April 15, 2005

Dewsbury named student employee of the year

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- James L. Dewsbury of Xenia is the 2005 Southern Illinois University Carbondale Student Employee of the Year.
A senior in accounting, Dewsbury, who is originally from Noblesville, Ind., was chosen based on his reliability, initiative, professionalism and the quality and uniqueness of his work. Dewsbury receives a $500 scholarship that is placed in his bursar's account, has his named engraved on a plaque at Woody Hall honoring student workers, and is eligible for Midwest and national student employee honors.

Dewsbury was honored during a reception April 13 at the SIUC Student Center. The University's Financial Aid Office sponsors the award.

April 10-16 is National Student Employee Appreciation Week. With more than 5,000 student workers, SIUC has one of the largest programs in the country. The students earn about $10 million in wages annually, and are employed in almost every department of campus, SIUC Financial Aid interim director Donna Williams said.

"From our office we rely on them very heavily and would not be able to provide the services we do without the help of our student employees," Williams said.

Jeri L. Novara, the office manager for the School of Accountancy, nominated Dewsbury – who is president of the Accounting Society, SIUC's chapter of the Institute of Management Accountants – for the award.

"There is nothing that James isn't willing to undertake, and there is no assignment too big for him. James is responsible for updating the School of Accountancy, College of Business and Administration, alumni database and producing mass mailings to alumni and friends of the School," Novara wrote.

She noted Dewsbury coordinates The Accounting Challenge, a competition for high school students from the central and southern parts of Illinois interested in accounting as a college major. Dewsbury is also a second year volunteer serving as the coordinator of the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program, sponsored through the IRS to provide income tax assistance to the elderly, the poor, and to students throughout Southern Illinois free of charge.

"He truly cares about the impression the School of Accountancy makes both within and outside the SIUC community and he strives to make sure he does his part to achieve that goal," Novara wrote.

Dewsbury is the son of Marsha and Graham Dewsbury of Xenia.

Finalists for the award were Carol Booker, a junior in psychology from Chicago, and Julie M. Jacobsen, a senior in Administration of Justice from Waukesha, Wis.

F. Bary Malik, a professor of Physics and Distinguished Scholar, nominated Booker, the daughter of Steven Cole Sr., of Chicago. "Booker takes the initiative in dealing with complex correspondences very successfully and professionally, " Malik wrote. "She also performs technical typing with complex mathematical formulas, prepares scientific publications with complex mathematics and graphs, and is assisting in preparing manuscript for a very advanced level reference book which involves editing complex mathematical formulas and figures."

Roger G. Pugh, a developmental skills training specialist at SIUC's Clinical Center, was among those to nominate Jacobsen, the daughter of Bonnie Greenwald of Waukesha, Wis., and Steven Jacobsen of Rochester, Minn.

"Julie is the kind of employee who steps forward -- her fear would be not to learn as much as she could, given the chance. Her job requires intelligence, flexibility, multi-tasking, courtesy, patience, and hard work," Pugh wrote. "It is due in a great part to her excellence in a new program for organizational skills training for students with organizational difficulties,a unique and untried position, that our program of organizational support has been successful for many students. Seeing (these) students become successful is the force that motivates her."

Enhancing and supporting student involvement in activities that provide opportunities to building leadership and interpersonal skills is among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University by the time it celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019.