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Honoring outstanding work

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Inaugural Staff Excellence Awards recognize 14 people for service to UD

Fourteen individuals have been recognized for their outstanding service to the University of Delaware with the inaugural Staff Excellence Awards.

“People are UD’s greatest asset, so I am excited to honor these exemplary staff members for their valuable contributions to the University and their dedication to our shared success,” said President Dennis Assanis. “They demonstrate a deep commitment to excellence in their job. It is such an inspiration and privilege to work with all our extraordinary staff and faculty members.”

The recipients were chosen from a pool of 77 nominations submitted by supervisors and co-workers in fall 2023. Those who were not selected for the award will be considered again for the spring award, along with new nominees. Faculty are recognized by the Faculty Senate with the annual Faculty Excellence Awards.

“The nominations for the Staff Excellence Awards highlighted so many of our talented employees,” said Melissa Bard, Vice President of Human Resources. “UD is proud to be recognized as a top employer in Delaware, and we are committed to supporting an excellent workforce to serve our students and advance our institutional mission.”

The Staff Excellence Award recipients are:

Distinguished Individual Staff Excellence Award

Jeanine Feltner, Academic Program Coordinator, Anthropology

Feltner is an influential part of UD’s campus-wide strategic initiative to improve the student experience and a key part of refreshing and innovating the department’s academic programs and processes. As noted by her colleagues, her help with reviewing and revising course information, coordinating the department’s student career training event, and managing logistics around recent art installation activities have been essential to the department’s successes, including a 25% increase in Anthropology majors over the past year.

Distinguished Team Staff Excellence Award

Student Life Financial Operations Team

●  Karen Beeson, Senior Business Administrator

●  Lori Hill, Senior Business Administrator

●  Katie Gibson, Business Administrator II

●  Debbie Rhodunda, Senior Business Administrator 

The team’s contributions to Student Life over the past year have helped to streamline processes, better manage costs in several areas and improve the student experience. The team has been key in redefining and implementing integrated financial operations within Student Life, including developing updated training procedures for new employee onboarding, creating resources for the Strategic Staffing Review Committee, and partnering with other units on improvements to funding utilization, tracking and reporting processes. These efforts have enabled greater efficiencies and stronger collaboration across Student Life and beyond.

Innovation Excellence Award

Integrated Teaching Team in the Interdisciplinary Science Learning Labs

●  Pamela Mosley, Program Manager, Interdisciplinary Science

●  Ginu Thomas, Preceptor

●  Christopher Presloid, Preceptor

●  Millicent Murray, Academic Program Coordinator 

●  Connor Duroe, Senior Lab Technician 

●  Alexandra Coombs, Senior Lab Technician 

●  Nathan Uhlmann, Lab Manager 

●  Shiyao Liu

The team’s skillful collaboration resulted in the creation of engaging integrated biology and chemistry laboratory learning experiences for first-year students. Their work helps to ensure that the lab curricula are updated, relevant and aligned with the latest techniques.

Community Advocate Excellence Award

Corrie Schmitt, Care Coordinator, Center for Counseling and Student Development

Schmitt’s work has been integral to promoting the mental health and wellbeing of students. As a result of the pandemic and several other stressful and difficult campus and world events over the past years, her individual assistance to nearly 600 students across all sectors of campus has been incredibly valuable and essential. New care management and customized referral processes she implemented have streamlined and facilitated student connections with the CCSD.

To be considered for spring Staff Excellence Awards, faculty, staff and students are encouraged to nominate individuals and teams by Friday, April 5. Nominations received after this deadline will be considered for fall awards. Learn more and submit a nomination online.

The Hen High Five program is another way to recognize the work of colleagues. Those who are sent a Hen High Five are entered to win a $100 gift card in a monthly raffle.

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