Student Success Summit Highlights Award Winners and Service Milestones at Gordon State College

On Wednesday, August 10, Gordon State College held its seventh annual Student Success Summit. As part of GSC’s strategic plan to recognize excellence across the campus, recipients were recognized for service milestones by receiving the GSC Service Award and other recipients were recognized for the GSC Foundation Faculty and Staff Awards. Everyone came together for a day that included inspirational discussions, workshops and recognition of faculty and staff.

“We are excited about the year ahead,” said GSC President Dr. Kirk A. Nooks. “This incoming freshmen cohort suggests that a Highlander experience is valued throughout-and-beyond our region. The Road Ahead is bright and we are continuing to move forward.”

This year’s Student Success Summit carried the theme of, “The Road Ahead.” The event’s agenda included the President’s Cabinet members demonstrating the concept developed by Brene Brown known as BRAVING. Dr. Nooks also spoke to faculty and staff about “The Road Ahead: F.O.R.W.A.R.D” and how a growth mindset will allow GSC to exceed expectations. Faculty and staff had their pick of several breakout sessions to expand upon their knowledge of SACSCOC accreditation criteria, new and updated campus technologies, and student views of success and campus life.

“Higher Education is about helping young people have a chance to succeed. There is no more awesome responsibility than that,” said GSC Provost and Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs Dr. Joanne Ardovini. “One of the greatest honors a person can have is helping change a person’s life for the better. This is what we are accountable for her at Gordon State College. This is what we do and who we are.”


Employee Service Recognition:

Employee honored for 25 years of service included: Dr. Allen Fuller, Dr. Anna Higgins-Harrell

Employees honored for 20 years of service included: Gratasha Banks, Dr. Alan Burstein, Teresa Haynes, Teresa Thompson

Employees honored for 15 years of service included: Walter Bibbs, Rori Herriage, Dr. Cathy Lee, Darlene O’Baner, Anthony Pearson, Dr. Caesar Perkowski, Dr. Stephen Powers

Employees honored for 10 years of service included: Wendy Martin, Karen Raines, Autumn Schaffer, Christy Skinner, Tobias Walker

Employees honored for five years of service included: Samuel Baskin, Taylor Howard, Dr. Brent Johnson, Dr. Mary Inez Jones, Victoria Mills, Dr. Cori Newton, Dr. Elizabeth Nwabuebo, Dr. Anne Sanders, Ronald Scruggs, Dr. Scott Shubitz, Ryran Traylor


Outstanding Service Award:

Dr. Jeffery Knighton was recognized for his service to the college during the event. Dr. Knighton served as the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs from 2015 until 2022.


GSC Foundation Awards:

Dr. Julie Little was presented the GSC Foundation Faculty Award by Mr. Robert Harris, GSC Foundation Board Chair. A statement from a colleague’s nomination of Dr. Little said, “She maintains a poise and confidence in the classroom that I have rarely experienced. Moreover, she consistently attempts to create effective relationships with her students, one in which she connects the curriculum to their worldviews.” It was noted that she was instrumental in developing the 2022 Teaching Matters Conference as well as the final publication for the conference. She is also a CETL Faculty Fellow and has served on numerous college-wide committees.

GSC’s Test Center Coordinator, Sue Gilpin, was presented the GSC Foundation Staff Award by Dr. Waine Kong, GSC Events and Recognition Committee Chair. A statement from a colleague’s nomination of Gilpin said, “I have witnessed Sue engaging with students over the years in all of her rolls. She takes the time to make sure they clearly understand the information they are being given and is encouraging and positive.” Another statement for Gilpin notes that she was instrumental in the establishment of the Testing Center in 2013 and has managed the center since that time. In her role as a testing proctor, she goes above and beyond to coordinate based on student needs often working with the Office of Counseling and Disability Services to ensure accommodations are provided compassionately for students with disabilities.