Of the 30 staff to be recognized by this year’s university-wide Outstanding Staff Awards, three are from Undergraduate Studies:
- Will Grindle, Program Coordinator, University Honors Center
- Kin Hau, Course Enrollment Registration Manager, First-Year Experience
- Rose Mastrangelo, Associate Academic Advisor, Bridging Disciplines Programs & Archer Program at UT Austin
The award recipients were formally recognized at the President’s Staff Awards on April 23, 2013.
About the Award Winners
Interim Dean of Undergraduate Studies Larry Abraham noted a “clear theme” in the nomination letters for the three award winners: “all three have made sustained and significant efforts to improve their programs through innovative approaches and practices.” Dr. Abraham offered congratulations, saying he is grateful for their continuing contributions to the school.
Kin schedules the hundreds of courses that make up the Signature Course program and manages that program’s five million dollar budget. She also worked closely with a programmer to develop and implement the new Signature Course data system. The Signature Courses teach first-year students college-level writing, research, speaking, and discussion skills, and expose students to distinguished faculty members. Kin joined the Signature Course program in April 2009.
First-Year Experience Senior Program Coordinator Patty Micks, Kin’s supervisor, pointed out that Kin’s “understanding of the processes and policies for the Signature Course program and the First-year Interest Group program is astounding as well as crucial for both the big picture and day-to-day tasks of the First-Year Experience. By training employees on various projects, by teaching new employees complex tasks, and by having the institutional knowledge that makes her the ‘go-to’ person on many issues, Kin has risen to the occasion and has truly become a leader in our office.”
Rose joined the Bridging Disciplines Programs (BDPs) in October 2011 as the advisor for the Environment, Digital Arts & Media, and Social Entrepreneurship & Non-profits Bridging Disciplines Programs. Rose also serves as the coordinator for the Archer Program at UT Austin. Prior to joining the BDPs, Rose worked as an advisor in the Center for Strategic Advising in the School of Undergraduate Studies at UT Austin, in addition to past experiences in the non-profit sector as an Americorps *VISTA Volunteer Coordinator and a Senior Program Associate at the PBS Headquarters in Washington, D.C.
“Rose exemplifies what it means to provide dedicated, caring, outstanding service to undergraduates both in Undergraduate Studies and across the university,” says her supervisor, Assistant Dean Jeanette Herman, Ph.D. “She excels at advising students in both the Bridging Disciplines Programs and the Archer Program in a way that lets each student know that she values their individual goals, and that helps them find pathways to achieve these goals.”
Rose’s nominators noted that she has performed at an exemplary level in both the CSA and the BDP offices, and has been instrumental in reorganizing, streamlining, and creating business practices that enhance student participation and success. In the words of one nominator, Rose has “added a refreshing dynamic to the BDP team and is incredibly supportive of the team’s members.” A student described meeting with Rose as “one of the best experiences s/he has had with an advisor at UT.”
Will advises and coordinates the work of six national interdisciplinary honor societies on campus, including Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Kappa Phi, Alpha Lambda Delta and Phi Eta Sigma. He has been recognized nationally for his work with those honors societies. Will is also an integral member of the Honors Colloquium team, supports Undergraduate Studies Outreach program, and in involved in special initiatives for the Dean’s Office.
Will’s nominators pointed out that his “inventive and creative” design and implementation of new technological solutions to organizational protocol have greatly improved efficiency in the University Honors Center. Will has served on and led school committees and has represented Undergraduate Studies across campus at meetings and events.
“I am delighted that Will’s outstanding contributions to our school and university will be recognized,” said Senior Program Coordinator Kathy Uitvlugt. “Will cheerfully and energetically sees opportunities and finds solutions to problems that some have yet to address.”
Current UT Austin Classified and Administrative/Professional staff members who were continuously employed for at least 20 hours per week from September 1, 2010, to August 31, 2012, were eligible for the awards. Previous honorees who received an award more than five years ago were also eligible.
Outstanding Staff Award Recipients must have:
- Outstanding dedication, competence, conscientious performance, excellent customer service, and ingenuity
- Contribute to and demonstrate a commitment to the School’s core purpose and values
- Have significantly improved customer service or increased customer satisfaction for specific UGS customers
- Have significantly improved a work process or system or have significantly increased the efficiency of an operation or unit
- Have demonstrated an exceptional ability to foster collaboration, communication, and cooperation among colleagues and constituents
- Have performed at a level above and beyond normal job requirements