Staff Development

Student Life Professional Development Committee

The Student Life Professional Development Committee (SLPDC) serves as a catalyst for professional development, personal growth, and community building among members of the Student Life Division and the broader university community. Our work is aligned with the University’s mission to offer the knowledge and skills needed to succeed as persons and professionals.

Our Guiding Values

  • Inclusivity: Welcoming and encouraging expression and exploration of diverse identities, thoughts, and experiences. 
  • Collegial Engagement: Fostering formal and informal, professional and personal interactions.
  • Connectivity: Building relationships within the division, across the university, with students, staff, and faculty.
  • Growth: Supporting continual improvement in knowledge and skills.
  • Access: Providing opportunities that are accessible to diverse learning styles and position schedules.

Signature Events

The committee coordinates a number of signature professional development programs, promotes ongoing professional development opportunities, and provides vehicles for the recognition and celebration of professional contributions and achievements.

Eat-Read-Connect is intended to assist Student Life professionals in connecting with each other over an assigned book (common text) as well as to create opportunities to discuss issues of professional and personal development. Eat-Read-Connect reading groups are organized and offered to the division each fall and spring semester.

Each fall and spring, the committee hosts webinars and/or virtual conferences designed to stimulate discussion and the development of best practices related to important topics in higher education and professional development.

Each spring the committee hosts a Professional Development Symposium for the division. True to a conference format, the symposium includes a keynote speaker, several concurrent professional development sessions, and Student Life Awards presented to members of the division. Presenting at the symposium is one of the valuable professional development opportunities offered in the division and each year an invitation to present is extended to all members of Student Life.

Student Life professionals are part of the most important, demanding, and meaningful professions in the nation. Finding ways to celebrate at the end of the year is key to maintaining a positive culture at USF. Thus, the SLPDC end of the year social is an opportunity to come together and celebrate another successful year.

In conjunction with the Vice Provost for Student Life, the Student Life Professional Development Committee (SLPDC) provides an opportunity to nominate colleagues or teams for one of six awards that are presented at the Student Life Professional Development Symposium. Congratulations to our recipients (listed below by year)! 


Rising Star Award: This award recognizes a graduate student working within the Division of Student Life who provides exceptional contributions to students and the University. This individual does not need to be in the Student Affairs Intern Program (SAIP), but must be actively working within a Student Life department or area at the time of nomination and selection. 

Jessica Alva (2019-2020)

Phoebe Tran (2018-2019)

Monica Paez (2017-2018)


Community Connector Award: This award recognizes a professional staff member who strives for excellence in building relationships within the division and across the University with students, staff, and faculty. 

Lamonte Stamps (2019-2020)

Deb Kang (2018-2019)

Alvin Mangosing (2017-2018)


Creative Works Award: This award recognizes an individual (graduate or professional), team, or department that strives for excellence in developing and implementing creative and innovative practices in delivery of service or education to students. 

Student Leadership and Engagement Marketing Team (2019-2020)

Mariella Brodersen (2018-2019)

Magis Leadership Program (2017-2018) 


Cross-Team Collaboration Award: This award recognizes an individual (graduate or professional), team, or department that strives for excellence in intra- and/or interdepartmental teamwork and uses collaboration to enhance and improve projects within the Division of Student Life. 

Student Housing and Residential Education (2019-2020)

Steve Peach (2018-2019)

Elise Yoshida (2017-2018)


Assessment Excellence Award: This award recognizes a team or department that strives for excellence in using effective measurements to assess program or student learning outcomes and uses that information to improve services and/or programs. 

Magis Leadership Team (2019-2020)

Sara Solloway (2018-2019)

Counseling and Psychological Services (2017-2018)


Social Change Catalyst Award: This award recognizes an individual (graduate or professional) that strives for excellence in promoting equity, inclusion, and justice at any level of a university organization (team, department, division), above and beyond the scope of position responsibilities.

 Alana Harrington (2019-2020)

Nicole Garcia (2018-2019)*

Tyler Murphy (2018-2019)*

* Two recipients were awarded this year

Committee Membership

The Student Life Professional Development Committee is comprised of staff members from various departments and position levels within the Student Life division. Committee appointments are made by recommendations from members of the Student Life Leadership Team each May for the following academic year.

If you have questions/comments/suggestions, please reach out to Committee Chair, Golden Venters, at