March 2008

Distinction Awards Nominations Sought

Deadline for nominees to new program is March 31

There's still time to nominate a colleague for the Tufts Distinction Awards, the new program that recognizes the contributions of all members of the university community. Nominations for the Distinction Awards, which were announced in February, will be accepted until March 31.

"This new awards program is one important way we can thank staff and faculty for their good work and affirm our shared values as a community where everyone is valued and has the chance to grow," says President Lawrence S. Bacow.

Members of the Tufts Distinction Awards selection committee-made up of staff and faculty from across the university-will be carefully weighing the nominees, say several members.

"These awards will be presented to those Tufts staff and faculty who love coming to work every day, whose enthusiasm and zeal for their Tufts environment is infectious, lifting the spirits of their colleagues, as well as those with whom they come in contact every day," says committee member Charles H. Rankin III, professor of endodontics at the School of Dental Medicine.

"I think the awards program is an opportunity to publicly recognize individuals who make an impression on those they work with, work for and interact with as representatives of Tufts University," adds committee member Jacqueline Hymes, director of equal opportunity in the Office of Institutional Diversity. "These are the people who do what they do because they enjoy and appreciate their responsibilities."

There are four categories of awards. The Extra Mile Award celebrates individuals or teams who always go the extra mile for their customers, which may include Tufts students, faculty or staff, as well as other individuals or groups, such as patients and their families, alumni, donors and host communities. Recipients of the Bridge Builder Award will be recognized for their ability to build strong connections with colleagues and students, promoting an inclusive environment and contributing to the fabric of the Tufts community. The Change Agent Award honors individuals or teams who have acted as catalysts for change through flexibility, creativity and entrepreneurship, and have a gift for getting others involved. Last but not least, the Unsung Hero Award recognizes individuals who are consummate team players and demonstrate a real willingness to do whatever needs to be done on the job.

"I think the awards will have a positive and lasting impact on employees and will indeed help confirm that Tufts is a community that recognizes and values the contribution that each of us brings to the table," Hymes says. "Being new to Tufts, I believe this program demonstrates that I work for an employer that appreciates what I do."

"These awards bring our diverse faculty, staff, students and administration together to enhance the notion that Tufts University is made up of its people rather than its buildings and classrooms," adds Rankin. "I believe each award describes a different type of individual who, in their own way, contributes to the success and superlative nature of Tufts University."

Online nominations may be made through the Tufts Distinction Awards website. Printed nomination forms are available at Human Resources on each campus; paper nominations may be mailed to the Medford/Somerville Human Resources office.

Bacow will present the awards at a ceremony on June 3.

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