Members of Volunteer USI, the University of Southern Indiana’s volunteer organization, celebrated another successful year at their annual recognition dinner on August 30. Volunteers contributed a total of 141,460 hours during the 2017-18 fiscal year.
Members had a lot to celebrate including Volunteer USI recording over 2 million volunteer hours recorded since 1996 during National Volunteer Week.
Three special recognition awards were presented at the Volunteer Recognition Dinner. The Student Volunteer of the Year award recognizes a student who has performed outstanding volunteer service to USI and/or the community through the Volunteer USI program. The Mentor of the Year award recognizes a USI faculty, staff, alumni or community member who has mentored a current USI student to enhance their development in their overall academic field. The Volunteer of the Year award recognizes a USI faculty, staff, alumni or community member who has performed outstanding volunteer service to USI and/or the community through the Volunteer USI Program.
Student Volunteer of the Year
Zach Price, a senior Marketing and Exercise Science major from Evansville, was recognized as the 2018 Student Volunteer of the Year. Zach serves in many student and professional organizations including Southern Indiana Dance Marathon (SIDM), a founding member of Love Unites, Love Avails and Student Alumni Association. As president of SIDM, Zach oversaw a large team of dancers that raised over $92,000 for Riley Hospital for Children. “What defines Zach most as a student and volunteer leader is his leadership by example,” said his nominator Andrew McGuire. “His willingness to work in the trenches with those he leads is exemplified in every organization he's in and he is truly looked up to by fellow students.”
Mentor of the Year
The 2018 Mentor of the Year award winner is Mary Ellen Stonestreet, a registered dietitian and native of Evansville. Mary Ellen serves as a preceptor to many students participating in dietetics internships and practicums. She also offers USI students opportunities to complete fieldwork and job shadow with her at the Vanderburgh County Women, Infants, and Children program where she is a coordinator.
Mary Ellen was nominated by Beth Young, instructor in the Food and Nutrition Department who wrote “Mary Ellen has been instrumental in our program’s success. She is a wonderful advocate for the community, our students and for programs here at USI.”
Volunteer of the Year
“Active, hardworking and always wearing a smile” are just a few words used to describe the 2018 Volunteer of the Year award recipient, Steve Grannan. Steve has volunteered an impressive 730 hours in many capacities, including assessment day preceptor, cross-country and GLVC Conferences. He is most well-known for providing leadership for one of the largest fundraising events to support the USI athletics--the West Side Fall Festival.
For many years, Steve has coordinated and implemented details including recruiting volunteers, negotiating food and supply contracts and setting prices for products. During the weeklong event, he rolls up his sleeves and will do anything he would ask of a fellow volunteer. He makes sure the operation is consistent with the high standards of USI, while working with administration, coaches and other volunteers to coordinate staffing at the Festival. He is goal focused and budget conscious all while keeping USI students in mind.
His nominator writes “If you have ever worked with Steve, you know that humor is an integral part of his character. He is always wearing a smile and is determined to make sure folks around him are having fun and smiling. He knows no strangers; there are simply people he has yet to meet.”
Photo Credit: USI Photography and Multimedia
From left to right: Steve Grannan, Mary Ellen Stonestreet, Zach Price