The NATIONAL ACADEMIC ADVISING ASSOCIATION (NACADA), promotes and supports quality academic advising in institutions of higher education to enhance the educational development of students. NACADA provides a forum for discussion, debate, and the exchange of ideas pertaining to academic advising through numerous activities and publications.
Western Oregon University has been the recipient of numerous NACADA Advising Awards dating back to 2008. Below is a list of Western’s award winners.
The Pacesetter Award recognizes executive officers, provosts and academic or student affairs officers (i.e. vice provosts, vice presidents, deans, etc.) who exemplify a commitment to academic advising and are true advocates for advising, students, and advisors across the
The Pacesetter Award hasn’t been given to someone west of Texas since its inception in 1992.
Dr. Bryan Dutton received a Certificate of Merit for the faculty academic advising category. Dutton, a graduate of WOU when it was the Oregon College of Education, came to WOU in 1998 after holding previous positions at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the Smithsonian Institution, and The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. He earned his doctorate in botany from the University of Maryland in 1995. Dutton has a comprehensive history of peer-reviewed publications, lectures, awards, and grants. One such grant was awarded in 2009 by the United States Department of Justice to a WOU research team that included Dutton ($685,754).The study was called “Application of Spatial Statistics to Latent Print Identifications: Towards Improved Forensic Science Methodologies.”
The recipient of this award demonstrates a passion for advising, empathy in working with students and advisors, and the potential impact on the larger field of advising through the individual’s leadership. This award was created by advising colleagues to honor and celebrate the life of Gail Rola, a former advising administrator at the University of North Texas, who led with passion and creativity.
Sullivan-Vance has been with WOU for nearly five years. She has an exemplary career in advising and has been heavily involved with NACADA, including serving as the past Region 8 Chair, Conference Chair for Portland 2005, Honolulu 2006, and Seattle 2010. She earned her master’s in education from Oregon State University and is currently working on her Ed.D. in educational leadership at Portland State University. She publishes on issues surrounded advising, students at risk and theory. In 2009 she was awarded a Dedicated Service Award from her advising colleagues in Region 8 of NACADA.
Dr. Marita Cardinal has beenawarded a Certificate of Merit in the faculty academic advising category. Cardinal is a professor in both the Division of Health and Physical Education and the Division of Theatre and Dance and was the 2008 recipient of the Mario and Alma Pastega Award for Excellence in Scholarship. Her background is in dance and she has spent her career combining her love for dance with her dedication to dancer wellness. Cardinal believes that student dancers often face unique problems including musculoskeletal injuries, stress management, and how to maintain the stereotypical dancer’s lean bodyweight without neglecting proper nutrition and she wants to help dancers make better choices so they can stay healthy.
Walczyk was originally selected as the recipient of the student-driven Western Oregon University Outstanding Faculty Advisor for the 2006-2007 academic year. The NACADA nomination was the follow-up to the university award. Only one other university in the entire northwest region of five states, two Canadian provinces and one territory received this NACADA honor, exemplifying the personal connection that Western provides its students. Walczyk, a professor of music at WOU for 14 years, serves as the graduate music advisor and coordinator. He created the comprehensive music department student handbook, detailing program requirements that assist students in developing a plan for degree completion. Specializing in jazz arranging, concert composition, film scoring and electronic music, Walczyk believes he has a dual role at WOU as professor and mentor, guiding students through the university experience, stating “If I demonstrate genuine interest in each individual’s collegiate welfare then I inculcate a quality trait that, I hope, permeates their future relationships so that they can, in turn, become model experts - mentors, educators, advisors, parents and citizens.”
The majority of her career has been spent advising students who have not chosen a major. “It’s fun to take all of that interest and unknowingness, and funnel it to help them find a direction,” said Weber. She’s also enjoyed advising non-traditional students who are fearful that they can’t be successful at the university. Weber’s mantra is to tell them they aren’t too old, it’s never to late to achieve your dreams.
Michael LeMaster, assistant professor of biology, was recognized as an Outstanding Advising Award Winner in the academic advising faculty category. Michael LeMaster joined WOU as an adjunct in 2001 after earning his doctorate in zoology from Oregon State University. In 2003, he moved into a tenure-track position. Since he began teaching, he has considered advising to be an important part of his role and credits the interest to the excellent advisors he had as an undergraduate, who directed him toward earning a doctorate degree.
For further details of these awards and NACADA guiding principles, please visit NACADA's webpage by cliking the icon below.
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The Academic Advising and Learning Center engages students in identifying and pursuing their educational, career, and life goals through personalized learning experiences. The AALC serves and supports students in developing collaborative relationships that foster student success.
—Mission Statement for the Academic Advising and Learning Center
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