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UCM Transitions to New Education for Service Awards Program Honoring Faculty, Staff and Students Who Exemplify Core Values

By Jeff Murphy, November 9, 2021

UCM Admin Building

WARRENSBURG, MO - Considering the impact the University of Central Missouri’s time-honored motto, “Education for Service,” continues to have on the institution’s approach to nurturing servant leadership, UCM is transitioning from its current internal recognition program to one that closely aligns with the motto in name and scope. UCM President Roger Best recently announced the establishment of the annual Education for Service Awards, which will honor one faculty member, one staff member and one student beginning with the spring 2022 semester. The first nominee applications will be submitted by Dec. 1, 2021 for individuals who exemplify the university’s six core values – Community, Diversity, Excellence, Learning, Opportunity and Service.


“Throughout our sesquicentennial year, we have referred to our long-standing motto ‘Education for Service.’ For about 100 years, this motto has very much framed the approach we take within our pedagogy and curriculum as we prepare our students to be global citizens,” Best stated in an email to campus. “Given the importance of ‘Education for Service’ in our history and identity, this year, we are transitioning away from the Learning to a Greater Degree Award and replacing the award with an annual Education for Service Award.”


The university introduced “Learning to a Greater Degree” as a positioning statement in 2012. This was accompanied by the Learning to a Greater Degree Award, which each semester was presented to one faculty or staff member and one student as a way to recognize exemplary service, based on four institutional pillars: engaged learning, future-focused academics, a culture of service, and a worldly perspective. Utilizing core values as criteria, and through input by specific campus leadership groups charged with helping to identify candidates, Education for Service Awards will support an equitable and thoughtful approach to recognizing university members.


Under the new program, representatives of the Office of Student Experience and Engagement, Executive Council of the Staff Council, and Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate will play key roles in the selection of honorees. Each award recipient will be presented a plaque and formally recognized by the university president at a meeting of the Board of Governors in the spring. The nomination form will annually open Sept. 1, and selection will be based solely upon the quality of the information provided on this form.


UCM’s Office of Integrated Marketing and Communications (IMC) will manage the publicity and nomination process, however, separate committees will be created, which will name their own chairs to lead the review of nominations and make selections. The awards and campus groups that will lead the selection process are Education for Service Student Award, Student Experience and Engagement; Education for Service Faculty Award, Faculty Senate; and Education for Service Staff Award, Staff Council.


Once selections are made, the names of the award recipients will be submitted by each committee to UCM’s Director of Marketing and Promotion in the Office of Integrated Marketing and Communications (IMC). The committee chairs will introduce each of their honorees at the Board of Governors meeting in which the award recipients are recognized. The chairs also will provide information to the board about the core values the recipient exemplifies.


All members of the university community are eligible and encouraged to nominate individuals for each award. They may nominate more than one person in each category, however, they may not submit multiple nominations for the same individuals.


Individuals who wish to nominate a student, faculty or staff member for the Education for Service Award can obtain a nomination form online. Anyone who has questions or would like more information about the awards program should contact Kelly Waldram Cramer, director of Marketing and Promotion in IMC, at 660-5434640 or


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