Easter may be over, but Renee Giron (our lead student ambassador this semester) and I will be making visits around BA 1 and BA 2 this week bringing gifts of good news to faculty and staff who were nominated for one of our Dean’s Excellence Awards.
Almost sixty students nominated a faculty or staff member for an award based on an exchange that transformed them, encouraged them to get out of their comfort zone, take a risk or view the world differently. These moments form the foundation of our culture of engagement in the college; one designed to help students develop the qualities necessary to compete in today’s marketplace. To emphasize the importance of these interactions, we will be visiting classes wherever possible to let the faculty or staff member know that their students believe that they are doing meaningful work that impacts the lives of others. We would appreciate it if you would give them a hardy round of applause when we make our announcement.
I can tell you from experience that this kind of acknowledgement from students beats a visit from the Easter Bunny for faculty and staff any day of the week. I for one, have always found that giant bunny to be a bit terrifying and question its motives in bringing me fattening candy eggs. Renee. on the other hand, is tiny and like me, genuinely believes in the transformative power of higher education: Making these visits will be affirming for both of us. Maybe I can even convince her to break out the Citronaut costume for the occasion and start a new tradition. You game Renee?
While Renee and I are visiting classes, members of the Dean’s Advisory Board will be busy reading all of the nominations and selecting winners to be recognized at our awards ceremony on April 16th at 4pm in the Fairwinds Alumni Center. They will also be giving awards to students who excelled at risk-taking, data-driven decision-making and cross-disciplinary collaboration. It is sure to be a great event. Hope to see you there.