Supervisor of the Year - 2024

Supervisors of the Year

The Office of Student Employment is happy to announce the 3rd annual Student Employee Supervisor of the Year Program! Each year, supervisors across campus can be nominated for their outstanding work with student employees.

A committee will then take into consideration a variety of factors and select one candidate to hold the title of Supervisor of the Year.

Click here to see past winners!

2024 Supervisor of the year

Zak Kroger
He is flexible with our schedules and makes an effort to schedule us with organizations that are interesting to us so we get a chance to speak with them. He goes out of his way to make UCCS Downtown not just a great place for the community of Colorado Springs, but for his student employees as well. He has given us so many opportunities to learn and grow with skills that we can use outside of college. He markets UCCS well using connections he has made in the community to get pictures in newsletters and pamphlets. The space is so busy now there is hardly ever a night off, which was not the case a year and a half ago before he started. He truly wants the best for UCCS and its Downtown presence, as well as for the people that work for him and that is why he deserves this award.
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"Zak is an excellent person, boss, and UCCS representative. He has gone above and beyond to make sure the space is used in the most effective way and emphasizes the importance of making connections within the community. Not only is he amazing at his job but he is kind to his employees as well."




Picture of Stephanie Gangemi
Stephanie Gangemi

From the outset, Dr. Gangemi has been a beacon of passion and knowledge, expertly guiding our project from its nascent stages—listening to deeply impactful interviews with law enforcement officers and correctional healthcare workers—to the exciting phase we find ourselves in today: drafting two significant manuscripts. This work has not only been a testament to our collaborative effort but has also been recognized for its importance, with acceptances to present at two prestigious conferences this summer, and more opportunities on the horizon. Dr. Gangemi's mentorship extends beyond academic guidance; they embody the very essence of support by securing funding for my attendance at these conferences, thus ensuring that our work reaches a broader audience. Their ability to intently listen and value my perspective has created an enriching environment of mutual respect and learning.

Picture of Johanna Creswell Baez
Johanna Creswell Baez

Dr. Baez exemplifies the core values of social work, consistently empowering me as a student through transparent communication and expressing unwavering trust in my abilities. Her dedication is evident in her relentless enthusiasm and commitment to fostering my growth. Furthermore, Dr. Baez has facilitated my integration into a professional network that is at the forefront of developing an AI Symposium tailored for social workers, thereby enriching my educational and professional journey. Her communication is not only timely but insightful, extending beyond academic support to include sharing job opportunities that align with my career goals. This level of personalized attention and support underscores her commitment to my success. Having Dr. Baez as a supervisor has been an immense privilege. Her kindness and genuine interest in my development have been instrumental in my growth. She embodies the essence of an exemplary supervisor, making her an outstanding candidate for Supervisor of the Year

Picture of Jana Hoffmann
Jana Hoffmann

I am writing to enthusiastically nominate Jana Hoffmann, Executive Assistant to the Dean at College of Education UCCS, for the Supervisor of the Year Award. I believe that her outstanding dedication, leadership, and support make her an exemplary candidate for this recognition. She is an amazing leader: Jana embodies exceptional leadership qualities, inspiring those around her to strive for excellence and achieve their full potential. Her vision, passion, and commitment to the college's mission have played a pivotal role in driving positive change and fostering a culture of growth and innovation. Beyond her professional responsibilities, Jana cultivates a supportive and inclusive work environment where everyone feels valued, respected, and appreciated. Her genuine care, empathy, and approachability make her not only a boss but also a trusted friend and confidante to those she leads.

Picture of Alé Ruiz
Alé Ruiz

I am nominating my supervisor Alé Ruiz because not only is she an exceptional MOSAIC staff member, but she is also a standout student at UCCS. Alé has previously served as a MOSAIC student staff member, and now has been currently serving as a full-time staff member - a position that she was unanimously voted to be. Alé has used her experiences of being a queer BIPOC student, staff member, and community member to help UCCS students, other staff and faculty, and their fellow peers. At the same time as being a full-time staff member at MOSAIC, Alé is pursuing a Master's degree in Sociology and is a full-time student. Their work in MOSAIC can be seen through various workshops like UndocuPeer, community programming, heritage month kickoffs and celebrations, and more. Even on days where she's not feeling the best, Alé succeeds in helping students, whether it's through academic guidance or bringing a smile to their face. As my supervisor she has helped me do my very best while still allowing me to be as free as possible within my job position. She shows full trust in me both in and outside of work, something I feel the same towards her. Alé's impact on the UCCS community is undeniable, as her presence is noticed in communities and offices outside of MOSAIC.  Ale has given me the change  to work with the MOSAIC center on campus, and they have been there to support me and my fellow staff members every step of the way. They go out of their way to help marginalized populations on campus, and I am thankful to know them!

ㅤNominees 2:

Picture of Jennifer Spice
Jennifer Spice

Patience, kindness, understanding, empathy, passion, and advocacy. These attributes come to mind when I think of what kind of leader Jeni has been for me as an employee at the T. Rowe Price Career and Innovation Center at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs. Before I was employed there, I was a frequent visitor to the Career Center, where I utilized the services and made strong connections with the employees there. Through these connections, I grew personally and professionally and decided to be a more integral part of our campus community. With Jeni's continued advice and guidance, I was inspired to join the LAS DEI commitee, where I get to express a student's voice on creating a more inclusive campus; I became a mentor to other students and volunteered in various campus activities. Jeni showed me there was more to college than getting good grades! Jeni is an excellent addition to the campus, and although she typically does not have direct contact with students, she is more than happy to answer students' questions enthusiastically.
Positivity is contagious, and because of Jeni's attitude, I look forward to coming to a positive work environment every day.

Picture of Paige Whitney
Paige Whitney

Dr. Paige Whitney has been my supervisor since starting grad school (Fall 2022) and has been such a great leader/supervisor. She has demonstrated compassion, dedication, and commitment! She makes the community a better place for both students and participants. I always look forward to my part-time work with the Parkinson's Wellness & Recovery Moves at the Center for Active Living. It's great to have a supervisor who makes coming to work enjoyable!

Picture of Katelyn Mansker
Katelyn Mansker

Katelyn is such an amazing person, helpful but firm to her employees, I absolutely believe she deserves to win this award, she deserves all the accolades and recognition cause she is exceptional at what she does!

Placeholder picture of Season Doebler
Season Doebler

Ms. Season is a manger who truly cares about her employees wellbeing. She never questions if you need a day off and is very understanding to all circumstances. She loses the power structure in hopes to build authentic relationships and withholds traditions such as our holiday party and student appreciation week. I have learned conscious discipline that I want to use with my future children from working here and eternally grateful for this opportunity for two years now.

ㅤNominees 3:

Picture of Nikki Pike
Nikki Pike

Nikki Pike is an incredible environmental artist, mentor and educator. Her life philosophies are pertinent in the way she teaches--with kindness, understanding and a deep desire to make the world more beautiful. She is an incredible asset to the UCCS VA department, and to the arts community in general. Please see my letter of recommendation for further notes.

Picture of Jerry Phillips
Jerry Phillips

Jerry is beyond supportive of his employeesut he doesn't consider us employees first, he considers us people first. He is interested in our dreams and goals, and he does his best to help us achieve what we set out to do. Life comes before the job, but when we are on the job he expects excellence. He is extremely kind, yet he gets the job done.

Picture of Renee Cinkosky
Renee Cinkosky

The best supervisor anybody could ask for. Very understanding and honest, she holds the parking department’s weight on her back and without her they couldn’t function properly. It is time she receives the recognition she deserves.

Picture of Misty Evans
Misty Evans

Misty Evans is the most caring and dedicated person I know. There has been countless times when Misty has gone above and beyond for those around her. Her heart is truly unmatched. Every time someone is sick Misty is offering any support that she can. When someone is having a hard time she is always here to make them laugh and remind them how loved they are. This year I was applying for graduate schools, I am the first in my family to consider it and I was very stressed out. Misty wrote me multiple letters of recommendation and helped me find answers to what I was struggling with. On my birthday, Misty went out of her way to get me my favorite cookies and made sure to check in with me after I had surgery. These are just a few examples of who Misty is, you can ask anyone in the office of Student and Family Connections about her and they would only have nice things to say. Misty would do everything in her power to help others. She is the most selfless person I know. 

ㅤNominees 4:

Picture of Stephen Marter
Stephen Marter

Stephen is the most considerate and hardworking boss I have ever had. He constantly makes sure our work environment is positive and supportive. He listens to us and treats us with respect. He has been working as my supervisor for almost two years and he is one of the main reasons why I love to be at my job.

Picture of Noelle San Souci
Noelle San Souci

I’m nominating Noelle because of all of hard work that she does around the campus. She doesn’t get her flowers as much as she should. She’s very understanding and care about the Students of UCCS and the ones that she works closely with. Not to mention, she’s the advisor for Student Gov’t, which is not an easy job. I believe she deserves this and more.

Picture of Sharla Windle
Sharla Windle

Sharla has been my go-to for any questions I have as well as someone I feel comfortable talking to about my personal life when I need someone to talk to. I knew her as a student employee and I was so excited that she would be returning to the office as a supervisor. She is not my direct supervisor but she is my main point of contact and I am so happy to be working with her again.

Sarah Long Photo
Sarah Long

Sarah encourages her student employees to develop and grow. The majority of the team Sarah manages are graduate students, with solid timeboxes around employment dates. This dynamic could lend itself to writing off investing in these employees, but Sarah has never done this. She regularly encourages us to attend trainings as part of our work time. I have learned more about inclusivity in the workplace, the functions of various campus offices, and how administrative aspects like budget impact our unit. These opportunities have developed my professionalism in the office I currently work in, and have impacted my growth as a higher education professional. Sarah’s prowess in this area has been recognized across campus, as she was recently selected for the Women’s History Month panel in March. She spoke about being brave and valuing diversity in the workplace to a wide audience. Sarah is a thinker, reader, and leader. She strategizes ways to solve big issues facing the College of Education and UCCS in general. Her tenacity, commitment, and consistency are guiding forces for our team. We appreciate the opportunity to show up every day and contribute to something bigger than ourselves under Sarah’s leadership. There is no one more deserving of this award than Sarah

Student Employee Supervisor Honorable Mention:

Tory Patsis

Superb understanding with an attention to detail that is greatly appreciated.

Brenna Hoff

I have worked as a student employee for the office of registrar for the past 6-7 months and I will say my senior student employee Ms. Brenna Hoff has been an outstanding co-worker and mentor to not only me but the numerous new student employees that have been taken onto the registrar student employee team. She is preparing to graduate and move onto bugger and better things and it literally brings the moral down in our entire office when we talk about it. She will be greatly missed and I think this is the perfect recognition for this her efforts. She has worked for the registrars office as a student employee her entire duration with UCCS and has most definitely touched the lives and assisted every student and faculty member at least once. All done with the most knowledge, most kindness, most professionalize, and most effort I've seen come from a student worker. I aspire to will her shoes when she moves on into bigger, better things but I know that won't be possible. As a soon to be senior student employee within the registrar's office I would like to nominate Brenna because she's simply amazing and I would strongly think everyone else "student employee wise" would support me in sending in this nomination. I know for a fact the faculty would nominate her if they could. So Please Pick HER!


Nominating a Student Employee Supervisor

Student employees, colleagues, and campus community members may nominate any number of student employee supervisors for Student Employee Supervisor of the Year by submitting a Campus Nomination Form and a one page Submission Letter. Up to three letters of reference may also be submitted and will be used in judging the UCCS competition only.

Return the completed forms to the Student Employment Office by 5:00pm, Friday, April 5th, 2024. (the Campus Nomination Form and one page Submission Letter are word documents which should be completed and submitted via the Campus Nomination Form link and adding attachments.  Late nomination forms will not be accepted.

In honor of National Student Employment Appreciation Week, we would like to also recognize our outstanding student employee supervisors! Students, colleagues, and campus community members can submit the nomination form electronically to our office to recognize their supervisor, past or present. Our student employees and their leaders have such a large impact on our campus and community and we would like to acknowledge that!


Below are the requirements that supervisors must meet in order to be nominated. A student can nominate more than one supervisor, however only one winner will be chosen.  The winner will be notified the week of April 8th, 2024 in line with National Student Employment Appreciation week, where we will also announce our winner of Student Employee of the Year. Nominees for both programs will also be acknowledged on our website.


Minimum Requirements

  • Must supervise at least one student employee
  • An active UCCS employee, off campus work study supervisors are ineligible


Along with Supervisor of the Year, we have created a Kudoboard in order for student employees, supervisors, and peers to recognize one another. The board is available and will be posted on our website for Student Employment Appreciation Week.