Tag Archive | "Student Affairs"

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UM Takes Part in Conference on Civic Learning and Engagement

UM News

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (June 18, 2014) — Student affairs administrators and faculty from the University of Miami joined peer institutions and community partners at the 2014 Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Conference (CLDE), held June 12-14 at the Hilton Miami Downtown.

To offer perspectives on community partnerships, NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education – invited a number of key professionals who are the thought leaders on student learning, civic engagement, and democratic participation to participate in CLDE. The conference highlights the relationships between campus and community and the shared role of educating students to also be active citizens.

Patricia A. Whitely, UM’s vice president for student affairs and chair of NASPA’s board of directors, opened the four-day conference and introduced opening speaker Barbara Jacoby, faculty associate for leadership and community service-learning at the University of Maryland. The opening session, titled “Now What? Shaping the Future of Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement in Higher Education,” led into further discussions on how to connect students beyond their college campuses.

“During the past two years, the University of Miami has been an active participant of the NASPA LEAD Initiative,” Whitely said. “I’ve been thrilled and honored that we were initially invited to participate in NASPA’s network of institutions dedicated to developing students’ sense of civic identity. Civic engagement is a core value of higher education and will continue to play an instrumental role in our students’ development inside and outside of the classroom.”

UM has served as a pioneer in engaging its students for more than 25 years, with the establishment of a Volunteer Services Center in 1989. Now, UM integrates service across the campus and the greater Miami community through the William R. Butler Center for Volunteer Service and Leadership Development, together with the Office of Civic and Community Engagement.

Andrew D. Wiemer, director of UM’s Butler Center, also led a session on the Civic Scholars Program—an innovative student affairs and academic affairs partnership—alongside Robin Bachin, UM assistant provost for civic and community engagement and Charlton W. Tebeau Associate Professor of History. UM’s Office of Civic and Community Engagement works to enhance University and community collaboration by engaging the University’s academic resources in the enrichment of civic and community life in local, national, and global communities.

“The conference was a wonderful opportunity to gather with educators from across the country and introduce them to our Civic Scholars Program,” Bachin said. “There was a great deal of enthusiasm about the program and questions about how our model could be replicated at other institutions.”

At CLDE, community partners HandsOn Miami, the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, and Branches discussed their partnership experiences with Florida International University, St. Thomas University, and UM, respectively. The closing session, “What You Need to Know and Do to be an Effective Citizen,” was presented by Bob Graham, former Florida governor and U.S. senator.

As a participating institution in NASPA’s LEAD Initiative, UM encourages students’ civic development through thoughtful community partnerships, engaging leadership opportunities, and democratic participation.

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Faculty and Staff Support the U: Grateful Alumna and Mom Gives Thanks by Helping Students and Building a Better U

Nancy Ryan

From left, Nancy L. Floyd Ryan, her son, Sean, his girlfriend, Kandice “Candy” Calvete, and Darlene Sapp, Nancy’s girlhood friend, show their spirit before the UM/FSU game in Tallahassee last October.

For the past 35 years, Nancy L. Floyd Ryan has spent her days helping University of Miami students. As executive assistant to Patricia Whitely, vice president for student affairs, she answers questions, points students in the right direction and, from time to time, serves as an informal counselor.

“It brings me joy to see our students succeed,” Ryan said. “I watch them grow from their freshman year until they cross the stage at graduation, and go out in the world with the values and experiences they gained at our University.”

Among those students is her son Sean, 24, an undergraduate in the College of Arts and Sciences who, like his parents, has a deep allegiance to the U. Back in 1989, Ryan and her husband, Robert, consulted a doctor at the School of Medicine for fertility treatments. Although Ryan had only a 50 percent chance of having a child through treatment, she became pregnant the very next month.

Today, Ryan gives back to the institution that she says played such an integral role in her life—personally, professionally and educationally—by donating to the University through the United Way campaign, as well as directly to the Division of Student Affairs and the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center.

“I am forever indebted to the University,” Ryan said. “Sean practically grew up on campus, as one of the first Mini-Cane Camp attendees, and is now a ’Cane loving his experience at the U. Our little family definitely bleeds orange, green, and white!”

A native Floridian who grew up in Hialeah, Ryan pursued an associate degree at Miami Dade Community College before marrying and moving to England and Texas. In 1979 she returned to Miami, taking a position at UM as executive assistant to William R. Butler, then vice president for student affairs. When Butler retired 19 years later, she continued in that role with Whitely.

During the 1980s, Ryan took night classes at UM, earning her bachelor’s degree in business administration while working her day job. In 1999 she was tapped into the Iron Arrow Honor Society.

“My job has given me the ability to help students and has allowed me to work in a great environment,” Ryan said. “Now, it’s my turn to give back and make a difference in others’ lives. I want to keep our University moving forward and help build a better world for our children.”

Have you made a commitment to support the University of Miami, or know a colleague who has? Share your story or nominate a UM faculty or staff member here, and you will be entered for a chance to win a special gift.





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Pat Whitely Receives 2013 Scott Goodnight Award, NASPA’s Highest Honor

Pat Whitely proudly displays the Scott Goodnight Award that she received at NASPA's annual conference in Orlando.

Pat Whitely proudly displays the Scott Goodnight Award that she received at NASPA’s annual conference in Orlando.

Pat Whitely, who took the reins as vice president for student affairs at the University of Miami 16 years ago and instituted innovative, new strategies to enhance student life, has been awarded NASPA’s 2013 Scott Goodnight Award for Outstanding Performance as a Dean.

The award is the highest honor bestowed by NASPA (Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education). Named in honor of the organization’s founding board chair, it is given to a senior student affairs officer “who has demonstrated sustained professional service in student affairs work, high-level competency in administrative skills, innovative response in meeting students’ varied and emerging needs, effectiveness in developing junior staff members, and leadership in community and university affairs.” Read the full story

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Vice President for Student Affairs Pat Whitely Elected Chair of NASPA’s Board of Directors

WhitelyPat Whitely, vice president for student affairs at the University of Miami, has been elected chair of the Board of Directors for NASPA (Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education), bringing to the role more than 30 years of experience in her field.

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University of Miami Student Activities CenterUniversity of Miami administrators, student leaders, and employees of Moss & Associates celebrated camaraderie and accomplishment on January 14, gathering at the construction site of UM’s new Student Activities Center to don the popular 2012 game-day T-shirts worn by students during Hurricanes home football games at Sun Life Stadium. Read the full story

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