2021 DOSA Winners

The Division of Student Affairs celebates its staff each fall at the division all-staff meeting. Here are the winners of the 2021 DOSA Awards:

Promotion of Public Affairs Award

This award is presented to an individual or team for promoting an appreciation, understanding, or celebration of the Public Affairs Mission through delivery of a program and/or through personal actions focused on the three pillars that created a positive impact on our campus.  This year’s winner is The Black Lives Matter Sticker Project. The project members include Devin Schehrer, Angie Strider, Travis Schilla, Rachel Brinley Arianna Fournier, Britni Fletcher and Ovidio De Leon. The Black Lives Matter Sticker Project was created by the Residence Life Diversity Committee to help fundraise for the Black Lives Matter movement, the committee created a sticker sheet and all profits were donated to the Milwaukee Freedom Fund and the George Floyd Memorial Scholarship.

The nominator of the project noted that “The Residence Life, Housing and Dining Services Diversity Committee Black Lives Matter initiative is a compelling example of promotion of public affairs. The initiative used MSU community members’ own artwork in contribution to the Black Lives Matter movement. The sticker sheets express an appreciation and celebration of Black lives, accomplices, racial justice, and amplifying marginalized voices. The Public Affairs Mission has three pillars and our initiative promoted public affairs in support of this mission and its three pillars.” Congratulations to the Residence Life Diversity Committee!

Outstanding New Program or Initiative Award

This award recognizes a new program to meet specific outcome(s) in accordance with our Public Affairs Mission. This year’s winning initiative is “MSU Explores.” In April 2021, the MSU Explores program was presented for the first time as an opportunity to explore issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice. The nominator of this program stated “Our team is looking forward to the opportunity to present MSU Explores in future years and to make this an essential part of how we educate our community about diversity, equity, and inclusion in line with the University’s Public Affairs mission. We certainly believe that MSU Explores has made a positive impact on our campus community, and the feedback we received from the faculty, staff, and student participants indicates that our program was a success.” The team members that made this program possible include: Susan Arnold, Courtney Brewer, Savannah Culver, Arianna Fournier, Jared Grimsley, Cole Keiper, Michelle Madsen, Codie Moore, Harry Riel, Sam Robinson, and Travis Schilla. Join me in congratulating the committee that coordinated MSU Explores!

Student Affairs Bridge Builder

This award is given by the Bridge Building committee to someone who has demonstrated support for the division of SA through collaboration in the development of programs or services. This year’s winner is Dr. Nicole West! Dr. West is a faculty member of the Counseling Leadership and Special Education Department and she also teaches in the Student Affairs and Higher Education program. Dr. West’s nominator notes that “Dr. West supports the Division of Student Affairs in many ways. She has served on a number of search committees, including the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs/Dean of Students search which is currently underway. She has also participated in programs and activities sponsored by departments in the division such as Belong BQ, Heritage Month Activities, Assessment Symposium, Student Affairs Annual Retreat, etc. She is an active member of the Bias Response Team…She has spearheaded the Unlikely Allies Conference which should take place in March 2022. Her involvement provides support, advise, guidance and advocacy for our staff, students, and the profession in general.” Please join me in congratulating Dr. Nicole West!

Outstanding Graduate Assistant Award

This award recognizes a graduate assistant who has completed at least one semester of graduate work and demonstrated superior job performance. As always, we have many wonderful graduate assistants but this year’s winning nominee is Addyson Emmons.  Addyson was nominated by three different individuals for this award. One of her nominators shared “Addy is dedicated to helping all students succeed. She is compassionate, analytical, strategic, friendly, understanding and determined. She steps up to help on any project where support is needed. You can always count on her to offer sound feedback. Addy is highly respected by her peers and the students she works with in the Traditions Council. You always know you can count on Addy to follow through on her word and responsibilities.” Congratulations Addy!

Outstanding New Staff Member Award

This award is presented to an exempt or non-exempt staff member employed within the Division of Student Affairs for less than three years who has demonstrated superior job performance. This year's winning nominee is Kelsey Major. Kelsey had two nominators, one of her nominators stated “Kelsey has been with the Division of Student Affairs a short time, but she was not been afraid to jump right into her role as a First-year experience coordinator for TRIO. In her role Kelsey has had to face many challenges, she started right before the height of the pandemic, she was settling into her new role when we had to switch gears and work remotely. Kelsey made the transition very smoothly and continued to serve the students.” Congratulations Kelsey!

Outstanding Part-time Staff Member Award

This award recognizes the many contributions provided by a part-time member of the SA team...  This year’s winning nominee is Kallen Brown. Her nominator said, “Kallen’s attitude and work ethic shines like a beacon. Kallen always has a positive attitude and demeanor. She is willing to help out with anything that is needed in the office. When we had a couple staff members leave, she even stepped up to help make the sign for the party, set out refreshments and helped stay and clean up after the party. She said she wanted to shadow our SOAR expo table, just so she could learn more about residence life and hear common questions families are asking so she can better design things to answer their questions. She is a go-getter and shows her commitment to our department and students.” Congratulations Kallen!

Outstanding Non-Exempt Staff Member Award

This award recognizes a non-exempt staff member employed within the Division of Student Affairs for three or more years who has demonstrated superior job performance above and beyond expectations. This year’s winning nominee is Diane Kingham. Diane is the Administrative Assistant III in the Office of Student Engagement. Her nominator shared, “What I love about Diane is that she doesn’t settle for mediocrity, she is committed to being an excellent professional and team member. I can always count on her to proofread and give great and honest feedback. She takes advantage of many professional development workshops and seminars. Being the best administrative assistant is high on her list.” Congratulations Diane.

Outstanding Exempt Staff Member Award

This award recognizes an exempt staff member employed within the Division of Student Affairs for three or more years who has demonstrated superior job performance above and beyond expectations.  This year’s winning nominee is Debbie Letterman. Debbie is the Assistant Director of Event and Meeting Services. Her nominator stated, “Debbie shines in her attention to detail and customer service. Debbie ensures all needs of clients are met and builds strong partnerships…She is dedicated, hardworking, loyal, kind, patient, and generous. She stands back and lets others get the recognition and now it’s her time to receive the recognition.” Congratulations Debbie!

That concludes our Annual DOSA awards presentation so please join me in recognizing all of our DOSA nominees and DOSA Award recipients. Congrats!