Metro Wire Staff
Outstanding faculty and staff members were recently recognized at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point for their work during the 2020-2021 academic year.
The Excellence in Teaching, Scholarship, and Service Award was given to David Barry, associate professor of sociology and social work. Barry teaches numerous classes and oversees the department’s highly successful internship program, which works with local agencies. He collaborates with his students on research and leads them on experiential learning trips. He also is active with campus and professional committees.
The winner of the Carolyn Rolfson Sargis Award was Tina Rajski, payroll, and benefits specialist with Human Resources. Rajski has created efficient processes, employee training on benefits and furloughs, and tactics for payroll troubleshooting. In 2019 she helped more than 650 employees enroll in a new health insurance provider. She has served on many campus committees and has been active in the community Meals on Wheels program since 2014, serving in various roles including president. The Sargis Award recognizes an employee with more than 25 years of service.
Those selected for the Excellence in Teaching Award include:
- Pamela Bork, associate professor of education, teaches inclusivity, engagement, honesty and respect to encourage her students to use these same values in their classrooms.
- Lauren Gantz, assistant professor of English, encourages her students to be self-reflective and collaborative in their work and is creating courses that focus on diversity.
- Kyle Herrman, professor of fisheries and water resources, uses hands-on research to help students apply ecological concepts to work they will do as professionals.
- Kate Kipp, assistant professor of sociology and social work, is a versatile educator, helping expand social work programs at the UW-Stevens Point at Wausau campus and through online learning.
- Erin Speetzen, associate professor of chemistry, creates a supportive and accessible classroom for first-year and introductory students who may need more help.
Recognized with the University Scholar Award were:
- Chris Diehm, professor of philosophy, shapes his research through his teaching of environmental philosophy focusing on the crucial connection humans have to nature.
- Alex Ingersoll, associate professor of media studies, creates scholarly work broadly concerned with place-based memory and the experience of looking, listening, and remembering in an increasingly technology-focused global culture.
The University Service Award recipients were:
- Jennifer Collins, professor of political science, served as a faculty mentor to students involved in the Campus Election Engagement Project in 2020.
- Shelly Janowski, a budget specialist in Continuing Education and Outreach, served as a University Staff representative on the Common Council this year and recently was the co-chair of the University Staff Council.
- Kathryn McGarry, assistant professor of chemistry, collaborates with Admissions to help recruit new students through hands-on chemistry activities, events, and communications.
The recipient of the Academic Staff Excellence Award was Dr. Helen Luce, director of Student Health Service. Dr. Luce’s commitment to the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff and keeping them informed and supported was indispensable during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Academic Staff Spirit of Community Service Award was given to Lisa Golda, associate lecturer in theatre and dance, who chaired the newly created Advocacy Allyship and Access committee and created an anti-racism action plan for her department.
Several staff members were recognized for Outstanding Work Performance:
- Janette Baumann, administrative specialist at UWSP at Wausau, has become a go-to problem-solver, taking on new responsibilities such as coordinating the first Career Expo.
- Corinna Neeb, emergency management specialist in University Police and Security Services, took on an increased workload in coordinating services, responses and communication for the campus during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Lisa Nelson, payroll and benefits specialist advanced in Human Resources, had additional duties responding to unemployment claims and furlough processes and aided with employees working for the county as COVID-19 contact tracers.
- Heather Springer, business specialist in University College, has been dedicated to helping lead University College through the pandemic, budget challenges and planning for the potential replacement of Albertson Hall.