A faculty adviser who regularly pitches ideas for study abroad programs, a Student Health Services employee providing students inoculation for trips overseas, a dining hall staff member who helps a student with a particular diet and a cashier who helps an international student through his or her tuition payment process don’t normally fit into the same category of achievement.
With the advent of the Global Achievement Awards, USF is taking a step toward recognizing all of these individuals for the work they do to make USF a more global university.
The awards are a new effort from USF World to recognize faculty, staff and administrators from campuses across the USF system for their contributions in fostering a global community.
Roger Brindley, vice provost and USF system associate vice president for USF World, said efforts like this used to go unrecognized.
“This is about celebrating the good work that is going on,” he said.
People have been talking about doing something like this for a while, Brindley said. Other universities have done similar things in the past, such as Johns Hopkins University’s Global Achievement Award for alumni who have international professional experience or service.
Brindley said the staff at USF World thought it was time for something like this at USF and met over the summer to plan the award.
The award is part of the 2013 – 2018 Strategic Plan for USF Tampa. The plan, now two years in, has four goals for the university. These goals include graduating students as global citizens, focusing on research with high-impact in a global context, creating strategic partnerships to promote sustainable futures in the global economy and establishing financial management for the university.
The international focus of these goals, Brindley said, made USF World think it was time to recognize the people who contributed so much to making them happen.
“USF has some wonderful awards for our campus community, but we’ve never had an award for silent heroes around globalization of our campus,” Brindley said.
There are four awards total: one for a faculty member, one for a staff member, one for an administrator and one for a department or unit. In order to qualify, the nominee must be currently employed in the USF system and must have demonstrated a global impact within the 2014-15 calendar year.
“What we’re really looking for is someone or … a group of people who have really created a global outcome. They have done something that has been important to the global processes of the university and has been important to the students in the university,” Brindley said.
Any USF student, faculty, staff, administrator or department can make a nomination, however applicants cannot self-nominate. The nomination form is on the USF World website. The form, documentation of the nominee’s global achievement and two letters of recommendation must be emailed as a PDF to Mary Cardenas, Brindley’s executive administrative assistant.
“We tried to keep the nomination quite simple,” Brindley said. “We wanted to make the award accessible.”
The nomination applications are due Oct. 16. A committee of USF World staff will then review the applications and choose one winner for each category. USF World staff cannot be nominated as a measure to eliminate bias. The winners will be announced at an awards breakfast Nov. 13 at USF’s Tampa campus.
“It’s really quite exciting because we suspect some people will nominate a colleague. Maybe a department will nominate another department, maybe a student will nominate a staff member,” Brindley said. “We expect all kinds of different nominations and it’s going to be very interesting.”
USF World will also acknowledge nominees who don’t win the award, he said. There is currently no student award, though Brindley said USF World is currently thinking about one.
“We hope the award recognizes some of the wonderful work that is going on while simultaneously encouraging more people on our global (campuses) to think more about their role because (this generation) is growing up in a profound global environment,” Brindley said.
“The grand challenges in the world in this century are global challenges and we want students who graduate from USF to have a really clear sense of their role and clear understanding of those systems and those processes.”
Brindley said prizes for the winners are a secret.
“We have some nice gifts, and for the winners, we have a really lovely artifact,” he said. “We talked for quite a while about what the award should be, but we think we’ve got the perfect award.”