Celebrating All Staff Loyalty

Awardees for Fall 2021

Patti Martin and Liz Clark (submitted by Gregory Osowski)

This nomination is for Mrs. Patricia Martin and Ms. Elizabeth Clark.

Mrs. Martin is not only a great source of information and always willing to share this information with other member of the Internship Advisory Council. She is always willing to help us as we meet that proverbial "wall" in front of us. She has always responded to my emails in a very timely manner and keeps us updated with any possible new internship positions that become available.

Granted, some may say that this is part of her "job description" it may be but her passion and her zeal in doing her job must be recognized.

Again, all comments are for Pattie and Liz, this is a "pair" that can beat any "full house".

Awardees for Summer 2021

Congratulations to Morgan Yuncker for receiving the Summer 2021 prize!
Nada Bachir (submitted by Marty Hershock)

I want to use this opportunity to recognize Nada's commitment to our students and to ensuring that when they interact with our office, that they always leave having the answers they need or, if they just felt the need to talk to someone, that they feel heard. In the normal course of her work as Assistant to the Dean, Nada comes into contact with numerous students who have issues or concerns that they wish to bring to the Dean. Since last October, Nada has also been covering the front desk responsibilities of our Administrative Specialist Intermediate position. This has only served to increase her contact with students who reach out to our office with any number of varied questions.

In spite of her very busy schedule, Nada always prioritizes student queries and ensures that they have the answers they need or know what next steps (and with whom) they might need to take. I could list numerous examples here--students who have become involved in academic integrity system, students who need financial assistance, students facing classroom issues, students who have questions about specific scholarship opportunities or degree programs. Time and again, she hears them out, works quickly to get them answers, or steers them down the right path for additional assistance.

A number of these students eventually make their way to me and to a person, express their appreciation for the assistance rendered by Nada. These sorts of actions often go unrecognized but they are crucially important as they reflect the values and priorities of the college and the university and they model the level of service that we look for in all of our staff members. Thank you Nada for looking out for our students!

Susie Gassel (submitted by Lynn Grimley)

As the director of CASL Advising, Susie has created a welcoming, engaging, and motivating environment for both her staff and students alike. She is approachable and kind-hearted and an advocate of student development and success.

Susie's approach to being a director is to lead by example and to be open and understanding. She has fostered a true team-oriented environment where work is meaningful and enjoyable, which is such a rare and fabulous thing to be a part of. She is incredibly hard working and would never ask one of her staff members to do something that she, herself, would not want to do. She trusts us, as advisors, to do our jobs but is always ready to answer questions or offer guidance when needed. She sees her students as individuals and carefully considers situations without prescribing blanket solutions to problems.

I think I can speak for her staff as a whole in saying that we cannot imagine working for anybody else at this point as the true collaborative and caring nature of our office culture is inimitable. Her humbled nature may make it easy for all of her hard work and accomplishments in running a very busy office to go unnoticed, so I am strongly recommending Susie for this celebratory award to give her the acknowledgement that she deserves.

Susie Gassel (submitted by Marty Hershock)

Where to begin? I write this as a long-overdue recognition of the work of Susie Gassel.

Susie works tirelessly in behalf of the college and our students. Many have been the times (literally, every week) that I reach out to Susie with a query about an individual student's circumstances or needs or to solicit assistance on some student or curricular issue. Without hesitation, Susie always springs into action and provides me whatever information I need in rapid order. I am eternally grateful to Susie for all that she does.

Thank you Susie!

Sue Gedert (submitted by Marty Hershock)

There are far too many things to say about Sue than can be said in this brief space. She is such an incredible asset to both CASL and to the university. Today I wish to recognize Sue for the many, many things she does behind the scenes, to assist us all and to tell the college's story.

Much of the work that Sue does is not necessarily high profile or flashy (newsletters, the web page, organizing webinars, creating marketing materials, etc.) but it is exactly the kind of work that, when done wrong, leads to disastrous results. The fact that we've had no such disasters speaks volumes about Sue's steady hand and reassuring presence. Always a delight to work with, Sue prides herself on her commitment to the college and to our students. She is a real prize and everyone who works with her is better for knowing her. Thank you Sue!

Sue Gedert (submitted by Gregory Osowski)

Recently, Dr. Shelton and I worked on a recognition project for those agencies who have supported our Internship Program.
We contacted Susan and explained our project and the need of graphic assistance. Without hesitation, Sue stepped forward and offered to handle the graphics and notification process to/for those agencies.

Her support, professionalism, and quality of work should be a benchmark for all. Thank you, Sue!

Christine Kelly-Williams (submitted by Marty Hershock)

I am writing in recognition of Christine's excellent work on the recent Faculty 180 project that I tasked her with. As is always the case, Christine approached the task in a careful and thoughtful manner, gathering information, speaking with the important stakeholders, documenting the issues/concerns that she was hearing, facilitating conversations between the departments and the Provost's office, and proposing solutions/next steps to college leadership.

Her work, as it always is, is comprehensive and of very high quality. Moreover, I appreciate her ability to see the big picture and how various pieces hang together and how they serve the strategic needs of the unit. Her recommendations always reflect this perspective. Thank you Christine for your professionalism, your willingness to take on any challenge, and your diligence and timeliness. The college very much appreciates you!

Corey Lambert (submitted by Orin Gelderloos)

Corey Lambert is the Manager of the Physical Sciences laboratories in the Natural Sciences Department and he has many varied duties for which he is responsible and on call. Yet, when a graduate student in the Master of Science in Environmental Science needed considerable technical assistance with using the Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS) when no other person was able or available to assist him, Corey volunteered his experiences and expertise.

The student's challenge was to analyze over two hundred samples of soil and plant parts for sodium content. He had no prior knowledge of the range of the sodium in any of the samples. For example, if he tested for sodium in the range of, say 0-100 parts per million (ppm) and the actual content was 5000 ppm, it was necessary to run several trials to find the correct range in which to test his samples and increasing the number of tests. Thus, the learning experience not only involved the operating procedures for the AAS, but also the tedious procedures of preparing the samples . Corey was undeterred by the diversity of sodium content in the samples and showed great patience in assisting the student step by step and trial by trial.

He is to be highly commended for attending to the needs (over and above his assigned responsibilities) of teaching the student the technologies and protocols necessary to fulfill his thesis objectives . In many respects, Corey should have been the Co-adviser with me on this thesis project. Corey Lambert is highly qualified to receive the award for Celebrating All Staff Loyalty.

Elisa Madrigal (submitted by Amy Brainer)

Nikki and Elisa have been wonderful partners to Women's & Gender Studies and to me in my transition to WGST director. They have shared time, knowledge and resources with our program above and beyond what they are already expending for the Math department.

The transition of College Wide Programs into departments administratively is a transition borne heavily by the staff. I recognize how hard they work for us and want to say thank you on behalf of WGST faculty and students.

Belinda Soliz (submitted by Patrick Beauchesne)

Belinda is a fantastic department administrator! She's made my transition to Director of Foundations very easy.

Thank you Belinda!

Kyle Sutherland (submitted by Maureen Sytsma)

Kyle is a much valued colleague because he is quick to help and add extra students to his schedule, no matter how busy he is. Kyle is very calm, level-headed and good at problem solving. Our office is extremely busy, and no matter how crazy things get, Kyle is very patient and good at explaining things. He is constantly looking out for the best interests of the students and his coworkers. Kyle works hard and makes it fun for everyone. He is very deserving of this award.

Nikki Wasilius (submitted by Amy Brainer)

Nikki and Elisa have been wonderful partners to Women's & Gender Studies and to me in my transition to WGST director. They have shared time, knowledge and resources with our program above and beyond what they are already expending for the Math department.

The transition of College Wide Programs into departments administratively is a transition borne heavily by the staff. I recognize how hard they work for us and want to say thank you on behalf of WGST faculty and students.

Morgan Yuncker (submitted by Marty Hershock)

While there are many reasons to recognize Morgan's work, I want to acknowledge in particular her recent work around data sharing. One of the primary deficiencies that hinders effective leadership/decision making in the college is the lack of reliable and readily accessible data. Morgan has taken it upon herself to create (and share) a consistent set of reports to inform department chairs and the dean's office about enrollment and retention trends.

Outside of the college, many across campus sing her praises and eagerly seek her out for inclusion in whatever retention/enrollment oriented project they might be involved in. I really appreciate Morgan's enthusiasm for her work and her dedication to envisioning a strategic pathway for the college related to student success and retention. Thank you Morgan!

Awardees for Winter 2021

Congratulations to Nicole Hefty for receiving the Winter 2021 prize!
Nada Bachir (submitted by Marty Hershock)

I want to recognize Nada for the excellent work that she has done to bring clarity and order to the confused state of affairs surrounding the transition to Faculty 180 as the college's annual reporting software for Faculty. Because the system, along with our current Promotion and Tenure tool, both originate with the same software company (Interfolio) there has been a great deal of confusion about how (if at all) the two tools interact, about how existing faculty annual report data can be integrated into Faculty 180, and about which tool is to be used for which piece of the review process (annual reviews, LEO reviews, Promotion and Tenure, etc).

Nada has worked diligently to ensure that both faculty and staff have a clear sense of the purposes of each product, that users have the opportunity to engage in appropriate training, that individuals know who to contact should they have questions, that the campus team overseeing the product is aware of both the needs and concerns of the CASL faculty/staff/and Chairs as it relates to the product, and that users of the product have the answers that they need.

Additionally, she worked closely with the Associate Dean responsible for College Wide Programs, along with the individual College Wide Faculty being considered for promotion and tenure this year, to create the necessary template in our Promotion and Tenure tool to enable these faculty members to populate their information for the P&T process. This is not among Nada's many responsibilities and was been handled in the past by the designated CWP staff members (positions that were eliminated this year in the face of financial difficulties associated with the pandemic). Yet, she readily stepped up to ensure that these faculty felt supported in this important endeavor.

Her work, in the face of the chaos surrounding these transitions is commendable and provided much needed stability and calm. Thank you Nada for this outstanding work!

Susan Gedert (submitted by Mike Lachance)

In terms of importance to life, the elements air, water, food are, in that order, the most important to humans. We often forget "air" because breathing is automatic, unconscious.

I liken Sue Gedert's efforts on behalf of the college as being akin that of "air." Firstly, we do not think about the smooth operation of the college's webpages, forms, communications, newsletters, messaging, and hosted meetings. They just wash over us--but it is important for us to remember that this is not by accident, but by design. Secondly, for those of us that reach out to Sue regarding anything on the aforementioned list (change this, modify that, can we add/delete something, or create something completely new), she always replies promptly, with a smile, and the intent of making it happen. Finally, she does not seek the spotlight, but continually puts her shoulder to the wheel for CASL.

Sue is an incredible partner to all of us in the college.

Nicole Hefty (submitted by Sven Morgan)

Nicole works 60+ hours per week to make sure the hundred little and big things that need to get done in NSCI get done on a daily basis. Nicole, as our Department Administrator, has to manage 40 permanent and 50 adjunct faculty. She regularly receives between 50-100 emails per day.

One of her biggest success' is managing the never-ending course scheduling and communicating as effectively as possible with a challenged registrars office. Nicole is caught in the middle between incomplete records the faculty send her and the mistakes made by the registrars office. Regardless, she figures out how to solve all of these problems.

On a personal level, Nicole is always looking out for how to make my job easier and I really appreciate that. Nicole always has a smile and is always pleasant to work with. I highly recommend Nicole for this CASL award.

Michelle Rahman (submitted by Nicole Hefty)

Michelle was hired right as the department ramped down and went home in March of 2020. She has met very few faculty and fewer students in our department. As her supervisor, I have been in a room with her twice -- once for her interview and once to work through some training items.

Even so, Michelle has proven to be someone who I can count on. She is intuitive and asks what she can help with when she knows there is a lot going on. She took on the responsibility of our department's student awards ceremony and put her own stamp on it -- making a beautiful invitation and writing a lovely message to students to share with their families. She makes people feel welcome and is a warm and positive addition to our team at NatSci.

I am excited for a time when we all get to share space together.

Morgan Yuncker (submitted by Gabriella Scarlatta)

Morgan has been working diligently and extra hard for the past years. She has organized the monthly CASL Conversations to help students continue to feel connected to faculty and staff in CASL, and to make sure they have all of the resources needed to succeed in this remote environment.

She has been making connections within CASL and across campus, and has secured fruitful collaborations with key people in EMSEL. Furthermore, she continues to reach out to our faculty directly in order to build initiatives to bring more students into our CASL programs, and to empower faculty to get involved in outreach endeavors.

Morgan also works tirelessly to find enrollment data and to share it with interested parties, thus allowing disciplines and programs to make better educated choices in course offerings.Just as before, since our work-at-home order last March, Morgan has been engaged, reliable and always willing to go the extra mile!

Thank you Morgan on behalf of the College for all you do!

CASL Administration

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