NWCCD announces leadership award nominees

SHERIDAN — The Northern Wyoming Community College District announced its nominees for this year’s Wyoming Association of Community College Trustees Leadership awards Wednesday morning.

Nominated by their peers, the NWCCD, consisting of Sheridan College, Sheridan College in Johnson County and Gillette College, will send a combined six people to this year’s WACCT Conference, which will be held in Cheyenne on Thursday. One winner in each category is chosen at the state level, and awards will be presented during the conference.

Faculty and staff were asked to nominate who they thought gave exemplary efforts in showing support for the goals and overall mission of the NWCCD in the following categories: student, classified employee, professional employee, faculty member, trustee leadership and foundation volunteer.

Criteria for the awards are different for each category, but all the criteria involve excellence in their chosen area, contributions to their community college, service in the community, innovative change and improvement of the college.

Bruce Hoffman was selected as the trustee leadership nominee; Cindy Shoop was selected as the foundation volunteer nominee; Susan Serge was named professional employee nominee; Diego Zepeda was named student nominee; Robin West earned faculty member nominee; and Monica Leonard-Walsh was named classified employee nominee.

Hoffman is in his 50th year with the NWCCD. He is a Sheridan College Hall of Fame basketball coach, a steadfast Board of Trustees member, a community volunteer and a longtime champion of the NWCCD.

“While the role of trustee has made new demands on Bruce, he has never forgotten his perspective as a teacher and a coach; he brings these to every challenge faced by the board,” said NWCCD President Dr. Paul Young. “He is always the first to raise the questions, ‘how will this affect our students?’”

Shoop has been a part of the Sheridan College Foundation Board of Directors since 2008. Her leadership has enhanced the SC Foundation’s investments and financial management.

“Cindy Shoop personifies the involved board member. She works alongside the NWCCD president and the trustees in representing Sheridan College to the broader community,” according to Shoop’s nomination packet. “She is always ready to do her part and encourage others to contribute as well.”

Serge has been the director of campus life and housing at Gillette College for the past two years. She is committed to facilitating students’ success and a top-notch campus experience.

“Susan Serge has been a member of the Gillette College family since 2012 and from day one has shown initiative, drive, and passion in every aspect of her work,” according to Serge’s nomination packet. “She is the academic and athletic cheerleader, the fixer of problems, and the kind ear for students when they need it. Susan embodies what it means to be devoted to students, and in her young career, students and staff alike have recognized her dedication to both her job and students.”

Zepeda, a business student at Gillette College, carries a 3.98 GPA while focusing on building the student community at the college. Zepeda has an uncanny ability to bring people together and lead.

“Diego pushes others to success,” Gillette College resident assistant Matt Jackson said. “He is always willing to help others succeed before himself. He is never in your face. You just know he cares and wants you to succeed.”

West is an English instructor at Sheridan College. She has piloted new ways of teaching English to underprepared students for more than 20 years.

“She has been continually engaged in curriculum development and the instruction of reading and writing courses,” according to West’s nomination packet. “Ms. West’s work includes the development of individual tutoring plans as she has worked in Sheridan College’s Student Success Center and Writing Center. Robin was instrumental in the development of the District’s First Year Success program and taught a section of the freshman Gateway course for more than five years.”

Leonard-Walsh is a facilities specialist at Sheridan College. She has been instrumental in orchestrating several of the public events at the college, focusing on enhancing the functionality of buildings across campus, especially the Edward A. Whitney Academic Center.

“Monica has long been a champion of Sheridan College in particular, and the Wyoming community college system as a whole,” said Del Seville, SC’s custodial manager. “She aims to promote the campus in an aesthetically-pleasing manner and wants everyone to have a positive view of the college.”


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