We have set the date for this year’s SEFS Recognition Event—Tuesday, May 5, from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Forest Club Room—so mark your calendars for our annual celebration of all things SEFS!
For those who haven’t been to the Recognition Event before, it’s a wonderful occasion to recognize students, colleagues and retiring faculty who have made exemplary contributions to the school and academic community. There will be catered snacks, a silent auction to raise money for the SEFS student scholarship fund (more on that to come), an expansive wine tasting and beer sampling, and a host of honors and awards. In short, a truly excellent time.
At the heart of the event, of course, are the awards, and we’ll be presenting a range of student, staff and faculty honors. For students, the awards include the John A. Wott Fellowship in Plant Collection and Curatorship, and the Richard D. Taber Outstanding Wildlife Conservation Student Award. We will also present two Director’s Awards, one each for staff and faculty service.
After that, we depend on all of you to determine the final four awards, which are based entirely on nominations: Faculty Member of the Year, Staff Member of the Year, Graduate Student of the Year, and Undergraduate Student of the Year. We launched these awards last year to recognize the highest honor for a year of achievement and service, and they are open to nominations from all faculty, staff and students. Honorees will have their names engraved on a plaque in the Anderson Hall display case, so help us recognize the achievements of your students and colleagues!
Submitting a Nomination
Nomination letters do not need to be long—a good paragraph or two will suffice—but they should be specific and clearly demonstrate the qualities your candidate exemplifies. Nominations can recognize a wide range of qualities and accomplishments, whether in one area or across many, in one instance or sustained throughout the year. You may nominate more than one individual for each category, and all nominations will be reviewed by a panel of students, staff and faculty. You are not expected to know grant totals or grades or precise figures, though the selection committee may use these metrics as part of the selection process. Most important, all nominations must be emailed to Sarah Thomas by the end of Monday, April 20!
Below are some criteria and characteristics to consider:
1. Faculty Member of the Year
Exemplary attributes can include, but are not limited to: Quality of teaching, advising and mentoring; student success in the field; new research grants and programs; recent publications, books, patents and invited lectures; contributions to the SEFS community and administration; preeminence in his/her field of study; etc. (Last year’s winner was Professor Sharon Doty.)
2. Staff Member of the Year
Exemplary attributes can include, but are not limited to: Outstanding commitment to the school and supporting students, faculty and other staff; contributing to the positive spirit and cohesiveness of the school; outstanding, creative and/or innovative performance of duties; community participation and outreach; commitment to professional growth and development; etc. (Last year’s winner was Amanda Davis.)
3. Graduate Student of the Year
Exemplary attributes can include, but are not limited to: Academic excellence and accolades; outstanding thesis/dissertation research and progress; extracurricular projects, collaborations and activities; conference presentations and other professional engagements; community participation and outreach; outstanding promise in his/her field of study; etc. (Last year’s winner was Hyungmin “Tony” Rho.)
4. Undergraduate Student of the Year
Exemplary attributes can include, but are not limited to: Academic excellence and accolades; outstanding research projects; conference presentations and other professional engagements; extracurricular projects, collaborations and activities; community participation and outreach; outstanding promise in his/her field of study; etc. (Last year’s winner was Alison Sienkiewicz.)
Remember, nominations are due by Friday, April 17, so send them to Sarah as soon as possible!