On December 7th WWCC had the opportunity to recognize an incredible employee with a community service award at the Chamber of Commerce’s 134th annual awards banquet. Laura Schueller, Coordinator of the Center for Academic Success, is a familiar face on campus and someone who puts her heart into her work every day.
Doug Bayne was honored to speak about Laura at the banquet. His sentiments, stated below, are reflective of the great work Laura does to further the college’s mission of student success and to impact the community as a whole.
“This marks the 20th year that Walla Walla Community College recognizes one of our very own outstanding family members. Past recipients are listed in your program this evening and we are honored to have them associated with the college. We believe service to our communities is more than listing membership on various boards and associations. It is truly a commitment to ‘making a difference.’ Making a difference not only in the present, but setting others on a future course where they will make the difference in their communities over time. Our recipient tonight is just such a leader, confidant, advisor, mother, community member, friend, and, oh by the way, an energetic math wizard!
There are many compelling reasons our award recipient is so deserving—overseeing a diverse staff of tutors in meeting our diverse students’ needs in The Learning Center; and leading a revolutionary overhaul of pre-college math requirement instruction and course work. This model has dramatically increased the student success rate in completing college level math work; shortened the time to that completion; and serving as a template for many other colleges in our system as they adopt a similar model. If you have a child, grandchild, family member or friend who enters college and needs to complete course work to prepare for college level math—Laura is the reason they will successfully complete that work in a timely manner.
But she doesn’t stop serving the community there—an avid athletic booster at both Walla Walla Community College and Whitman—Laura is a loyal Warrior and a true fan of the Blues. She hosts student athletes’ family members who travel long distances to see their favorite team play. She volunteers with the Tour Walla Walla bicycle event; coordinated the Walla Walla Valley Elementary School Math Contest, serving as a mentor for all children (but especially young women); encouraging them to be successful STEAM (yes, some Arts included) students. In previous years, she has served as PTA President for Edison Elementary and Garrison Middle School; and she and Albert advocate for the most vulnerable and disenfranchised children in our community.
Finally, I am not a hugger—and I am very nervous about Laura receiving this award this evening. Laura is gracious, kind and very, very outgoing. You have probably been hugged by her if you ever attended a Sweets game. That is all that needs to be said.
It is an honor and I am very proud on the behalf of Walla Walla Community College to present the 2016 Community Service Award to Dr. Laura Schueller.”