CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY KENYON
300 Plaza Centre One
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: April 24, 2002
(Editors: Receipt of this release indicates one or more UI students from
your readership area have been recognized for outstanding work in on-campus
UI senior named State Student Employee of the Year
Schmitz, a University of Iowa senior from Dunkerton, has been named the UI
Student Employee of the Year and the State of Iowa Student Employee of the
Year. Schmitz was nominated by his supervisors at the WiderNet project, where
he is a project assistant. He became the UIs nominee to the statewide
contest after winning the campus competition.
The UI and statewide contests are part of the National Student Employment
Administrators Associations annual recognition process by which student
hourly employees are judged on their contributions to the job. The evaluation
is based on such qualities as reliability, quality of work, initiative, professionalism
and uniqueness of contribution.
WiderNet is a nonprofit project based at the UI that aims to build bridges
between the UI and universities in developing countries, particularly African
nations, by assisting faculty and students with access to computers, email,
and the Internet. Schmitz, who is pursuing a double major in management information
systems in the College of Business and in computer science in the College
of Liberal Arts and Sciences, was hired to assist with the technical aspects
of the project including setting up and configuring remote Web servers, creating
email list services for international online discussions, creating database-driven
Web sited, and wiring a network and installing computer workstations. Cliff
Missen and Michael McNulty, the co-directors of the WiderNet project, said
they would have been thrilled if Schmitz had limited himself to these tasks,
but he has eagerly sought out additional responsibilities including organizing
training sessions, assisting with the collection of donated computers, and
securing corporate donations of software and training materials for African
Mike is an outstanding example of maturity, reliability, flexibility,
and dedication, said McNulty, a UI professor of geography. He
brings to his work a real respect for everyone he meets, a ready smile, and
an ingenious sense of humor.
In addition to Schmitz, the UI recognized 10 other student employees with
a Certificate of Distinction or a Certificate of Appreciation. Those students
are listed below according to hometown.
BETTENDORF: Scott Stone, a senior and computer science major, was
awarded a Certificate of Distinction for his work in the Stead Advanced Learning
Technology Center in the UIs Henry B. Tippie College of Business. He
has advanced the mission of the Learning Technology Center by providing one-on-one
teaching assistance to College of Business students and helping to redesign
the colleges Web site.
BETTENDORF: Nathan Kerns, a junior and history major, was awarded
a Certificate of Appreciation for his work as assistant to the coordinator
of the Engineering Building Modernization Project (EBMP). He supervised a
team of student employees to insure that projects such as painting, replacing
floor tiles, cleaning, and moving furniture were completed on schedule. According
to his supervisor, This work was physically demanding and could bear
no direct support of his plans to attend law school, and still, he devoted
himself to it until the end. Additionally, the tens of thousands of dollars
that his student-led crew saved is the only way that the Project could have
been finished to the standard it was.
CLARKSVILLE: Dana Deuell, a junior and journalism major, was awarded
a Certificate of Appreciation for her work as newsletter editor for the UI
Facilities Services Group, where she started from scratch, developing and
managing the entire process of producing the monthly newsletter, which is
designed to motivate and inform the departments 630 staff members.
FAIRBANK: Erin Robinson, a junior journalism and Spanish major, was
awarded a Certificate of Appreciation for her work as a student clerk with
the Pathology Learning Center, which is a center for teaching and learning
with a high level of public contact and year-round curriculum development.
She assists users and solves problems for the computer lab area, the microscope
lab and the departmental teaching support services. She coordinated a component
of the medical student curriculum, which involves 150 separate one-hour small
group sessions covering 22 topics with more than 20 instructors. In addition
she developed the Web site for the center and is responsible for site content,
structure, layout and design.
HILLS: Christopher Miller, a graduate student in Library and Information
Science, was awarded a Certificate of Appreciation, for his work as a student
assistant in the Map Collection Library in the UI Main Library. He developed
the most efficient method for scanning Iowa aerial photos for patrons and
for writing up scanning instructions for the entire department. He al applied
his expertise in database management to assist with a project on InterLibrary
loan transactions and on data collection for a grant proposal.
IOWA CITY: Joseph Lynn, a senior and accounting major, was awarded
a Certificate of Appreciation for his work as assistant to the Athletic Liaison
and Scholarship Coordinator for the Office of Student Financial Aid. Using
his accounting experience, he prepared yearly four-year projections for various
scholarship programs and refined an Excel spreadsheet that pinpoints shortfalls
and overspent accounts. His assistance was instrumental during a recent internal
NCAA audit. He also recently undertook the duties of maintaining and upgrading
the offices Web site when budget cuts did not permit the replacement
of the offices Web Administrator.
IOWA FALLS: Nick Holt, a senior and finance major, was awarded a Certificate
of Distinction for his work as an office assistant with the Iowa Electronic
Markets, where according to his supervisor, his duties require him to be the
complaint department, the media relations contact, the office accountant,
the technical support department, and the unit webmaster (to name only a few)
sometimes within the span of a few minutes.
DES MOINES: Matthew Thoendel, a junior and microbiology major, was
awarded a Certificate of Appreciation for his work as a student laboratory
assistant in Dr. Michael Welshs lab in the Internal Medicine Department
in the Carver College of Medicine. Welsh says that Matt, who has worked in
the lab for three years, is one of the most valuable undergraduates he has
ever employed. He achieves efficiency by carefully scheduling experiments
and planning ahead for the reagents and equipment he will need. He is well
known for preparing the cleanest DNA with the highest yield and has taught
many people in the lab how to purify plasmid DNA.
LAKESIDE: Nathan Fulcher, a junior English and secondary education
major, was awarded a Certificate of Distinction for his work as an assistant
teacher for the 4Cs Home Ties childcare center, which provides free
and temporary childcare to families that are in crisis. He is responsible
for activities that encourage the social, nutritional, physical, emotional,
and academic development of children ages newborn to 12 years. Nathan distinguished
himself through his innovative problem-solving skills, including organizing
drives to obtain needed clothing, diapers, and equipment.
LISBON: Nickolas Brecht, a senior and exercise science major, was
awarded a Certificate of Appreciation for his work as a cardiovascular rehabilitation
exercise assistant with Iowa CHAMPS (Cardiovascular Health Assessment, Management,
and Prevention Services.) He assists with cardiac evaluations, monitored exercise
therapy and exercise testing. He also took the initiative to set up a computer-based
Cardiac Risk Factor Screening Program.
WATERLOO: Ryan Potter, a senior and communication studies major, was
awarded a Certificate of Appreciation for his work as a student office assistant
in the UIs Central Microscopy Research Facility. He assisted with the
complex process of ordering, billing, and accounting for the office, which
serves more than 250 on-campus faculty laboratories and 32 off-campus labs.
He also has revamped and expanded the offices Web site, designed posters
and brochures, prepares and mails newsletters, and designed a calendar using
images from users. He also organized the first Art in Science
contest last fall in which investigators from around the region submitted
images for review.
SHOREWOOD: Rebekkah Mazze, a senior and art major, was awarded a Certificate
of Appreciation for her work as a graphic design assistant with the University
of Iowa Health Care Joint Office for Planning, Marketing, and Communication.
She assisted with several projects that will have a lasting and positive impact
on health care services at the UI, including such brochures as Patients
Rights and Responsibilities, Controlling Acute Pain, and
Controlling Chronic Pain. A surveyor with the Joint Commission
on the Accreditation of Health Care Organizations specifically complimented
the Patients Rights and Responsibilities brochure for excellence
in both content and design.