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Top Student Worker, Boss Honored

Student Employee of the Year recipient Brandon Jacobs is flanked by Jeff Bray and Sally Daggett

The “face of Game Day and Event Management” and a “role model, mentor, and friend” were the respective recipients of the 2014 Student Employee and Work-Study Supervisor of the Year awards, respectively, at the Student Employment Awards Luncheon April 17.

Senior management major Brandon Jacobs and Interlibrary Loan Librarian Kimberley Fenton were selected by two separate panels of judges.

Jacobs, nominated for the award by Jeff Bray, associate director of athletics, has worked in Game Day and Event Management for four years.

“You think when you go to a sporting event on the Keuka College campus, it just happens—but it only happens because of Brandon,” said Bray, who sees the Walworth resident as a co-worker.

As the student supervisor for Game Day and Event Management, Jacobs’ role is “absolutely critical” to the success of hosting home sporting events.

“Over the past year, Brandon has become the ‘face’ of our game management staff,” said Bray. “Referees, visiting coaches, and our own coaching staff know he is someone they can count on and is the ‘go-to’ person.”

Jacobs is responsible for the organization and set-up for more than 70 home sporting events—including equipment, sound systems, scoreboards, visiting locker rooms, and game officials.

“In doing so, it has been assumed by many that he is member of our professional staff; not a student employee,” said Bray. “When those individuals comment on a job well done, they are shocked to learn that he is a student. Brandon has aspirations of becoming a college athletics director and has really taken stock in his opportunity as a work study student.”

Sally Daggett (l), poses with the Student Employee of the Year nominees including Megan Barney, Lee Bottoni, Brandon Jacobs, Brianna Long, Karina Cochran, Kayla Garrow, and Megan Barney

The other student nominees were Lee Bottoni, Kayla Garrow, Karina Cochran, Kelsey Morgan, Brianna Long, and Megan Barney.

“Recognizing our work-study students is important, and this is an opportunity to honor the best of the best of our student workers,” said Sally Daggett, human resources manager. “I am proud of the work all of our 442 students, who perform 870 jobs for an average of six hours a week. If we were to hire full-time employees to do the work they do, we would need 103 more full-time employees. So, Keuka College students do a massive amount of work.”

Work Study Supervisor of the Year Kimberley Fenton holds her plaque next to Sally Daggett and Faith Garlington

Fenton was one of five work-study supervisors nominated for the award. She was nominated by occupational science majors Alysa Halsey and Faith Garlington.

Both were nervous about finding a work study position when they arrived as freshmen on campus, but since then, Halsey and Garlington believe Fenton has welcomed and included them in many library related tasks.

“Ms. Fenton has steered me toward success in any activity that I do,” said Halsey, an occupational science major from Pulaski. “She gives me freedom and allows me to feel independent by figuring out problems on my own, but reminds me she will always be there to answer any questions I have.”

That freedom and independence includes creating display case designs for patrons of the library to view.

“Ms. Fenton usually just lets me do whatever inspires me about the particular topic that is being displayed at the time,” said Halsey. “I use my imagination for the appearance, and my knowledge for the information that is being displayed. She provides me with the responsibility of creating displays, but I know that if I need advice or help I can always go to her for guidance.”

Garlington, who also assists in creating displays, agrees.

“I have also used my academic background in the creation of specialty displays for different disease awareness months,” said Garlington. “As an occupational science major, I have learned about many disorders which have ‘awareness months’ and I am often recruited to come up with display ideas. When I achieve these special goals, the other librarians also support me. They notice a particularly job well done and offer support in any task with which I may struggle.”

Halsey says Fenton creates a “quality and challenging environment by pushing me to work for the things I don’t believe that I can accomplish. She exemplifies the characteristics of a leader and a role model while helping me achieve the goals and dreams that would otherwise be out of reach.”

In her time with Fenton, Garlington has “gradually received more responsibility. [For example], this past fall when Ms. Fenton hired a new assistant to replace a graduating senior, I was entrusted to train her in many different aspects of the job. I had to act as a professional while showing the new student how to do many tasks. This made me feel as though I was a part of the library staff.”

Sally Daggett (l), poses with the Work Study Supervisor of the Year nominees Lori Haines, John Boccacino, Kimberley Fenton, Michelle Polowchak, and Karlee Roberts

The other supervisor nominees were Lori Haines (assistant secretary to the Board of Trustees/board liaison and presidential support specialist.), John Boccacino (sports information director), Michelle Polowchak (director of human resources) and Karlee Roberts (D.R.I.V.E. peer mentor supervisor).

“Thank you to our student workers for the excellent work you do across the entire campus, and to our work study supervisors who provide a positive working environment,” said Anne Weed, vice president for academic affairs. “Thank you to all the nominators for recognizing how important it is to make people feel the worth of what they do every day.”

Each of the nominees was recognized at the luncheon by his or her nominator and presented with a gift. The names of the student and supervisor award recipients will be added to two separate plaques housed in the Center for Experiential Learning. The Student Employee of the Year plaque is hung up in the winner’s work-study location until the following year’s awards luncheon.

Click for more photos from the luncheon.

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