OCPA Award Information and Nominations

The OCPA Awards are an opportunity to recognize students, new professionals, mentors, colleagues, or programs. As we continue to navigate these unprecedented times, please take some time to celebrate the amazing work individuals and organizations are accomplishing across institutions in the state of Ohio!

Complete the nomination form for colleagues, students, or programs you believe deserve recognition OR self-nominate for any of the awards categories. The deadline to submit a nomination is Friday, January 5th at 5pm. While nominations are open until January 5th, you can always submit a nomination prior to the deadline.

Nominations may be submitted for the following awards:

Equity and Inclusion Award • Innovative Program Award • Mark G. Noffsinger New Professional Award • Fayetta M. Paulsen Accomplished Leader Award • Gerald L. Saddlemire Mentor Award • Philip A. Tripp Distinguished Service Award • Outstanding Contribution to Literature or Research Award • Undergraduate Student Leader • Robert F. Rodgers Graduate Student of the Year

We are excited to introduce a brand NEW award this year – the Outstanding Mid-Level Professional Award! This is an opportunity to recognize the accomplishments and achievements for individuals that fall in the middle of new professionals and accomplished leaders. Please read the selection criteria for this award below:

Outstanding commitment to the profession with at least 5 years of professional experience

Professional responsibility for the direction, oversight, and/or supervision of one or more functional areas, and/or one or more professional staff members

Experience creating campus environments that promote student learning and personal development

Award Descriptions

The Fayetta M. Paulsen Accomplished Leader Award is presented by OCPA to a student affairs professional who has, through outstanding leadership, made significant contributions to the field and to the institution of which the professional is a part. The professional has achieved innovative responses in meeting the varied and emerging needs of today's students.

The Philip A. Tripp Distinguished Service Award is presented annually by OCPA to a student affairs professional in recognition of extended illustrious service to our field. The purpose of the award is to recognize seasoned members of the profession.

The Saddlemire Mentor Award is presented to the student personnel professional with a demonstrated history of mentorship who embodies and advances the true spirit and ideals of Dr. Gerald L. Saddlemire. Gerald Saddlemire was an effective administrator, a true scholar, an educator, and a mentor who accepted each person as a unique individual, and believed that the ability and potential of those individuals was the profession's greatest asset.

The Mark G. Noffsinger New Professional Award is presented annually at the OCPA conference to an individual with three years or less of full-time experience in the profession. This individual serves as a role model to students and professionals, demonstrates creativity and innovation in the field with the potential for continued success.

The Outstanding Mid-Level Professional Award is presented annually by OCPA. This award recognizes the hard work and commitment to our field for professionals who no longer identify as a new professional, but still make valuable contributions that positively impact those they collaborate and work with as well as to their respective institution and the field of Higher Education.

The Innovative Program Award is presented annually by OCPA to a student affairs professional who has initiated a new program or unique approach to a college policy, program, or problem. Through this award, OCPA recognizes innovative and effective approaches directed towards meeting the changing needs of students on the campus and the applicability of these approaches to other campuses.

The Equity and Inclusion Award is presented to an individual, campus/community program or service who or which has demonstrated creativity, innovation, and success in making a significant contribution and impact in the area of multicultural understanding and appreciation. The purpose of this award is to encourage and recognize outstanding efforts addressing cultural diversity issues in higher education.

The Undergraduate Student Leader Award is presented annually by OCPA. This award is presented to an undergraduate student leader who is enrolled in an Ohio higher education institution and has demonstrated leadership, contributed to student affairs on campus, and has a desire to begin a professional career in Student Affairs.

This Robert F. Rodgers Graduate Student of the Year is presented annually by OCPA. As graduate students become more actively involved in creating the future direction of Student Affairs, OCPA has committed to recognizing their professional achievements. OCPA presents The Graduate Student of the Year Award in recognition of the dedication and unlimited energies of a full-time Ohio graduate student, masters or doctoral candidate, in the field of student affairs, college/student personnel or a related field.