In 1995, Eileen Coughlin, Vice President for Enrollment and Student Services, introduced a new tradition of acknowledging staff members and their contributions with a Nakama award. Each year, division members have an opportunity to Sorry.nominate a colleague who has fostered the division’s traditions by excelling in any of the following areas:

  • Demonstrate outstanding commitment to the development or support of students
  • Create or significantly contribute to initiatives which promote student success
  • Strengthen the Division’s work within the University and larger community
  • Provide dedicated and consistently excellent service to students and/or the Division

Christian Urcia, Nakama’s 2017 Award recipient

Nakama 2017 Award Winner Christian Urcia with Melynda Huskey, Ph.D, VP for Enrollment and Student Services

Each year, the Nakama award goes to a member of our division whose work exemplifies an ongoing and dedicated commitment to supporting our students and to strengthening the work of our division.

Christian has brought creative expertise to the division and provided consistent and outstanding service in the work he does with students. He challenges and supports the development of leadership capacities in our students, creating more engaged, successful and happy students.

Christian has been with Western for three years – serving as a Residence Director for two years in Mathes Hall, and most recently as the Apartment Coordinator in Birnam Wood where he has spent time advocating for creative solutions to promote students’ personal and social wellbeing. Under his leadership, each of these areas has built a strong sense of community and been recognized for that as the ‘Hall of the Year’ winners in each of the last three years. This is most notable for Birnam Wood – this year’s award recipient for the first time in 17 years.

He led this year’s diversity poster contest in University Residences and more recently was part of a panel discussion on student success at the Board of Trustees meeting this past June. Congratulations Christian.

2017 Christian Urcia, University Residences
2016 Tina Loudon, Academic and Career Development Services
2015 Nate Panelo, Ethnic Student Center
2014 Dong Vo, University Residences
2013 Janet McLeod, Enrollment and Student Services
2012 Lori Larkin, Admissions
2011 Sally Abbott, University Residences
John "Fuzzy" Fuchs, Athletics
2010 Jean Meyer, Financial Aid
2009 Michael Postlewait, University Residences
2008 Kurt Willis, University Residences
2007 Dixie Doran, Registrar's Office
2006 Lynda Goodrich, Athletics
Chris Roselli, Admissions
2005 Connie Copeland, Special Assistant to VP
2004 Jules McLeland, Child Development Center
Emily Gibson, Student Health Center
2003 Margie Conway, Admissions
2002 Jennifer Pickeral, Admissions
Kevin Majkut, Student Activities
2001 Lynn Thomas, Registrar's Office
2000 Deborah Frost, University Residences
Renée Murray, Career Services Center
1999 David Brunnemer, Student Support Services
1998 Patricia Fabiano, Prevention Health and Wellness
1997 Anna Carey, New Student Programs/Family Outreach
Sonia Arevalo-Hayes, Student Support Services
1996 Kay Rich, University Residences
1995 Jack Smith, Student Activities

Their names have been added to a plaque that resides in the Office of the Vice President for Enrollment and Student Services. 


Page Updated 05.07.2018