Employee of the Month Profiles
Full-Time: Kara Seigh
College Credit Plus Curriculum specialist Kara Seigh was named January Staff Employee of the Month at First Wednesday. Her supervisor, Jacqueline Jenkins, was the primary nominator. Barbara Allen and Lauren Jones were co-nominators.
Jenkins wrote, “Kara has helped streamline the functions for creating and tracking embedded College Credit Plus classes at our partner high schools. She impresses our school district partners by responding promptly to any and all concerns and by offering training over the phone or in person.
In addition to her nomination, two external recommendations were received for Kara, including one from the Dublin City School District.
Arts and Sciences advisor Beth Stanley was named the January Part-Time Staff Employee of the Month. “When I hear her conversing with a student, no matter how complicated the situation may be or how frustrating the student’s attitude may be, Beth always responds with patience in tone and action,” writes Amanda Jurden, her nominator, and fellow advisor. She says Beth’s demeanor and interactions with students help bring out the Columbus State “spirit” in the advising team.
Beth has taken on a project that involves following up with students who have met requirements to graduate but have not yet filled out a Graduation Application, some of whom met requirements years ago. She also occasionally teaches COLS 1100 classes.
Full-Time: Laura Baisden
Laura Baisden, an advisor in Student Central, was named the Staff Employee of the
Month at February’s First Wednesday last week. She was nominated by coworker . In
her nomination letter, Tomasek said, “Laura makes a significant difference with our students who sign up and attend FAFSA and scholarship workshops. She created a database to track attendees, in addition to contacting them before and after the workshops. These efforts have increased enrollment numbers and the number of financial awards to students.”
Nancy Smith, specialist, Student Advocacy, was awarded the Part-time Staff Employee of the Month. Lauren Merante, advisor, was the nominator. Merante said, “Nancy has made great strides for Student Advocacy. She recently gave a presentation to high school students about budgeting and borrowing and the importance of graduating with less debt. The high school seniors were engaged and eager to speak with her after the class.”
Full-Time: Megan Hale
With a work ethic and commitment to the Columbus State brand that “shines through,” Megan Hale was named Staff Employee of the Month. Hale is one of the officers in the Columbus State Police Department. She was nominated by Sgt. Jeff Dodge.
In his nomination, Dodge said that Megan recently investigated two crimes. In one
case, an employee had their identity stolen while at work. In the other, Columbus
State property was stolen over several months. Megan identified suspects, sought felony
charges, and worked to assist the employee-victim.
Polly Moore is a specialist who splits her time between Student Central and College Testing Services. Nominator Stephanie Albrecht, senior director in Student Central, wrote that Polly provided service to departments outside of her work with students.
“Perhaps the main reason Polly most deserves to be awarded,” says Albrecht, “is the way she interacts with students. In tough situations, she displays genuine empathy. In difficult conversations, she brings a gentleness. Students are lucky to have her in their corner.”
Full-Time: Averee Fields
Averee Fields, coordinator, was named the Staff Employee of the Month at last week’s First Wednesday. She was nominated by David Bader, adjunct faculty member, who says, “Fields has provided me with ongoing and valuable assistance in her role as a member of the Student Services Department at the Delaware Campus.
She is focused and clearly understands the end goal of student engagement programs
in the academic process.” The nomination letter also points out that Fields has organized
volunteer extra-curricular programs aimed at enriching the college experience for
Selam Bihon is a part-time lab technician at the Dublin Regional Learning Center. While this position can sometimes be overlooked, her nominator stressed the vital importance of her work.
Faculty member Ola Ali says, “Bihon made a big difference to the Dublin Center by helping all faculty organize the lab materials and models. She always assists with the lab exams and keeps them clean and organized for everyone to use.”
Full-Time: Justin Mulinex
Justin Mulinex, material handler in Mail and Distribution Services, was named the Staff Employee of the Month at First Wednesday yesterday. He was nominated by Brittany Barrett, supervisor, Center for Advising, Support, and Exploration. She says, “Justin was a valuable member of the New Student Orientation Team this past summer.
He was always asking what we need and kept track of our stock in the warehouse making it easier for the team to keep up during the hectic summer months.” Mulinex earned his Associate of Arts degree from Columbus State last May and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in applied psychology at Franklin University.
Full-Time: Barbara Smith-Allen
Barbara Smith-Allen is no stranger to the College. Having worked here for almost 31 years, she has served in many capacities. She’s currently a coordinator in the Student Advocacy Center. Nominator Terrence Brooks, senior director of Student Conduct, says, “Barbara Smith-Allen has been working behind the scenes for many years to support major initiatives and encourage staff participation. This year marked 30 years of her support for the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration. She initiated the partnership (for this celebration) with Ohio State University 30 years ago.”
Brooks says, “There are countless examples when Barb has been asked to participate
or contribute to a project. Her general response is ‘what can I do?’ This exemplifies
the spirit of Columbus State Community College.”
Damian Marburger, Student Central specialist, was nominated by Misty Mahefkey, director of Student Central. Mahefkey says Marburger started making an impact soon after he was hired a few years ago. He also received numerous accolades from students. One said, “Damian was extremely polite, professional and informative.”
Marburger’s nomination also included this comment: “Damian, you successfully deescalated a tense situation in CASE with a great deal of empathy and respect for the student even when you did not initially receive that in return. Your positive attitude and supportive listening steered the interaction in a way that helped the student feel ‘heard.’”
Full-Time: Stephanie Hall
Stephanie Hall, project manager in the Grants Office, was named the July Staff Employee of the Month (SEOM) last week at First Wednesday. Hall’s efforts in an application to make Columbus State designated as a Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense was highlighted in her nomination for SEOM. Tara Sheffer, grants manager, said, “With just three months left in the application process and many parts of the application not even started, Stephanie rose to the occasion. She collected more than 150 pieces of evidence from key department across campus.”
Larry McWherter, instructor in the Computer Science Department, said, “Stephanie was consistently there meeting deadlines and providing superior products with a great attitude that just wouldn’t quit. She was part of a team that applied for and received the prestigious Community of Academic Excellence – Cyber Defense designation on our first attempt without the need for revisions or clarifications.”
Full-Time: David Wells
David Wells, academic advisor at the Dublin Regional Learning Center, is the August Staff Employee of the Month. “As a member of the Center for Advising, Support, and Exploration (CASE), David always has a positive outlook and put the students’ needs forward in everything he does,” says nominator Teresa Lister, CASE supervisor. “David helped organize registration workshops at the Dublin Regional Learning Center, where 32 potential students turned into 28 active students.” Dawn Blair, CASE assistant director, adds, “David is flexible and always willing to pitch in whether there is a need for advising assistance at the Delaware Campus, another regional learning center, or on the Columbus Campus.”
Full-Time: Jason Love
Jason Love was named the Staff Employee of the Month at last week’s First Wednesday meeting. As program coordinator in Benefits, Love was instrumental in the seamless transfer to BefefitFocus, Columbus State’s new online benefits platform for full-time staff and faculty. His supervisor, Deborah Robinson, said, “There were numerous hours of testing and updating the data, as well as other back-end work, that goes unnoticed.” In nominating Love (along with 14 co-nominators), Phyllis Gorman, director of Professional Development and Retention, said, “Jason demonstrated grace under pressure. He engaged staff for countless hours in the lab, returned phone calls, and had long, late nights generating reports and sending emails to assure everyone was properly enrolled onto the BefefitFocus platform.”
Full-Time: Maria Santiago
Maria Santiago is a specialist in Business and Industry. She was nominated by her supervisor, Chaylee Liberator. “Maria is student and client-focused and always provides a level of service that makes the students and companies feel heard,” says Liberator. “She is constantly looking for ways to improve and grow by participating in professional development activities, volunteering, and soliciting feedback. She is very deserving of this award.”
Marwan Khasawneh had ties to the College before working in his current position as an advisor in the Center for Advising, Support, and Exploration. He’s a graduate, and he worked at Columbus State as an advisor from 2000-2005. Darla Van Horn, coordinator in Student Advocacy, nominated Khasawneh. “I have overheard him start a conversation (with a student) in English,” she said. “Then if he speaks their native language, he communicates with them in their chosen language. This provides a holistic approach and makes them feel welcome.”