With its new venue at the May Street Building, the annual Employee Service Recognition and Retirement Celebration brought faculty and staff together to celebrate each other’s accomplishments and dedication to Worcester State University. In addition to the traditional employee service and retiree recognitions, this year’s ceremony honored faculty members who recently attained tenure and the recipients of the Extraordinary Dedication, Campus Collaboration, and Diversity and Inclusion Awards, which have become newer traditions at the annual event.
President Barry Maloney described the longtime employees as “seasoned veterans” who exemplified the high working standards encouraged by Worcester State.
“There is a tradition here of dedication and commitment to place, and you are part of that tradition, as much as any alumnus is,” he said. “Each and every one of you has been part of our recent successes, and I thank you for playing a role.”
Senior administrators recognized the awardees from their areas, with Stacey Luster, assistant vice president for human resources, payroll, diversity, inclusion, and affirmative action, serving as master of ceremonies.
“Today we are recognizing some employees who have an amazing 40 years of service—Dianna Aquafresca and Mariann Saulenas,” said Luster. “Let’s give them a round of applause!”
From there, Luster continued to recognize employees who had served 35, 30, 25, 20, 15, 10, and five years of service to Worcester State, as they posed for pictures with President Maloney, who also celebrated his fifth year with WSU.
Retiring this year are Richard A. Cortesi (Facilities), Wayne Dorazio (Facilities), Carol Neylon (DGCE), and Associate Professor Jacqueline Brennan (Occupational Therapy), who was awarded emerita status.
“All four retirees will leave their mark on our students and on our community,” said President Maloney. “You have to know that this place could not have functioned without your teaching, your support, your knowledge, and skills.”
Mark Wagner, Ph.D., director of the John J. Binienda Center for Civic Engagement, was the recipient of the 2017 Campus Collaboration Award.
The recipients of the 2017 Diversity and Inclusion Awards are Jason Grant (Sociology), Hilda Ramirez (Latino Education Institute), and Dr. Tanya Mears (History.)
The recipients of the 2017 Extraordinary Dedication Awards are Michael Martin (Registrar’s Office) and Catherine Novick (Library) for AFSCME, Robert Daniels (Facilities) and Thomas Kelley (Residence Life and Housing) for APA, and Dr. Antonio Guijarro-Donadios (World Languages) and Dr. Barbara Zang (Communication) for MSCA.
Luster thanked members of the Human Resources Department for organizing the event, which included photos with President Maloney, recognition gifts, centerpieces on the tables, and hors d’oeuvres and desserts. She encouraged all to attend the Employee Fun Day scheduled for Thursday, May 18 from 12 noon to 2 p.m. on the quad.