|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 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
Congratulations to Lori Larkin, NAKAMA's 2012 award recipient.
Lori truly represents the best of Western. For 21 years, her contributions to the division, as well as the university, have personified the meaning of collaborator, partner, and innovator. She demonstrates outstanding commitment to group efforts on a regular basis without regard for who receives credit for the results, and consistently works "behind the scenes" with the best interests of students and the larger campus community in mind. She is, without a doubt, a living example to all of us of this year's conference theme.
With an eye always focused on quality, Lori has a never ending willingness to lend expertise to projects, and brainstorm what changes can be made to improve processes that benefit both our students and those who serve them.
Lori is described by her colleagues as having a constructive, analytical approach toward meeting challenges, including change. Figuratively and matter-of-factly, she is an individual who rolls up her sleeves, resolves obstacles in the path head on and dismantles them piece by piece, while simultaneously cheering on others in support of shared goals.
Here are just some of the accomplishments Lori was part of in this past year:
- She led the implementation of the online registration system for Western Preview, the Office of Admissions' largest program for future Western students. This new system resulted in significant time savings for staff and much improved customer service for students and their families.
- She helped three major scholarship-related initiatives get off the ground. First, she helped implement a new net tuition revenue model. This required thorough testing of a new awarding process for tuition waivers and working with colleagues to constantly monitor throughout the award cycle.
- Second, as Admissions moved to a paperless application process this year, she assisted with the transition while ensuring the process was still compliant with all requirements.
- Finally, she was a key player in a University-wide team to implement a new scholarship awarding process that has proven to be very effective and efficient. She continues to lead the annual training for the new scholarship system and helps team members throughout the Division troubleshoot issues that arise.
Clearly, Lori's contributions are significant and are to be celebrated. But what shouldn't be missed is the recognition we should all extend to Lori for the ways in which she has embraced the concepts of collaboration and innovation and used them for improving the ways we serve others.
The following individuals have received Nakama awards:
||Lori Larkin, Admissions
||Sally Abbott, University Residences
John "Fuzzy" Fuchs, Athletics
||Jean Meyer, Financial Aid
||Michael Postlewait, University Residences
||Kurt Willis, University Residences
||Dixie Doran, Registrar's Office
||Lynda Goodrich, Athletics
Chris Roselli, Admissions
||Connie Copeland, Special Assistant to VP
||Jules McLeland, Child Development Center
Emily Gibson, Student Health Center
||Margie Conway, Admissions
||Jennifer Pickeral, Admissions
Kevin Majkut, Student Activities
||Lynn Thomas, Registrar's Office
||Deborah Frost, University Residences
Renée Murray, Career Services Center
||David Brunnemer, Student Support Services
||Patricia Fabiano, Prevention Health and Wellness
||Anna Carey, New Student Programs/Family Outreach
Sonia Arevalo-Hayes, Student Support Services
||Kay Rich, University Residences
||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.