Blue Ribbon Winners, 2006
Twyler Boykin, Program Director for the Upward Bound Math Science Program, goes far above and beyond the call of duty to make the program successful and enjoyable, according to Christopher Stokes, Program Director for the Upward Bound Math Science Program. “Our program is designed to help deserving first generation, low-income high school students to pursue their dreams of going to a college and obtaining a career in a math or science related field,” Stokes said. “I have single handedly witnessed Twyler counsel our University custodial staff, colleagues, parents of our participants, and even myself, to reach our highest attainable goals.” According to Stokes, Boykin has helped staff members to get their first homes, recover from debt, and overcome emotional obstacles. “She is not only a supervisor but a true friend to many,” said Stokes. “It is people like Twyler that make this campus a community.”
Drs. Robert Marlowe, Habte Giorgis Churnet and L.J. Wang have nominated Kelley Veazey, Administrative Support Assistant II, Physics Program for the Blue Ribbon Award. “Since becoming our secretary in August of this year, Kelley has made some outstanding changes in department office procedures,” Marlowe said. “She assists faculty and students, going the extra yard to do special things. She has improved our publicity brochure and record-keeping producers. Perhaps best of all is her ability to get things done on short notice, and her cheerful disposition. In addition to the great job Kelley has done at the office, she also participates in community activities. She sponsored a group for the Alzheimer’s Memory walk last month at Coolidge Park. We are lucky to have her here.”
Shasta Westmoreland, Assistant Director of Admissions and Recruitment, works hard to prepare for nine student orientation sessions, according to Amy Davis of Advisement, who says she has often witnessed Westmoreland’s dedication. “Shasta has been readily available to call upon, and I am truly grateful for her kindness and caring student. She is the go-to person when problems arise, and I have called upon her several times while meeting with an incoming student,” said Davis. If an incoming student has difficulty completing a process, Westmoreland researches and solves the problem, Davis said. “Let me add that some of the problems were not easy or quick to fix. Shasta works as if everything is high priority. She doesn’t stop until the task is complete or to her satisfaction.”
September’s Blue Ribbon was awarded to Becca McCashin, EDD program coordinator.
Dr. M. D. Roblyer nominated McCashin, who was Roblyer’s primary University contact through her application and interviewing process last fall and spring. “She was always so prompt and knowledgeable in responding to my inquiries and making arrangements for my visits,” said Roblyer. “It gave me a very positive impression of the university from the very beginning. I will never forget her coming down to meet me in the rain with a parking permit in one hand and an umbrella in the other, so I wouldn't have to get out of my car and get wet!” McCashin continued to be of assistance to Roblyer after Roblyer was hired. “In response to any question, she has always been there with a wealth of helpful information. In the few times I encountered a problem (e.g., a closed classroom that was supposed to be open, technical difficulties with my computer), she was always available to identify the right contact person and address the issue promptly.” In addition to her prompt and helpful support, Roblyer says McCashin is unfailingly upbeat and positive with everyone.” I know both students and faculty count on her to be the ‘face of the EDD program,’ and that face is always smiling and good-natured.”
A University event that requires sound equipment requires Kyle Askew to deliver. Jayne Holder, director of Alumni Affairs, spoke for those in many campus offices and departments when she said “Kyle always goes above and beyond the call of duty to help with events.” Holder said the 2006 Legends and Leaders dinner was a perfect example, an annual event where Askew always provides the sound, going early and setting up equipment, then staying during for the duration. It is one of the reasons Holder, Jennifer Foster, and Donna Parshall nominated Askew to be the August Blue Ribbon Award winner. “This year, he called and offered to come to our office and help us load our boxes and take them to the country club when he delivered his sound equipment,” Holder said. “Not only did he carry our boxes out of our office and into the country club (and we are talking lots of boxes, display boards, vases, etc.), he helped us load that night after the event and he and Wayne Etherton came back to the alumni office with us and helped us to unload. Kyle is one of the nicest folks on this campus, and I’m not sure how many events, programs, etc. in the arena as well as other parts of campus and community could be facilitated without his ‘service with a smile.’” Thanks, Kyle, for all your good work!
Karl Fletcher, who is responsible for all technical support for the College of Engineering, has a demanding, full-time job. Last year, Fletcher took on an extra assignment: to supervise the fabrication of UTC’s first entry into the Mini Baja competition sponsored by the Society of Automotive Engineers. That is why Dr. J. Ronald Bailey, Dean of the college of Engineering and Computer Science, nominated Fletcher for the Blue Ribbon Award. “UTC's team finished a remarkable 19th out of more than 160 entries,” said Bailey. “This project has been a great learning experience for our students. It has brought recognition to the University, and it will help us recruit future students. It would not have been possible without Karl's supervision, which included traveling with the team to the regional competition in Wisconsin.”
She can answer questions about IRIS, and she can keep departments running in the absence of an administrative secretary. Marge Fergason, former ERC president and Administrative Secretary in the College of Arts and Sciences does it all, and she does it with a smile. Nominated for this month’s Blue Ribbon Award by Julie Bomar, Administrative Assistant in the Department of Psychology, Fergason earned kudos for covering the needs of two departments when secretaries took medical leave. “In addition, Marge contributed a significant amount of her own sick leave to one of the women to help cover her lengthy absence from the University,” said Bomar. Bomar said Fergason did outstanding work with her ERC tenure as president, professionally presenting budgets. “She is ever willing to assist new staff with IRIS questions and issues, by either individual demonstrations, even after formal training, or by referencing a specific person with the specific knowledge needed at the time,” said Bomar. “In short, we rely heavily on Marge for information necessary to do our jobs effectively and efficiently.”
Five faculty members nominated Jennifer Hoff for the May Blue Ribbon Award. The team from The College of Engineering and Computer Science is grateful for Hoff’s support with the development of grant proposals, particularly recently completed proposals for prestigious National Science Foundation programs. “Not only does Jennifer do excellent work in shepherding grant proposals through the funding process, but she is personable and very easy to work with,” said Dr. Joe Dumas. “As we worked on our recent NSF proposal, it seemed that during every meeting with Jennifer, we all got at least one good laugh. Jennifer’s easygoing attitude and sense of humor made what would have been a very dry and sometimes dull process of proposal writing much more bearable.”
Janice Gowdey is “currently the glue that holds together the Human Ecology Department,” according to Dana Moody, Catherine Kendall and Jane D. Reagor. The three say that since the retirement of Dr. Linda Cundiff, it has become necessary for Gowdey to perform many of the administrative duties typically performed by a Department Chair. The three faculty members agree “Janice pays attention to detail and is extremely organized, sending out reminders of upcoming events. She is patient with the students, approaching every task as if it is of high priority. She also does all of these things with an enthusiastic attitude. Last fall, the interior design program underwent a Foundation for Interior Design Education Research accreditation, which is a very stringent five-day process encompassing a weekend. Janice went way above her duties with helping the faculty to coordinate the site visit, even staying at her desk over the weekend to facilitate the process. Her attention to details seemingly anticipated the program’s needs helping everything to run smoothly. Adjunct professors say that Janice treats them just as if they were full-time faculty. The Interior Design Program owes her much gratitude and strongly believes that she exhibits all the traits of a Blue Ribbon award winner! “
February and March
Frankie Roeser and Sue Stephens have volunteered for years to make the United Way Campaign at UTC a success, and Jane Cashatt in Development wants everyone to know they do a great job. “What a system they have for the United Way auction!” Cashatt said. “They should be given the Blue Ribbon Award for the hours they put in for donations, picking up the items, making sure than an inventory list was kept, thank you letters to the donors, and last but not least the auction itself. Did you see their website and did you look at it after the auction where they put the remaining items and added new items that came in late? Well, the website was impressive.” Cashatt commends this dynamic duo for being able to ask for donations and continue to smile and be courteous even if they did not receive. Stephens and Roeser’s efforts boost campus giving to this important fundraiser, and for that the entire campus community is thankful.
Reed Gregory, Information Technology Division, is greatly appreciated for his life service to others and his dedication to his job. That is why Dr. Kittrell Rushing, head of the Department of Communication, nominated Gregory for the Blue Ribbon Award. “Reed responds to our calls for computer and network help rapidly and competently,” Rushing said. “Importantly too, Reed's attitude toward those he serves is positive, friendly, and helpful.” Congratulations to Reed Gregory, who was awarded the Blue Ribbon for the month of January.