ABSAP Awards

Annual awards have been established to acknowledge alumni relations professionals and alumni programs that put forth best efforts and practices while contributing to the advancement of the industry. Awards are presented during a program at the annual conference in July. It’s a time to be recognized for dedication, hard work, and service to alumni.

  • 2013 award recipients cropped with label.jpg
  • 2014 award recipients medium cropped with label.jpg
  • ABSAP award recipients 2012 cropped with label.jpg

 


2016 ABSAP Award Winners

Most Improved Alumni Relations Initiative Award 
McCombs School of Business, University of Texas at Austin
“40 Hours for 40 Acres” Campaign
This annual giving campaign started in 2014 with the goal to inspire alumni to give back to the school during 40 hours in April. In 2015, the campaign raised $17,609 from 399 alumni. In 2016 changes were made that included a branded, mobile-responsive web page with live giving updates, and heavy social media and volunteer engagement strategies. The Alumni Relations team collaborated with students to schedule the legacy student campaigns to coincide with the campaign. At the end of the 40 hours, they raised $91,913 from 589 alumni, which was a 422 percent increase in gifts and a 48 percent increase in the number of donors over the previous year. 

Most Innovative Initiative Award
McCombs School of Business, University of Texas at Austin
“Texas 12 Dinners” Program
This program brings together 12 strangers for dinner where alumni have an opportunity to meet fellow graduates they would not otherwise meet.  The Alumni Relations team personalized the format of the first three events to best serve different alumni affinities.  They secured hosts for the dinners at faculty members' and alumni homes.  They also had a different theme for each dinner.  This new initiative succeeded in that it 1) connected alumni who would not otherwise meet each other, thus expanding their personal and professional networks, 2) helped alumni to view the school as a valuable resource for fostering connections, 3) expanded the career network of students and alumni, and 4) provided an industry connection for a faculty member. 
Outstanding Partnership Award
Smeal College of Business, Pennsylvania State University
“Change of Location” Project
The Alumni Relations Office, along with the Alumni Society Board, decided to take action and provide assistance to "change of location" transfer students by partnering with the Career Office.  With so many diverse aspects of this demographic, it was vital to develop a portfolio of projects in order to launch this collaborative effort.  In turn, these projects have created exciting engagement opportunities for alumni. Together the teams have been able to see significant progress in Change of Location initiatives in the past year alone, and they are confident that our continued collaborations will lead to results that we could not achieve independently.
Outstanding New Professional Award
Sandy Gelinas, Stern School of Business, New York University
Associate Director, Alumni Relations
Since joining her school’s team last summer, Sandy has made an exceptional impact across so many facets. She was quick to take on a tremendously challenging but important portfolio of work, and has made such a difference in the last 12 months across all aspects of this portfolio. Sandy fits the bill when thinking of an "ideal teammate." She is always willing to jump in and help on a project, offer her thoughts or insight from past programs, or simply brainstorm a sticky situation. Not only is she impressive in the volume of work she accomplishes, but Sandy's quality of work is just as striking. 



2015 ABSAP Award Winners

Most Improved Alumni Relations Initiative Award 
Ross School of Business, University of Michigan
Most Innovative Initiative Award
Mendoza College of Business, University of Notre Dame
Outstanding Partnership Award
George Washington University School of Business
Outstanding New Professional Award
Jennifer Mihalek, Booth School of Business, University of Chicago
Outstanding Service to ABSAP Award
John Sengenberger, Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University


2014 ABSAP Award Winners

Most Improved Alumni Relations Initiative Award
Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University
for their Reunion Weekend
Outstanding Partnership Award
George Washington University School of Business
for their Capitol Advertising Program
Outstanding New Professional Award
Adrienne Jaroch, Goizueta Business School, Emory University
Outstanding Service to ABSAP Award
Janice Headley, Kelley School of Business, Indiana University


2013 ABSAP Award Winners

Most Improved Alumni Relations Initiative Award
Paul Merage School of Business, University of California, Irvine
for New Graduate Engagement Program
Most Innovative Initiative Award
George Washington University School of Business
for Volunteer Stewardship Letter Process
Outstanding Partnership Award
Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University
for Tepper Alumni Magazine App
Outstanding New Professional Award
Megan Rasmussen, Foster School of Business, University of Washington
Outstanding Service to ABSAP Award
Leslie Mille, College of Business, Florida State University


2012 ABSAP Award Winners

Most Improved Alumni Relations Initiative Award
Kelley School of Business, Indiana University
for Industry Connections Event
Most Innovative Initiative Award
Kelley School of Business, Indiana University
for Future Alumni Leaders Banquet
Outstanding New Professional Award (Co-Recipients)
Meghan Bollens, Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University
Mike Schmeckebier, Kelley School of Business, Indiana University


Please click each Award to reveal the details.


Guidelines for the Most Improved Alumni Relations Initiative Award
This award recognizes a business school’s alumni relations team for improving an existing initiative. 

The winning school will receive one free registration to the following year's ABSAP conference.  (The free registration may not be held for a future year.)

Eligibility Criteria
  • The school is a current dues-paying member school of ABSAP.
  • The initiative is an improved version of an existing initiative (e.g., event, website, newsletter).
  • The submission cannot be for a new initiative.
  • The improvement to the initiative was implemented on or after July 1, 2016.
 
Number of Awards
One award is given to a school each year, assuming the nomination meets the criteria and is approved by the selection committee.

Nominations
Nominations are solicited from current dues-paying member schools of ABSAP. In 500 words or less, the nomination should describe the original initiative and an outline of all the ways in which the team has changed or enhanced the initiative. Supporting documents, illustrating the improvements made to the initiative, are encouraged (e.g. letters of support, press releases, before and after images, analytics/metrics). No more than (3) supporting documents will be considered.


Guidelines for the Most Innovative Initiative Award
This award recognizes a business school’s alumni relations team for a new initiative that supports the mission of the respective school, department, and/or the alumni relations profession. 

The winning school will receive one free registration to the following year's ABSAP conference.  (The free registration may not be held for a future year.)

Eligibility & Criteria
  • The school is a current dues-paying member school of ABSAP.
  • The initiative is a completely new initiative (e.g., event, website, newsletter).
  • It cannot be an improved version of an existing program.
  • The initiative was implemented between January 1, 2016 and May 1, 2017.

Number of Awards
One award is given to a school each year, assuming the nominee meets the awards criteria and is approved by the selection committee.

Nominations
Nominations are solicited from current dues-paying member schools of ABSAP. In 500 words or less, the nomination should describe the success of the new initiative, as well as how the initiative and outcomes are connected to the overall office/department goals. Supporting documents, illustrating the initiative, are encouraged (e.g. letters of support, press releases). No more than (3) supporting documents will be considered.


Guidelines for the Outstanding Partnership Award
This award recognizes the successful partnership between a business school’s alumni relations team and another unit at their school or an outside organization on either a single initiative or on an ongoing basis to serve their alumni constituency. 

The winning school will receive one free registration to the following year's ABSAP conference.  (The free registration may not be held for a future year.)

Eligibility & Criteria
  • The school is a current dues-paying member school of ABSAP.
  • The school is pursuing or has successfully executed at least one initiative in support of the mission of the business school involving the collaboration of alumni relations and another unit of the school or an outside organization.

Number of Awards
One award is given to a school each year, assuming the nominee meets the awards criteria and is approved by the selection committee.

Nominations
Nominations are solicited from current dues-paying member schools of ABSAP. In 500 words or less, the nomination should describe the scope of the school’s alumni relations partnership. Supporting documents, emphasizing the outcome and/or influence of the partnership for the school, are encouraged (e.g. letters of support, press releases). No more than (3) supporting documents will be considered


Guidelines for the Outstanding New Professional Award
This award recognizes the accomplishments of new professionals in alumni relations and/or development efforts who exceed excellence at their school.

The winning school will receive one free registration to the following year's ABSAP conference.  The registration need not be used for the same staff member to attend the conference.  (The free registration may not be held for a future year.)

Eligibility and Criteria
  • The individual is employed at a current dues-paying member school of ABSAP.
  • The individual has no more than three years of experience in alumni relations and/or development.
  • The individual demonstrates significant achievements in their professional experience and involvement in professional organizations.
  • The individual exhibits the potential for future leadership in alumni relations or development.

Number of Awards
Up to two (2) awards will be given each year, assuming the nominees meet the criteria and are approved by the selection committee. The award includes a registration stipend for a staff member at the recipient’s school to attend the annual conference the following year.

Nominations
Nominations are solicited from current dues-paying member schools of ABSAP. In 500 words or less, the nomination should describe the individual’s professional achievements. In addition, the nomination should include the following materials:

  • Two (2) letters of support, not exceed one page in length each. Letters may be submitted by the individual’s supervisor, the business school dean, colleagues, or alumni volunteers. No more than two (2) letters of support will be considered.
  • Resume or biographical document, not to exceed one page in length.
Guidelines for the Outstanding Service to ABSAP Award
This award recognizes an individual whose service to ABSAP supports its mission and enhances the vision of the greater organization.

The winning school will receive one free registration to the following year's ABSAP conference.  The registration need not be used for the same staff member to attend the conference.  (The free registration may not be held for a future year.)

Eligibility and Criteria
  • The individual is employed at a current dues-paying member school of ABSAP.
  • The individual has at least one year of experience in alumni relations and/or development.
  • The individual is actively involved in ABSAP.

Number of Awards
One (1) award is given each year, assuming the nominee meets the criteria and is approved by the selection committee.

Nominations
Nominations are solicited from current dues-paying member schools of ABSAP. In 500 words or less, the nomination should describe the individual’s contributions to ABSAP. In addition, the nomination should include:

  • One letter of support, not to exceed one page in length. No more than one letter of support will be considered.
  • The letter should be submitted by a member of ABSAP at another institution.


For consideration of the ABSAP Awards, the following guidelines have been implemented:

Selecting Body
The selection committee consists of members of the ABSAP Awards Committee, with final consultation provided by the ABSAP Advisory Council.

Timeline
The call for nominations is posted to the ABSAP community on LinkedIn. Nominations are typically sought two to three months prior to the annual conference, and submissions are typically due a few weeks prior to the conference. The award is presented to the recipient and/or school at the annual conference.

NOTE: Similar to the way in which we showcase each school’s promotional materials at the annual conference, the award recipients may be asked (where appropriate)—in a similar venue—to showcase the initiatives that led to winning the awards.

In addition to these five professional awards, the "SAPPYS" will be awarded for various fun/comical antics that happen during the conference. All attendees are able to vote on these awards. More details about these awards will be provided at the conference.

For any questions about the ABSAP Awards Program, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Please include "ABSAP Awards" in the subject line of your email.