For photos from the awards ceremony, click here.
On April 14, the College of Health and Human Sciences presented 12 awards at the All-College Reception and Awards Ceremony. The annual event recognizes faculty and staff members who exhibit exemplary performance, two outstanding students, and Friends of the College.
Honorees are nominated by their peers and are selected by a review committee.
"While we can only select one recipient for each award, all the nominees should be commended for their exceptional performance and for bringing excellence and distinction to our College and to CSU," Associate Dean for Academic Programs Dale DeVoe said at the ceremony.
Award winners are pictured with Dean Jeff McCubbin.
The Outstanding Teacher Award honors an excellent teacher who exhibits superior and sustained performance in teaching that impacts student learning.
Jim Folkestad is a master of technology enhanced learning, working tirelessly to make his courses better and more in tune with students' needs and interests every semester. One nominator wrote, "Jim is a campus innovator. He has gone well beyond applying technology to instruction and has truly used technology to transform his teaching."
One student wrote, "Dr. Folkestad taught with excitement making this the best class of my semester. The course focused on relevant topics and it has been the most useful in my college career."
The Outstanding Adviser Award recognizes a faculty member or administrative professional staff member, who excels in undergraduate or graduate student advising and mentoring.
Anne started at CSU in 2000 as a career counselor in the Career Center and joined HDFS in 2005. She is credited with building up the infrastructure of HDFS advising, overseeing an advising office that includes three academic success coordinators, two graduate assistants, and several undergraduate peer advisers. In addition, she serves as a passionate source of support to her advisees.
One nominator wrote, "Students love Anne. There is simply no other way to say it. She is never too busy to help them and always empowers them to see their own strengths."
The Superior Faculty Service Award is given to a faculty member who has made significant service contributions to the College, University, profession, or other off-campus organization.
Jen Aberle began teaching at CSU in 2007 and demonstrates a deep commitment to service, where she goes above and beyond expectations. Her work as chair of the HDFS undergraduate program committee and director of the HDFS online degree program will leave positive, long lasting impacts on current and future students. At the college level, she chairs the Non-Tenure Track Faculty Committee, and at the university level, she chairs the Faculty Council Advisory Committee on Non-tenure Track Faculty. Aberle’s service ensures that students have a world-class educational experience at CSU.
One nominator said, "Her work has been long-term and effective, and she is a strong and consistent contributor to our campus advances in quality education."
The Superior Staff Service Award, is given to a staff member who demonstrates outstanding achievement in performing his or her responsibilities.
Eric Tisdale oversees the college’s IT services group including the college HelpDesk which serves more than 5500 faculty, staff and students. He manages a wide variety of IT-related systems and develops applications for research and academic projects. Above all, Tisdale is known for his helpful, friendly service and ability to listen to peoples’ needs and provide solutions. He often finds innovative ways to improve the service provided to the college faculty and staff. He makes the college a better place to work and learn through his many contributions.
One nominator wrote, "Eric's commitment to excellence shines through all of his work, and the College owes him a debt of gratitude for his extraordinary efforts."
The Outstanding Engagement Award is given to a faculty member, administrative professional, or a program team who exemplifies the land-grant mission of developing and promoting partnerships and collaborations between campus and external partners for the benefit of the community.
Social Work Research Center, School of Social Workled by Director Marc Winokur. Other team members are Kristy Beachy-Quick, Helen Holmquist-Johnson, Chris Lee, Luke McConnell and Becky Orsi, as well as Graduate Research Assistant Zach Timpe.
The Social Work Research Center serves as a model for partnerships that benefit agencies and the underrepresented populations they serve. Their most significant impact is that they have been effective in demonstrating to agencies the benefits and importance of having research partners. One example is the Applied Research in Child Welfare Project with the Colorado Department of Human Services. County Human Services directors donate a portion of their annual budget for examination of a specific set of questions around child welfare, which in turn informs improved services and policy change. For example, the Social Work Research Center has also helped construct a new, more reliable assessment tool for risk that was created and pilot tested with input from child welfare caseworkers. It is now being utilized in 62 counties throughout Colorado.
One nominator from the Matthew’s House wrote, "Overall, we have found the staff of the Social Work Research Center to be exceptionally effective in developing and promoting partnerships and collaborations between campus and external partners for the benefit of the community, state, nation, and world."
The Tenure-Track Faculty Teaching Excellence Award recognizes a faculty member, who is not yet tenured, for outstanding contributions in teaching such as creative instructional approaches, innovative use of technology in the classroom, or creation of service-learning opportunities, as well as positive student feedback.
In her time as an assistant professor, Tiffany Weir has consistently scored very high on student evaluations. This reflects on her enthusiasm, organization, and her ability to keep students engaged, and her ability to provide a wealth of information that students find relevant. Her contributions to teaching also include developing three new courses. The courses Weir teaches are focused on complementary nutrition practices such as the consumption of probiotics and fermented foods for optimizing health.
One student wrote, "Dr. Weir is a highly gifted professor who uses innovative approaches to educating learners. She has the unique ability to explain highly technical research methods in a way that excites students. She has high expectations and her courses are intellectually challenging. Of all of my instructors, I have grown and learned the most from her teaching and mentorship."
The Tenure-Track Faculty Scholarly Excellence Award recognizes a faculty member, who is not yet tenured, for outstanding contributions in original and theoretical research, creative works, or other forms of scholarly endeavor.
Chris Gentile has established a notable reputation for his work related to the understanding of vascular and metabolic dysfunction in obesity and diabetes. He has published more than thirty high-quality research papers in top journals, and his work is cited often by others. His record, with respect to both publications and successful grant funding, has contributed to his solid national and budding international reputation. Among his many accolades is receiving a prestigious Boettcher Foundation Early Investigator Award.
One nominator wrote, "Dr. Gentile’s record of scholarship is truly impressive. I consider him a rising star in nutrition science, metabolism, and physiology. He is one of the top early-career stage investigators in his field."
The Outstanding Senior Award recognizes a college graduating senior for outstanding performance including academic achievement, leadership, research, service, or creative endeavors.
Christine Nicolaysen, Department of Design and Merchandising
Christine Nicolaysen is an interior design student who has had made involvement and leadership in various university and professional organizations a priority. She served as a student representative to the board of the American Society of Interior Designers. She is also president of the Student Hospitality Network, taking the lead in coordinating activities between the three interior design student groups. She is among the first to volunteer when there is help needed in the program or department. Despite her many activities, she maintains a 3.98 GPA. Nicolaysen was recognized for her achievements with the CSU Alumni Association’s Albert C. Yates Student Leadership Award last fall.
One nominator said, “Academic excellence, boundless energy, enduring positivity, and an authentic concern for welfare are all characteristics that set Christine apart from her peers."
The Outstanding Graduate Student Award recognizes a CHHS graduate student for outstanding performance in research, outreach/engagement, and/or creative endeavors.
Allyson Brothers, Human Development and Family Studies
Allyson Brothers is a doctoral student in the Applied Developmental Science program where she illustrates a passion for quality research. Her doctoral work is motivated by a desire to promote healthy aging by understanding the role that individual’s awareness of age-related change plays in influencing their behavior. Ultimately, she hopes to develop interventions that promote positive changes in behavior that lead to healthy aging. Brothers has twelve publications already as a graduate student and she was first author on two that were published in top journals in the field. She received a National Research Service Award which was funded on its first submission to NIH. When CSU couldn’t offer higher level statistics courses, Brothers sought them out and was accepted to attend a highly-competitive advanced statistics training hosted by the American Psychological Association.
One nominator wrote, "She is an exceptionally strong student, who has shown herself to have the outstanding potential, capability, and motivation for becoming a productive, independent investigator in aging research."
This award was created to recognize those individuals who have supported the college in extraordinary ways.
Tracy Hutton, CSU Human Resources Department
Tracy Hutton joined CSU as an Employee Relations Manager in 2005, and was promoted to Associate Director of Human Resources in September 2006. Hutton serves as HR Representative for various ad-hoc and standing committees including the Employee Consult Team, College Administrative Advisory Group and the President’s Commission for Women and Gender Equity. She has also been involved in key campus initiatives including implementation of Parental Leave, establishing job families/classifications for Administrative Professional positions and establishing a revised compensation policy and strategy for State Classified staff.
As associate director of the Department of Human Resources, Hutton has continually gone above and beyond to assist our academic units and dean’s office with important personnel issues. She has been willing to act as an in-house consultant to numerous unit heads and members of the Dean’s Office when it comes to the development and ongoing support of our positions, offering spot-on guidance frequently and empowering our college to overcome many challenges that arise. Tracy is always there to help with an excellent attitude and a great sense of humor, and our college is lucky to have her as a partner.
Angie Nielsen, CSU's Office of Budgets
Angie Nielsen, the Director of the Office of Budgets, has been with CSU since 2001. In addition to her 8 years in the Office of Budgets, she has experience in two of CSU’s critical supporting units: Facilities Management and Sponsored Programs. Angie is an alumna of CSU, holding a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an accounting concentration.
Being the lead on budgets at CSU is a complex, demanding and often trying position. There is never a simple 25 words or less answer when explaining a budget decision, budget change, or budget process. The scope and depth of the task are daunting and would test the diplomacy skills of the most seasoned budget Director. Despite these demands, Angie has always been responsive, accessible, and extremely knowledgeable on all aspects of the process.
One nominator wrote, "Many times I've called her up, explained to her that I forgot the answer to a particular situation and she graciously refreshes my memory. Angie is always pleasant, straight forward, and extremely competent. She understands the needs and issues that face all units across campus." We are fortunate to have Angie as CSU’s Director of Budgets.
Dwayne Schmitz, Poudre School District
Dwayne Schmitz is the Director of Research and Evaluation at Poudre School District. He was chosen as a Friend of the College for his role in helping to support research connections between CSU and the school district that benefit the well-being of youth and their families in Fort Collins. Specific partnerships with PSD which have benefitted the College include collaborations with the School of Education, Campus Connections in Human Development and Family Studies, the Center for Community Partnerships in Occupational Therapy, and CSU's STEM Center.
Schmitz taught mathematics in public schools for 13 years. While earning his doctorate of Applied Statistics and Research Methods, he gained expertise in estimating student academic growth and the effects of teachers and schools on student growth. He served in the Chancellor’s Office of California State University as the Assistant Director of Teacher Education and Evaluation. Those experiences prepared him to serve as the Colorado Department of Education’s Principal Consultant for the development of the Colorado Growth Model before he joined PSD. We are fortunate to have his support for critical research partnerships that will help inform practice going forward.