Honorees in the seventh annual UConn Spirit Awards, which celebrate exceptional employees at the University, were announced in a virtual ceremony for the University community on Thursday, March 25, 2021.
The ceremony recognizes the efforts of employees, especially staff, in building community and promoting civility. The Spirit Awards program was originally the result of a survey conducted by the Something’s Happening Committee, which found a significant correlation between supportive interactions among colleagues and productivity on the job.
“This year in particular has redefined the very idea of ‘Husky Spirit,’” said UConn President Thomas Katsouleas. “Over the past 12 months, we’ve been called on to respond to challenges that none of us could have imagined. I’m sure we would all be happy to never hear the word ‘unprecedented’ again, but it happens to be true: unprecedented effort was required of everyone at UConn, and we answered the call.
“Today is an opportunity to single out some of the outstanding staff members who demonstrate what it means to be a UConn Husky day in and day out. Our whole community is grateful to them always, but this year that gratitude is even more profound.”
Katsouleas took time to recognize all those that were nominated for the awards and those that took the time to submit a nomination.
“Today is also an opportunity to remember that, despite the diversity of our roles here, ultimately we have the same goal: making UConn the best possible place for our students, faculty, staff, and friends,” he said.
This year’s winners and finalists are:
Rising Star Award
Winner: Edward Junhao Lim, University Libraries
Finalist: Erin Ciarimboli, Enrichment Programs/CETL
Finalist: William Davenport, Department of Extension, Litchfield
Unsung Hero Award
Winner: Hengameh Vosough, Campus Technology Services
Finalist: Sirrah Galligan, Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences
Finalist: Amanda Wilde, ISS First Year Program and Learning Community
University Citizen Award
Winner: Kay Gruder, Career Development Center
Finalist: Eva Gorbants, Fine Arts
Finalist: Sherry Zane, Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Winner: Dean of Students Office
Finalist: Center for Clean Energy Engineering Staff
Finalist: CETL: Educational Technologies and Learning Initiatives Team
Finalist: Office of the Registrar
Finalist: SHaW COVID-19 Morning Huddle
Inclusive Excellence Award
Winner: Lisa Famularo, Career Development Center
Finalist: Dr. Willena Kimpson Price, African American Cultural Center
Finalist: Dr. Chao Song, Student Health and Wellness