“The review committee was in awe by the talent and dedication of our NIACC employees,” said Karen Knudtson, member of both the College and Foundation boards. “This award is a wonderful way to honor our staff and faculty members for the many things they do. Our employees are our best asset at NIACC and we want to show how much we appreciate them.”
The board decided to give the ‘Excellence in Service’ award. Up to $1,000 will be awarded each year by the NIACC Foundation Board to recognize exceptional efforts of full-time NIACC employees. It could be awarded to one person or split between two.
Nominations from peers were accepted on behalf of employees who have gone above and beyond their daily obligations. They could be nominated for a variety of reasons, including, but not limited to, student support, service to the College, leadership or community engagement.
During an all-staff meeting on January 9, 2012 two employees were surprised with the announcement they would be the first recipients:
Mindy Eastman, Director of Business Services, was nominated because of her exceptional service to internal and external customers. She regularly goes above and beyond her daily obligations. While the work in the Business Office varies greatly, Mindy provides leadership in all aspects and makes the office a pleasant place to do business. Mindy is also an accomplished musician and volunteers many hours each year accompanying Central Springs High School students for contests and also participates in school concerts, graduation and baccalaureate services. Several students noted that they enjoyed working with Mindy and contribute their success, in part, to her efforts. Mindy also plays the organ and piano for two local churches.
Laurie DeGroot, Associate Degree Nursing Instructor, was awarded for her efforts in the recent reaccreditation for the nursing program, her loyalty as a long-term College employee and her commitment to students. Laurie teaches the beginning level nursing classes and her instruction starts a nursing student off on the right track. Because she is so caring and committed, her students are often better prepared for the increased rigors of the upper levels in the nursing program. She is described as a patient and understanding person.
Each received $500 from the NIACC Foundation.