American colleges will give back to the little people of education next week by celebrating National Student Employment Week. Tech is one of many schools across the country that devotes five days in April to rewarding student employees in work-study programs and University Academic Services. The Student Worker of the Year week will be the center of attention next.
“Most of the students don’t even know they’ve been entered until they win,” said Adriane King, assistant director of Financial Aid.
Here’s how it works: Supervisors from each department turn in short essays or other creative works telling the award committee why they think their favorite student worker should win. Then the committee decides which faculty member wrote the most convincing submission and chooses his/her student as the Student Worker of the Year.
“We’ve had some departments submit poems, some essays, and some other cute and creative things,” King said.
Each year, two winners are chosen-one work-study student and one University Academic Services student. The award is 100 flex dollars to spend in the RUC, plus various knick knacks donated by other departments on campus. In the past, the bookstore has donated free t-shirts, and the fitness center has donated goodie bags.
Financial Aid staff usually surprise the students at work to notify them of their selection.
“It’s kind of like the prize patrol,” King said.
She said that many departments also host parties for their student workers during the week to let them know they are appreciated.
Tina Campbell, work study director and Student Employment Week organizer, said, “I would encourage the supervisors to do something special for their workers.