• The Student Alumni Society is seeking nominations for an award that recognizes shining stars in campus activity groups.
“We’re looking for someone who contributes in a significant way,” says SAS alumni relations chair Mackenzie Alameda ’15, a chemical engineering major. “With nearly 200 school organizations,” she says, “there is plenty of acclaim to go around and plenty of room on the podium, as it were. A lot of people can be recognized,” she says, for work they do in various groups, whether it be Students Promoting Animal Welfare, the Game Development Club, a Greek organization or SAS itself.
AN AWARD OF ITS OWN
The SAS & GOLD Outstanding Commitment to Student Life Award, as it’s called, is new at WPI, Alameda says. Last year was its inaugural year.
Nick Teceno ’13, who now works at a pharmaceutical research firm in Plympton, was involved in developing the award last year. He said criteria was kept unstructured on purpose.
“Specific criteria was left up to the individual organizations, first on the aspect of a deadline, and second on the realization that all organization at WPI are different and might interpret commitment in differing ways,” he says, “such as number of events attended, years of service, engagement with the general body, enthusiasm, etc.”
Each organization may nominate up to five graduating seniors and two alumni who have shown leadership and commitment over the past school year, Alameda says. Nominees will then get official recognition at the SAS & Gold Senior Welcome Reception on May 15 at 6:30 p.m. at the Odeum in the Rubin Campus Center.
Teceno, in addition to being part of the team that developed the award, was chosen as its SAS nominee. He was very surprised to be picked.
“Honestly, it made my year,” he says. “Many students are a part of Greek life at WPI and will always have a connection to the school that way. I was not … so SAS really was my ultimate connection to the Institute.”
PROMOTING THE GREATER GOOD
Teceno says the award also shows appreciation for seniors who are contributing so much of their time and focus to a campus group. It helps students understand that as a young alumnus right out of college, financial donations to WPI may not be immediately feasible, Teceno says, but contributing your time is also important and acknowledged. “You would be very amazed by how far a ‘thank you’ can go,” he says.
Alameda says the alumni awardees who return for the Welcome Reception recognition inspires the undergraduate members of campus organizations to stay involved and stay active.
Nominations will be accepted until midnight, April 21, and may be submitted via tech synch, under Student Alumni Society.
Acknowledging and awarding seniors for their commitment relays the message that their contributions did not go unnoticed, says Teceno. “Acclimating WPI students to that mindset shortly before graduation hopefully will convey the message that any kind of giving back is appreciated and needed. It certainly did for me.”
BY SUSAN SHALHOUB
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