The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Staff Awards and Excellence Recognition event honors CSUN administrators, staff service

Nearly 300 CSUN administrators and staff were honored June 3rd at the 44th annual Staff Service Awards and Excellence Recognition event.

This year’s program, themed “Recognize, Refocus, Rise,” highlighted the contributions and achievements of employees from departments across campus in a two-hour ceremony held at the University Student Union (USU).

“It’s all about celebrating what we do together as a university,” said Marianne Hudz, program manager for the event.

The awards have two elements, said Hudz, who works in the CSUN office of human resources.

Staff and administrators are acknowledged for each five years of service they’ve completed, Hudz said.  This year awards ranged from five to 35 years, with honorees receiving certificates and letters from the president.

Also recognized are individuals and groups who provide outstanding contributions to the university, she said.

These awards are distributed in three categories.

Merit Awards recognize people who demonstrate exceptional performance and service to the university community, group projects that bring positive change to the university receive the Team Award, and the President’s Award honors a person who serves as a role model for university values, Hudz said, adding that recipients are nominated by their colleagues and selected by a reviewing committee.

This year 12 people received Merit Awards, each receiving $200, Hudz said.

The group responsible for developing myNorthridge Student Portal 2.0 received this year’s only Team Award.

The vice presidents of information technology, student affairs, and academic affairs submitted the nomination, said Mary Ann Cummins-Prager, co-leader of the project which crossed all three divisions.

The team consisted of over 30 volunteers, she said.

Together, they worked to make the portal user friendly.

The old portal required students to know what they needed to look for and when they needed to look for it, said Chris Xanthos, the other group leader. Their team renovated the system to show students what they need to know and when they need to know it.

“I’m especially happy for the team,” Xanthos said. “The number of hours and late nights put into the project have been extensive. It was a huge boost to the whole team to realize what they did was not only recognized but it mattered enough for the university to take notice.”

The group was awarded $1000 to continue their work, Hudz, said.

Leta Chow, administrative support coordinator for the CSUN psychology department, was the 2010 President’s Award recipient.

“I’ve worked as a staff member at CSUN for 24 years, 20 of which were in the psychology department,” Chow said.

Chow described her job as an analyst, working with her department’s budget and hiring, but she also works as back up for other positions in the office, she said.

“I’ve scheduled classes, assisted students with registration and coordinated with advisers,” she said. “I do a little bit of everything.”

Department Chair Carrie Saetermoe and Professor Judith Friedman nominated Chow for the  award.

“They got support letters from like 14 other faculty members,” Chow said. “People said really wonderful things about me. I had no idea they thought that way.”

This award came as a big surprise, Chow said, adding that everyone in her department works just as hard.

“I’m glad I was singled out, but I think everyone on this campus deserves the award.” Chow said.

Chow received a framed certificate and $500, Hudz said.

Over 400 people watched this year’s honorees receive their awards, Hudz said.

“This year was our largest turnout ever,” she said. “We had a lot of people to honor.”

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