Four MPS staff members have been recognized with the 2021 SAS Staff Excellence Awards: Kathleen Guarino, Mathematics; Viktor Oudovenko, Physics; Lauryn Siu, MPS SAS Dean's Office; and Steven Young, Chemistry and Chemical Biology. Now in its fourth year, this recognition program acknowledges the efforts of those staff members who have made extraordinary contributions to the School through their hard work and dedication to the faculty, staff, and students of our community. This award recognizes staff in three different categories: contributions to the student experience, operational excellence, and School culture.
2021 Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Student Experience:
Kathleen Guarino, Administrative Assistant, Department of Mathematics. In her role, Katie provides essential support to the Graduate Vice-Chair in the operations of the large Ph.D. and traditional MS programs in Mathematics. Her nomination for this recognition lauded her for organizational skills, her absolute commitment to the students, and her willingness to do this all with “the utmost grace and good humor, integrity, patience, professionalism, and warmth.”
Viktor Oudovenko, High Performance Computing Manager, Department of Physics & Astronomy. Viktor is the mainstay of the condensed matter group’s computational efforts and provides extraordinary service to the faculty and students whose research he supports. While credited with saving valuable machinery and data in the face of power outages, temperature fluctuations, and other interruptions, his nominators singled him out for his service to the students. He always has a line of students waiting to see him in his office and is celebrated as a caring and effective supervisor of student workers. His generosity with his time for students assures that his impact goes well beyond being an exceptional computer manager.
2021 Award for Outstanding Contributions to Operational Excellence:
Lauryn Siu, Coordinator of Administrative Services, Divisions of Mathematical & Physical Sciences, and Life Sciences. Lauryn is recognized for her ability to navigate the workload and complexity of two of the School’s four academic divisions. In particular, she is appreciated for her “exemplary work ethic, her desire to expand her knowledge base, and her ability to overcome obstacles by focusing on solutions, not problems.” Her work products contribute significantly to the day-to-day operations of MPS and DLS and also help bring new and important data projects to a successful conclusion.
Steven Young, Coordinator of Shipping and Receiving, Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology. There are few areas of the School that are impacted by the pandemic as broadly as the CCB stockroom. Shipping delays, missing deliveries, supply chain limitations, and difficulties in coordinating deliveries with individual labs have kept Steve busy. Despite these challenges, he is credited with providing reliable and steady support to the researchers and lab instructors of the department. As indispensable as the stockroom is to the research and teaching operations of CCB, so is Steve.
Congratulations to Kathleen, Viktor, Lauryn, and Steven - we are thankful for our hardworking staff!