Pure Gold Recipients
Dean Ilse-Mari Lee and the faculty, staff and students in the Honors College, MSU-Bozeman
During the course of the summer, Brett Davis worked closely with me and members of the Honors College administrative staff, to migrate the Presidential Scholarship to a fully online application. This was a monumental task, and the end product, which Brett designed in its totality, is truly extraordinary. All users of this system -- the applicants, recommenders, counselors and the MSU review committee, will appreciate the ease of use, as well as the robust nature of the application system. No matter how complicated our requests were, Brett would make detailed notes and implement our ideas. This portal, which will serve as the virtual entry to our university for hundreds of students each year, will represent our university in the best possible light. Thank you, Brett, for going the extra mile and for doing such a superb job. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. You are Pure Gold!
Nominated by Ilse-Mari Lee; Received award on September 30, 2015
With a defined technological skill, an inherent wit and an unsurpassed loyalty to MSU, Bill Freese has been true gold for the Department of Education and the MSU campus for the past 33 years.
As the Department of Education assessment coordinator, Bill works closely with faculty and staff to collect, organize and share data through a system he has designed to enhance department growth and effectiveness. Bill's duties are extensive and his contributions are critical to many areas, including the accreditation process. While much of his work happens behind the scenes, his data presentations at staff meetings and retreats have become highly anticipated events that involve consistently creative themes and humorous anecdotes. Being able to get an entire room excited about data is no small task and serves as a testament to just how talented Bill Freese is at his job!
Putting official job titles aside, Bill is also tremendously invested in his colleagues and the campus community. For all that his job entails, you can find Bill generously donating his time on a daily basis to help out a co-worker troubleshoot a menacing projector or tussle with a rogue copy machine. Fortunately for all of us, Bill stays on site, without fail, until the technology is working once again. Furthermore, you can find Bill supporting the campus through his attendance of a wide range of campus activities during the year. Bill is a Montana State Bobcat through and through!
I feel fortunate to have not only learned from Bill when I was a student, but to continue to learn from him as a colleague. Thank you Bill for everything you do day in and day out for our department and across our campus community.
Nominated by Joe Hicks; Received award on September 9, 2015
University Communications, MSU-Bozeman
For the past two years Emily Flynn has been a student worker in University Communications. As a marketing major and entrepreneurship minor, she brings a wealth of ideas and energy to our team. Last year, when our office was short handed due to staff turnover, Emily really stepped up to take ownership of a key community outreach project - the Welcome Back Bobcat Kits. Last year, she single handedly organized the sign-ups, gathered volunteers, stuffed the kits, created the delivery routes, and helped deliver the kits to over 650 community businesses. As she has grown in her position, she continues to come up with new ideas on how to enhance the program and provide more value to the community. She is always prompt, energetic and thorough. In addition, she has built her marketing know-how by participating in photo and video shoots and maintaining the merchandise social media presence. Her energy and enthusiasm as well as her thoughtful approach will propel her to an exciting career. She inspires us everyday to have a go-for-it attitude and embrace our passion for Montana State University.
Nominated by Julie Kipfer; Received award on September 23, 2015
University Stuides, MSU-Bozeman
As many of you know, MSU in Bozeman implemented a new Cat Course registration system for new students this past summer/fall. Many people were involved in making the implementation of this new system a success. In fact, due to the hard work of many, we registered over 1,300 new freshmen on one day alone (August 21). Things went so well that there were very short or nonexistent lines the entire day. Needless to say, it was a very long day for many dedicated MSU staff that helped make this happen in computer labs all over our campus. One of the people integrally involved with the process for months in advance and all day long on 8/21 was Diane Donnelly. Her ability to watch course capacity, communicate about additional section needs, advise students and provide above and beyond support to our student and professional staff is extraordinary. Diane and all others who worked in the freshman registration labs all day on 8/21 were, no doubt, exhausted at the end of the day.
I received a call from a very distraught mother of a new freshman about 5;30 p.m. on that day. The mother was concerned that her son did not get the classes he needed at the times he needed them, etc. I gave Diane a call on her cell, hoping that she would set up a time to meet with the student on Monday morning. Instead, she said: ?I will meet him and his mom in my office in 10 minutes? (She was just walking from the registration site to her office). Imagine the excitement of the mom and student when I called them back with this news!
Diane texted me about 7 p.m. that night, telling me that she had just finished her meeting and both the student and parent left very happy.
To me, Diane's efforts each and every day are PURE GOLD, but her willingness to go above and beyond with the student and parent on what was already a very long Friday is definitely worthy of recognition.
Thank you, Diane, for all you do!
Nominated by Ronda Russell; Received award on September 2, 2015
Veterans Center, MSU-Great Falls
I feel that Kevin Lyons would be a perfect recipient for the Pure Gold award. Kevin is a retired pilot in the Air Force and now runs the Veterans Center at Great Falls College MSU. His title is Veterans Success Coach, and the title fits him very well. Kevin has gone above and beyond to ensure that veterans, spouses and dependents have the greatest chance for success while attending Great Falls College MSU. Not only has Kevin worked to provide a great learning environment for veteran's families, he is a friend with a smiling face to anyone that enters the room. To name just a few things, Kevin has coordinated with the school to provide tutors for veterans in the center, he has brought in counselors and advisers to help veterans with various issues, and he has purchased many models to help students with their anatomy classes. Everything that Kevin has done for the Veterans Center has proven to be a great success. Statistics have proven that veterans that use the center have a higher GPA and a higher graduation rate. I feel that for all of these reasons, and many more, Kevin Lyons would be a great person to receive this prestigious award, and he is a great asset to the MSU family. I am very happy to call him my friend.
Nominated by Ted Nesmith; Received award on September 16, 2015
Jennifer Anderson has been a member of the MSU-Northern family for over 8 years. For the last 2 years, she has worked as the Administrative Associate for the Education Department. As a co-worker, I have seen first hand her deep commitment to students, faculty, and to the MSU-Northern community. She is the first one in the office in the morning every day and is usually one of the last people to leave. Her smile, warmth, and genuine interest in people fill the department offices with cheer and a sense of well-being.
As the first person that students, faculty, and other staff usually meet when coming to the Education Department, Jennifer is always smiling and readily helpful. She assists with advising and also provides assistance to our education faculty at our satellite campus in Great Falls. She will go above and beyond to assist anyone in whatever area they need help. With her extensive knowledge of policy and procedures across the campus, she is able to provide solid insight when working with others, including myself.
Besides her regular job duties, Jennifer also gives her time to work with the Student Education Association, assisting our education students in a variety of ways as they prepare for their future careers. She also serves as a member of the board for the staff labor union and is a staunch supporter of MSU-Northern community activities.
Jennifer is the type of work associate that makes everyone strive to do a better job themselves. Her work ethic is second to none. She is a valuable asset to the Education Department, and we are lucky to have her. For all of these reasons, I believe that Jennifer Anderson is PURE GOLD!
Nominated by Virginia Braithwaite; Received award on October 7, 2015