Glen Oaks President Dr. David H. Devier recognized several individuals during the 55th Annual Glen Oaks Community College commencement ceremony on Friday, May 5. Those receiving awards were:
- President’s Award – Madisyn Tulley
- Outstanding Service Award – Christopher Dao
- Part-time Faculty Teaching Excellence Award – Darci Skrzyniarz
- E. J. Shaheen Chair for Teaching Excellence – Lori Hatfield
- Distinguished Alumni Award – Kelly Bibb
- Up and Coming Distinguished Alumni Award – Collin Dussel
- Fellows Award – Patricia A. Devier
President’s Award – Madisyn Tulley
Nominated by the Glen Oaks faculty, this award recognizes a student for high achievement in academics and excellence, and contributions in the classroom, class work, and the college, Recipients have an accumulative GPA of 3.75 or higher.
Madison Tulley, of Constantine, is this year’s President’s Award recipient. She is graduating with an Associate of Business degree and has tentative plans to work as a sales intern at a local RV facility this summer. Tulley loves talking with people and feels a career in sales would be a good fit. Tulley, who took dual enrollment classes while in high school, says she has had a great experience at Glen Oaks and especially enjoyed Professors Michelle McNamara and Cheryl Schmitt. She works part-time at the Pigeon Inn restaurant in White Pigeon.
Outstanding Service Award – Christopher Dao.
This award recognizes employees of Glen Oaks for outstanding performance and contributions to the college, while taking into consideration accountability, responsiveness and excellence in their work and embracing innovation, diversity, and sustainability.
Christopher Dao, is a systems analyst support engineer who is said to do outstanding work and always goes above and beyond expectations to serve his colleagues and the entire college. The knowledge and skills that he brings to his role have proven to be an asset for all. He is said to be an “unsung” hero as he plays a key role in maintaining many of the systems that employees take for granted in their daily work. He maintains a positive attitude through routine and crisis situations alike. He is said to meet and exceed all expectations and has transformed and revolutionized everything that he has touched.
Part-Time Faculty Teaching Excellence Award – Darci Skrzyniarz
This award is presented annually to a part-time faculty member or adjunct who demonstrates excellence in teaching and reflects the value of education to students.
Darci Skrzyniarz teaches as part of the Allied Health program. She is said to have tough standards but is supportive every step of the way for each student – making a difference in their lives and education. An instructor with the Health Science CTE program for over 25 years who teaches dual enrollment classes, Skrzyniarz, is an alumna of the Glen Oaks Nursing program. She enjoys helping students make connections and transition from high school to the post-secondary world and finding their passion to become the next generation of healthcare providers.
E. J. Shaheen Chair for Teaching Excellence – Lori Hatfield
The award was initiated in 1984 with a generous donation from E. J. Shaheen, one of the original Glen Oaks board members. Shaheen, a college professor, lawyer, and business owner, placed a high value on education and spent much of his later life promoting high quality education and educational institutions, including Glen Oaks.
Lori Hatfield, professor of English, is the 2023 recipient of the E. J. Shaheen award. She began her Glen Oaks career in 2010 teaching English Composition and Developmental English classes. Today she teaches English Composition, Creative Writing and Mythology classes. It is said she allows her students the freedom to choose their topics whether it is creative writing or a research project. Her nominators say she is very understanding, goes above and beyond to help her students and inspires them to work hard and take instruction to heart. Hatfield earned her Master of Arts at National University in San Diego, her Bachelor of Arts from Thomas Edison University in New Jersey, and her Associate of Arts from Kalamazoo Valley Community College.
Distinguished Alumni Award – Kelly Bibb
The Distinguished Alumni Award is awarded through the Glen Oaks Foundation and recognizes alumni who have gone on to make a difference in their communities via demonstrated achievement in their chosen professions or personal service.
Kelly Bibb earned her Associate of General Studies and then juggled a household with two busy teenagers to reach her goal to obtain her Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Western Michigan University. Upon graduation, she discovered her love for teaching reached beyond the classroom and she went to work for Edward Jones in 2007 as a financial advisor and made it her mission to teach individuals about retirement planning and investments. She has earned numerous awards from Edward Jones since 2008. Kelly is involved in Sturgis Kiwanis Club and has been an active member since 2010. She is quick to tell you that she is grateful to have had Glen Oaks be so close to home when she started and that had it not been for Glen Oaks that she may have never pursued her dream of completing a college degree. Her nominator said that she “is simply an amazing person and would do anything for anyone.” Anyone who knows her knows how much she loves helping others while never asking for anything in return. She actively supports Glen Oaks and serves on the Glen Oaks Foundation Board.
Up and Coming Distinguished Alumni Award – Collin Dussel
The Up-And-Coming Distinguished Award is a newer Glen Oaks Foundation Award category for alumni who graduated 10 years ago or less who exhibit professionalism, have demonstrated achievement in their chosen careers, and have provided significant service to the community.
Collin Dussel is the first recipient of this new award. Collin graduated from Glen Oaks with an Associate of Applied Science in Agricultural Equipment Technology. He grew up in a farming family, with his dad and grandfather and has witnessed the rising costs of machinery and the repairs necessary to keep those machines running and in the field. When he was given the chance to take over the family farm, he knew that he had the ability, but just needed the knowledge to repair his own equipment, so he enrolled in the Glen Oaks Agricultural Equipment Technology program and thrived. He is not only running his family farm, he is also doing customer fertilizer applications with his brother and selling seed and other farm-related projects. He serves on the Ag Tech Advisory Board as both a former student and an industry professional.
Fellows Awards. – Patricia A. Devier
The Glen Oaks Fellows Award is given to an individual, individuals, or institution who has provided outstanding support to the college as evidenced by one or more of the following: Long-term dedication and commitment to the college; extensive community-level support for the college, direct and continuing support for the college and students via contributions to the Glen Oaks Foundation or Board of Trustees.
Patricia Devier has worked behind the scenes to accomplish many things to better the college and the experience of all who work and learn at Glen Oak. She has volunteered many times to help register and advise Early Middle College students. She has drawn on her nursing experience to advise the Allied Health Department with ideas on marketing the Certified Nursing Assistant program. Devier has used her sewing, knitting, and landscaping skills around the campus in addition to organizing many events at the college including graduations, open houses, and picnics at her home as well as at the college, gala fundraiser events for the Glen Oaks Foundation and Epsilon Pi Tau inductions. All this and more has been done quietly or on her own without any expectation of recognition or praise of any kind.