Ronald L. Vaughn, president of The University of Tampa, has been awarded the 2017 William M. Burke Presidential Award for Excellence in Experiential Education.
This award is presented by the National Society for Experiential Education (NSEE) and funded by The Washington Center for Academic Internships and Seminars (TWC) in memory of TWC’s founder William M. Burke. It recognizes a sitting college president who has made significant contributions to experiential education and exemplifies Burke’s commitment to college students through support of experiential education on campus and in the community.
The nomination stated that Vaughn embraces, demonstrates and nurtures experiential education at UT “through extensive modeling, support, and leadership to ensure continued success and impactful learning.”
Vaughn most demonstrably supported experiential education at UT through the implementation of UT’s current Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), which focuses on student inquiry with faculty-student collaborations, undergraduate research and internships.
For example, UT offers more than 1,000 internships and student/faculty research opportunities, its students and employees serve more than 300 community organizations each year, and there are more than 1,500 campus employment opportunities and even more part-time opportunities with area organizations. Plus, students enjoy consulting assignments, clinical practicums, applied community research projects and more.
Paul Kwant, president-elect of NSEE and Music Industry Management Program director/assistant professor at Ferris State University, said Vaughn’s “strong leadership and passion for experiential education have been manifested in many ways at UT, benefiting students, faculty, staff and the community.”
The Burke Award consists of a $2,000 scholarship to be awarded to a deserving student at UT who is involved in experiential learning.
Vaughn said he is honored to receive the Burke award and thanks the faculty and other academic leaders who all worked diligently to help create UT’s rich experiential education learning environment. “I view this award as institutional recognition of the great progress we have made together,” he said. “I’m happy that all UT students can enrich their learning through the many impactful experiential education opportunities we provide.”
Vaughn will receive the award at the 2017 NSEE Annual Conference Awards Luncheon on Tuesday, Sept. 26, at the Don CeSar Hotel in St. Pete Beach.