As members of the MIT community, we witness the talents of our colleagues and benefit from their contributions to life at MIT. The Excellence Awards committee encourages you to shine a light on these exceptional people by nominating them for one of six Excellence Awards for 2015, or for the 2015 Collier Medal.
“We go about our days and we often meet people who are making a difference. But we’re all very busy, so those kind deeds or great jobs get pushed to the back of your mind,” says Felix DeLeon, a member of last year’s Advancing Inclusion Award-winning Employee Resource Group (ERG) Co-Leads team. “The Excellence Awards are a great chance to acknowledge the contributions of our co-workers.”
Teamwork makes for great work
ERGs are groups of employees that form around a common bond. Sponsored by MIT Human Resources, ERGs are open to all employees and promote diversity, openness, understanding, and inclusiveness. The ERG Co-Leads team mentored members, organized community events, and collaborated with one another to grow their ERGs into vibrant groups that are part of the larger MIT community. The ERG Co-Leads team is one of the many wonderful examples of the power of teamwork being recognized by the awards.
“Our team was so surprised to win, particularly given the many outstanding groups and individuals who were nominated,” says DeLeon. “We were all very honored to be recognized for our efforts. And we are also very happy that winning the award has raised awareness and participation of our group.” The ERG Co-Leads team members are Michelle Baildon, Maria Barrios, Gabrielle Brewington, Cheryl Charles, Suzette Clinton, Gilbert Cordova, Felix DeLeon, Abigail Francis, Thomas O'Connor, Lynn Santiago-Calling, Taeminn Song, and Nina Wu.
Another team winner from 2014 was the MIT Student EMS team, which received the first-ever Collier Medal — an award created to honor the memory of Officer Sean Collier. Comprised of more than 60 MIT students who are certified EMTs, the team works together to provide emergency medical services to the MIT community.
As with fellow recipients in the ERG Co-Leads team, the MIT-EMS students work together because they have a passion for making a difference. “They push each other to accept nothing less than the best for their patients,” says Dylan Soukup, who led the team last year. “They strive for excellence and they grow together as an incredible group of peers, all with a common goal of making a difference in the MIT community.”
As is common with Excellence Award winners — teams and individuals alike — the MIT-EMS group was honored to receive the Collier Medal. “The award itself is a remembrance of Sean, a way to carry on his legacy of service to our community and the service we should all strive to carry on. And to say that we are deserving of carrying on his memory is something that is a profound honor,” explains Soukup. “Winning the Collier Medal is a humbling reminder of what Sean did for our community, what we as a group are doing for the MIT community, and what we should always work harder towards, so as to carry on the spirit of service that is abundant at MIT.”
For a full list of the MIT-EMS team members — as well as information on all other 2014 Excellence Awards recipients — please visit the MIT Rewards and Recognition website.
The time to nominate is now
As of this year, the nomination and selection processes for the Collier Medal and the awards for Advancing Inclusion and Global Perspectives, Sustaining MIT, Innovative Solutions, Bringing Out the Best, Serving the Client, and Unsung Hero now take place at the same time. The 2015 MIT Excellence Award and Collier Medal nomination period is open until October 20, 2014.
The 2015 MIT Excellence Awards and Collier Medal ceremony will take place on Wednesday, March 11, 2015, at 3 p.m. in Kresge Auditorium. For more information about the awards, or to submit a nomination, visit the 2015 Excellence Awards website.