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Not All Heroes Wear Capes Series – Round 3

May 3, 2021

College News Highlights asked you to nominate someone who has made an impact on campus during the pandemic. And you delivered. We bring you our final round-up of nominees in this issue.

James Bowman
Associate Professor, English

Credited with being “one of the best professors during a pandemic,” Dr. Bowman has been lauded for focusing all of his class material on the current COVID situation, allowing class discussions to evolve into discussions about the vaccine, mental health concerns, or other issues students were thinking about. As the student nominator shared, “I truly believe that Dr. Bowman deserves the utmost recognition from St. John Fisher College. He has made a tremendous impact on the lives of his students and is the reason Fisher feels like home to me.”

Amanda Burns
Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Institutional Advancement

Amanda Burns spends her days juggling donor meetings and other projects for the Office of Institutional Advancement, but this semester, has spent plenty of days working in the College’s testing clinic. Her dedication and support of students and the College to ensure a safe semester meant that some days, her work extended beyond her typical work hours. Her nominator said this is “just another example of how she goes above and beyond every single day to support the people around her.”

Kristen Stone
Senior Administrative Assistant, Office of Information Technology

Another regular and friendly face in the testing center this semester has been Kristen Stone. She also kept her sense of humor on point. She raised her hand to help with the pre-arrival testing process and stayed a steady member of the clinic each and every week. Her willingness to reshape her work day has been both appreciated and impactful.

Becky Kieffer
Director, Health and Wellness Center

When she wasn’t busy overseeing the Health and Wellness Center and the day to day appointments and student visits, she could be found in the testing center – answering questions, helping with locked Daily Passes, and processing swabs. In the fall, she worked tirelessly to be available for students and families who had questions and concerns. And this spring, she has done the same. Her nominators applauded her for her “knowledge, level-headedness, preparedness, and helpfulness” and for her keen awareness of the importance of mental health across campus. Her work has benefitted the campus throughout the pandemic, but will also most certainly benefit the campus as we look ahead.

Jonelle Mattiacio
Associate Professor, Biology

Sure, Dr. Mattiacio teaches biology, but this semester, her student nominator said she went “above and beyond” ensuring classroom safety and upholding protocols. The student also shared that she helped her students understand the impact of the virus by thoroughly explaining how COVID effects the body, the differences in vaccines, and provided helpful information regarding any questions students had. Dr. Mattiacio, College News gives you a 4.0 this semester!

Dan Kent
Student Library Assistant

According to the Lavery librarians, Dan Kent “has always been a hero in our department, but his spirit and generosity has truly shone this year.” He has been credited with putting in extra effort in helping the library and the campus community in a variety of ways. He serves as the inclement weather student, willing to assist with opening and closing the library in case permanent staff are unable to make it safely to campus. He has gone “above and beyond” in helping students feel connected to the library in social ways they may be missing this year due to COVID by helping to advertise programs among the student body. Finally, despite his busy schedule and RA responsibilities, he has been called reliable and punctual, as well as personable, friendly, and positive.

Terri Bagshaw
Records and Registration Coordinator

Longtime member of the Registrar’s Office, and Fisher alum, Terri Bagshaw has been the only staff member who has been regularly going into the office this semester. As the boots on the ground, she has been vital to the work that can only be done in the office and not remotely. Her nominator said that while there was plenty of her own work to do, she tended to spend more time doing things for the rest of her colleagues, even delivering materials and mail to colleagues’ homes, meeting them to get signatures on important documents, and picking up paperwork from them that needed to get back to campus. Her colleagues thank her for all the extras, including the extra miles. 

Kristen Millerd, RN and Leslie Nash, LPN
Health and Wellness Center

As two of the resident nurses on campus, Kristen and Leslie have been serving both behind-the-scenes and on the frontlines throughout the pandemic. Kristen has been vital to the logistical aspects of running a testing site, proper PPE, and training of non-medical staff to make sure they were following safety and health protocols. Leslie has also assisted in the testing center in the afternoons until she was pulled back to handling the day-to-day student visits in the Health and Wellness Center. Both have been heavily involved with the College’s isolation and quarantine process and students, ensuring that they were well cared for and following all the protocols before returning to campus. According to their colleague, they also rallied when it came time to prep for a COVID-19 vaccine clinic – new territory for all.  Kudos to this team for taking each day – and all that it brought - in stride.

Brenda McDermott
Administrative Assistant to the Department Chairs, Wegmans School of Pharmacy

Brenda McDermott is used to competing demands as she serves as an administrative assistant to department chairs in the Wegmans School of Pharmacy. Last fall, she went above and beyond to ensure that the College’s wastewater sampling and individual testing was well stocked and supplied. She helped with logistical support and coordination, including the important task of printing and labeling the sample tubes in the department. She also supported the major adjustments to faculty and student schedules and supported faculty working both remote and in person throughout the pandemic, and picked up the duties of a retired staff member in addition to the added work of directing remote meetings and learning.