A busy graduate student who has embraced university life since coming to Memorial only a year ago, a campus group that caught national attention when two of its members slept in the Queen Elizabeth II Library for 10 days, and a well-known pair of professors are among this year’s recipients of the 22nd MUN Volunteer Day awards.
Memorial University of Newfoundland held a special ceremony on Wednesday, March 26, to publicly recognize the efforts of its students, faculty and staff.
More than 50 people including Dr. Eddy Campbell, acting president of Memorial, Dr. Lilly Walker, dean, Student Affairs and Services, and Bradley Russell, executive director of student life with Memorial University Students’ Union (MUNSU), attended the event in the Smallwood Centre.
Nova Scotia-native Rebecca Daniels, who is currently completing a master of science degree in the Division of Biomedical Sciences in the Faculty of Medicine, was named this year’s Student Volunteer of the Year.
Since arriving at Memorial only a year ago, she has immersed herself in volunteer work with groups such as Project Green, the Medical Graduate Students Society and Answers.
She is also a volunteer with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, Memorial’s WalkSafe Program and has been involved in the Aldrich Conference.
Meghan Mitchell is this year’s recipient of the David Kirkland Student Leadership Award. The fifth-year Arts student is active not only within student housing at Memorial – where she was president of Blackall House and a member of the Paton College Council – but she has volunteered with MUNSU, Faculty of Arts Council, Senate, Board of Regents and is involved with several young New Democratic Party groups.
Burke House was named Residence of the Year for its involvement in a range of volunteer events including I Love MUNdays, Shinerama, Real Time Cancer Climb of Signal Hill, and the CIBC Run for the Cure, among other activities.
That award is presented to the residence at Memorial dedicated to motivating others and providing volunteer efforts and events designed to improve both campus and community life during the academic year.
Meanwhile, the group Students for Literacy @ MUN was named the Volunteer Club or Society of the Year.
Since 1996, that group has been partnering with organizations such as community centres, junior high schools and boys and girls clubs to help support the learning needs of the community through group and one-on-one tutoring.
Two of its members – Danielle Barron and Samantha White – camped out in the QE II Library in January 2008 to help raise money for overseas libraries and promote the local group.
Drs. Michael and Annette Staveley – well-known to the Memorial community – are this year’s recipients of the Glenn Roy Blundon Award. That honour is presented for excellence in disability accommodations and is named for a former Memorial student who died in 1984 and who is remembered for his leadership and commitment to equality and accessibility issues.
Dr. Michael Staveley – a former dean of Arts who is now retired – and his wife – a professor of English – are heavily involved in Memorial’s Harlow program, bringing students to the university’s campus in England.
They were singled out for their dedication to ensuring all students have a chance to take part in fieldtrips, special tours and other events while overseas.
Award-winning faculty member Dr. TA Loeffler can add another prestigious honour to her mantelpiece. She was named the inaugural winner of the MUN Faculty Volunteer of the Year.
Dr. Loeffler, a professor in the School of Human Kinetics and Recreation, was singled out for her work in motivating others – particularly young students – to get more active and dream big during dozens of motivational talks, free public presentations, and school lectures.
Dr. Loeffler has received national and international awards for her teaching and leadership skills and is a noted outdoor adventurer who is attempting to complete the highest peaks on all seven continents.
And, Hans Rollmann, resource co-ordinator with MUNSU, took home the first-ever Staff Volunteer of the Year award. A well-known and dedicated volunteer not only on campus but also in the wider community, Mr. Rollmann is active with groups ranging from CUPE Local 4554, the Graduate Students’ Union, the Newfoundland and Labrador Sexual Health Centre as well as the university’s Pagan Society.
Organized by the Student Volunteer Bureau the awards allows both community and campus organizations to recognize publicly the efforts of their volunteers.
During the awards ceremony, special certificates were also presented to those who were shortlisted for this year’s awards.