The winners of the 2012 Don Dorsey Excellence in Mentoring Award are (from left) Christopher Aston ’02 (Communication Studies), M.A. ’04 (Communication Studies), assistant director of student development and international programs; Dr. Yolanda Linda Reid-Chassiakos, director of the Klotz Student Health Center; Bridget Sampson ’91 (Speech Communication), M.A. ’93 (Speech Communication), professor of communication studies; and Bradley McAuliff, professor of psychology.
“Humility,” said Glenn Omatsu, coordinator of the California State University, Northridge Faculty Mentor Program, is the shared attribute all four winners of the 2012 Don Dorsey Excellence in Mentoring Award possess.
The four CSUN faculty and staff members were honored on Nov. 6 by CSUN’s Educational Opportunity Program’s Faculty Mentor Program. The annual award recognizes faculty and staff who have made exceptional contributions to mentoring of past and present students; who take a holistic approach to mentoring, including academic and personal support; and who support the university’s commitment to the success of students of diverse backgrounds and communities.
“Mentoring is important at CSUN, because it promotes a culture on our campus that enables all students to succeed,” Omatsu said. “On our campus, oftentimes the most powerful mentoring moments happen not in formal, one-to-one matching programs but during small encounters in classrooms, offices, and hallways where faculty and staff skillfully use each interaction with a student, no matter how brief, as a mentoring opportunity.”
Following are the 2012 Don Dorsey Excellence in Mentoring Award winners.
• Bradley McAuliff, professor of psychology
McAuliff began his work at CSUN nearly 10 years ago. In addition to his responsibilities as a professor in the Department of Psychology, he works with several mentoring programs including the high school and undergraduate Career Opportunities for Research Program, the Minority Access to Research Careers/Undergraduate Science Training and Academic Research Program, the Minority Biomedical Research Support Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement, the California Pre-Doctoral Program, the GE Honors Faculty Mentor for Freshman and the CSUN Ally/Positive Space Program.
“I mentor because I wouldn’t be where I am today without a mentor who invested time, energy and concern for me as an undergraduate,” McAuliff said. “For that, I am forever grateful and indebted to my students.”
• Christopher Aston ’02 (Communication Studies), M.A. ’04 (Communication Studies), assistant director of student development and international programs
Aston was selected because of his “commitment to inclusion and open-mindedness” to students, faculty and staff across campus. He connects and mentors students through his work as coordinator of Commencement, Honors Convocation, Freshman Convocations, New Student Orientation for freshmen, and various campus welcome events. His work as a professor for the University 100 Freshman seminar provides him the opportunity to be a direct mentor to students in orientating them to success.
• Dr. Yolanda Linda Reid-Chassiakos, director of the Klotz Student Health Center
Reid-Chassiakos has served as director of the Klotz Student Health Center since 2000. She clearly embodies the dual mission of the center to provide health services for students and to educate students through the provision of an environment suitable to academic growth.
“I am grateful to have the opportunity to help open doors and pave pathways for students seeking academic training careers in the health professions,” Reid-Chassiakos said. “To the students I have mentored, I also owe my thanks for the many things they have taught me.”
• Bridget Sampson ’91 (Speech Communication), M.A. ’93 (Speech Communication), professor of communication studies
Sampson was honored for her outstanding service to EOP and mentoring students for the past two decades. She was called “passionate” about her commitment to mentoring students. In addition to teaching various communications courses, she provides communications training and consulting services to several campus organizations including the EOP, the Student Health Center and Human Resources.
“EOP goes out into the community to find these bright, eager, worthy students and teach them that they can go to college, that there is a home for them at CSUN in the EOP family, which will provide transitional programs to understand how to succeed in college,” said Sampson. “I cannot imagine a program I’d want to work with and dedicate my time to more.”
The Don Dorsey Excellence in Mentoring Award was first presented in 1998. The award’s namesake, professor emeritus Don Dorsey, cultivated the university’s first mentor training program.