Schroeder wins Outstanding Service Award

Jodi Schroeder

“You must do the things you think you cannot do.” This quote from Eleanor Roosevelt has inspired Jodi Schroeder to strive to grow, learn and improve the environment around her. By all accounts, she succeeds abundantly.

Schroeder, administrative assistant in the Department of Theatre and Film, was selected as this year’s winner of the Classified Staff Council Outstanding Service Award. It was presented to her at the annual CSC spring reception, along with a $1,000 check and a plaque bearing her name, to be permanently displayed on the second floor of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.

Theatre and Film is “complex creature,” wrote department chair Dr. Lesa Lockford, and Schroeder handles the department’s operations with both attention to detail and goodwill.

In addition to its academic classes, which entail class schedules, day-to-day student registration and scheduling, it also has robust theatrical and film productions and other activities that “reach beyond the traditional classroom, for they consistently involve pedagogical experiences that take place in studios, laboratories and field work,” said Dr. Cynthia Baron, professor of theatre and film.

“To create these experiences, the department functions much like a small business that requires purchase of production materials, supervision of multiple budget lines, and constant coordination of schedules and applied teaching spaces. Ms. Schroeder handles all of the complexities of these tasks seamlessly and graciously. She has an exceptional ability to grasp the big picture, and at the same time ensure that all details are addressed.”

“Ms. Schroeder is the lynchpin for so many parts of our organizational structure,” Lockford said. “What sets her apart is how student-focused she is. While all the administrative tasks before her are important and she handles them with diligence, timeliness and care, she takes special care for matters that concern the welfare of students. She understands the significance of our pedagogical mission and wholeheartedly embraces the service aspect of our job.”

When additional events occur, such as this year’s high-profile major donor event and the celebration of the Gish Film Theater, she also takes them in stride, assisting with the same calm, organized approach she brings to her usual work. “She is immensely diplomatic, evincing the ability to meet a situation with professionalism and the appropriate response,” Lockford said.

The same was true when Schroeder served in a shared role as senior secretary for both theatre and film and the School of Art, said Dr. Katerina Rüedi Ray, former school director. Not only did she organize the annual Art Discovery Day bringing high school students to visit four BGSU academic units, scheduling class visits and presentations, food and transportation “with 100 percent success,” she also served as secretary to the school’s donor group, again showing the kind of efficiency and tact that promoted the functioning of the group and ultimately, increased donations.

When she was first hired to that role, she came from the chemistry department and the arts group wondered, “How will she transition from the world of numbers and formulae to the world of words, movement, images, sound, costumes and scenery, as well as our deeply diverse and expressive faculty and students?” Ray said.

“We need not have worried! Jodi brought the perfect balance of rationality and imagination, logic and empathy, analysis and human communication to her new position. She learned new tasks in both units very fast and just as quickly began to make improvements to various processes. She is a wonderful and highly effective colleague.”

Ray also noted that Schroeder challenges herself by pursuing a master’s degree and serving as a leader for BGSU CHAARG, an organization that helps young women build a positive self-image.

As Lockford said, Schroeder does all this “with grace, kindness and care.”

Updated: 05/23/2018 03:00PM