The annual Worcester State University Employee Recognition Awards honor employees who were nominated for their extraordinary service and dedication. The May 3 awards ceremony was the first in-person ceremony since 2019.
President Barry M. Maloney thanked all staff and faculty “for helping keep our campus safe and our students on a path to graduation these past two years.”
“Whatever the protocols were,” he continued, “you all did your part, and you did it with respect toward your co-workers and our students.”
Six Worcester State faculty and staff were presented the Employee Recognition Award:
Clerk Leslie Daniels was described by her colleagues as the heart of their English department, knowledgeable and friendly, doing her job exceptionally well, and serving as both the rock and the emotional core of the department.
Roger Greenwell, Associate Professor in the Biology Department, was honored for his efforts to build a community of industry and academic contacts to provide internships, training, and funding to benefit the students in WSU’s biotechnology program.
Human Resources Staff Associate Suze Jean-Charles was praised for her quiet compassion and clear advice that has guided and supported hundreds of employees as they navigated life changing events.
Samuel O’Connell, professor and chair of the Visual and Performing Arts Department, is the only faculty member in the VPA department to teach every one of the VPA majors and has served on a variety of committees, exemplifying what it means to be an engaged and dedicated Worcester State employee.
Staff Assistant and Nursing Skills Lab Coordinator Deirdre Palmer’s work in transitioning lessons from classroom to online during the COVID-19 pandemic was critical in ensuring the students could meet their required lab hours for their courses.
Christopher Reed was the University’s sole plumber for over a year, frequently responding to after-hours calls and keeping up with plumbing issues throughout campus.
This year, three employees won the Diversity and Inclusion Award:
Marilyn Cleary, Assistant Dean of Graduate & Continuing Education, for her tireless work to improve the experiences of the University’s post-traditional students and her involvement with the Advisory Committee for Equal Opportunity, Diversity, and Affirmative Action
Matthew Hare, electrician, for always including people from other cultures being a member of the BIRT committee
Eriberto Mora-Carrera, Staff Associate for Multicultural Affairs, for recognizing that young men of color were a disadvantaged group in higher education and developing the idea for an inaugural Brotherhood Leadership Conference, held at Worcester State
The winner of this year’s Campus Collaboration Award was Elena Arranz Alonso, Assistant Director of Graduate & Continuing Education. Arranz Alonso represents her department on many University committees, volunteers for the Greater Worcester Foundation, serves as a Title IX investigator and retention outreach volunteer, and assists with admissions events on campus. She has presented her work at the
Leadership Symposium and the Backpack to Briefcase series. Next year, she will represent Worcester State University as a member of the 2022–2023 cohort in the Executive Leadership Institute.
This year’s winner of the Mark W. Cusson Service Award, which recognizes is an AFSCME employee who, like Cusson, embodies a strong work ethic, dedication to their coworkers, and commitment to the success of the University, was Central Receiving & Stockroom Storekeeper Allen Price. Price received the award for his kindness, commitment, and willingness to go the extra mile every day. Through the University Foundation, Price received $500.
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