2020-2021 Undergraduate Advising Awards
- I am Bret Smith, Interim Dean of University College in the Division of Academic and Student Affairs and it is my honor to welcome you to the undergraduate advising award ceremony. Today we have the pleasure of recognizing the accomplishments of our colleagues who have counseled, mentored, coached, encouraged and taught students across our great university. These individuals have committed themselves to the growth and development of our undergraduate students in innumerable ways, and NC State is made better every day by their dedication and energy.
Charlie Nutt, the Executive Director of NACADA, the National Academic Advising Association has said that, often the one to one relationship between the student and the advisor is the only opportunity a student has to build a personal link with the institution. It thereby has a profound effect on the student's academic career. As you will hear about our nominees and winners, their relationships with students have been not only strong but life-changing.
Their work inspires us all. The difficult task of choosing award winners from among our outstanding nominees was accomplished by our selection committee composed of these individuals from across the university. We thank each of these 12 people for their time, energy and thoughtful consideration of the nomination packets. I will now turn the program over to Donna Burton for recognition of our Advisor Development Institute graduates. - My name is Donna Burton, and it is my honor to recognize the 23 individuals who have earned their Advisor Development Institute Certificate.
The people whose names you see here have dedicated themselves to better understanding and practicing the many aspects of the advising relationship. They have learned how to form stronger student advisor partnerships, so students can successfully pursue their educational career and personal goals. The ADI graduates come from across the university.
They include faculty advisors, primary role advisors, advising administrators, those who provide advising administration support, and emerging professionals. In their individual roles, each of them provides guidance and support for the students they serve. We thank them for their perseverance and their commitment to their advising practice during such a challenging year.
Please join me in celebrating their accomplishment. Today we are taking the opportunity to honor an exceptional leader. Dr. Carrie McLean, the university's director of advising retired December 31. Carrie positively impacted thousands of students and served as a colleague and mentor for more individuals than we could possibly name.
We thought the best way to demonstrate Carrie's impact on academic advising was to share messages from her colleagues. You will hear them talk about the difference Carrie made in their lives and in their students lives. The first message is from Dr. Brian Peters Associate Director of Academic Advising Programs
and Services. Brian will talk about Carrie's work at NC State and her contributions to NACADA, the National Academic Advising Association. Let's hear what Carrie's colleagues have to say. - [Dr. Brian] Hello, my name is Dr. Brian Peters.
I have the honor of highlighting some of Dr. Carrie McLean's accomplishments here at NC State into the field of academic advising. Dr. McLean worked at NC State University for 35 years. She actually started within the university libraries, wanting to serve students, especially first generation and underrepresented students at the college. Dr. McLean switched to the field of academic advising.
She served as an academic advisor, associate director and then director of the first year college, now known as Academic Advising Programs and Services. Dr. McLean was the first assistant dean of the University College and director of advising at NC State, serving in numerous college and university committees. As Assistant Dean, she helped campus leaders understand the importance of academic advising. In her time at NC State, Dr. McLean created several programs and advising projects to
further student success in advising on campus. Dr. McLean created the academic advising services model to support students in transition, including the inter college transfer program, and advising case managers. Dr. McLean served on the team that envisioned and created the First Year Commons, now named Holmes Hall.
She also created the university advising committees to advance academic advising across a decentralized campus. Dr. McLean assisted with the implementation of advising software on campus, such as EAB navigate, to better assist advisors to keep advising notes, track student success, and assess advising outcomes. She also helped establish the advising career ladder, who provided oversight for the academic advising awards.
Dr. McLean never stopped advising students. As Assistant Dean, she often advised and provided resources to students who reached out to senior university leadership. Outside of NC State, Carrie also contributed to the field of academic advising.
Dr. McLean was highly engaged within NACADA, the National Academic Advising Association. She has presented at several national and regional conferences, and in 2017, she co-hosted NACADA's Region Three regional conference. She also served on Region Three's Leadership Committee, serving as the diversity chair.
Lastly, Dr. McLean collaborated and mentored advisors in advising administrators across the country. Through her years of service, Dr. McLean has advanced the field of academic advising at
NC State and nationally. Most importantly, she always remained focused on the success of our students. Thank you, Carrie, we're gonna miss you.
Congratulations on your retirement. - I know that it would be customary to mention and celebrate the many years of service you've given to the university, but I think that misses the point. It's not the years you serve, but the lives you have changed. That's what we celebrate today.
Our students have greatly benefited from your tireless efforts on their behalf. And most of us don't even know half the stories. - I don't even really know how to summarize how much Carrie has meant to the community at NC State and the advising community. - Your ability to see grand visions of advising long before others on campus can catch up with your ideas is all inspiring.
- Thank you for your dedication, your passion, your contributions and impact that you've made in the lives of engineering students, certainly, but much more broadly than that, Carrie, in the lives of many, many students throughout the years at NC State. Impacting them and their trajectories, their accomplishments, and then downstream then how they impact their families and those around them and their community. - Thank you for advancing the role of advising on campus through innovative and inclusive practices that truly support our students holistically. No matter where they come from, no matter who their families may be, no matter how much money they may have in the bank, those students are at a much better place because they had someone in their corner such as yourself.
- For the 15 plus years that we've gotten to work together, I've counted on you. I've loved our talks over lunch, the many committees we've served on together, and how you always make me laugh. And after a conversation with you I always have better perspective on what we're working through and a plan for how to move forward.
- You're everything great about our university in one person. You were so thoughtful and courageous. And you're an amazing role model and mentor, and you have the ability to be about the business of the work and being a consummate professional, but also always having the heartbeat of the student in your mind and sharing that with your colleagues. - I've seen you champion many, many, many times, students and their success to be able to thrive here at NC State. - On NC State's campus, I think of you, your face, your smile, your compassion, your care, all of that comes to mind when I think of advising. - But when I think back of your career, the thing I hold in highest esteem is the impact you've had on individual students.
Especially those students that were struggling or had lost hope, couldn't find a path forward, you could listen to those students without judging them and you could help them find success. You've changed so many lives and you should be very proud of that. - When I approached you with the idea for what has now become advisor power hour, and you just looked at me and asked, what do you need? And that was just such a powerful question, because it let me know two things, one, that you believed in the idea itself, and two, that you believed in me that I could do this and pull this idea off. And I know that you have believed and supported so many other advising ideas on campus. So on behalf of all of us, thank you, thank you for believing in our ideas.
- Carrie McLean is one of those people that epitomizes Dr. Stafford's belief in students first. She listens to students to understand them to know they are people, what their joys are, what their goals are to help them find the path that works for them. - Carrie, you're a true academic advising advocate.
You have helped professionals and students alike in so many ways. You are an encourager, a supporter, a dedicated leader. You spent years developing teams, organizing committees, and being a proponent of change for advising on campus. You've always been eager to listen, willing to compromise and truly embraced modeling the way.
- Your patience and perseverance and bringing those visions to life is something that has long been about you. - There's never been one time where I haven't thought that you always had the best interest of the students in your mind. You are one of the best things to ever happened to NC State University. And you're gonna leave a huge hole that we can only hope to fill in some kind of capacity. - I watched you, I have been inspired by you, I am grateful that I was one of the people that got to work alongside you and learn from you. - The second is a quote I heard you share so many times, people forget what you do what you say but they remember how you made them feel.
You always made us feel empowered, seen, heard, valued. So thank you so much for how you always made us feel every time we saw you. - Your work has created tremendous benefits for hundreds of advisors and thousands of students, and we'll continue to do so for many years to come. - We are a stronger advising community because of her vision and leadership.
- I've had students come to me and tell me their stories of success and appreciation in working with you. - You've made such an impact on advising the Exploratory Studies program and student success in general at the university. - You know the countless amount of students and colleagues whose lives you've changed and including mine, from when I was a student to my privilege and honor being your colleague. And had the privilege of sharing students with you and having to see them awakened to what their life's purpose is because they interacted with you.
- On a more personal level, Carrie loves people, in small groups of course. She makes connections that encourages us to be authentic, confident and the strive for excellence. - She is such a well known and respected leader and we are so thankful that she was a part of NC State for so very long. She's so deserving of retirement. - You know NC State, you know your students, you know your colleagues, and this knowledge is your impact.
But it's not just Raleigh, North Carolina, where your impact is felt because you've helped train and develop professionals all across this nation. - And you've been a great mentor and someone who's led by example in all things and so, I like many others will greatly miss you, but we wish you all the best in this next chapter. - My distinct memory is of a time when you not only supported the student but you also supported me as a person that you supervises one you should person. I was fortunate enough to have a young man as my advisee, who came to NC State and actually was his intent to come in the fall semester.
And this was after he had suffered a brain tumor in his senior year in high school. He had to be totally rehabilitated, but because of the person he was on graduation day, even though he had to learn to walk and talk all over again, on graduation day he walked across the stage because he said he wanted to do it and he did. He also said he wanted to attend NC State. And the fall semester came three months later, and he fully intended to be on campus. Unfortunately, it was medically impossible for him to be there.
I had some ideas about how we could accommodate Cam. I took them to my boss, Carrie McLean, and we worked together to have Cameron on campus, not on campus but online, but still a part of that entering class, that fall semester class. And by spring semester, he came to campus. He was challenged even then, he, a couple of times he ended up in the hospital, took his work with him and continued to work and he got through the spring semester. The next thing that was very important to him was attending a football game.
He came back in the fall semester of his sophomore year. He attended a game on September the first, which was a Saturday, and he passed away on Sunday, September the second. That was a really challenging time for me. And most of the time, I'm saying it as a person who is strong, confident and independent. But Carrie realized that that wasn't one of those times and she made the journey with me over to the western part of the state to say our goodbyes to Cameron.
And if I did not say it then I want to say it now, I wanna say thanks to Carrie for supporting not only Cam, but for supporting me. - For those of us that have worked with you, you've set a standard that we will strive to follow and hopefully surpass, for that is the way of things. Each of us has an opportunity to do our best and an obligation to pass the torch to the next generation. We accept your challenge. Carrie, thank you for the standards you set, the questions you raised, and the encouragement you have always provided. As you continue with your life's voyage, I wish you fair winds and following seas.
- We thank everyone who has shared these messages with Carrie today. Her care for each student and each advisor meant that they were in a much stronger position to succeed. I too, thank her, and I hope that as an advisor and administrator, I honor her every single day. We now turn our attention to the nominees and winners of this year's advising awards. Our presenter is Tremaine Brittian, Director of Recruitment and Student Engagement in the College of Natural Resources. Tremaine was the 2019/2020 winner of the Advising Administrator Award.
- It is my honor and privilege to present the nominees and winners of this year's five undergraduate academic advising awards. Each winner of these awards receives a plaque and a check for $250. The winners are then nominated for regional and national NACADA Awards in their respective categories. Before we meet these nominees and winners, it is my pleasure to make a very special announcement.
You just heard about Dr. Carrie McLean's many contributions to advising at NC State and across the nation. In recognition of her distinguished service, the Academic Advising Administrator Award will now be named the Carrie McLean Award. Thank you so much, Carrie for your exceptional leadership.
We are so glad to honor your career and your impact on advising through this award. I hope my plaque can be updated to note that I received the Carrie McLean Award last year. I will now tell you about the nominees and the first recipient of the newly named Carrie McLean Award. This award recognizes an individual with administrative oversight of an advising area. Nominees must have served in advising administration at NC State for at least three years and must have shown advocacy for advisors, a commitment to deepening the understanding of the advising process and a commitment to improving advising practices at NC State.
Dr. Alina Duca, is the Director of Undergraduate Mathematics Program in the College of Sciences. In that role, Dr. Duca facilitates academic administration and support for 20 faculty advisors who serve 320 undergraduate students. One of her nominator said, her role as the director of undergraduate programs is one she upholds by being professional and personable to everyone she interacts with. She does her work with integrity and exemplifies what it means to be caring, committed, empowering, inclusive, professional and respectful. Dr. Carol Ann Lewald, is the Director of Undergraduate Advising for Interdisciplinary Studies in
the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. She administers the advising program for six majors that range from Africana Studies to Science, Technology and Society. She provides significant support for 20 faculty members, while also advising 70 students herself. Her colleagues wrote, she has an uncanny ability to identify where each of her students is intellectually and emotionally and provides a perfect combination of challenge and support unique to their needs at that time. She also transmits this approach in the training that she offers to other advisors. Kimber Lunsford, is the Assistant Director of Undergraduate Programs for the Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources in the College of Natural Resources.
She oversees recruitment, undergraduate student support, and advising for environmental science students, and she also supports faculty advisors in the department. One person said about Kimber, her colleagues lean on her for knowledge, tenacity and integrity. I can attest that her employees admire her advising ability and look to her for guidance and understanding as they grow and learn within their own positions. Heather Lyerly is the Director of Academic Services in the Wilson College of Textiles. She oversees all aspects of advising for the college, working with advisors, department heads, and directors of undergraduate programs to ensure student success. Her nominator said, she works hard to create an inclusive and respectful environment for everyone she encounters.
She expresses compassion for her students and colleagues, and she empowers us to grow personally and professionally every day. The winner of the very first Carrie McLean Award, recognizing the outstanding advising administrator is Heather Lyerly. We congratulate you Heather on this recognition of your effective supportive of both students and advisors in your college and at NC State. I will now introduce the individuals nominated for the new advisor award. Each one has been advising undergraduate students for three or fewer years, and advising makes up at least half of their duties. Sarah Bessey advises students in the Life Sciences First Year Program, a joint program between the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Sciences.
One of her students wrote that, in every lecture and advising meeting, I was certain she actually cared about and was invested in my future and academic career prospects. With her help, I finally felt hopeful and confident in my future. Laura Garey advises environmental science students in the College of Natural Resources, Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources. One of her advisee said this about her impact. Her guidance has been incredibly important to my professional development, and I don't think I would have had the confidence to continue pursuing undergraduate research without her support.
Ashley Hamilton advises environmental sciences students in the Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources, located in the College of Natural Resources. One of her advisees told us, I realized that without Ashley's assistance and push in the right direction, I would have had a much more difficult time finding and plotting out my educational path. Trisha Jackson advises students in the TRIO Collegiate Programs, which serves underresourced first generation and underrepresented college students. In her role, she advises students in a multitude of areas, including academic and career planning, gaining research experience and connecting effectively with faculty members. A recent NC State graduate shared that Tricia was more than just an advisor. She was my friend, mentor and so much more.
She provided me a space to cry about my struggles and a space to celebrate my academic accomplishments. Susan Lawhead advises political science majors and minors as well as the Political Science Honor Society, Pi Sigma Alpha. One of Susan's students wrote that, she helped me think through the pros and cons of all the possibilities in front of me, and ultimately, she empowered me to trust myself in making decisions. Elizabeth New advises students in Electrical and Computer Engineering.
She also guides the Department Student Ambassador Program. One of the ambassadors described her this way. I have always known her to be hardworking and passionate about working with students to help us be successful in everything we do. Bethany Remington serves in the Study Abroad Program, advising students from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the College of Sciences in the Wilson College of Textiles. Her nominator praise her understanding, flexibility and perseverance, during arguably the toughest of times for our students, office and the university is commendable and she serves as a model to her students and colleagues. The recipient of the New Advisor Award is Tricia Jackson.
We congratulate Tricia on being honored for her dedicated service to first generation underresourced and underrepresented students at NC State. We will now meet the nominees for the New Faculty Advisor Award. This award honors those faculty members who have been advising undergraduates for up to three years and who spend less than half of their time serving as advisors. Chelsea Krieg is a lecturer in the Department of English and advises English majors in the creative writing concentration. One of her advisees lauded Chelsea saying, most importantly, Chelsea helped me graduate during a year marked by immense personal and collective turmoil, an accomplishment that would have seemed impossible without her.
Dr. Erin McKenney is an Assistant Teaching Professor and the Director of Undergraduate Programs and Applied Ecology in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. She advises all 31 students in the applied ecology minor. One student wrote that as a mentor, Dr. McKenney has been very supportive throughout my research experience, while also allowing me to work independently gaining confidence in my own research abilities. Dr. R. Brian Ormond is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Textile Engineering,
Chemistry and Science in the Wilson College of Textiles. His nominator said that he deeply cares for each one of his students and equips students with every resource they need to succeed academically and professionally. The recipient of the New Faculty Advisor Award is Dr. Erin McKenney. We congratulate her on her outstanding service to both students and advisors. Next, we will meet the nominees for the Faculty Advisor Award.
These are individuals whose primary responsibilities are teaching and research and who spend less than half of their time advising. Dr. Trino Ascencio-Ibanez is an Associate Teaching Professor of Biochemistry in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. He serves as the undergraduate coordinator for the biochemistry program. One of his students noted, that Trino has a passion for mentoring students and has managed to create a legacy through his work by providing guidance and expertise. Dr. Kim Bush is an Associate Teaching Professor and Director of Undergraduate Programs in
the Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management Department in the College of Natural Resources. She also serves as co-chair of the university academic advising committee. One of her students wrote that, he does not believe he would have finished his degree without Dr. Bush.
Talking to her is like talking to a mentor that is a best friend because she not only talks about what I need to get done in the classroom, but also what it takes to be a step further to ask how I'm doing in everyday life. Dr. Helmut Hergeth is an Associate Professor in the Department of Textile and Apparel, Technology and Management in the Wilson College of Textiles. He serves as Faculty Director for two study abroad programs. One of his advisees described him this way. His patient and approachable manner always made me feel comfortable reaching out to him, and his guidance and direction helped me to reach my goals.
Dr. Helen Kraus is an Associate Professor in Horticulture Science. She serves as the distance education coordinator and undergraduate coordinator for the department. One student told us this about Dr. Kraus. She devotes great amounts of time to ensure the students will be able to have career experience and develop their passion for their future career during their time at NC State. Terrie Litzenberger is a Senior Lecturer and Faculty Advisor for the Environmental Technology Management Program in the College of Natural Resources. She also serves as the program coordinator.
One of her advisees said about her. I never despaired because I knew Miss Litzenberger genuinely fostered and committed to my academic success, professional development and career goals. Sarah Queen is an Associate Professor in the School of Architecture, and the Director of Undergraduate Programs and Architecture. She also serves as the Director of the First Year Experience in the College of Design. One of her advisees wrote that Sarah understands the value of getting more out of college than a degree and is always giving students new means of involvement with architecture and design. Roy Stamper is a Senior Lecturer in English and an Academic Advisor for English Majors and Language Writing and Rhetoric.
He also serves as Associate Director for undergraduate student support in the first year writing program. An alumnus of NC State, who Roy advise said that he related to him because he was cheerful, but very real with me. And because he could see me as a person, he had a strong sense of the kind of student I was.
Dr. Lynn Worley-Davis is a Teaching Assistant Professor in the prestigious Department of Poultry Science in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. She also serves as the director of undergraduate programs for the department and the co-coordinator of the Agriculture Institute Livestock and Poultry Management program. One of her advisees shared that I know I can count on her to give her honest opinion of how I can best achieve the goals I have set for myself.
The recipient of the faculty advisor award is Dr. Kim Bush. We congratulate Kim for her exceptional service to her students, her department and to the university. Our last award is the Barbara Solomon Award, presented to the outstanding advisor who spends at least half of their time directly advising students and has five years or more of academic advising experience at NC State. This award is presented in honor of Barbara Solomon, whose long and distinguished career demonstrated both outstanding advising and advocacy for students as she championed student success.
Here are the five nominees. Meggie Metcalf is a Senior Advisor in the Wilson College of Textiles. She has been advising NC State students since 2015. Meggie not only advises students in the five undergraduate degrees, but also coordinates study abroad programs for the Wilson College students. Meggie's nominator wrote that she recognizes that students come in at different levels, with different backgrounds and experiences and works with them to find the path that is right for them.
She believes that all areas of a student's life are interconnected and that mental and physical well-being, participation in activities outside the classroom, and relationships impact academic performance. April Hix Morrison advises more than 300 students in the Department of Food Bioprocessing and Nutrition Science in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, where she has served since 2008. She also teaches FS 471, which is designed to provide students with guidance on their professional development. Her nominator described her contributions this way.
April knows every one of her advisees by name and can provide a detailed description of each one's talents and challenges. This makes her advice invaluable as she works with undergraduate coordinators to connect students to jobs that match their skill sets, interests and personalities. Melissa Simpson has advised and taught first year college and exploratory studies students since 2004.
She also serves as the Assistant Director for Recruitment and advises the Exploratory Studies ambassadors. Her nominator shared that Melissa goes out of her way to make sure each of her students feels heard on campus and has a place at NC State. Further in meetings with other advisors, Melissa is often voicing the concerns of students, and how changes to our program or policies will impact our students directly. Dana Thomas, who has advised students at NC State since 2014, serves as the advisor for more than 250 students in biological sciences and zoology in the College of Sciences. She's also the coordinator of advising for the Department of Biological Sciences.
Dana's nominator said that she is also critical to helping our faculty advisors know about resources and services, so that they can better serve their advisees. But as in so many areas, Dana goes above and beyond, she actually creates resources and services where she sees a need. Cynthia Zuckerman-Hyman is a Senior Lecturer and the Director of Undergraduate Advising in the Department of Communication in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, where she has served since 2011. She is the primary advisor for 520 students and secondary advisor for the other 180 plus majors in communication. One of her students shared, she is the one who taught me how to navigate MyPack Portal, what to do in order to gain worthwhile experiences as a young professional, and remained committed to helping her students even as we lost the ability to visit her office on any given day.
The recipient of the Barbara Solomon Award is Cynthia Zuckerman-Hyman. We are pleased to honor Cynthia for her years of outstanding advising. We appreciate her many contributions to student success at NC State. As I close this part of the ceremony, I like to take a minute to thank those who nominated such outstanding advisors and administrators. We appreciate the time and thoughtfulness you put into sharing information about your colleagues. What you shared gives us greater insight into the day to day experiences of our students and advisors and inspires us as well.
Bret Smith will now close our program. - I want to leave you with this parting thought. If you asked my father what he did for a living, he would in his more reflective moments describe himself as a country doctor. He was someone who went to his patients, someone who met them where they were. He had a regional reputation for being an excellent diagnostician and a man of great compassion.
When I was in high school, and I became aware of the depth of his reputation, I asked him how he became so good at diagnostics. He said, the first thing you have to do is understand the technical aspects of your job, the rules, and the requirements, the underlying data, and the best practices and how they were developed. You have to understand how everything fits together. You have to be curious and determined to find answers. The second thing that you have to do is to be observant. What do the eyes tell you? What do the posture and the hands say about energy or state of mind.
The third thing you have to do is to listen to what is being said, to hear what is not being said, and to understand what it means. The news isn't always happy or simple. It can be complex, it can be affirming, it can be disappointing, or sometimes even alarming. So the last thing you need to do is to be honest, supportive, and compassionate.
As I reflect on this today, it strikes me that this advice is equally true for the qualities that you find in an excellent advisor. We are gathered today to acknowledge all of your efforts, and to say thank you in some small way for all of you who know the technical requirements, who daily observe, who listen to what is being said and unsaid and who support our students, honestly, and with great compassion. Congratulations to our five winners. We are pleased to acknowledge such exemplary service to students and the university. Advising is a vital part of helping NC State students succeed, and we thank all of our nominees and winners for exhibiting what it truly means to think and do. Good afternoon.