Regional Winner
Month: August 2013


Institution Faculty/Staff of the Month

School: University of Nebraska- Kearney Region: MACURH
Nominee: Scott Benson Nominator: Anna Tenille Stoeger

On-Campus Population: 2000 Chapter Size: 20

Please explain the outstanding contributions of the nominee during the month of nomination

August is a busy month for all Residence Life professionals. Preparing the halls for opening, training new resident assistants (RAs) and expanding the knowledge base of returning RAs, as well as priming for the much anticipated arrival of our students. These, among many tasks, are key to giving our residents the most educational and enjoyable live- in experience during their college career. We know this plays a major role in retention, successful graduation, and overall preparation for life after college. Without the hard work of all our student affairs professionals, none of this would be possible. It is an honor to write this Of The Month Award for Scott Benson, who is the epitome of hard work and dedication in our office. Scott is currently transitioning to a new job, one that is an incredible career step for him. During this busy time of year it is hard to lose anyone, especially one as invested and dedicated as Scott. Instead of plunging straight into his new job, Scott has elected to work part-time in both offices in order to ease the transition as well as support us during the opening of our residence halls. Over the past month (two weeks of hall director training and the two weeks of resident assistant training) Scott has presented 13 different training sessions. He has made himself available both inside and outside regular business hours. Though he is part time in both offices, he seems to still be a full-time presence with our staff. Not only has he been available during evening and weekend trainings, a sacrifice of his personal time, last week Scott stayed back from Camp (everyone’s favorite part of training, and Scott’s last opportunity to participate) in order to hold the duty phone and enable the rest of us to travel to camp and bond with our staffs. His work ethic and his dedication speak volumes for his character. He gets down in the trenches with us; moving microfridges, linens, furniture, and a multitude of other miscellaneous items. He never asks us to do anything he is not willing to do alongside us. He is always lending his ear to someone in need. He empathizes, he cares, and he invests. He is genuine, transparent, and authentic. To risk tears with Scott means to feel heard and comforted, to feel one’s pain and have it absorbed by one who cares and understands. This is a quality that is hard to describe, hard to find, and yet very valuable when working with college students, or anybody for that matter. Just last week our assistant director announced her own departure from the office (the third to leave this summer). With these numerous changes, I found myself in Scott’s office experiencing my own tears and his genuine comfort. I understood, for the first time, the impact Scott has had on the many students who have crossed his path in his six years here. I also understood why we have all been so willing to work hard for Scott. He is a servant and a model. He is the type of leader we want to follow because he is the type of leader we all strive to be. The University of Nebraska-Kearney Department of Residence Life will never be the same without Scott Benson. Again, it is truly my honor to write this OTM for Scott. These sacrifices he has made for us this past month while he is transitioning out is only a snapshot of all that he is invested in us as individuals and as a department and staff throughout the years.

Word Count: 598

Date of entry into database: 2013-08-28 15:12:27

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