2013-09-26

Athletics, Recreation, Physical Fitness, Non-Varsity Sports, and related Excellence Award

Category Abstract

This category recognizes excellence by highlighting new, innovative, and successful programs, best practices, or services that impact holistic student development in athletics, recreational sports, health and fitness programming, kinesiology collaborations, and intramural/sport club organizations.  This may include initiatives provided by other units (e.g. Student Life, Student Union, Campus Activities, College of Education, etc.); however it is important that the initiative nominated is related to the category and addresses a critical need.

Excellence Awards Overview

NASPA recognizes the contributions of members who are transforming higher education through outstanding programs, innovative services, and effective administration. All NASPA members are encouraged to enter recently developed and/or longstanding programs and initiatives for consideration for the NASPA Excellence Awards.

Programs selected for recognition in each category will receive one of three designations: Gold, Silver, or Bronze. The gold recipients from each category will be further judged for the designations of Grand Gold, Grand Silver, and Grand Bronze.

Submissions will be due by October 23, 2018. There is no specific time by which your submission must be made on October 23, 2018. Gold Award recipients will be recognized at the 2019 NASPA Annual Conference in Los Angeles, CA. 

If the submission relates to a program that relies on substantive use of multimedia technology, a link to those materials should be embedded in the award submission. The materials must be accessible to committee members without the need for user identification or password.

  • Judging Criteria

    Entries within each category will be reviewed by a cross-section of experienced NASPA members. Three to five judges will independently review submissions using the following criteria:

    • Impact on student learning and success demonstrated through transition, retention, or achievement outcomes
    • Relevance to institutional mission and/or applicability to student affairs profession institutionally, regionally, or nationally
    • Success in addressing student needs or responding to critical campus concerns and issues
    • Involvement, inclusion, and collaboration with academic affairs and other campus departments in planning and implementation
    • Use of innovative and creative methods, practices, or activities including the use of social media and emerging learning technologies
    • Application of available or emerging theoretical models, practical research, and program assessment


    In addition, submissions will also be assessed for the quality of the program description, explanation of concepts, and clarity of writing. Please see this link for the rubric which will be used for assessment.

  • Recognition

    Gold Award recipients will:

    • Be placed in consideration for the NASPA Grand Gold Medal, NASPA Grand Silver Medal and NASPA Grand Bronze Medal designating the top three programs or initiatives.
    • Receive NASPA Excellence Awards Certificates of Gold.
    • Be prominently displayed at the NASPA Annual Conference.
    • Be invited to participate in a poster session recognizing all Gold Award recipients during the NASPA Annual Conference.
    • Be showcased in a collection of Gold Award recipients on the NASPA Excellence Awards web resource center.
    • Receive letters of commendation sent by NASPA to the institution's president, chief student affairs officer, and selected local media to announce the achievement.


    Silver and Bronze Award recipients will:

    • Receive NASPA Excellence Awards Certificates of Silver or Bronze.
    • Be included in a collection of selected entries on the NASPA Excellence Awards web resource center.
    • Receive letters of commendation from NASPA to the institution's president and chief student affairs officer.


    Grand Medal recipients:

    • The Gold Award recipient in each category will be further considered for the highest awards for program excellence -- the NASPA Grand Gold Medal, the NASPA Grand Silver Medal and the NASPA Grand Bronze Medal. The recipients of these three grand awards will be recognized during the NASPA Annual Awards Luncheon.

Excellence Awards


Award Information

Nominations for the 2018-2019 NASPA Excellence Awards are now closed. Winners will be announced in January.

Nominations for the 2019-2020 NASPA Excellence Awards will open in spring 2019. 

Requirements

To be considered for a NASPA Excellence Award, you must submit the following information:

  • Correspond to Excellence Award category
  • Program title
  • Executive summary (500 words or less)
  • Information around Student Learning and/or Success, Mission and/or Advancement of Student Affairs, Student and/or campus needs, Collaboration and Sustainability, Originality and creativity, and Application of Research, Theory, and Assessment
  • Letters of support (maximum of three)

Current Excellence Award Recipients

  • Gold Winner
    Get Outdoors Fund Scholarship Program

    California State University, Chico

    The Get Outdoors Fund at California State University, Chico provides scholarships for outdoor adventure trips. Students at CSUC have been facing increasing financial barriers to participation in Adventure Outings (AO) trips, as indicated by qualification for federal financial need, evaluation data, and feedback. The Get Outdoors Fund provides scholarships that help engage individuals of all backgrounds in outdoor pursuits, regardless of socioeconomic status. To generate revenue for the Get Outdoors Fund, Adventure Outings works in tandem with the Bike Cart, a bicycle repair program that serves the Chico State community. Revenue for scholarship funds is primarily generated through a used bicycle auction. At the end of each semester, abandoned bicycles on campus are collected by the Chico State University Police Department. Bikes that remain unclaimed after 6 months are then released to the Bike Cart. Staff sort through the bikes to determine value, strip usable parts, and recycle unusable bikes and parts as scrap metal through Associated Students CSU, Chico Recycling. Usable parts stripped from these scrap bikes are repurposed and utilized to replace parts on bikes to be sold. Bikes are repaired as needed and sold at a semi-annual auction ran by Bike Cart staff. A small fee from each bike sale goes back to the Bike Cart to cover the cost of labor and new parts, and the remainder transfers into a scholarship program, the Get Outdoors Fund, for students to attend an Adventure Outings trip. Since its inception in 2007, the bike auctions have generated over $50,000 for the Get Outdoors Fund, and over 1000 used bikes have been repurposed and sold to provide the campus community with an environmentally-responsible transportation option. In order to apply for a scholarship, students complete an application through OrgSync, the university’s online engagement platform. The application gauges financial need through various questions including FAFSA financial aid qualification, description of the student’s financial situation, and the need for the scholarship in order to participate in an Adventure Outings trip. In the last 3 years, 438 scholarship applications have been received via OrgSync, and 385 of those applicants (approximately 89%) have received scholarship offers. Scholarship awards from the Get Outdoors Fund then provide support for students to be able to enroll in outdoor adventure offerings through Adventure Outings. These offerings include student-led outdoor adventure trips such as backpacking, whitewater rafting, and rock climbing, taking place throughout the academic year as well as summer wilderness orientation programs. As evidenced by the data presented in the Student Learning and Success section, participation in Adventure Outings trips has a positive effect on students. Involvement positively impacts student success. Retention rates increase as students build connections on and off campus and sense of belonging strengthens. To conclude, the Get Outdoors Fund contributes to the overall college experience of Chico State students. Synergy between Adventure Outings, Bike Cart, and campus collaborators breaks down financial barriers to student engagement in outdoor adventures and creates opportunities for involvement that enhance the holistic well-being of students.


    View All Current Recipients
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  • Silver Winner
    Rec Sports Universal Locker Room

    University of California Berkeley

    UC Berkeley opened an expansive “universal” locker room Wednesday, September 26, 2018, creating a space for transgender or non-binary students and those who want more privacy or need disability accommodations. The 4,500-square-foot locker room, part of the campus’ Recreational Sports Facility, is the first of its kind in California and one of only a handful in the country. The idea for a universal space was borne out of conversations with students who said they felt uncomfortable having only a traditional choice of locker rooms. The $2.7-million facility houses private rooms for changing and showering, including 400 lockers, four shared sinks, 16 individual changing rooms, seven private showers, and five private toilets, two of which are accessible under the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, and one with an adult changing table. The funding for this project is the result of a 2015 “wellness referendum” designed and passed by the Berkeley students that imposed a $146 fee each year. The fee is tied to inflation and will increase over the life of the 30-year referendum. Money from the fee goes into a fund for innovative mind-body services that addresses the concerning rise of mental health complications on campus and provide new support for minority student groups. The new universal locker room serves a wider population of students because it is housed in the university’s main gym, where members can access the pool, basketball court, and group fitness classes. Prior to the universal locker room, some students felt so alienated by the lack of accommodations that they avoided using the recreational center — not only transgender or non-binary students but also those with disabilities, body-image concerns or religious restrictions. The universal locker room is not only in response to the needs of today’s student but is a paradigm shift toward integrated built environments in support of overall student wellness. Universal locker rooms on college campuses are the new norm and today’s standard. Berkeley is proud to lead the way for other institutions in service to all of our students


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  • Bronze Winner
    All Bears Train: Inclusivity in Berkeley Rec Sports

    University of California Berkeley

    All Bears Train at UC Berkeley is a multi-year, multi-department collaboration to improve the weight room culture within Berkeley Rec Sports, specifically focusing on gender, ability, and other identities that are marginalized in gym spaces. Over the past two years, the All Bears Train team, supported by multiple units on campus, has utilized a three-pronged approach to creating culture change in the gym. First, it changed staff training to incorporate skillbuilding around bystander intervention and inclusivity with all professional and student gym staff. Second, it initiated conversations about explicit gym policies, shifting the basis from response--that is, based entirely on the UC Berkeley Student Code of Conduct--to a proactive, preventative set of community expectations. Third, it began a social norms change poster campaign titled “In Our RSF [Recreational Sports Facility]” designed to highlight positive, inclusive gym behaviors and attitudes that could be lifted up as examples for the community. All Bears Train began as a student project in a Public Health course, which found that some students perceived the weight rooms as intimidating, male-dominated spaces. In a project survey, 10% of respondents reported having witnessed unwelcome behavior toward women in the weight rooms on campus. The students involved in the project proposed a social media campaign to address this issue in weight rooms, and with the help of the Public Health course’s instructor, the project was discussed in a group of campus stakeholders. This group included Berkeley Rec Sports, the PATH to Care Center (which works to prevent and respond to incidents of sexual harassment and sexual violence on campus), the Gender Equity Resource Center (which focuses on inclusivity issues related to gender and sexual orientation), campus Health Promotion, and the Center for Support and Intervention (which works to support students in distress and also works to prevent student crises in the first place). This group decided on improving inclusivity overall--including, but not limited to gender dynamics--within weight rooms, and secured campus funding from several sources so that the project could move forward. Over the next two years, students who participated in the initial project--and eventually, students who had heard of the project and wanted to contribute--pushed All Bears Train far beyond its initial scope, setting up Berkeley Rec Sports for sustained, thoughtful change. Students are the constant driving force of All Bears Train, helping to set messaging strategy, reviewing policy and making suggestions for updates, conducting interviews to discover norms, and advocating for the promotion of All Bears Train’s messages. All Bears Train, as a collaboration between students and staff in multiple units on campus, is innovative, transformative, and engages Berkeley Rec Sports and the campus community in conversations that further both students’ physical health and and their sense of belonging on campus, and is fully deserving of a NASPA Excellence Award.


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Past Excellence Award Recipients

  • 2018
    Gold Winner
    Building More than a Gym: Half Acre Recreation and Wellness Center’s Innovative Approach to Promoting Student Well-Being


    University of Wyoming

    Learn More
  • 2018
    Silver Winner
    Career Readiness for Sport-Related Careers: Pre-Internship Collaboration with Career Services and Sport Management Program


    University of West Georgia

    Learn More
  • 2018
    Bronze Winner
    Fish Camp: Session Zero


    Texas A&M University

    Learn More
  • 2012
    Gold Winner
    Building Better Community: How a small survey made a big difference

    Erin Callihan
    New York University

    Read Materials
  • 2012
    Silver Winner
    Dean of Students Half Marathon Challenge and Food Drive

    David Tuttle
    Trinity University

    Read Materials
  • 2012
    Bronze Winner
    The Unbeaten Path: Considering Global Leadership in the Shadow of the Great Wall

    Michael Edwards
    Georgia Institute of Technology

    Read Materials
  • 2010-11
    Gold Winner
    Team QUEST: Experience-Based Training & Development

    Cherry Callahan
    University of North Carolina at Greensboro

    Read Materials
  • 2010-11
    Silver Winner
    Movin' Mavs Adapted Sports and Recreation

    Doug Garner
    University of Texas Arlington

    Read Materials
  • 2010-11
    Bronze Winner
    Faculty & Staff Wellness Program

    Andrew Mauk
    Florida State University

    Read Materials
  • 2009
    Gold Winner
    The University of Arizona C.A.T.S. Life Skills Program

    Lynette Cook Francis
    University of Arizona

    Read Materials
  • 2009
    Silver Winner
    DOC First-Year Trips

    Molly Bode
    Dartmouth College

    Read Materials
  • 2009
    Bronze Winner
    Chatham University’s Purple Reign Campaign

    Julianne Dunphy
    Chatham University

    Read Materials
  • 2008
    Gold Winner
    The Group Exercise (GX) Program

    Erica Choutka
    USC-Columbia

    Read Materials
  • 2008
    Silver Winner
    The Culture of Learning Initiative: A Recreation Department’s Focus on Student Learning Outcomes

    April Moore
    University of West Florida

    Read Materials
  • 2008
    Bronze Winner
    Believe in Blue

    Daniel Nadler
    Eastern Illinois University

    Read Materials
  • 2007
    Gold Winner
    Tear It Up!

    Erin Callihan
    New York University

    Learn More
  • 2007
    Silver Winner
    APPLE: A Comprehensive Approach to Promoting Student Athlete Wellness & Substance Abuse Prevention

    Laurie Casteen
    University of Virginia

    Learn More
  • 2006
    Gold Winner
    Pirate Training

    Jerry Brody
    Southwestern University

    Learn More