Office of International Affairs hosts second annual Global Achievement Awards



The winners of the 2023 Global Awareness Awards pose for a photo. They are as follows in no particular order: the Department of Animal Science; Jose Alvarez, School of American and Global Studies; Stephanie Bebensee, College of Nursing; Michael Gonda, Department of Animal Science; Tracy Greene, Office of General Counsel; Tonya Hohenthaner, Human Resources; Rajesh Kavasseri, Jerome J. Lohr College of Engineering; Michelle Kuebler, Admissions Office; Ashley McConnell, Department of Biology & Microbiology; Kay Trooien, Records & Registration; Mark Venhuizen, University Student Union and Greg Wasberg, Miller Wellness Center.

Kenneth Rebello, Reporter

South Dakota State University’s Office of International Affairs recognized 11 people and the Department of Animal Science at its second annual Global Achievement Awards Monday at the SDSU Alumni Association’s Woster Celebration Hall.

The Global Achievement Awards were hosted to honor the faculty, campus staff members and students of the community who help to support international students as well as study abroad education.

“Today’s program is to mainly recognize individuals for their contributions to internationalize South Dakota State University,” Dennis Hedge, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, said.

Hedge thanked and congratulated the honorees of the award and the Office of International Affairs for their contribution toward the international community at SDSU.

“I think it shows our appreciation toward them for the hard work put in, because many of our recipients are interacting with international students on a daily basis,” said Kirsten Linke, international student adviser for the Office of International Affairs and International Relations Council.

This year, the Global Achievement Awards witnessed fewer honorees compared to its inaugural edition. Last year, 30 honorees were awarded with the Global Achievement Award. 

“We were intending to host the first annual Global Achievement Awards in 2020, and then we all know what had happened (COVID-19),” Linke said. “Last year, we had honored three years’ worth of honorees, including 2020, 2021 and 2022.”

Faculty members have a long history of leading educational trips abroad. They help students achieve global mobility and understanding of how things would be in a different country..

Staff members help students in a variety of ways. They collaborate alongside the Office of International Affairs to achieve goals for the student. 

Students who contribute to the international community have participated in a higher level of different opportunities on campus like leadership positions and their involvement with the Office of International Affairs. 

“When you talk about internationalization, which is a very common term in international education, we don’t mean to imply that we’re trying to make everything on campus international,” Jon Stauff, assistant vice president for International  Affairs, said. “What we’re trying to do is to work to integrate the university and the community with as many global connections as possible.” 

Besides the recipients for the Global Achievement Awards, the International Relations Council and all the international student organizations on campus were recognized for their contribution to the campus’ internationalization.