GEORGETOWN, Ky. – The college community took time out from orientation workshops and move-in planning on Monday, August 18, to honor employees who have served Georgetown faithfully for many years and to recognize individuals who so generously give of themselves to better the lives of students.
Each year, the Retention Task Force, a standing faculty committee, highlights the critical role academic and career advising plays in the success of undergraduates. While quality academic advising is a basic faculty responsibility, the Outstanding Advisor Awards recognize efforts that go well beyond the basic requirement, said Associate Professor of Biology Dr. Tracy Livingston, committee chair, in announcing this year’s award recipients.
Based upon student nominations, the Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award was presented to Dr. Melissa Scheier, Associate Professor and Chair, Political Science. Dr. Scheier is integral as advisor to Pre-Law students along with Model United Nations. In selecting her, one colleague noted her “tireless advocacy for students” while another mentioned “how many current and former students credit this professor with their successes.”
A second Outstanding Advisor Award was presented to Dr. Kenny Sibal, Assistant Professor Communication and Media Studies, who is celebrated not only for his advising but also for his encouragement to student-athletes. In making a nomination, one student wrote, “This professor has never given up on me the whole time I’ve been at Georgetown. It is because of his guidance that I found my major. He always makes time to talk to his students and help in any way he can. He’s more than a professor; he’s become a friend and confidant for many of us.”
Nominations are also sought each year for two members of the Georgetown College family whose contributions span the academic and personal aspects of college to receive Outstanding Student Life and Learning Awards.
Philosophy Professor Dr. Jonathan Sands Wise, now Associate Dean for Academic Success, was this year’s faculty recipient; the staff award went to Ms. Beth Purdy, Director, Office for Diversity and Inclusion.
In nominating Dr. Sands Wise, a student wrote, “This professor always encourages and motivates students, not just within the classroom but outside of it, and is obviously passionate about the lives of students, even to the point of starting a college ministry at his church. His leadership role in the Christian Scholars Program is very beneficial to the school, incoming students and the students who are a part of it.”
Advising and support for students comes from staff members as well as faculty. In nominating Ms. Purdy, one student remarked, “This staff member loves her students and makes a positive difference in their Georgetown experience with the large amount of time and care she puts into every interaction with both local and foreign exchange students. She has become a second mother to many and all of her students respect and love her as such.”
In this day and age, a most important element of day-to-day existence is technology.
Each year, the Rollie Graves Technology Excellence Award is presented to one faculty member who is determined to have made the best use of technology to enhance learning and one staff person who best uses technology to improve the quality of his or her job.
The staff award for 2013-2014 was presented to Assistant Registrar for Graduate Programs Donna Whitehouse, cited for her skill in using application software to accomplish complex tasks. Her nomination, describing her command of data systems and the development of forms that improve processes and make the work of others more effective, was cosigned by persons in two different offices. She previously worked in the Department of Education.
The winner of the Graves faculty award is Associate Professor of English Dr. Carrie Cook, long a sophisticated user of technology in both the conventional and the online classroom. She was described as one who made herself an expert on creative approaches to teaching her specialty online, not only developing several undergraduate online summer courses but also helping her fellow faculty to succeed in the online environment.
Said Dr. Rosemary Allen, Provost, in announcing Dr. Cook’s award, “Her use of technology as an aid to her traditional teaching is exemplary; her online teaching is state-of-the-art. She sees it as her mission to help faculty understand the value of technology as a tool to improve their teaching and effectiveness . . . she is always ready to volunteer to help train others.”
The Rollie Graves Technology Excellence Award was established in 1993. It is sponsored by his children, Douglas Graves and Diane Graves Smith.
Several other employees were honored with pins and gifts for their full-time continuous service to Georgetown College:
5 year – 2009
Helen Bischoff, Carlos Cooper, Nicholas Griffin, Lori Matthews and Megan Redditt
10 year – 2004
Douglas Bradley, Dr. Christel Broady, Dr. Bryan Crawley, Dr. Jonathan Dickinson, Holly James, Dr. Sheila Klopfer, Dr. Lisa Lykins, Dr. Jennifer Price, Dr. Sara Rivas, Tracie Shapiro and David Wilhite
15 year – 1999
Dr. Tom Cooper and Dr. Ellen Emerick
20 year – 1994
Dr. Barbara Burch, Dr. Mark Christensen and Dr. Sigrid Suesse
25 year – 1989
Dr. Rosemary Allen, Dr. Todd Coke, Dr. H.M. Lewis, Charles Mingua and Marianne Riddle
30 year – 1984
35 year – 1979
Asa Overall and Dr. John Sadlon
Recently retired and retiring employees also received special recognition. They are Sharon Austin, payroll; Ruth Ann Blankenship, building services; Charles Burton, grounds; Dr. Joe Lunceford, Professor of Religion; and Dr. James Simpson, Assistant Professor, Graduate Education.
After the ceremony, faculty and staff enjoyed an “indoor picnic” in the Montgomery Caf. Then it was back to workshops and orientation planning in anticipation of the welcome return of students later in the week.