2024 Regional Award Winners – Region VI [Press Release]

March 13, 2024
For Immediate Release

Regional Award Winners Announced 

In service to NODA’s mission of creating an inclusive community which enhances and elevates orientation, transition, and retention practices in higher education, the Association is pleased to announce the NODA regional award winners for 2024. The regional awards process helps elevate and highlight the outstanding work of our members. These winners were selected from dozens of different applications and nominations. Congratulations to all of this year’s nominees. Regional award winners were announced at the Region VI Regional Conference (SROW) in Charlotte, North Carolina on March 9, 2024. All regional winners advance for consideration in the annual award process where award winners will be announced at the NODA Annual Conference in Portland, OR, November 11 -14, 2024

NODA is an international association providing scholarship and professional development for the areas of orientation, transition, and retention. Region VI consists of the following Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Kentucky, North Carolina, and South Carolina.

Outstanding Orientation, Transition, and Retention Professional Award

The Outstanding Professional Award recognizes outstanding contributions of a professional to the field of orientation, transition, and retention. Contributions should include development or enhancement of a model orientation, transition, or retention program that meets the varied needs of students; leadership within NODA; and/or other significant contributions to the field. Recipients must have five or more years of professional experience in higher education.

The 2024 Region VI Outstanding Orientation, Transition, and Retention Professional is Melanie Marshall, Associate Director of New Student and Family Programs at the University of Florida.

Outstanding New Orientation, Transition, and Retention Professional Award

The Outstanding New Professional Award recognizes outstanding contributions of a NODA professional to the field of orientation, transition, and retention. Contributions should include demonstrated commitment to and promise of becoming a leader in the field of orientation, transition, and retention; innovative contributions to the individual’s institution; active participation in NODA; and/or other significant contributions to the field. Recipients must have less than five years professional experience in higher education.

The 2024 Region VI Outstanding New Orientation, Transition, And Retention Professional is Jennifer Asouzu, Assistant Director for Special Populations & Communication at University of South Carolina.

Outstanding Student Leadership Award

The Outstanding Student Leadership Award is designed to give special recognition to students for their creativity, energy, enthusiasm, and outstanding abilities, which are the backbone of any successful campus programs. This award will recognize one undergraduate student leader and one graduate students leader.

Undergraduate Student

The 2024 Region VI Outstanding Undergraduate Student Leader is Mattie Smith from the East Tennessee State University. Mattie serves as a POLO Intern and is studying nursing.

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Graduate Student

The 2024 Region VI Outstanding Graduate Student Leader is Raina Cowans from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Raina serves as a Graduate Assistant for Enrollment Programs and is pursing a Master’s in Educational Leadership (Higher Education).

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Innovative Program Award

The Innovative Program Award recognizes a program or unique approach to a challenging situation or a specific campus need. This award seeks to recognize innovative and effective approaches in three categories with awards for Innovation in Orientation, Innovation in Transition, and Innovation in Retention. It is the opportunity to highlight good administrative practices that meet the changing needs of an institution and its students. These innovative programs help generate new knowledge and best practices within the field of orientation, transition, and retention.

Orientation Program

The 2024 Region VI Innovation in Orientation Programs Award is presented to the Florida State University for their program Food Recovery Initiative created FSU Orientation in collaboration with Seminole Dining and FSU Sustainable Campus.

Transition Program

The 2024 Region VI Innovation in Transition Programs Award is presented to the University of Georgia for their program Pathways created by the Department of Student Transitions.

Retention Program

The 2024 Region VI Innovation in Retention Programs Award is presented to the Savannah State University for their program Transformation Tuesdays created by the Student Orientation Leader program.

To learn more about NODA membership and programs, visit www.nodaweb.org or reach out to noda@umn.edu


For questions or comment, please contact Joyce Holl, NODA Executive Director, holl@umn.edu.

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