Annual Awards & Scholarships

The Innovative Program Award is presented annually recognizing a program or unique approach to a challenging situation and/or specific campus concern or need. This award seeks to recognize innovative and effective approaches in three categories with three awards: Innovation in Orientation, Innovation in Transition, and Innovation in Retention. It is the opportunity to highlight good administrative and practices that meet the changing needs on college and university campuses that generate new knowledge within the field of orientation, transition, and retention. This award is granted at both the regional and national level. Each region will select a recipient for each category and the winners will be considered at the national level at the annual conference.

2023 Applications Due Friday, September 15Click here to Apply

2022 Recipients
  • Orientation Program: Orientation Peer-to-Peer Class Registration model, University of Colorado – Colorado Springs
  • Transition Program: District Connections (GWxDC), George Washington University
  • Retention Program: Improving the Student Support Referral Process, Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College

The Presidential Recognition Award is given annually (at the discretion of the Association Presidents) to an individual or organization to honor outstanding commitment and support to the advancement of the mission of the Association.

  • 2023: Lizette Rebolledo, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
  • 2022: Chris Verhaeghe, NODA
  • 2021: Joe Thomas, University of Colorado-Boulder
  • 2020: Maria Sedotti, University of Connecticut
  • 2019: Beth Lingren Clark, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
  • 2018: NODA Fundraising Committee
  • 2017: Kathryn Kay Coquemont, University of Utah
  • 2017: Joyce Holl, NODA Executive Director (10 years of service)
  • 2016: Rebecca Atkinson, Clemson University
  • 2015: Laura Coffin Koch, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
  • 2013: Dean Tompkins, HelmsBrisco
  • 2013: Dr. David W. Parrott, Texas A&M University
  • 2012: Katie Granholm, DePaul University
  • 2011: Don Miller, Wright State University
  • 2011: Carren Martin, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • 2010: Rick Sparks, Virginia Tech
  • 2009: Joyce Holl, NODA Executive Director
  • 2008: Archie Cubarrubia, George Washington University
  • 2007, Becky Armour, University of Michigan, Flint
  • Deon Butler, Florida International University
  • 2006: Carren Martin, NODA Executive Secretary/Treasurer
  • 2006: Porter Martin, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP
  • 2005: Melanie Payne, Indiana University
  • 2004: Jim Levi, Greek 101
  • 2003: Terese King, NODA Director of Membership Services
  • 2002: LeeAnn Melin, Northern Arizona University
  • 2001: Jeanine Ward-Roof, Clemson University
  • 1999: Bonita Jacobs, University of North Texas
  • 1998: Victor K. Wilson, University of Georgia
  • 1997: Michele McManus, University of North Carolina-Charlotte
  • 1996: Valerie Hodge, East Stroudsburg University
  • 1995: Gerry Strumf, University of Maryland
  • 1994: Dick Mullendore, University of North Carolina
  • 1993: Ray Passkiewicz, Davenport College

The Norman K. Russell Scholarship is awarded to recognize and assist graduate or doctoral students who have demonstrated a strong commitment to orientation, retention and transition, who will contribute to the enhancement of the orientation field, and who is currently enrolled as a graduate student in orientation-related fields. Up to three $1,000 scholarships (one of which may be awarded to a doctoral student) will be announced at the annual conference. Scholarships are sent through each recipient’s financial aid office for distribution of funds.

  • NODA may award up to three $1,000 scholarships annually.
  • No individual can receive more than one scholarship in a given year.
  • Recipients of the scholarship cannot be considered again.
  • The scholarships selection is to be based on merit only.
  • Applicants must be currently enrolled in a Master’s program or in a Doctoral level studies at the time the scholarship is awards.
  • At least one recommendation letter is required from a previous supervisor and/or a faculty member in the graduate student’s academic department.
  • A personal statement from the student is required.
2023 Recipients
  • Alayzha Booth, Pepperdine University
  • Chrissy Daniel, University of Buffalo
  • Stephanie Brown, University of North Texas
2022 Recipients
  • Jordan Holiday-Millard, UNC Charlotte
  • James Luckman, Syracuse University
  • Grant Mitchell, Florida State University

The Outstanding OTR Professional Award recognizes outstanding contributions of a NODA professional to the field of orientation, transition, and retention. The award is based on the following:

  • Outstanding contributions to the orientation, transition, and retention profession (e.g. research, publications, presentations, etc.)
  • Development or enhancement of a model orientation, transition, and retention program that meets the varied needs of students.
  • Current NODA membership.
  • Outstanding regional or association-wide leadership. (Examples: Association Committee Chair, Association Committee Member, Annual Conference Program Committee)
  • Five years or more of professional experience in higher education (graduate work not considered).
2023 Recipient

Phillip Campbell, Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College

2022 Recipient

Maria Santilli, Central Connecticut State University

The Outstanding New OTR Professional Award recognizes a new orientation, transition, and retention professional who has demonstrated service to NODA at a regional Association-wide level, and/or to the orientation, transition, and retention profession. This award is granted at both the regional level and the national level. Each region will select a recipient for the regional award. The regional award winners will automatically be considered for the national award winner as well. The award is based on the following:

  • Current NODA membership for one full year.
  • No more than 4 years of professional orientation, transition, and retention experience.
  • Demonstrated commitment to (and shows promise of becoming a leader in) the field of orientation, transition, and retention.
  • Innovative contributions to the individual’s institution.
  • Active participation at the NODA regional and/or annual conference.
2023 Recipient

Nick Stines, Syracuse University

2022 Recipient

Nic Laconico, University of Georgia

The Outstanding Mentor Award is designed to give special recognition to those professionals who provide outstanding mentorship and guidance to graduate students who aid in orientation, transition, and retention programs with our Association and on your campuses. This award will be reviewed and selected by the Graduate Student Network with a recognition of the award winner on the network webpage and announcement to the membership.

  • Nominees must be a current NODA member.
  • Nominees must have been involved in orientation, transition, or retention programs within a year of the September before the Annual Conference.
  • Within the nomination form, the nominator will be asked to describe:
    • their relationship to the nominee, including how long they have worked with them;
    • the nominee’s mentoring style and how it impacted their growth and development;
    • how the nominee has impacted the growth and development of other students they supervise/advise;
    • and a time that the nominee provided guidance and support.
2023 Recipient

Sarah Joslyn, Bowling Green State University-Main Campus

The Outstanding Graduate Student Leadership Award recognizes one graduate student for their contribution to their campus orientation, transition, and retention program and staff success. The award is based on the following:

  • The graduate student must have participated in a graduate internship, assistantship, externship, practicum or other significant experience.
  • At the time of the Annual Conference, nominees will have had to accomplish one complete semester at an institution (excluding NODA internships).
  • Work in a NODA internship does not automatically qualify for the award.

2023 Award Nominations Due Friday, September 15Click here to Submit

2022 Recipient

Shelby Pierce, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

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 successful and dynamic orientation programs. This award will recognize student leaders as an undergraduate student and graduate student from each region. Winners of the regional awards will be submitted for consideration at the annual conference.

2023 Recipients

(Undergraduate) Cassidy Morrow, University of Massachusetts
(Graduate) Alicia Dominguez, University of North Texas

2022 Recipient

Isabella Banks, George Washington University

The Outstanding Research Award is tenable by graduate students who are enrolled in graduate studies and in the process of completing a graduate thesis or dissertation or who have completed their degree requirements within one year prior to the annual fall conference at which the award will be bestowed. The scholarly research honored should highlight topics within the field of orientation, transition, and retention. Award recipients will be invited to present their thesis or dissertation topic at the NODA Annual Conference as well as be invited to submit the completed study in manuscript format for possible publication, in part or in full, in the JCOTR. The amount of $1,000 award will be available to the Outstanding Research Award winner.

2023 Applications Due Friday, September 15Click here to Apply

No nominations were made in 2022.

The Outstanding NODA Intern Award recognizes one intern who demonstrated commitment to learning, professional development, and service through the successful completion of a NODA internship.

  • Must have served in an internship sanctioned by NODA within the 12 months prior to the conference in which the award is given, lasting a minimum of 8 weeks.
  • Must be placed into nomination by the host and/or direct supervisor in the internship.
  • Each nomination must be accompanied by two (2) letters of recommendation; one from the direct supervisor and the other from an additional internship campus representative.
  • Internship experience must be with a different institution and not the student’s current institution.
  • Recipients must be either enrolled in a graduate program or have graduated from a graduate program no more than 12 months prior to the conference in which the award is given.
2023 Recipient

Emma Mancini, Missouri State University

2022 Recipient

Sydney Rubin, The Ohio State University, Internship at Lehigh University

At the close of each regional conference sessions will be deemed the “Regional Showcase Winner.’ The criteria for this award will be based upon the evaluation results and other factors deemed by the regional leadership team and conference planning committee. One award will be given for the best presentation by an undergraduate student presenter(s) and one will be for the best presentation by a professional / graduate student presenter(s). The Regional Showcase Session that is selected for the Professional / Graduate student presenter(s) will be automatically be accepted for inclusion at the next NODA Annual Conference in the fall.