By Julian Pedrouzo
Every year, the members of the Sacred Heart community get the opportunity to nominate someone who has positively impacted their life in some way throughout their years at the university. These nominations are separated into four different categories, resulting in four different winners.
These categories are the Outstanding Faculty Award, the Outstanding Administrator Award, the Outstanding Staff Award, and the Outstanding Graduate Assistant Award.
Junior Maddie Thomas, a Psychology major, said, “Even though I do not have a lot of information on the awards and I have never participated on the voting, I think it’s a great opportunity for students to give back to those who have left a mark on their lives, both academically and outside of the classroom.”
Students know college is more than just what goes on in the classroom.
“College is not only about studying and going to class. It’s also an opportunity to grow as a person, and those who have helped us deserve to be honored for it,” said Thomas.
Each member of the community gets to choose only one person from each category every year and the winners of the last three years are not eligible to receive the award in that category. Also, the nominees must have worked for at least two years, with the exception of the Graduate Assistant award, for which this is not a requirement.
“Students struggle in many different ways throughout their college experience and it’s important that the school provides help through their staff,” said senior Austin Markmann, a Criminal Justice major.
The community at Sacred Heart knows that professors care about their students.
“Even though it is not a professor’s responsibility to take care of a student’s issues outside of the classroom, I have encountered many of them who actually do care and make an impact on that student’s life by just having a talk or helping them with whatever they are going through, and they deserve to be rewarded for it,” said Markmann.
For whoever wants to nominate a member of the community, it’s important to know that in order for the nomination to be accepted their name has to be provided, meaning that it cannot be anonymous, and they have to vote on at least one of the four categories available.
“My mom is also a teacher and I always see her giving her maximum effort to her students so it makes me happy to know that in a similar environment like this one, teachers are getting rewarded for all the hard work they do. They give us a leg to stand on in our near future, and this acts as a nice reminder for that,” said Thomas.
From the four awards available for nominations, only one of them is named after a professor. The Outstanding Faculty Award is named after Dr. Marian Calabrese, who received the prestigious prize consistently for two years running. According to the Sacred Heart website, “This award honors faculty who go above and beyond their call of duty.”
“This award does a great job of giving staff not only recognition for their great work, but it also works as an encouragement for them to come in every day and not only teach but also leave a mark on our lives,” said sophomore Joe Emerson, a Finance and Accounting major.
“I think it becomes more special when we talk about the graduate assistants, because they are usually the people who we can feel more connected to, and from who we can learn the most. They were in our shoes not too long ago, and it is amazing that they can get rewarded for coming back and try to teach us through their own struggles as students,” said Emerson.
To submit your nomination and get more information about the vote, click here.