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Staff Awards and Recognitions

Student Affairs is proud to recognize some of the outstanding work and accomplishments of its employees, departments and programs over the past academic year.

departmental national awards and honors

  • The Division of Student Affairs received the Ted K. Miller Achievement of Excellence Award from the Council for the Advancement of Standards for conducting outstanding work assessing student learning and development in Fall 2009. 
  • The Adaptive Recreation program was awarded a gold NASPA Excellence Award in December 2013 for their program entitled, Get Back in the Game Adapted Sports and Recreation for Injured Service Veterans.
  • The Movin' Mavs Wheelchair Basketball program was awarded a gold NASPA Excellence Award in November 2012 for their program entitled, Creating an Inclusive Environment for Sport, Recreation and Fitness.
  • The Relationship, Violence, and Sexual Assault Prevention program was awarded a gold NASPA Excellence Award in November 2012 for the peer educator and bringing in the bystander programs.
  • A program of the department of Multicultural Affairs, Diversity Week: It’s a Maverick World was selected as the silver medal honoree in the International, Multicultural, Cultural, LGBTQ, Spirituality, Disability, and Related category at the NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators) awards in December 2010.
  • The Movin’ Mavs Adapted Sports and Recreation program was selected as a silver medal honoree in the Athletics, Recreation, Physical Fitness, Non-Varsity Sports and related category at the NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators) awards in December 2010.
  • Freshman Leaders on Campus (FLOC) was awarded a bronze NASPA Excellence Award in 2009.

2014:

  • The UT Arlington Cheer Squad came in 1st place at the National Cheerleaders Association College Nationals on April 11, 2014.
  • The Shorthorn dominated the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association with an all time high of 41 awards, including several of the top awards in April 2014.
  • The Shorthorn Newspaper was  recognized nationally in 15 digital media categories at the Columbia Scholastic Press Association awards! Arts, Media, and Entertainment in February 2014.

2013:

  • The Movin' Mavs were awarded a $42,500 grant from the Craig H. Neilson Foundation in October 2013. The grant will go towards providing services for individuals with spinal cord injuries. In 2002, founder Craig Neilsen personally established a private foundation with the purpose of awarding grants to a broad spectrum of charities benefiting spinal cord injury (SCI) research and rehabilitation.
  • The Career Development Center blog was selected as one of the 10 Simply Awesome College & University Career Service Blogs. Others on the list include Harvard, Oregon, Tufts, Dartmouth, and Penn.
  • The Center for Community Service Learning was awarded a $25,000 grant from the Ford Motor Company Fund.
  • The Shorthorn was one of six student newspapers in the nation to receive the 2013 Gold Crown award for hybrid print and online publications from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, which is considered one of the top student media awards in the nation. The award was announced in March 2013 at the College Media National Convention in New York City. Shorthorn Editor in Chief Natalie Webster and Features Editor Shelly Williams represented The Shorthorn at the convention and awards ceremony.
  • The Movin' Mavs Wheelchair Basketball Team was awarded a $15,000 grant from the Reese Jones Foundation in January 2013. 

2012

  • EXCEL Campus Activities’ advertising campaign for the 2012 Bed Races received an award for excellence in Multi-color Poster/Flyer (Large School Division) at the National Association for Campus Activities Central Regional Conference at the Arlington Convention Center on October 4-6.
  • The New Maverick Orientation online transfer presentation was awarded Outstanding Website for an institution with greater than 15,000 students at the NODA (National Orientation Directors Association) conference in October 2012.
  • In March 2012, The Shorthorn received the Gold Crown award and The Shorthorn Online received the Silver Crown Award both from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association in New York City. This is one of the most prestigious awards in college media.

2011:

  • The recently re-vamped Shorthorn website, www.theshorthorn.com, was selected as a finalist for the Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s Crown award in March 2011. This is one of the highest awards in college media. The website received a Silver Crown award on March 13th and was named one of the seven best college websites in the country.
  • In April 2011, the cheer squad came in second place and the dance team came in seventh place at the NCCA (National Collegiate Cheerleading Association) competition in Daytona Beach, Florida.
  • The Movin’ Mavs played in the 2011 National Wheelchair Basketball Intercollegiate Division National Championships in March 2011 and placed 3rd in the tournament.
  • The New Maverick Orientation Guidebook won the 2010 NODAC (National Orientation Directors Association Conference) Publications Showcase Award for Outstanding Handbook at the October ’10 conference in St. Louis, Missouri.
  • In December 2011, TheShorthorn.com, The Shorthorn's online edition, was named the best-designed college media website in the U.S. by College Media Association, the largest national organization for college media. A Shorthorn sports page also won first place in the contest's Sports Page Design category.
  • In December 2011, The Shorthorn was named a finalist for the Columbia Scholastic Press Association's Gold Crown Awards, one of the most prestigious awards in college media. Winners will be announced in New York in March 2011.
  • The Freshmen Leaders On Campus (FLOC) student group was honored in a video made by The Giving Circle (a not for profit volunteer organization working with the people of Uganda to construct The Koi Koi house, an orphanage for the country's poorest and AIDS stricken children) for which the group partnered with for their 2010-2011 community service organization. This service organization coincided with the 2010-2011 OneBook theme of 'Remembrance' and book, A Journal for Jordan: A Story of Love and Honor (2008) by Dana Canedy.

2010

  • The cheer squad won the title of Small Coed National Champions at the NCCA (National Collegiate Cheerleading Association) competition in April 2010.
  • The Movin’ Mavs were awarded a $70,800 from various grant funds in November 2010, which will support their adapted sports and recreation programming.
  • The Society of Professional Journalists has named The Shorthorn’s website, theshorthorn.com, one of the top three college news websites in the nation. The awards were presented at the SPJ’s national convention in Las Vegas in September 2010.

individual NATIONAL AWARDS AND HONORS

2013:

  • Dr. Frank Lamas, Vice President for Student Affairs was published in the August 2013 issue of Student Affairs Today.
  • Movin' Mavs Coach Doug Garner was named the 2013 Sam Provence award winner by the Helping Restore Ability group in Arlington. Arlington mayor Robert Cluck is chairman of the event. Sam Provence who is the primary founder of Helping Restore Ability was an advocate for those with disabilities. This award was created in honor of Same and his tremendous efforts in advocacy. This award was presented to Doug as he has been deemed the person to be the most dedicated advocate for those with disabilities.
  • Johnny Robinson, Assistant Director of Fraternity and Sorority Life was published in AFA Essentials - The Association of Fraternity and Sorority Advisors in June 2013.
  • Justin Samuel, The Heights on Pecan Residence Director in Apartment & Residence Life, won Top Program for his presentation "Supervision Love Languages!" at the annual SWACUHO (Southwest Association of College and University Housing Officers) regional conference in early March. Justin’s presentation was based on Dr. Gary Chapman's "5 Love Languages".  As the winner, Justin is attending and presenting at the annual ACUHO-I (Association of College & University Housing Officers- International) conference in June.

2012:

  • Michael Knox, Assistant Vice President and Director for New Maverick Orientation was elected to the General Board for NODA (National Orientation Directors Association) in January 2012.
  • Stephanie McAlpine, Assistant Director for Sport Clubs and Aquatics was selected to serve as Vice-Chair for the NIRSA National Campus Championship Series (NCCS). The NCCS coordinates all NIRSA extramural events, Sport Club Championships, and sponsored and endorsed activities.
  • Chris Muller, Associate Director for Campus Recreation was selected for appointment to the NIRSA Foundation Board. The NIRSA Foundation, through fundraising and stewardship efforts, works in cooperation with the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association to enhance the effectiveness of collegiate recreational sports by providing its members meaningful opportunities for scholarship, research, and personal and professional development.
  • Veronica Rendon, Graduate Assistant for The Leadership Center was awarded the NASPA Region III Award for Outstanding Graduate Student in May 2012.

2011:

  • Movin' Mavs Coach Doug Garner was selected to coach the Army National Team at the 2011 Wounded Warrior Games. Coach Garner lead the Army team to victory at the games on May 20th in Colorado Springs. For more information please see the article on the tournament in the U.S Army website. In addition to being listed on the U.S. Army's website, Doug's accomplishment was written about in USA Today and the Ft. Worth Star Telegram.
  • Coach Garner was nominated for a national AAPAR (American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation) award in March 2011. He was also selected to represent the USA as an IWBF (International Wheelchair Basketball Federation) technical official/classifier at the 2011 Under 25 Women's World Championships in Vancouver, Canada.
  • Dr. Frank Lamas, Vice President for Student Affairs was appointed to the NASPA (National Association of Student Personnel Administrators) Board of Directors in March 2011.
  • In April 2012, The Shorthorn received 32 awards from the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association for content published in 2011 and part of the current semester.

2010:

  • Adam Drew, Production Manager for Student Publications received a College Media Advisers Board of Directors Citation in October 2010 for his work on CMR Review, the organization’s magazine, and his technical contributions to college media advisers nationwide. The board’s Citation honoring Adam was announced at the annual National College Media Convention in Louisville. College Media Advisers is the nation’s largest professional organization for people who work with college media.

DEPARTMENTAL STATE AWARDS AND HONORS

2013:

  • Hats off to The Shorthorn staff for bringing home Sweepstakes (the top award), Best of Show and more than 40 other awards from the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association convention in early April 2013 in Fort Worth. Awards included TIPA Editor of the Year to Dustin Dangli, TIPA Photojournalist of the Year to Michael Minasi and TIPA co-Reporter of the Year to Krista Torralva. Shorthorn staff also were honored in awards presented by two other organizations: The Shorthorn's advertising rate card won second place for Best Rate Card in the College Newspaper Advertising and Business Managers national competition (announced in San Diego), and Shorthorn staff members Krista Torralva and Casey Holder placed first in the Society of Professional Journalists' awards for Region 8 (Texas and Oklahoma) in the online in-depth reporting and online sports reporting categories respectively, among six awards received by The Shorthorn from SPJ. As first place winners, Krista's and Casey's work will be entered into the SPJ's national Mark of Excellence competition. In its premiere year as a digital first publication, The Shorthorn staff continues to excel and receive state, regional and national recognition

2010:

  • The Shorthorn was named Best Daily Newspaper and theshorthorn.com (the online edition of The Shorthorn) was named Best News Website by the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association at its annual convention in March 2010 in Kerrville. Overall, Shorthorn staff received 24 TIPA awards.
  • The Shorthorn also placed second in the Texas Associated Press Managing Editors awards in the Best Daily College Newspaper category, the eighth consecutive year in which The Shorthorn has placed first or second in this contest.
  • Theshorthorn.com was honored as the Best Online College Newspaper in Texas and Oklahoma by the Society of Professional Journalists.

INDIVIDUAL STATE AWARDS AND HONORS

2013:

  • Beth Francesco Currie was named a 2013 Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism Outstanding Graduate Student in April 2013. She was nominated by faculty and staff at the University of North Texas and will be recognized Friday, April 5, during Honors Day, the most prestigious academic event of the year at North Texas. Beth is in the final semester of completing her Master of Arts in Journalism.

2012: 

  • Heather Snow, Director for the Office of Community standards was awarded the Outstanding Mid-Level Professional award at the 2012 TACUSPA conference.
  • Charity Stutzman, Assistant Director for the Relationship, Violence, and Sexual Assault Prevention Program was awarded the Outstanding New Professional award at the 2012 TACUSPA Conference.

2010:

  • Mike Knox, Assistant Vice President and Cheyenne Hernandez, Assistant Director for the Parent & Family Center were named the Mid-Level Professional and Outstanding New Professional at the October 2010 TACUSPA (Texas Association of College and University Student Personnel Administrators) Conference in Ft. Worth, Texas.
  • Lisa Nagy, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs chaired the 2010 TACUSPA (Texas Association of College and University Student Personnel Administrators) conference in Ft. Worth, Texas in October 2010.

local AWARDS and honors

2013:

  • JC Stoner, Outstanding New Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Apartment and Residence Life
  • Allyson Fulton, Outstanding Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Campus Recreation
  • Beth Woodlee, Outstanding Non-Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, The Office of International Education
  • Gilda Williams, Outstanding Non-Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, The Office for Students with Disabilities

2012: 

  • Durl Rather, Associate Director for Campus Recreation received a 2012-2013 Outstanding Maverick award presented by The University of Texas at Arlington in December 2012.
  • The Office for Students with Disabilities received a 2012-2013 Outstanding Maverick award presented by The University of Texas at Arlington in December 2012.
  • Heather Snow, Outstanding Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, The Office of Community Standards
  • Charity Stutzman, Outstanding New Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, The Office of Community Standards
  • Ashton Whitley, Outstanding Non-Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Student Publications

2011:

  • The Division of Student Affairs was awarded the I Am Community Municipal Volunteer Program award by the City of Arlington in 2011. The award is in recognition of the Division’s exemplary dedication to volunteering and to the City of Arlington.
  • Vanessa Balderrama, Outstanding Non-Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Parent & Family Center and Student Governance and Organizations
  • Doug Garner, Outstanding Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Campus Recreation
  • Laura Kinch, Outstanding New Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, VPSA Office
  • Apartment and Residence Life, Assessment of the Year for The Division of Student Affairs

2010:

  • Kristina Clark, Outstanding Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Office for Students with Disabilities
  • Cheyenne Hernandez, Outstanding New Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Parent & Family Center
  • Tak Momose, Outstanding Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Campus Recreation
  • Betty Patterson, Outstanding Non-Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, Apartment & Residence Life
  • Cindy Scarbrough, Outstanding Non-Exempt Professional for The Division of Student Affairs, VPSA Office
Wendy Okolo

STUDENT LIFE

Close Bonds

College is all about forming bonds and gaining experience. That’s why Wendy Okolo supplements study time with offerings from UT Arlington’s student activities.

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