Instructor of the Quarter boards each quarter and each of the formal schools selects its own individual instructor. The IOY winners from each school then compete for the MCCSSS award.
"I think it is a great program," said Staff Sgt. Manuel R. Rendon, Logistics Operations School. "I came out here to be with the best. This program really challenges everyone because it challenges us to be the best of the best. The classes we received give us more knowledge of being a teacher."
"I think it improves the quality of our instructors," concluded Rendon, who was a runner-up in the competition. "To me it is an honor and a privilege to teach our Marines."