Yesterday was Patriot’s Day, a holiday in Massachusetts.  Though classes were held at Fletcher, the rest of the University was closed, including Fletcher staff offices.  I used my day for a bit of cooking, a little cleaning after a busy weekend, and reading applications.  What’s that you say?  How can she be reading applications in April?  Well, in this case, they’re for the Tufts Distinction Awards, and would more accurately be called nomination forms.

Tufts University President Lawrence Bacow initiated the idea of formally recognizing members of the University staff, and this is the first year for the award.  I’m on the selection committee, which I initially saw as an annoying burden and now see as a wonderful opportunity.  The committee has met twice, and there are also a lot of other people working behind the scenes to create a structure for the awards.  It’s fun to be part of the initiative in the first round, and to have the opportunity to shape it for future years.

I did worry initially that the awards might turn out to be cheesy — but I am very happy to say I was wrong.  Everyone involved is taking them so seriously.  Best of all, we have received an amazing batch of nominations.  It’s almost as if some people were just waiting for the opportunity to talk about their colleague, boss, friend, or employee, and about the great work that person has done.  I know of several Fletcher staff members who submitted nominations, though I haven’t come across those forms yet.  We’ll have our first selection meeting this week and wrap up the process in May.  The awards will be presented to recipients in June at a ceremony to which the entire University is invited.

The awards have nothing to do with Fletcher admissions, of course, but I’ve always considered Tufts to be a very nice place to work.  It’s collegial and filled with interesting people.  If you are thinking of applying, or if you are an admitted student who has already decided to attend, you may appreciate the idea that most of the people with whom you will interact are satisfied employees.  And some of them will also be newly recognized for their efforts.

 

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