Spathelf honored for excellence in academic advising, mentoring

Spathelf
Clare Spathelf (center) with Provost Joe Whitehead (left) and President Rodney Rogers at the 2019 Faculty Excellence Awards.

Clare Spathelf’s clever leadership and direct service to over 650 undergraduate students pursuing degree programs with the intent of extending their education in one of nine professional programs has earned her a Faculty Excellence Award. Spathelf, assistant director of Pre-Professional Programs at BGSU, received the 2019 Academic Advising and Mentoring Excellence Award at the Faculty Excellence Awards on April 16.

The award recognizes an individual faculty, staff member or group of individuals who contribute to the educational development of undergraduate students through effective academic advising and mentoring. The recognition includes an award of up to $1,000 for their efforts.

“Without question, Clare is a student-centered professional and a tireless advocate for student success,” wrote Andy Alt, assistant vice provost for academic affairs, undergraduate advising and academic services.

Spathelf has built a solid program for pre-professional students at BGSU, and has led significant efforts to further enhance the scope and service of BGSU students. Additionally, her professional experience at BGSU has allowed her to make effective and meaningful relationships with advisers, faculty, student support units across campus, and external partners and stakeholders.

“Over the past nearly five years, Clare Spathelf has put together an advising office that more efficiently, effectively and completely prepares our students to successfully apply to professional school,” Dr. Lee Meserve, Distinguished Teaching Professor Emeritus in the Department of Biological Sciences, wrote. “And she does this unflaggingly with enthusiasm, with empathy and with love for her student charges.”

On top of her service to students, Spathelf’s recent accomplishments include the opening of a new office space, scheduling meaningful use of the Resource Room for student organizations, expanding service to students and executing three summer camps.

Spathelf spends her time connecting with students and encouraging them on their educational journey. Her particular interest in each student helps them move on to the next step in their careers. For example, she personally proofread first-year medical student and BGSU alumnus Nate Locke’s personal statements on his medical school applications.

“Clare played a crucial role in my acceptance,” Locke said. “Her work to provide the resources that prepared me for the MCAT, written application process and the interview process was priceless. Not only that, but Clare spent time with me to ensure that my application was flawless.”

Her influence on students does not stop after they leave BGSU. Locke said that she continues to encourage him through the occasional email, wishing him the best with the “same warm encouragement I have always received from her.”