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MIACADA is pleased to offer the Outstanding Academic Advisor Awards annually. 

The awards are designed to honor individuals and institutions within Michigan making significant contributions to the improvement of academic advising.

The deadline for the receipt of nomination materials is CLOSED FOR 2024.

Awards will be presented at the 2024 MIACADA state conference held on Friday, May 17, 2024. Awardees will have their 2024 conference registration fee waived. This is for the 2024 conference only and only available to the awardee.

Award Description:

  • Academic Advising‐Primary Role — Individuals whose primary role at the institution is the direct delivery of advising services to students.

  • Faculty Academic Advising — Individuals whose primary responsibility is teaching but who spend a portion of their time providing academic advising services to students.

  • Academic Advising Administrator — Individuals who may provide direct academic advising services but whose primary responsibility is as an administrator or director of an academic advising program.

  • Graduate Student Graduate students who: demonstrate comprehensive knowledge of coursework and apply this knowledge to practice; take a leadership role and demonstrate a commitment to the advancement of the advising profession; foster student development (cognitive, career, identity, personal) through advising and strive to create effective advising partnerships with students.

  • Pacesetter The Pacesetter Award recognizes Executive Officers, Provosts, and Academic or Student Affairs Officers (e.g., Vice Provosts, Vice Presidents, Deans, etc.) who exemplify a commitment to academic advising and are true advocates for advising, students, and advisors across the institution. The Pacesetter Award has a separate application link. Please see below for details.


  • Any individual serving as an academic advisor or advising administrator, and a current member of MIACADA for at least 1 year. This does not apply to the faculty advisor, graduate student, or the Pacesetter nominees. 

  • Current members of the Executive Board are not eligible for consideration for these advising awards. After the member's term of office is over, they may then be eligible for consideration.

  • Previous award winners are not eligible for the same award. 

  • Self‐nominations are welcome.


The Selection Committee will evaluate nominations on the evidence of qualities and practices that distinguish the nominee as an outstanding academic advisor, faculty advisor, advising administrator, graduate student, or pacesetter. Such evidence may include: 

  • Interpersonal/Human Relations Skills

  • Professional Practices/NACADA Core Values

  • Documented Success

  • Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • Documented Professional Development

  • Personal Advising and/or Leadership Philosophy 

Award Rubric:

Submit a Nomination:

Academic Advising‐Primary Role Award, 

Faculty Academic Advising Award,

Academic Advising Administrator Award, OR

Graduate Student Award Nomination/Application Requirements::

  • Completed online application

  • Vita/Resume (2-page maximum)

  • Up to 2 Letters of support

    • 1 student support letter
    • 1 professional support letter
  • Nominee’s Advising and/or Leadership Philosophy (2-page maximum) - A statement that guides your practice as an advisor or advising administrator, determines goals and objectives, and forms a foundation for advisement and leadership. Here is a resources on creating your advising philosophy

  • Summary of the Nominee’s Qualifications (5-page maximum) - This key piece should summarize the extent to which the nominee meets the award criteria. This can include quotes from students and colleagues, examples of projects and presentations, office or campus-wide initiatives, previous recognition/awards, data, or other materials illustrative of exemplary performance in the associated award category. This summary should illustrate how the nominee consistently goes beyond expected job duties to provide outstanding service in their role. 

Pacesetter Award Nomination/Application Requirements:

  • Completed online application
  • The most recent resume/vita for the candidate (5-page maximum). Please limit entries to material that pertains directly to academic advising, presenting relevant information from the nominee's overall resume/vita. 
  • Summary of the Nominee’s Qualifications (5-page maximum) - A supporting letter from the nominator, or nominee (if self-nominating), providing evidence that the candidate has made significant contributions to the profession of academic advising, demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, leadership in the field of advising, as well as related professional areas, and a commitment to the importance of academic advising at a state, regional and/or national level. 
  • Letters of support from colleagues and staff (5 letters maximum)

Additional information requested above should be emailed to: 

Emily Reetz, MIACADA Past President

Nomination Deadline: April 5, 2024

Note: If someone has already paid for their conference fee and receives the award, they will get their conference fee refunded.


    Advising Award Winners-Advisor Primary Role (Established 2009)






     Margaret MacKeverican

     Erin Bususscher

     Wayne State University

     Grand Rapids Community College


     Cynthia Merritt

     Wayne State University


     James Fortune

     Wayne State University


     Erin Yanke

     Henry Ford College


     Tamarie Willis

     Wayne State University


     Debra Wheeler

     Oakland University


     Sherry Spencer

     Eastern Michigan University


     Laurie Shano

     Oakland University


     Amy Tratt

     Michigan State University


     Angela Caruso

     Grand Valley State University


     Felipe Lopez Sustaita

     Lansing Community College


     Anne M. London

     Grand Valley State University


    Donna LM Malaski

     Oakland University


     Thea Brophy

     Calvin College


     Betty Sanford

     Michigan State University


     Carmen Etienne

     Oakland University


     Marilyn Kritzman

     Western Michigan University

    Advising Award Winners-Faculty Advisor (Established 2009)

     Year  Name  Institution
     2021 Maria Smith Bohannon
     Oakland University
     2018  Bradley Isler  Ferris State University
     2017  Paula Dronen  Andrews University
     2009  Christine Yalda  Grand Valley State University

    Advising Award Winners-Advising Administrator (Established 2009)

     Year  Name  Institution
     2021 Donna L.M. Malaski
     Kellogg Community College
     2019  Christine Robinson  Western Michigan University
     2018  Catherine Bernas  Wayne State University
     2016 Dana Hebreard Calvin College
     2015 Molly Weir Eastern Michigan University
     2012 Cheryl Kollin Wayne State University
     2009 Jennifer McCaul Grand Valley State University

    Advising Award Winners-Graduate Student (Established 2009)

     Year  Name  Institution
     2022 Natalie Drobny
     University of Michigan 
     2018  Brook-Lynn Vij  Oakland University
     2017  Megan Coburn  Grand Valley State University
     2015 Theresa Lyon Grand Valley State University
     2014 Leah Kicinski Grand Valley State University
     2013 John Gipson Grand Valley State University
     2012 Kathryn Clark Grand Valley State University
     2011 Amy M. Burns Grand Valley State University
     2009 Lauren Long Grand Valley State University


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